Thursday, September 24, 2009

quick fix: swtich it up

so its safe to say that we're all moved in but on the other hand we're not so much...settled. we have undertaken a few small projects but it just seems to take forever to get anything completed with our lives being so hectic. this is our first diy...we're just getting our feet wet.

one project that is on its way to fruition is one of that benny has been in charge of {and he has done a mighty fine job i might add}. it has proven to be a quick fix that makes a world of difference. if you live in home that is {less new} this may be a fast upgrade for you too! when we moved in each & every outlet, faceplate & light switch was old, worn & dirty. it dated the entire house and each individual room in a different way.

here is a bag of all the old outlets & switches. what a mess. i hope you can see the discoloring & dirt that these fixtures have accumulated. you never think about how many of these little treasures you have around the house until you try & replace each and every one of them.
here is just a small sampling of the mismatched faceplates that could be found around our home. gold, bronze, brushed gold, cream & stainless/silver. wow. the stainless ones were in the kitchen to match the appliances. while i agree with the idea in theory it is an awful idea in real least it is at my house where we actually touch our light switches. they are a constant source of fingerprints and splotches. they never looked clean. and if you want any room to look clean, i pick the kitchen!
we chose plain, white, plastic switches, plates & outlets as our replacements. they may not be the fanciest little goodies but they all match. they match one another and they match the trim & doors throughout the house. the two things i like the most are (1) that they look and ARE clean (2) they don't call any attention to themselves. they blend right in & have no personality. that's exactly what i was going for.
ben bought all of these at home depot {i think} & a very helpful sales associate told him all the details that he needed to know. one important tid-bit that we didn't realize is that there are 1-way & 3-way switches. we had to go around the house and not only count the number of switches and how many went together per plate {1, 2 or 3}, outlets & how many per plate, flat plates & phone jacks we also had to count how many of the switches went to the same light. if you can turn on a light from more than one switch in the room then you need a 3-way switch for each of those. they are a bit more expensive but necessary. i think that to replace all of these gadgets & plates we spent about $40-$50 total. not bad for an instant home update & face lift.

after ben replaced the first one he said "they should show this on HGTV on those commercials about how to fix things up for little cost." -- he's sweet. and right.
it is also important to note that you need to turn off the power before starting on this project. you have to mess with a bunch of wires. safety first.
other than that all you need is a small flat head screwdriver & some time.
ben just has a couple more to take care of. until he does i assume the remaining swtiches will look like this. beautiful right? i'll just have to envision what i know is to come... our laundry room. it loves it's new addition.
happy thursday.
if you know of any quick fixes that you've found particularly useful to spiffing up your house without breaking the bank feel free to share.
oh & i found a shower curtain! 1 down, 1 to go.
here's a link to {it} to see details. the curtain was only $28 and then i found a 10% coupon code so even with shipping fees it was only $31. yippee way cheaper than my beloved anthropolgie. the reviews also said that the fabric was really thick {yes!}. i can't wait until it arrives. i think it should come tomorrow. i'm not sure which bathroom it will live in yet. it could go either way. i'll keep you posted.


  1. JEN!!!

    We did the same thing. We have some 4 way switches that aren't going to get replaced for a while because they are SUPER expensive. Like $22 each. And we have to buy 12 of them. So ridiculous.

    But great tip and makes things look so fresh!

  2. We also switched out all of our outlets when we moved in!! Except I don't think we knew about the 3-way switches, so I think we have 1 or 2 switches that don't do anything. You think that's a problem?

    I also love the shower curtain - I really love bathroom accessories!

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  4. I love the shower curtain :) Good choice! What are you thinking for the paint color? I can't wait to see all of the things you do to your new house!


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