Cozy Eclectic Master Bedroom Before & After: One Room Challenge Week 6

UPDATE! This project was shared by Apartment Therapy on December 3rd, 2018. There are a few details that were wrong in their post. I will address them as they appeared in the post.

1. The title is misleading. I did not create an “entirely new bedroom for only $350”. We kept a lot of existing elements, and added some personality through paint and textiles. $175 of the $350 total was for the Ikea dresser project.

2. My name is Avery, not Ashley.

3. The paint colors on the bedroom wall and the sunroom ceiling are not the same. The wall is Luxe by Magnolia and the ceiling is Early Riser by Magnolia.

4. We did not stain the nightstands. They are unfinished Tarva nightstands from Ikea.

5. We did add new artwork from Dandyroll Home above the bed, and the expense of the frames was part of my total cost.

Week Six is here and I am equal parts giddy, proud, and exhausted. This was my first experience with the One Room Challenge, and I am glad we decided to jump in and give it a shot!

If you’re finding me through the One Room Challenge, welcome to my home on the internet! I’m Avery and I live in rural Iowa with my husband. You can learn more about me here, and see some of my previous design work in my kitchen. My design style is cozy, whimsical, and collected. You can follow along with my homemaking adventures on the Holland Avenue Home Instagram

*This post contains affiliate links. If you choose to purchase any items from Target or Amazon through my links, I will make a small commission at no extra cost to you*

Here’s a recap of my posts for the One Room Challenge so far.

Week 1: Cozy Eclectic Master Bedroom Design Plan

Week 2: Moody Accent Wall

Week 3: DIY Throw Pillows and Vintage Artwork

Week 4: Hand-Painted Modern Chinoiserie Mural

Week 5: Ikea Dresser Makeover

Here’s a reminder of my vision for our Cozy Eclectic Master Bedroom update.

Cozy Eclectic Master Bedroom Moodboard One Room Challenge

I stuck to the original vision, and I’m so happy with all of the choices I made! I also updated the attached sunroom, and did a little improvising with that design plan which involved taking some bold risks with paint.  But you’re not here to listen to me ramble…you’re here for the reveal!

Here is a reminder of what our bedroom looked like before.

One Room Challenge- Master Bedroom Before

It was very neutral, and gave me a wonderful blank canvas to start with. I took my time designing our bedroom, and kept things very minimal and neutral for two and a half years. If I could go back in time, I would still make all of the same purchasing decisions for bedding and furniture, because it only took a few accessories and an accent wall to make this space unique and colorful! If you don’t have a clear idea of your personal style, you can’t go wrong with a neutral base. Experiment with adding color through accessories and pillows because they will be easier and cheaper to switch out if you’re not happy with the finished design.

Now for the exciting part… the “after”!

Cozy Eclectic Master Bedroom- One Room ChallengeCozy Eclectic Master Bedroom- One Room ChallengeCozy Eclectic Master Bedroom- One Room ChallengeCozy Eclectic Master Bedroom- One Room Challenge

Headboard | Lamp (Similar. Gold instead of wood) | Linen Duvet and Shams

Bird Poster | Indigo Throw (Similar)

We kept all of the same furniture, but I added unique and colorful accents with textiles and an accent wall. The throw pillows are all made from fabric I picked up at Mood on my recent trip to New York City for the Better Homes & Gardens Stylemaker Celebration. The indigo throw at the foot of the bed is from a very kind gentleman at the Chelsea Flea Market in NYC.

The art above the bed is very special to us. I love decorating with vintage maps, and Courtney from Dandyroll sent me these 1897 maps of Kentucky, Iowa, and Turkey (the three places my husband and I have immediate family). I wrote all about the prints and bedding in my Week 3 post, DIY Throw Pillows and Vintage Artwork: One Room Challenge Week 3.

On the wall opposite the bed, we have a new Ikea dresser! We already had one dresser (which I didn’t photograph because I had to move it out of the room to take photos of the bed!), but we needed a little bit more storage for large sweaters that need to be folded. We live in Iowa after all, so our winter clothing is the main component of our closet. We wanted to get the smaller, four-drawer Tarva dresser, but when we got to the warehouse it was out of stock! We decided to bring home the larger, 5 drawer Tarva dresser, and can use it in another bedroom or somewhere else down the road. I stained the dresser with Minwax Dark Walnut stain, and Ben installed the new hardware we bought from Hobby Lobby.

Ikea Dresser Hack- One Room Challenge

Ikea Dresser Hack- One Room Challenge

I needed a place to store my jewelry, and the top of the new dresser works perfectly! I was styling the top today to take photos, and all of my earrings were in a pouch. I decided on a whim to use the vintage books as a makeshift earring holder, and it is now one of my favorite styling elements of the whole update. I didn’t see it on Pinterest or anything, but as I was trying to arrange the mustard tassel earrings on the tray, I decided to stick them in the book. It works great, and is an unconventional and whimsical way to store my earrings without having to buy a special earring tree!

Ikea Dresser Hack- One Room Challenge

Mirror | Wood Watch | Gold Earrings

Now on to my FAVORITE part of the update, the sunroom! It is just through that door to the right of our bed.

Cozy Eclectic Master Bedroom- One Room Challenge

It has been neglected for the two and a half years that we’ve lived in this house. Here is what it looked like when we moved in. Beige walls, damaged wood trim (from the extreme temperatures and direct sunlight this room experiences), dated wallpaper, and pale green shades. Yikes. We used it as storage for two and a half years, but I knew that this space had amazing potential.

Sunroom Before- One Room ChallengeIMG_4188

The desk and chair metal chair were here when we moved in. I sold them on Facebook marketplace! The giant chair, affectionately named Charles, was given to us by Ben’s parents. It is the comfiest chair in the entire world, and it also has its own zip code. It is HUGE. It won’t fit in our living room (the ottoman alone is significantly larger than our coffee table), so it lives out here. We moved it to the guest room to take some pretty photos with a cute vintage chair, but we will probably move it back on to this porch. (#reallife).

I started painting this space white months ago (and by months, I guess I really mean years at this point!). I gave up painting because we never used this room and winter happened and it gets COLD.

When I decided to do the One Room Challenge, I knew I needed to do more than just paint a wall and make some new pillow covers, so I decided it was time to give this room the love it deserves. I am SO glad I did. I am giddy just typing this because I’m so excited to show you the finished product.

I don’t know how to do things halfway, and I only do incredibly affordable designs, so instead of just painting the walls (like a normal person) or using some fun removable wallpaper (like a normal person that has a lot of expendable money), I decided to HAND PAINT A MURAL ON AN ENTIRE WALL. It was a crazy decision. But crazy decisions yield crazy results. And if you will allow me to toot my own horn, I am in love with what I created. The mural was inspired by the floral bird fabric (aka my spirit fabric) that I used for the pillows, and Rifle Paper Company’s Shanghai Garden print inspired the elements of my mural. I relied on my own creativity for the colors and details, but I need to give credit where credit is due!

Are you ready to see the finished mural? I’m so excited to finally share it with you!

Here it is!!!

Hand painted Chinoiserie Mural- One Room Challenge

Hand painted Chinoiserie Mural- One Room Challenge

At the last minute (and by “last minute” I mean at 1:00pm on the last day of the challenge!) we decided to paint the ceiling the most beautiful sage color. (Early Riser by Magnolia Home Paints!) It was previously a pale yellow color, which seriously needed an update after the rest of the room got a fresh coat of white. The sage is so pretty, and brings an unexpected pop of color to this already whimsical space. Why be boring when you can be fun?

Hand painted Chinoiserie Mural- One Room Challenge

I’m sharing this photo again just because I’m so excited about it. I used acrylic craft paint from Hobby Lobby ($10 total) to paint the mural. The yellow tufted chair was free on the side of the road on our town’s junk day (because someone is insane and was going to throw away this perfectly beautiful chair). The kilim rug is from our trip to Istanbul last year.

Painting the window sashes black was another bold design choice that really paid off. I could’ve gone all white on the windows, walls, and ceilings, but the contrast of the black sashes and the cheerfulness of the sage ceiling really add a lot to the finished design.

Big risks have big rewards.

I’ll say it again for the people in the back.


I used to be afraid to take risks with design, and I looked to other designers’ spaces for inspiration. But where is the fun in that? Once I decided to design this master bedroom around what my husband and I love, what we already had, and what would be unique and special for us, I had a blast picking out fabrics and colors and taking bold risks like painting the ceiling green. I’ve never seen a bedroom or a mural or a space like these before, and that is the most satisfying part of doing what I love instead of what is trendy. If I followed the trends (board and batten accent walls, neutral everything, high-end throw pillows, brand new furniture) I might get a trendy and popular space (for a lot of dollars). But by choosing what brings a smile to my face, sourcing decor and furniture from around our home, and making bold color choices, I’ve created a space that my husband and I absolutely love and that no one else can copy.

The entire master bedroom and sunroom update cost a grand total of $350. (HALF of that total was for the Ikea dresser update!)

Here’s my entire cost breakdown. I want to be transparent about this, because you rarely see the cost behind images on Instagram or Pinterest or in the magazines. Instead of feeling bad that your house can’t look like an editorial spread, just remember that a high-end throw pillow can cost $100 or more! Remember that when you see a “perfect” bed or couch that is covered in a throw pillow army (that may cost a few hundred dollars, not including the designer couch!)

Master Bedroom and Sunroom Update Budget:

$40 – Fabric for pillows

$30 – Indigo throw

$10 – Craft paint for the mural

$20 – Quart of paint for accent wall

$30 – Gallon of white paint for the sunroom

$20- Quart of paint for sunroom ceiling

$5- Small can of black paint for window sashes

$150 – Ikea Tarva dresser

$25- Hardware for Ikea dresser

$5 – Small can of stain for dresser

$15 – Frames for vintage maps

Total: $350


The $70 I spent on the fabric and indigo throw was the majority of my “fun money” I saved up to spend when I went to New York City. We actually already had the black paint for the windows and the white paint I used on the sunroom walls and trim, and the ceiling paint is leftover from when I painted my office. I still wanted to share all of those things in my budget breakdown because we bought them at one point or another (even if it was spread out over a few months).

I hope that by being transparent about the cost of this update, I can encourage you that you don’t need to spend a ton of money to love your space. I must confess that the total of $350 feels very excessive to me, but every item we purchased for this space (whether paint, furniture, or decor) was intentionally and thoughtfully selected, and we won’t be changing it anytime soon! I am all about affordable decor and resourceful decorating, but at the end of the day, stuff costs money. It just does. I like to prioritize using what we already own (which is composed of secondhand furniture, thrifted decor, furniture handed down from family, and a handful of Target and Ikea items) Updating this space wasn’t necessary, but it has been an exciting and enjoyable process for me and I am incredibly thankful that we have the resources to make our house a special and beautiful home.


Thank you so much for following along with my first One Room Challenge journey, and don’t forget to check out the amazing transformations from the other Featured Designers and Guest Participants!

With so much love, 

avery- signature

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Want to see more of my room transformations?

Before & After: A Bright, Affordable DIY Kitchen Update

Vintage Modern Guest Retreat

Don’t forget to follow along on my Holland Avenue Home Instagram for daily snapshots of life, resourceful decorating tips, and encouragement towards thoughtful homemaking.



Hand-Painted Modern Chinoiserie Mural: One Room Challenge Week 4

Hi, everyone! I’m back for WEEK FOUR of the One Room Challenge.

If you’re finding me through the One Room Challenge, welcome to my home on the internet! I’m Avery and I live in rural Iowa with my husband. You can learn more about me here, and see some of my previous design work in my kitchen. My design style is cozy, whimsical, and collected. I’ll be sharing my One Room Challenge progress on my Holland Avenue Home Instagram. Thanks for following along!

Here’s a recap of my posts for the One Room Challenge so far.

Week 1: Cozy Eclectic Master Bedroom Design Plan

Week 2: Moody Accent Wall

Week 3: DIY Throw Pillows and Vintage Artwork

And here’s a reminder of my vision for our colorful, cozy, eclectic Master Bedroom Update. master bedroom moodboard

Because I am also a crazy person and don’t know how to do things halfway, I decided to include the attached sunroom in my Master Bedroom update! You can read about my design plans for the sunroom in the Cozy Eclectic Master Bedroom Design Plan: One Room Challenge Week 1 post, but the main thing you need to know is that I am hand painting a mural.

I wanted the mural to be inspired by the floral bird fabric that I used to make pillows for our bed. (Pictured in the moodboard above!) I decided this about a month ago (wait where did October go?) and in my head I was just calling it my “floral bird mural inspired by my floral bird fabric”. Which brings me to my next point.

Have you ever heard the term, “chinoiserie”? I hadn’t until this week.

If you asked me what “chinoiserie” was before I knew, I probably would’ve guessed that it was a French boutique that sells either lingerie or baked goods. Or both. I don’t know. The French have some pretty crazy boutiques.

I was still in the sketching and planning phase of my floral bird mural, when I saw a new post from the Queen of design herself, Emily Henderson. The post is called Is Chinoiserie Making A Comeback? Let’s Discuss. Not knowing what the heck “chinoiserie” was, and assuming it could have something to do with pastries, I sat down to investigate.


I didn’t know they left, because I didn’t know they existed and were a whole category of design. So now my burning question is: does this put me ahead of or behind the trends? I have no idea! I had the idea before Queen Henderson’s staff said it was back, which either means I’m way ahead of the game or that I decided to incorporate something that was dated and “out”. Either way, florals and birds are two of my favorite elements to use in art, so when the post asked if I was “on board the chinoiserie train”, I could confidently say that I’ve been riding that train for my whole life without knowing where it was going or what it was called.

Chinoiserie is back, and I’m on board.

Here are some examples from Emily Henderson’s blog post of what her team is calling “modern chinoiserie”. The traditional interpretation is the definition of maximalism, with decadent prints and colors and textures and drapes that were probably on the Titanic. Modern chinoiserie is sophisticated and can work brilliantly with more minimal design aesthetics. (The following four images are from Emily’s blog and you can find the original sources there!)


I want to give that blue wall a hug. That will always be my favorite color.


This room just radiates “cool”. The chandelier. The cane barrel chairs. THE FLORAL BIRD MURAL AKA CHINOISERIE AKA MY NEW FAVORITE THING.


This smaller scale wallpaper is gorgeous, and is the perfect feminine contrast to that statement light fixture.


I have a soft place in my heart for blue kitchens, and that tiny little mural might convince me to paint my own next to my pantry. We will see how the first mural goes, though. I might have a new favorite hobby or I might want to retire from painting forever. We’ll see.

After falling in love with my new favorite design element, I was ready to start sketching.

I grabbed my pencil and a stepladder, made my way up to the sunroom, and decided to just go for it. After studying the elements of my fabric and many examples of chinoiserie wallpaper, I found a pattern by Rifle Paper Company that is basically their take on chinoiserie. Some of my floral shapes will be based on their pattern, but I’m going to stick to my own creativity for creating the pattern and color palette!

I’ve been sick this week, so 100% of my Week 4 progress has taken place in the last two hours. I’ve been intimidated to start actually sketching out my mural on the wall, so I’ve been putting it off. But we’re going out of town this weekend, so I knew I needed to make some serious progress tonight!

I had to edit this image so you could see my fine pencil sketches, but there is progress! I didn’t fill in the details on the flowers or branches or leaves, and my sketch isn’t finished, but I started! That’s all the progress I have for this week, but I have a feeling that it will be easier to make progress now that I took the scary step of putting pen to paper (er… pencil to wall).


It wasn’t a decorating update, and it won’t be part of my before and after post, but I did spend some significant time “updating” our Master Bedroom this week. I cleaned out our closet and dresser! After purging all of the things we didn’t wear, we suddenly had way more space for our clothes to breathe. Instead of being way too full of things we don’t wear, with the things we do wear not having space after laundry, we’re just left with the things we love and wear on a regular basis! It has cleared my mind so much to know that everything has a home in our closet and dresser, and getting dressed is so easy because I only kept the things I absolutely loved. (I put some exclusively summer blouses and dresses in a rubbermaid box in a guest closet, but even without taking those away we had so much more space).

Ben and I decided we could use more drawer space for sweaters that take up a lot of room and can’t go on a hanger, so we are going to buy a small dresser when we go to Ikea on Monday. (Ps. I get to go to Ikea on Monday!!!) Our current dresser is quite large, but the drawers are not very deep and we don’t want to shove sweaters in drawers that are too small.

It will go in the empty corner of our bedroom and I plan to work out some kind of jewelry storage situation on top of the dresser, because my jewelry currently does not have a home.

I’ll share mural progress and details about which dresser we chose next Wednesday in my WEEK FIVE POST. I AM STRESSED JUST SAYING THE WORDS “WEEK FIVE POST” but we will get there, friends. This is all just for fun anyway, and I’m enjoying the crazy train that is the One Room Challenge!

That’s all for this week! Be sure to check out all of the other Guest Participants in the One Room Challenge to follow along with their progress!

I’ll share behind the scenes sneak peeks on my Instagram Stories this week, so follow along there if you want the inside scoop on mural painting before next Wednesday! If you’d like to be reminded when new posts go live, enter your email in the “Brighten my Inbox” tab on the right side of your screen. 

Thanks for following along with me here on Holland Avenue Home, and don’t forget to follow along with the rest of the One Room Challenge Blog to see all of the Featured and Guest Designers!

avery- signature

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(Update: Follow along with the last two weeks of the challenge!)

Ikea Dresser Makeover: One Room Challenge Week 5

Cozy Eclectic Master Bedroom Before & After: One Room Challenge Week 6