I've been working hard to make our screened in porch into a livable outdoor space this summer. The patio floor was a disaster before I started this makeover, you can see before pics in this post here, but now it has been cleaned, prepped and painted a pretty beige/grey paint color from Valspar. I painted the floors and it was a huge improvement, but I really felt it needed a bigger pop. The neutral color was too neutral for me, it just didn't look polished or finished to me. I absolutely love the look of cement tile, but they are insanely expensive (thousands) to purchase/install and I am just not willing to spend that kind of money on this project! Not wanting to give up the look of tiles, I decided a floor stencil would be a fun alternative to add some design to the porch without breaking the bank. The fun thing about this stencil is that I actually created the stencil from scratch, so this turned out to be an incredibly budget friendly upgrade. The stencil cost me about 25 dollars to make (vs about 45 dollars to have a stencil made of the same size or 80 dollars for a production size larger stencil with repeating patterns). The chalk paint and stencil were under 20 dollars at the craft store. The project is mainly an investment of time. The stenciling took me about 4 hours over two days, and it was a PITA honestly. But, the floor came out exactly like I imagined and I'm obsessed! It really brighten up our patio and adds a bit of character and fun. What do you think??

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I am so excited to partner with Valspar to makeover our cute little screened in back patio that I never paid much attention to until recently. This is most likely because it was covered in old cardboard boxes, dust and grime. I shuddered at the creepy crawlies living under those boxes and just simply put the room out of my mind. This Spring, I felt a renewed interest in this room, mostly because I love entertaining in the backyard and last year, the mosquitos proved too much to make this dream a reality. We had people over a few times and had to end the nights both times due to mosqutios at the end of the night. Enter, screened in patio. 

Here is the disgusting disaster that we started with: You wanna know why I had to take this picture through the screen door? Because I was terrified of going in there.

I cleared this patio out in a few hours (with the help of a shovel so I didn't have to touch anything gross). After throwing away pretty much everything in there, sweeping the floor, and pressure washing the concrete, it looked like this.

We took out the screens, took them to the hardware store to be replaced and popped them back in. After fixing the screens, repairing the cracked concrete and painting the concrete, and adding some patio furniture on sale at Home Depot, our patio resembled this.

I spent a few hours patching the patio. We bought fast setting concrete and Lowe's and just used YouTube as my teacher. It worked well enough and was pretty easy. If you have smaller cracks than we did, you'd be able to easily patch them yourself. We had big patches of completely uneven concrete, as well as cracks, so I found even-ing out the concrete rather time consuming and somewhat frustrating. It didn't come out completely even. Oh well, I did the best I could.

We were then ready to paint the concrete. I used Valspar Porch & Floor Paint in the color Villa Grey. I also etched with Valspar Fast Prep. Etching is easy and (kind of) and pretty fun actually! I'm not an expert in this by any means, so I won't explain in depth how to do it, but basically you water down the patio with a hose, pour the etching fluid into a plastic can and then sprinkle it all over the porch. Then you use a scrub brush to really clean the patio, then rinse off the Fast Prep with the hose! There are helpful videos from Valspar on how to use this project, it works really well and prepared the concrete to be painted.  You have to let the Fast Prep dry for at least 24 hours. I waited about that long, I was eager to get the project going so I didn't wait any longer.


I used two coats of Valspar's Latex Porch & Floor paint, and honestly, I probably could have used three. I have some other ideas for the third layer actually, I want to stencil a fun pattern all over the floor and seal it with a clear sealant. I used a roller from Lowe's and a roller extender for the painting. I actually poured the paint right onto the floor when it was time, rather than using a paint tray. Pouring the paint directly on the floor worked totally fine and I would totally recommend this method! I feel like it sped the process up a bit, too.  I did not seal the floor with anything (yet) and I've actually read mixed reviews about applying a sealant. Once I stencil the floor, I think I'll probably apply a Varathane floor sealant to protect my design. Until then, I'm just enjoying the clean simplicity of our newly painted floor!



Here is how our patio turned out after the paint! It's definitely heading in the right direction, right?! I'm so excited to keep working on the patio this summer, and I can't wait to fully furnish and style the room! Not to mention the summer parties! I will say though, this has turned out to be a bigger project than I originally thought. With all the repairing, cleaning, prepping, painting and soon stenciling and sealing as well as decorating...This project may occupy a few of my early summer weekends before I can call it finished! Have you ever taken on something like this? How did it turn out? Are you as obsessed with outdoor space as I am? Let me know in the comments!


Thank you to Valspar for sponsoring this post.




DIY Bridal Shower

Last weekend, my mom and I put together (with the crucial assistance of some family friends) a bridal shower for my recently engaged big sister. The shower was in our hometown and everything came together nicely! The turnout was perfect- a wonderful group of people from our childhood as well as family members still in Michigan, who we rarely get to see. My sister and I had the absolute best time decorating, playing the games, and drinking champagne. The two of us see each other very rarely that any time we spend together ends up being a hilarious, blast.

The pretty pink room was perfect for our floral themed shower! With real flowers punctuating our balloon creations, the decor was simple, festive, and (semi) easy to throw together right before the party!

DIY Bridal Shower

Our coffee and champagne bar was a pretty touch. I spent most of the time on the champagne side drinking mimosas and various tropical juices, but the crowd seemed to really enjoy the coffee being served throughout the party. Before the party started during the decorating session, things got a little tense with the time crunch and so many balloons to blow up. Crystal and I both decided that it was the perfect time for us to pop open a bottle of champagne just for the two of us...our moods quickly improved and we soldiered on with the set up.


The food spread came together nicely. While the initial thought was that the party would be appetizers mainly - there ended up being so much food! It was definitely an "I hope you didn't eat lunch or plan on eating dinner after this," type situation. Not complaining though, the food was delicious, The sandwiches were made at a local shop and we spent the night before cutting up fruit, organizing vegetables, and making a delicious pasta salad. I wish I had gotten close up shots of the fruit trays because the arrangements were straight up professional status.

DIY Bridal Shower

Gold and Floral were accented throughout- which is absolutely perfect for the bride. If I could pick two words to describe the decor in her room, I would definitely pick "gold" and "floral." The desserts were large and yummy, picked up from this cute little boutique bakery in Detroit. 

DIY Bridal Shower

We played a few games (Crystal's favorite) at the shower and I've never enjoyed bridal games so much! It might be because I got to lead one of the games and insert all my own commentary... or maybe because I know her the best so I got first pick of the prizes. Either way, I was surprised at how much fun everyone had during the games, getting really competitive and saying funny stuff. At one point, a sweet relative, called the three of us (mom, sister, and me) gangsters...I still don't really know what that was about. Something to do with my knowing most of the answers, I think.

DIY Bridal Shower
DIY Bridal Shower

Most of the pre-party set up (for crystal and I at least) was spent on balloons. Do not underestimate just how annoying it is to hand tie 30 helium filled balloons. We created a few balloon clusters (easy ones- no tools required) just using a twist and tie method, and occasional  ribbon to keep the clusters together. A few of the balloons were just floating on the ceiling in the main dining room, mostly because we thought it looked cuter than having too many ribbons dangling.

DIY Bridal Shower

We also created a few balloon bouquet's like this one to tie in strategic places...and for pictures, of course!

DIY Bridal Shower
DIY Bridal Shower
DIY Bridal Shower

She got this STUNNING vase from Tiffany's. That's what that smile is all about...

DIY Bridal Shower

Everything came together beautifully, despite moments of tension and stress leading up to the party (sometimes inevitable, right?) but we could not have imagined a more fun way to spend a slow sunday, celebrating love with family and friends and my lovely sister who I rarely get to see! Do you love showers? What's your favorite activity? I've always loved showers of any kind (even baby ones)! I love a good excuse to get dressed up with friends and celebrate!!

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