Masthead header

With the recent addition of our streamlined gallery wall in the living room’s gap, we’ve been itching to add something large – very large! – above our velvet sofa. Not wanting the room to feel overly cluttered with our already vibrant rug (and the opposing wall’s art round up), we’d been tossing around a handful of ideas for the last year (yes, really), and we finally landed on trying out a couple of over sized engineer prints.

This, of course, led us to the next question, of what? And since choosing to “go big or go home,” we took the most literal route and went with a tried and true favorite – dinosaurs!

engineer-print-frame-15
engineer-print-frame-01

I picked up a vintage dinosaur book, Life Before Man, with page after page of prehistoric illustrations. We settled on the finalists – the notorious T-Rex (!) and a wild flightless bird. While the latter falls under a different (although prehistoric) era, we loved the composition when the two were paired up. We wondered if it was normal for two adults to choose such subjects, but we decided it was best to fully embrace our inner quirk and run with it! If it’ll make us smile every time we enter the room, why not?

Engineer prints can be printed up to 3′x4′ at any copy center (we used Staples), and they’re inexpensive at $7 each (although you can pick up smaller sizes for as little as $2!). I scanned our chosen images from the book at 300 dpi, submitted them through the online system, and we picked them up the next day. We knew the paper would be very thin, so we teamed up with Ace Hardware to create extra large frames to give them that finished, polished look.

For this month’s Ace challenge, we were teamed up with Tasha over at Designer Trapped, where we both chose to give the Bosch Variable Speed Palm Router a try; we encourage you to see what Tasha created! In our case, we used the palm router to DIY our frames, opting for thin and sleek, allowing the dino prints to be the star. (Naturally.) Here’s what we needed for two frames:

MATERIALS USED FOR 2 FRAMES, 39″ X 41″ EACH:
4 – 2″ x 2″ x 8′
2 Packs – Ring hangers
2 Packs – 3″ corner braces (each pack comes with 4 + screws)
2″ screws
Hanging wire (we chose 100 lb, but 50 lb would also work)
Paint
2 Engineer prints on 3′x4′ over-sized paper
2 Pieces – double paned glass cut to size (this can be done at any Ace)
2 Sheets -  Foam core (size dependent on art)
Anchors for hanging

TOOLS USED:
Measuring tape / pencil
Dust mask / safety glasses
Sandpaper / Power sander
Bosch Palm Router with 1/2″ straight bit
Compound miter saw
Drill
Chamfer bit
Wood glue
Clamps
Spackle or wood putty
Paint brush or small foam roller
Staple gun with 1/2″ staples

engineer-print-frame-02

WHAT WE DID. To start, I used our small power sander to smooth out the wood for the frames. They were pretty rough to begin with, but felt good after using an 80 grit paper, followed up with a 120 grit. Tip: 2x2s are very inexpensive, but be careful to choose pieces that are as straight as possible!

engineer-print-frame-03

We used our palm router to create the lip for the glass, art and backing to sit into the frame, and we chose to route all of our 2x2s first (rather than do so after the frame was put together). Never having used a router before, it took a few rough starts to get it right, but the ultimate trick was slow and steady. (Scott got the hang of it quickly, after which, it was smooth sailing!) It kicks up a lot of saw dust and debris, so safety glasses and a dust mask were crucial for this step!

engineer-print-frame-04

We adjusted the router to a 3/8″ depth, and the 1/2″ straight bit was perfect for getting that recessed lip. Bonus – the edge guide made it super easy to keep our line perfectly straight. Once each piece had been routed, I followed that up with a quick sanding to get off any burrs and rough edges.

engineer-print-frame-05

Next up, we used the compound miter saw to cut the four pieces for each of our frames. We goofed the math a few times (and tripped ourselves up more than we’d like to admit!), but when it came time to figure out the proper lengths, this is likely the easiest way:

  • First, measure the size of your art. Ours came to 35.75″ x 37.5″ (it filled the 3′x4′ engineer prints width-wise, and we allowed the height proportions to fall naturally). Your glass and foam core should be cut to this same measurement.
  • Subtract .75″ from your width and your height, and make your mitered cuts using those measurements for the inside edge. For example, this would give us a measurement of 35″ x 36.75″, which should be the length of the inside of our frame.
  • Once everything is all assembled, this will ensure that your print, glass and backing will fill the frame, but it will still leave you with an 1/8″ of wiggle room within the recessed tray!

engineer-print-frame-07

With all of our pieces cut down to size, we worked on one corner at a time. After a dab of wood glue, we used clamps to hold two pieces together, drilled a small pilot hole and used a chamfer bit to allow our 2″ screws to sit below the level of the 2×2. We only used them on the top and bottom of the frame, for a total of eight screws per frame.

engineer-print-frame-08

Our frames felt pretty sturdy after this, but as an extra measure (always!), we installed a 3″ brace along each corner, snugging it up to the routed edge as to not hit the 2″ screws beneath them. As large as these frames ended up, they were super strong and provided no give – perfect!

engineer-print-frame-10

I spackled the exposed screw heads, and once that was dry and sanded, I dived right into painting. I applied two coats of the same exterior Valspar paint that we have on our front porch, color matched to Clark+Kensington’s Designer White.

engineer-print-frame-11

We allowed everything to dry overnight, and the next day, we brought the frames inside to bring it all together! As mentioned in the supply list, we got double paned glass cut to size at Ace, and I used a utility to knife to cut the foam core down to the proper size. Using the same framing technique I’ve been using for years, I used a staple gun with 1/2″ staples to secure everything into place (the trick is nestling the gun about an 1/8″ away from the frame, which will allow the staple to remain proud). We finished it up by installing ring hangers (you can pick them up in a kit with screws) and 100 lb hanging wire; this is admittedly overkill, as each frame couldn’t weigh more than 20 lbs (the glass is the heaviest component!).

engineer-print-frame-12
engineer-print-frame-13
engineer-print-frame-14

Update! Check out Kyley’s comment regarding the installation of D-rings (photo above). For something this large and heavy, it may be best to use an anchor per ring rather than a strong wire.

Each frame was hung on a 50 lb. anchor, and we fussed with placement until the height was high enough so you wouldn’t hit your head while seated, but low enough to avoid the art-that’s-hung-too-high problem. Now, when you walk in our front door and look left, you’ll see this!

engineer-print-frame-17

We’re super happy with our choice to use 2x2s; they’re substantial enough for our massive prints (we still can’t help but chuckle when we realize that yes, we have large prehistoric creatures on our wall!), and yet they’re sleek enough as to not detract from… well, you know. The T-Rex!

engineer-print-frame-18
engineer-print-frame-19

We absolutely love them (weirdos), but don’t forget to check out how Tasha used her palm router! And because we want you to make some ridiculously large frames too, how about $100 to get you motivated? Together with our friends at Ace, we’ll be giving away a $100 Ace Hardware gift card to one lucky reader! The giveaway runs through this Friday, August 1st at 5pm CST, and the winner will be announced within this post by Friday evening. Simply enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. Good luck and happy entering!

*Update: We had a glitch with our Rafflecopter widget! Please let us know if you have any issues with entering. Thank you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

We’re excited to be collaborating with Ace Hardware as a part of their Ace Blogger Panel! Ace has provided us with compensation and the materials necessary to complete this project (hey, thanks, Ace!), and all opinions are our own. #rawr

  • Heather - July 29, 2014 - 6:28 AM

    Love the idea of using engineer prints to cover some white space on the walls in my apartment!ReplyCancel

  • Haley - July 29, 2014 - 6:45 AM

    I love this! I will always love dinosaurs no matter how old I get, because they are fascinating. There is a reason Walking with Dinosaurs is on my Netflix list. The bird is a perfect compliment to Mr. Rex.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 29, 2014 - 8:49 AM

      What! Awesome! I’ll have to add it to our queue as well!ReplyCancel

  • Nate - July 29, 2014 - 7:06 AM

    For MCM house images!ReplyCancel

  • Lizzzy - July 29, 2014 - 7:07 AM

    Brilliant! But is there any issue with copyright over the old book?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 29, 2014 - 8:49 AM

      Thanks, Lizzzy! That’s actually a discussion we had before starting the project (we definitely take that seriously!), and we did a bit of digging to consider if there could be any issues. In the end, because this is personal use and not for sale or public display, we’re not dealing with infringement. Some of my favorite engineer prints I’ve seen are everything from books to magazines to vintage photographs!ReplyCancel

      • Jess - August 4, 2014 - 1:41 PM

        Such a bummer! I LOVE this idea but just went to Staples and they wouldn’t do it for me because of copyright.ReplyCancel

        • Kim - August 4, 2014 - 1:59 PM

          Wow, I’m sorry! Even though it’s for personal use and not re-sell? What did you try to enlarge? I know that sometimes photographers need to provide a photo release form (I used to do this when I was still freelance shooting), so maybe that’s the case?ReplyCancel

          • aaron - August 20, 2014 - 2:25 PM

            Really cool project! I think the copyright problem isn’t with your personal use of the images. The problem is that the printer would be printing copyright images with the intent to sell them to you.ReplyCancel

            • Kim - August 20, 2014 - 4:07 PM

              Thank you, Aaron. We did speak with a few of our fellow artist friends, and they said the same! Good to know. Definitely food for thought for anyone taking on this project.ReplyCancel

  • Alison F. - July 29, 2014 - 7:17 AM

    I’d like to enlarge a vintage postcard- perhaps hang it in our guest room? Cool idea!ReplyCancel

  • Rachel - July 29, 2014 - 7:23 AM

    I love how both the print and frame turned out. Now I’m scheming about what I need to gigantify!ReplyCancel

  • Leslie - July 29, 2014 - 7:36 AM

    I would probably either do botanical prints or cool house plans!ReplyCancel

  • Emily - July 29, 2014 - 7:39 AM

    So incredibly weird – and awesome! I’d love to use some travel photos or maybe just close up textural images (river rocks, wood grain, etc.).ReplyCancel

  • Ann - July 29, 2014 - 7:51 AM

    I would love to try the engineer prints at the end of my hallway.ReplyCancel

  • sarah r. - July 29, 2014 - 7:53 AM

    i’d love to blow up some images from children’s books for my daughter’s room.ReplyCancel

  • Jessica - July 29, 2014 - 8:08 AM

    I love the dinosaurs! I’ve been itching to get an engineer print of my own but I can’t figure out what image to print!ReplyCancel

  • Julia [Chris Loves Julia] - July 29, 2014 - 8:12 AM

    you guys are just so cool.ReplyCancel

  • Jen N. - July 29, 2014 - 8:33 AM

    I’d blow up a photo from our recent European vacation.ReplyCancel

  • Jen - July 29, 2014 - 8:48 AM

    I would live to print a huge photo from my recent trip to Yosemite. Thanks so much for this DIY!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 29, 2014 - 8:50 AM

      I bet that would be beautiful!ReplyCancel

  • Erin@Suburban Bitches - July 29, 2014 - 8:53 AM

    I love the dinosaurs print! I’m itching to get a large octopus engineer print somewhere in my house! Love weird animals. And great tutorial on how to build a frame.ReplyCancel

  • Laura @ Rather Square - July 29, 2014 - 8:58 AM

    I never realized how inexpensive those large prints could be. I’ll have to look into this for our artless rooms (currently all of them – we are procrastinators and always do the art last!). And I love the frames you made – they really seem to contain the prints without detracting from them. Although it would be hard to detract from those ferocious dines!ReplyCancel

  • Mary - July 29, 2014 - 9:01 AM

    These are so fun–I think I’d print a cool vacation picture or something.ReplyCancel

  • Catherine - July 29, 2014 - 9:03 AM

    I have been wanting to get an engineer print done too but I also haven’t been able to decide on what to print. Love the dinosaurs!! I might hit up the graphics fairy for some vintage bird illustrations. I have a sofa that desperately needs something above it.ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer I. - July 29, 2014 - 9:14 AM

    I love engineer prints, but haven’t used them in my house yet. I love the way the dinosaurs look and I’m thinking I need something in our master bedroom….but maybe something less scary before bed, lol. Love the way it looks! I can’t believe the progress you guys have made.ReplyCancel

  • Heather - July 29, 2014 - 9:16 AM

    What a great idea!The dinosaurs are perfect.ReplyCancel

  • Bethany Wellman - July 29, 2014 - 9:17 AM

    My husband is decking out his “Man Cave” in our backyard, and some over sized prints would be PERFECT wall decor!ReplyCancel

  • Whitney D - July 29, 2014 - 9:24 AM

    I love how easy and inexpensive this is. And the Dinosaurs is such a fun, unique idea.ReplyCancel

  • Jody - July 29, 2014 - 9:25 AM

    I love using large engineering prints in home decor! I think layering some prints in around my TV would be a great way to add visual interest and draw the eye away from the TV.ReplyCancel

  • Jenny Doyle - July 29, 2014 - 9:29 AM

    I would love to blow up some beach photos for my daughter’s nursery! Great idea for such large scale art!ReplyCancel

  • Cara - July 29, 2014 - 9:40 AM

    I keep meaning to get some engineer prints and never get around to it. Look great!ReplyCancel

  • Jenna - July 29, 2014 - 9:47 AM

    I use them to print a family picture now that we’re a family of 5.ReplyCancel

  • Hannah K. - July 29, 2014 - 9:52 AM

    I have been wanting to do something with engineering prints for ever! Just haven’t figured out “what” quite yet. I love these!!ReplyCancel

  • kkoira - July 29, 2014 - 10:08 AM

    Is that a Terror Bird next to the T-Rex? Because if so, they are probably one of the most creepy prehistoric predators that I’ve heard of. They would be able to outrun modern cars, apparently.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 29, 2014 - 10:16 AM

      That gives me the chills! I’m so weirdly fascinated by these prehistoric animals… I double checked in the book, and it’s a Phororhacos, which comes from the same family as the Terror Bird. Can’t beat this pair, that’s for sure!ReplyCancel

      • kkoira - July 29, 2014 - 3:54 PM

        I got totally hooked on the show Primeval (it is filmed in the UK but available on Netflix) with the dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals that make an appearance on there.ReplyCancel

  • kkoira - July 29, 2014 - 10:11 AM

    Oh, also, I totally LOVE the prehistoric predators on the wall. It is an awesomely awesome touch.ReplyCancel

  • Janet - July 29, 2014 - 10:32 AM

    It’s just Tuesday and the give away is closed? That’s the message I got when trying to enter…?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 29, 2014 - 10:49 AM

      Janet, we’re SO sorry! It looks like there was a hiccup with the widget. It should be showing up now! Everyone else, please chime in if you’re getting a similar error!ReplyCancel

  • carrie @ brick city love - July 29, 2014 - 10:48 AM

    I love your dinos!! Best choice of content ever.ReplyCancel

  • Missy G. - July 29, 2014 - 11:03 AM

    If I did this, I think I’d go with some nature photos.ReplyCancel

  • Jackie - July 29, 2014 - 11:04 AM

    I’ve been thinking of doing this with an old envelope I have that was postmarked in Antarctica, so that is likely what I’d do. Love the dinosaurs though!ReplyCancel

  • Emily @ Adventures of a Dog Mom - July 29, 2014 - 11:05 AM

    Great choice for an oversized print. I think if I did one it would be of my dogs!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 29, 2014 - 11:35 AM

      We actually considered that and had an idea for something neat for a while… until we thought, how much art can we have of the pets?! So, dinosaurs won out. Ha!ReplyCancel

  • Heather - July 29, 2014 - 11:27 AM

    I’d love to enlarge a photo from trips to Europe – such amazing architecture!ReplyCancel

  • Christa B. - July 29, 2014 - 11:37 AM

    I would probably hang some engineered prints of cacti or mountains over our sofa.ReplyCancel

  • Mary Pat - July 29, 2014 - 11:47 AM

    I would enlarge pictures of the Colorado MountainsReplyCancel

  • Renee D. - July 29, 2014 - 11:57 AM

    I am seeing engineer prints everyone on the blog-is-fere! I am in love.ReplyCancel

  • Mandi M. - July 29, 2014 - 12:12 PM

    I love the frames! But I am especially tickled to find out how to make engineer prints, that’s awesome. Thanks for the (cheap!!) decorating tip.ReplyCancel

  • Alexis - July 29, 2014 - 12:29 PM

    Love love love this!!! I’m converting a large-ish closet into a craft space and am trying to figure out how I’ll decorate, large prints like this would be awesome!ReplyCancel

  • Tyler Anne Snell - July 29, 2014 - 12:32 PM

    I want to do this to our blank wall in the bedroom! Freshly painted gray, we want BIG pops of color! This is a perfect way to do it!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 29, 2014 - 12:40 PM

      Keep in mind that engineer prints are black/white! You can totally get over-sized color prints, but I’m not sure on the cost for those…ReplyCancel

  • Leila Waddell - July 29, 2014 - 12:33 PM

    My husband will totally dig this new tool !ReplyCancel

  • Anna Creecy - July 29, 2014 - 12:49 PM

    I’d use it to work on my entry hallway. I’m wanting to do a gallery wall. Not too busy though.ReplyCancel

  • Ashley - July 29, 2014 - 1:04 PM

    I already have a large black and white print of a floor plan in my home. I am an intern architect and access to large scale plotters is one of the perks! http://southernarchitectress.blogspot.com/2014/01/collage-wall.htmlReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 29, 2014 - 1:18 PM

      We love that idea too and considered it as well! Lucky you for free plotter access :)ReplyCancel

  • Joyce H. - July 29, 2014 - 1:08 PM

    I love the dinosaurs! I didn’t even guess that it was made from an engineer print.
    Also, Kim, where did you get your flats? They’re so cute!ReplyCancel

  • Sharon Flasche - July 29, 2014 - 1:31 PM

    I love this idea, never knew it was so cheap and easy to make large prints, on my way to the print shop and Ace hardware for materials. Thank You!ReplyCancel

  • Katie - July 29, 2014 - 1:38 PM

    I would never think to make my own frame.ReplyCancel

  • LK - July 29, 2014 - 1:47 PM

    Who doesn’t love dinosaurs?ReplyCancel

  • wendy - July 29, 2014 - 2:06 PM

    I’ve had so many ideas for engineer prints floating around in my head for years. My question was always how to hang them, love these simple frames! And now I kind of want a giant T-rex in MY living room, or a vintage space poster, or maybe one of my kiddos.ReplyCancel

  • Laura Igram - July 29, 2014 - 2:39 PM

    I would definitely create a couple large scale prints to hang over my bed (on my new charcoal wall!) I think it would complete my bedroom makeover perfectly.ReplyCancel

  • Jenna - July 29, 2014 - 3:07 PM

    I love these frames! I’ll have to add them to my DIY list for my gallery wall :)

    Also, totally random question – I just bought a vintage sofa that looks almost exactly like yours (beautiful, right?), and I’m also thinking of covering it in velvet. What material was used for the cording/welting on the cushions? If velvet is used, it can sometimes end up looking like little caterpillars because of the pile and I’d love to avoid that!

    Thanks!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 29, 2014 - 3:53 PM

      Whoot! Congrats on your score!

      We used this velvet: http://www.housefabric.com/Chambord-Indigo-P162698C477.aspx

      When we brought it in to the upholsterers, they explained to us the “caterpillar effect,” however, once I showed them the fabric, they agreed that our pile was low enough that it wouldn’t be the case. We were able to use that same velvet for all of the welting with no issues!ReplyCancel

      • Jenna - July 30, 2014 - 11:54 AM

        Thank you so much for the info!ReplyCancel

  • Emily R. - July 29, 2014 - 3:14 PM

    I’d probably do something pretty similar to this – some awesome large-scale prints for our bedroom or living room. And dinosaurs totally rock.ReplyCancel

  • Katherine - July 29, 2014 - 3:32 PM

    Holy Cow!!
    I’ve never even heard of engineer prints!! This is going to totally change my decorating and framing world!
    Thanks a ton.
    -KReplyCancel

  • bridgette r - July 29, 2014 - 3:51 PM

    I think a fun geometric print would make a great statement. the frames look great!ReplyCancel

  • Kelley - July 29, 2014 - 3:53 PM

    Those prints are awesome!ReplyCancel

    • Kelley - July 29, 2014 - 3:55 PM

      Oops – clicked send too soon! I would definitely use them to do a large print like this in our living room. So much blank space in there!ReplyCancel

  • Kelly McKinnell - July 29, 2014 - 4:07 PM

    LOVE the dino prints! I could use a few of these over my bed in my apartment!ReplyCancel

  • caroline [the diy nurse] - July 29, 2014 - 4:19 PM

    I love this – so pretty, fun, and quirky. Very ‘you’ ;)ReplyCancel

  • Christa - July 29, 2014 - 4:24 PM

    Honestly I would do the same as you guys (well not dinos, but hanging the prints over my couch).ReplyCancel

  • Surani - July 29, 2014 - 4:42 PM

    I love the quirkiness! (quirkyness?) If you can’t like dinos as an adult, what’s the point?ReplyCancel

  • TulumChica - July 29, 2014 - 5:11 PM

    I really like your over-sized framing solution. That little router looks like it would be SO handy! I would like to know you specified double paned glass?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 30, 2014 - 10:18 AM

      When we told our guy, Al, at Ace that we needed glass cut in the size we did, he suggested double paned due to the large dimensions. It definitely helps during transport from the store to home! It’s not super thick, but it does feel sturdy, and it doesn’t have any green/blue tint to it at all.ReplyCancel

  • Anna, Sydney - July 29, 2014 - 5:21 PM

    Long time lurker, first time commenter. Love everything you guys do (stumbled upon you back when you did your tiny light pink office in your unit).

    It’s freaking me out that those pictures look like old PHOTOS!!!! Time travel?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 30, 2014 - 10:10 AM

      I KNOW. That’s what I told Scott – they look like actual old timey photos! Freaky.ReplyCancel

  • Trinitee - July 29, 2014 - 5:22 PM

    I love this idea– budget friendly and my husband and son would love the dinosaur prints (we have a budding paleontologist). I also love the idea of simplifying our current gallery wall, which has a bunch of smaller photos currently, with oversized prints of our family. Thanks for the inspiration!ReplyCancel

  • jan - July 29, 2014 - 5:50 PM

    I’d frame some of my pictures from our last vacation! Great idea!ReplyCancel

  • Rebecca Anderson - July 29, 2014 - 6:16 PM

    They look awesome! The whole room is so fun! My husband loves Ace!ReplyCancel

  • Alli - July 29, 2014 - 6:21 PM

    Dana at House*Tweaking also just did this and I loved it when she did it. Your post is just what I needed to see to get going on my own project. Also, thanks for the tip on Ace cutting glass. I’m not talented enough to make my own frames and the IKEA frames are now coming with plexiglass inserts. It’d be perfect to swap those out for some ACE glass!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 30, 2014 - 10:17 AM

      Ugh, they are?! We’re big fans of using glass. Plexi just always seems to warp and look less than stellar. Go to Ace for sure. You can do it!ReplyCancel

  • Kathy - July 29, 2014 - 7:10 PM

    I think it would be cool to get a world map in an engineering print and then use it to mark all of the places we’ve been.ReplyCancel

  • Marlene @ Jade and Fern - July 29, 2014 - 8:01 PM

    Wow, I LOVE those dinosaur prints! I’ve been wanting to get some engineer prints made but am too overwhelmed by all the possibilities (and lack of wall space) to choose. A gift card to Ace sure would be nice though. :)ReplyCancel

  • Melissa - July 29, 2014 - 8:45 PM

    LOVE! We’ve been considering engineer prints for a couple of places, most notably above OUR sofa or mantle or hallway. Kind if dog the idea of something unexpected and large in the entryway!ReplyCancel

  • Holly A - July 29, 2014 - 9:09 PM

    I think a large, oversized graphic print would be awesome!ReplyCancel

  • Nancy - July 29, 2014 - 10:13 PM

    Your instructions are so clear! I may need to purchase a palm router to try this project :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 30, 2014 - 10:09 AM

      Thanks, Nancy – the trickiest part is just getting the measurements right!ReplyCancel

  • Karen - July 29, 2014 - 10:19 PM

    I have seen other bloggers hang engineering prints and think it can be awesome. My daughter just moved into a “new” letterpress studio in Portland. It has huge windows, extremely tall ceilings, and lots of white. I’m brainstorming ideas–thinking some close-ups of the workings (gears, type, etc.) of her old presses might look really great on those huge blank walls.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 30, 2014 - 10:08 AM

      LOVE that idea! Sounds like an amazing place to live in a pretty amazing city, too!ReplyCancel

  • Cindy - July 29, 2014 - 10:42 PM

    I actually just used some engineering prints for our master bedroom. I used some of our favorite pictures from my husband’s and my travels together. Such a statement!

    You’re right: the paper is thin. We mounted ours on foam core (they sell them in 2′x2′ sections at Home Depot now, which is a perfect fit for the 2×3 prints cut into a 2′ square) with double-sided tape. We tried glue adhesives, but the thin paper wrinkled with even the slightest bit of moisture.

    Yours look great!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 30, 2014 - 10:07 AM

      Thank you! We considered mounting them with spray adhesive, but I feared that we had a higher chance of screwing it up that way due to the paper. I have nightmares thinking of my photo school days and mounting prints. It only took a bubble or two to have me going back to the dark room…ReplyCancel

  • Joy - July 29, 2014 - 10:51 PM

    these are so FUN! they must make you both burst out in ear-to-ear smiles every time you see them. i’d love to do some engineer prints of bicycles — i think the big size would be perfect for all their fun little details!ReplyCancel

  • Caroline Bedard - July 29, 2014 - 11:38 PM

    I really want to try engineer prints for a couple of family snapshots from the 50s.ReplyCancel

  • Melissa - July 29, 2014 - 11:56 PM

    I actually have an engineer print of the Neutra House in Palm Springs in my bedroom . I love the T-Rex!ReplyCancel

  • tiffany - July 30, 2014 - 2:52 AM

    I have contemplated using them in my hallway that runs the length of my home to keep it visually clean and simple. The difficult task is narrowing down the prints!ReplyCancel

  • martha at MarthaLeoneDesign.com - July 30, 2014 - 6:10 AM

    Hi. I’ve been wanting to enlarge a couple of fun family photos we have taken over the years to be hung in our dining room and the price of the engineer prints is just right! Thanks for the simple tutorial on building frames.ReplyCancel

  • Jacqulyn - July 30, 2014 - 7:06 AM

    These prints are amazing!

    I’ve always wanted to use old letters from my grandmother in some way. Perhaps I could blow them up really big and make prints.ReplyCancel

  • Brooke - July 30, 2014 - 9:53 AM

    Love the engineer prints! Used them to make inexpensive art in my office at work and always get compliments on them!! But yours are WAY more polished. Great plan!!!ReplyCancel

  • Emma - July 30, 2014 - 10:27 AM

    Wonderful! You saved so much coin on this project :)ReplyCancel

  • Liz - July 30, 2014 - 12:09 PM

    I would have never thought to scan something from a book to turn it into art (especially large scale art) but I must say this is a really clever idea! And the frames are perfect.

    Way to go!ReplyCancel

    • AlisonG - July 30, 2014 - 1:37 PM

      I don’t have wall space big enough! I think a house always looks more like home with art/pictures hung.ReplyCancel

  • Kelly D - July 30, 2014 - 1:55 PM

    I think my daughter would love if I did prints like these with birds or butterflies for her bedroom.ReplyCancel

  • Kathy G - July 30, 2014 - 2:12 PM

    I have a print I have been wanting to do this with a long time – thanks for the info on how!ReplyCancel

  • Lauren - July 30, 2014 - 3:05 PM

    My husband is an architect so maybe we’d blow up a photo of a favorite local building.ReplyCancel

  • l - July 30, 2014 - 3:51 PM

    cute prints. love the teal couchReplyCancel

  • alex - July 30, 2014 - 5:02 PM

    i could use some large prints over my couch too!ReplyCancel

  • Trude - July 30, 2014 - 5:09 PM

    They look awesome! Sometimes a few large pieces is perfect (as compared to a gallery wall). Really love the white frames, they let those amazing prints stand out. :)ReplyCancel

  • Holly - July 30, 2014 - 6:29 PM

    Love the large frames! They are a great statement piece.ReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth G. - July 30, 2014 - 6:31 PM

    I would like an over sized print in my kitchen.ReplyCancel

  • Nayla - July 30, 2014 - 8:15 PM

    I would make photos of my lil one.ReplyCancel

  • Kthro - July 30, 2014 - 8:22 PM

    I have wanted to have a tattoo inspired by this photo for ages:
    http://awfullibrarybooks.files.wordpress.com/2009/06/pregnancy21.jpg
    I even hunted down a used copy of the book! It would make a great engineer print too, I think. The writing is so dated and backwards and I’d like to take it back in a satire sort of way. Yay, feminism!ReplyCancel

  • Sarah Scruggs - July 31, 2014 - 9:17 AM

    This blog title made me feel warm and fuzzy before I even read past the first line. That was the clearest easiest most innovative frame making scheme I’ve seen and I will definitely be trying this. Dinosaurs are the best :)ReplyCancel

  • Kyley D. - July 31, 2014 - 9:29 AM

    I love those engineer prints! I have a HUGE twin lens reflux camera photograph hanging in my house that I used the engineer prints for, but I’d love to add more.

    Also, I just can’t help myself (being that I’m a picture framer at all). But I noticed how you installed the D-rings on the back of your frame. While the double hole ones are great for heavy stuff, if you don’t have them facing each other (top of the ring to top of the ring) when wired, you run the risk of the wire pulling them towards each other over time – eventually splitting the wood and causing a BIG crash off your wall. If you decide to use them the way you installed it I would suggest not using the wire and instead putting a screw & molly into the wall on each side of the frame for it to hang directly from the d-rings. It’s a much safer option. I’ve fixed many broken frames over the years because they weren’t wired correctly on the back and came crashing down off the wall….so I just couldn’t help myself & would hate your lovely dinosaurs to break! :) (as a framer we always use “wall buddies” for the big stuff – incase you want to google them)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 31, 2014 - 9:39 AM

      Eeks! THANK YOU so much for letting us know! We’ve used them over the years in the same way you see in this post, but not on anything this large. We even considered just using 2 anchors in the wall on the D rings, so we’ll have to do that to prevent a fall.

      Thanks, Kyley!ReplyCancel

  • Samantha - July 31, 2014 - 9:48 AM

    I am redecorating our home office, which my husband uses more than anyone. I’m sure he would love some oversized prints of dinosaurs in there!ReplyCancel

  • Marie - July 31, 2014 - 10:25 AM

    Thank you so much for sharing this tutorial. I bought a few posters two years ago and wanted to make frames of my own but unfortunately, my husband would never build them with me. I think he does not take the fun of it. Anyway, I eventually bought frames from the store and cut the posters. And I used screws and mollies to hang them.
    Know I can see how to build a frame, and I would need some more tools. I can do it alone, can’t I ? You guys are so lucky to have each other.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 31, 2014 - 10:34 AM

      You can absolutely do this on your own! It would be helpful if your husband could help you balance out the longer 2x2s at the start, but other than that, you can handle the power tools on your own!ReplyCancel

  • Carolyn - July 31, 2014 - 10:56 AM

    An engineer print would be great as a backdrop for a white board! I guess then it’s basically a big picture you write on, but still! Imagine the doodle possibilities!ReplyCancel

  • martha at MarthaLeoneDesign.com - July 31, 2014 - 11:08 AM

    Hi! A couple of days ago I commented and thanked you for the tip on engineer prints at Staples. Well, I uploaded a few files to my local Staples and just picked them up. They are amazing. One image of the beach was enlarged to 36×48. It’s grainy which is fine with me because such a large format piece of art is designed to be viewed from several feet back. So, it works and the price was around $10. Thanks again. Now, I’ll need to learn how to build those great frames you guys did.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 31, 2014 - 11:33 AM

      Oh, I’m so happy you did this! I actually love that when you look reeaaally close to the prints, you can see the dot matrix printing process, which feels like a cool throw back. Have fun making the frames!ReplyCancel

  • Joseph - July 31, 2014 - 12:25 PM

    I could use two over my living room couch.ReplyCancel

  • Michelle - July 31, 2014 - 12:37 PM

    My husband and I just bought our first house shortly before our June wedding, so we’re just now really diving in to the “good stuff.” Art has become a big priority!ReplyCancel

  • Lisa Rohrer - July 31, 2014 - 2:13 PM

    I just walked into Ace hardware for the first time a couple of weeks ago! Also, I LOVE the engineering prints! So easy and affordable!ReplyCancel

  • Rachel - July 31, 2014 - 3:13 PM

    This is so cool! I don’t know if we’re brave enough for dinosaurs in our house, but I’m definitely itching to try making our own frames!ReplyCancel

  • Cara - July 31, 2014 - 9:18 PM

    If there’s someday a matching giant T-Rex somewhere in Cincinnati, just remember that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. :)ReplyCancel

  • Nicole Dz - August 1, 2014 - 2:56 AM

    I would use an oversized print of old short love poems I have from my hubby and hang them in our bedroom.ReplyCancel

  • Alana - August 1, 2014 - 6:36 AM

    The Dino prints are amazing! I have been looking for something like that for my boys’ playroom. PERFECT!ReplyCancel

  • Kelsey - August 1, 2014 - 11:26 AM

    I LOVE your print choice!! So great!!ReplyCancel

  • Lisa Maria - August 1, 2014 - 11:28 AM

    I love this idea – this is perfect for over our couch!ReplyCancel

  • Jen Covington - August 1, 2014 - 12:53 PM

    I am planning a dirigible print for my bedroom to hang over my bed.

    Here is the link for the awesome images
    http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/41/49/11/414911dbd4f344ebc50dd45b9545b962.jpg

    I am torn between a print and doing a watercolor painting myself.ReplyCancel

  • Kala - August 1, 2014 - 1:20 PM

    I love this project. The frames add a refined touch to the prints.
    Thanks for the chance to win!ReplyCancel

  • mysweetiepiepie - August 1, 2014 - 1:24 PM

    I’d use large, oversized vintage prints of Venice Italy in our living room.ReplyCancel

  • Katrin - August 1, 2014 - 3:39 PM

    I love the idea of oversized prints to make a BIG impact in a home but this just makes it so much easier compared to what I typically do- which is hope I get lucky with a thrift stores find!ReplyCancel

  • Nadia - August 1, 2014 - 11:13 PM

    Fantastic idea. By the way, birds ARE dinosaurs, so you 2 prints match! (Geeky biologist alert)ReplyCancel

  • […] [DIY Giant Poster Frame | DIY Wall Hangings | DIY Abstract Art Canvas.] […]ReplyCancel

  • Friday Finds 8.8 | BHG Style Spotters - August 8, 2014 - 11:24 AM

    […] to spend in the print studio, Yellow Brick Home has found a way to make it a little easier. Their DIY giant frames not only make dinosaurs look even more awesome than normal, they do it in a quarter of the […]ReplyCancel

  • […] going to have to borrow a few tools from my Dad, but I’m planning on putting together this giant DIY frame for our paper wall […]ReplyCancel

  • house of hipsters - August 13, 2014 - 10:41 AM

    ok, this is so weird, this is the second time today that i read about engineer prints! i knew nothing about them or that they even existed! thanks so much for the awesome DIY frame tutorial…it’s so difficult trying to find frames that are that large, don’t break the bank (custom framing) and aren’t too heavy. i can’t wait to try this!ReplyCancel

  • Mandi - August 13, 2014 - 3:57 PM

    This is great! I had to comment on your shoes, though. Because they are Crocs and I have the same pair— couldn’t believe I would buy Crocs, but they are cute and SO comfy, right?!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 13, 2014 - 5:42 PM

      So funny, isn’t it!? I said the same thing, and yet here I am. Wearing Crocs. Crazy!ReplyCancel

  • We love: DIYs | - August 21, 2014 - 7:47 AM

    […] to make giant frames for your […]ReplyCancel

  • Claudia - August 23, 2014 - 3:45 PM

    Amazing room! Thanks for the great DIY. :)ReplyCancel

  • Erin - August 24, 2014 - 7:18 PM

    I love this! Would you mind clarifying…did you use double sided tape to attach the print to the foam board? If so, did you use it only around the edges? These are fantastic!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 24, 2014 - 7:29 PM

      I didn’t use double sided tape, although, it’s a great idea to do so! The prints are REALLY thin, so this could prevent any paper buckling.ReplyCancel

  • Tanya - August 26, 2014 - 9:24 PM

    How about giant Zentagle prints?ReplyCancel

  • Plans for the Girls' Shared Room - Cape 27 - August 28, 2014 - 1:53 PM

    […] something huge over the girls’ beds, and I just keep coming back to this freaking awesome diy dinosaur engineer print. We visited the new dinosaur exhibit at King’s Island this summer and holy dinosaur […]ReplyCancel

  • Kelly - August 30, 2014 - 8:29 PM

    I’m obsessed with the T-Rex. Any chance you’d sell a file of your scan? That book looks amazing but so expensive! Love it all!ReplyCancel

BACK TO TOP

When we were first introduced to our home at the showing, we were immediately greeted by our neighbor’s dog – but it wasn’t, um, the friendliest hello. It scared the pants right off of me (well, not really!), and it has continued to do so for every friend (and passerby) that walks up to our front gate.

The problem was that to the left of our home, there was no privacy fence; rather, it was old, beat up chain link, and it had seen its day. Because of this, we were greeted day and night by a dog that didn’t like us one bit (Jack and CC on the other hand, thank goodness, got along just fine with him!), even if we were simply standing on our front porch.

We knew when we signed on all those dotted lines a year ago that one of the first things we’d do with that house is install a proper fence – and then we fell down a rabbit hole of demolition, putting that fence-to-do off for next year, which is now this year. And now? We have that fence!

fence-001

First, fences are no joke. They’re pricey – even though we had been saving up for a while (and especially when you’re refrigerator begins its slow death after you’ve signed a fence contract) – and although it was a necessity for upping the safety factor for Jack and CC, it was also a mostly aesthetic upgrade, curb appeal for the block and the chance for a little bit of peace. After receiving our quote, we talked with Scott’s parents and the neighbor to our right, and we learned that our estimated price was, in their words, great!, and with that, we booked it before we could think twice. After all, there was never a doubt that we wanted a fence, and because our right-hand-neighbor already had a 6′ cedar fence installed, it was an easy decision for us to mimic the same style to our left. Looking on the bright side, we only needed to have one side of our home fenced off, so we consider ourselves very lucky!

Below, you can see where we started vs. what we’re seeing today – so much better.

fence-002
fence-003

But! Let’s back up to where we began. For starters, the chain link was held on by triple-wrapped rope, and when it came time to rip up that old fence, we also learned that it wasn’t built very deep into the ground. It was rusted and covered in weeds, and to be quite honest, we were growing tired of welcoming our friends and family by saying, Hi, hello! Sorry about the neighbor dog! He’s cool, we promise! Just don’t look left!

fence-004

Oddly enough (or maybe not?), the fence didn’t stretch the entire length of our home! It stopped at the front face of the physical house, and then it resumed at the back and stretched to the garage. The only reason we can think it was done this way was to save money, however, we showed our home’s land survey to the builders and had them correct this issue when it came time for installation. We’d been discussing our plans with our neighbors from the start (who’ve been great throughout our entire renovation thus far), and they were just thrilled to be getting a real, live fence! Hip, hip!

fence-009

By allowing the fence to run the entire length of our property, however, meant that there was no more division between the front and back yards. For now, our method of separation is a highly technical scrap of plastic we pulled from the garage, so we’ll need to make another teeny, tiny baby gate (or a permanent guard, at the very least) to step it up a notch.

fence-014

On Fence Day, I wanted to let the installers do their thing, but I couldn’t resist grabbing an in-process shot (and a few phone snaps to text Scott; OMG! Look! They’re so fast!). It was important for us to make sure that the outside of our fence looked just as good as the side that would be facing us – Chicago lots are spaced very close together – just short of being right on top of one another! – and we wanted to make sure our left-hand-neighbors would be just as happy as we were. We literally pointed to our neighbor’s already standing fence and asked, can you make it look just like that? And they did – in half a day, no less!

fence-007

While our back yard may be the biggest eyesore of our entire property, the fence has helped a bit! No more growth of chain link and dead weed-like ivy! And can I side tangent for a moment? As for the much, much larger picture, we’d love to take down the entire back deck – which is down right rickety and likely dangerous – and fill the small yard with concrete and wall-to-wall planters with built-in benches. We’ll rebuild an appropriately sized back deck off of the kitchen (which is right behind that door on the first level), and the pups can rumble while we grill, drink a glass of wine and light up the fire pit. Aah. Some day!

fence-010
fence-013

All day dreams aside, we are loving the privacy this fence has (quite literally) afforded us, the visual appeal and the much more quiet evenings on the porch swing. (For those interested in the Chicagoland area, we used A & M Fence Corporation. Although heavy rain delayed their start date a few times, their work is spot on, and they’re polite and efficient!)

fence-015
fence-016

It’s still a muddy mess between the fence itself and our new concrete pad, but we’ll be filling it with gravel and other, a-hem, pee-pit-esque pebbles for Jack and CC! That is, once we can mix that in to our list of to-dos – after all, summer is calling, don’t you know! The front porch is begging us to take a seat (while we still can!).

  • Stacy - July 24, 2014 - 7:09 AM

    It looks great! Fencing is one of those things that is easy to put off when there are so many other projects to do. I can relate!ReplyCancel

  • Cara@ theprojectaddict - July 24, 2014 - 7:20 AM

    The fence looks great! It is so worth it to hire it out. We were shocked by the price initially too. It is the first thing we did when we moved into our home. We live in central Illinois so our lot is much much larger than those in Chicago but they still got it done in 2 days. I’ve watched people diy fences and it seems to take months. Our yard is on a slant too so I’m sure we wouldn’t have been able to make it look as pretty!ReplyCancel

  • Laura @ Rather Square - July 24, 2014 - 9:07 AM

    Looks great! So much better than chain link (especially a rickety chain link). And good for animal control, too. :)ReplyCancel

  • Anita - July 24, 2014 - 9:10 AM

    We had the same issue and our new fence has made a HUGE difference in our lives. Now Maize can frolic about the yard without worrying about any dogs around her.ReplyCancel

  • ann - July 24, 2014 - 10:40 AM

    Oh, how I’ve been waiting for this post! The changes in your front yard since Memorial Day weekend are unbelievable.ReplyCancel

  • Hollie @ Fancykins - July 24, 2014 - 12:46 PM

    I never thought I would swoon so hard about a fence, but I am. Looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Jeannie - July 24, 2014 - 12:50 PM

    Hello!! I’m new to your blog and found it as my partner and I have recently bought a home as well :) We admire your work, attitude, and helpful photos! The fence looks awesome. I would like to comment on the cement: please consider not such a big cement pad OR a permeable type of outdoor concrete/paving. It’s actually just as durable, looks great, and most important: provides some exposure to soil so that rain may go through into the ground rather than runoff. It’s the best thing to protect water quality :) thanks for your consideration! We have a rather big yard and are planning on making an entertaining space as well, but I believe it’s important to consider the environment ;)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 24, 2014 - 1:48 PM

      Those are all possible options! Unfortunately, this project won’t happen until next year at the earliest, so we’ll be weighing all the options much, much later. Thank you so much for the suggestion; definitely something to consider.ReplyCancel

  • Kim Schutte - July 24, 2014 - 2:27 PM

    Looks good! I’m personally quite interested to hear more about this pee pit. It may not be a bad addition to my yard before I undertake Operation Weed-be-Gone.ReplyCancel

  • Beth - July 24, 2014 - 7:37 PM

    Your home is beautiful inside and out! Just curious–what part of the city did you decide to buy in? I am a former Chicagoan!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 24, 2014 - 7:52 PM

      Thanks! We’re in the Logan Square area :)ReplyCancel

  • Amanda - July 24, 2014 - 9:27 PM

    This is beautiful … and lovely. Can I move in? I’ve always wanted to visit Chicago ;)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 25, 2014 - 10:30 AM

      Sure! We’ll trade a room to stay in for a little help with some DIY projects :)ReplyCancel

  • Jenn - July 25, 2014 - 9:12 AM

    The new fence looks great! We also have a neighbor with some friendly dogs (thankfully they are currently small and truly friendly) but they love to come into our yard through the unfenced front and do their doggie business inside the fenced side-yard if the gate is left open (which is usually is). A pretty privacy fence is definitely on the to-do list.

    Just out of curiosity, you mentioned consulting with the neighbors about the cost, does that mean you shared the expense between both properties? Is that usually how fences along property lines work? (Seriously, I’ve got no clue.)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 25, 2014 - 10:08 AM

      Ah, we just discussed cost with our neighbor on the right who already had a cedar fence installed, and wanted to make sure that the price seemed right to her – which it definitely did! There was no cost sharing, but for the neighbors on the left (with the “friendly” dog), we told them about our plans since it would be facing their yard as well. Luckily, they were completely on board, and they got a MAJOR upgrade to their yard as well!ReplyCancel

    • Carol - July 25, 2014 - 11:38 AM

      Typically, the cost of a shared fence is split between the two homeowners. If the other party doesn’t want to go in on the fence, then usually the new fence is put up alongside the old one. It benefits both parties, so the cost should be split 50/50.ReplyCancel

      • Kim - July 25, 2014 - 11:47 AM

        Hi Carol, we heard so many different sides to this story. Let’s put it this way – we really doubt they would have paid for half (sad face), but it was absolutely a necessity for us. It IS on our property, but this may require a little more digging on our end… At this point, it may be a hard lesson learned if they really should have paid for half. (Although everything we’ve found via Chicago laws/regulations is very subjective!)ReplyCancel

  • qlkowa - July 25, 2014 - 5:45 PM

    Wow, it looks much better now!ReplyCancel

  • Monika & Sam - July 28, 2014 - 4:22 PM

    What a remarkable transformation, the porch, the fence, all of it! Well done you guys.ReplyCancel

  • Sondra - August 4, 2014 - 5:21 PM

    I love the new fence! I think it’s beautiful and adds nice privacy and ambiance to your property. It looks like the fence in the back yard blocks light from going in to your neighbors basement windows. Were they upset about that at all?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 4, 2014 - 5:56 PM

      You’re right – it does block some of the natural light they once got, however, they’re no longer exposed to the neighbor’s yard… More importantly, the neighbor’s dog! There were a few times in the night when they’ve flipped on the switch and the dog has run up to the window barking. That’s no longer an issue, which we know they definitely appreciate!ReplyCancel

BACK TO TOP

Let’s say one of your kitchen appliances died. And let’s say – oh, I don’t know! – it’s the fridge. You had to make a decision to not only buy used (again) or buy new, but you’ve also realized that you had the freedom to choose any finish you liked! Stainless! White! Black! (Blue!)

In an attempt to salvage our on-the-fritz, fine-to-look-at but not-so-stellar-working stainless refrigerator, we purchased a replacement magnet strip. When that didn’t work (and we were out $100 on an appliance we only paid $200 for a year ago), we figured we had a few options: Hire a repairman and hope for the best (therefore putting us out an unknown amount of money), scour the classifieds and pick up another used-but-okay-for-now replacement or put on our grown up pants and just buy a new one.

While the last option was the most painful price-wise, we felt it was the smartest decision for the long haul. (And let’s be honest, it took us a few days of waffling just to commit to the idea that funds needed to be allocated towards an unexpected item.) A kitchen makeover is very much in our future, so we completed step 1 (at the very least!) and got a new refrigerator!

white-fridge-01

When it came time to start the hunt (and we needed to move – fast!), I asked Scott, what about white? I’d been noticing white appliances pop up more in a handful of blogs, catalog spreads and the like, and after confirming with you all that white was right, we nixed the idea of stainless and said peace out! to puppy nose smudges once and for all.

Not wanting this to turn into the next Great Fan Debate, we quickly narrowed down our favorite style to french doors with a bottom drawer freezer (it makes so much sense!). But you all know we got stuck somewhere, right?

fridge-options

We store hopped and online shopped for far longer than we’d ever admit, and although our heads began to spin with more ideas of what we liked (a clean finish on the front), what we didn’t like (no exterior water dispensers!) and what our max budget would be (which admittedly got bumped up and up), we landed on 3 finalists. Above, left to right: Whirlpool, Maytag and Samsung; all french door, all around 25 cu ft.

On paper, these guys are damn near identical, however, some had more visible screw holes, some of the bottom freezer drawers felt chintzy (not good when you’re spending this much!) and – as weird as this may seem – some of the wheels were more noticeable. And after a mind numbing game of which is the best? We went with the  Samsung!

white-fridge-003

If we’re going to look at the bright side, this did all go down around the 4th of July holiday which amounted to some pretty great appliance sales. While purchasing a new refrigerator wasn’t the first thing we would’ve hoped to be spending money on, we love it! It’s our first big appliance purchase that’s shiny and new (our condo came stocked with all new appliances, so we had no input), and we liked the matching stove that we have a feeling we’ll be picking up soon (which was also a deciding factor). Tip: We ended up purchasing ours from Best Buy, as they had a 10% cash back in-store incentive (which’ll go towards the stove!).

We christened it with a no holds barred grocery trip, stocking our newly adult purchase with the appropriate adult beverages (among other things, too – come on, now!), but the only downside is our very sad, very out of place kitchen:

white-fridge-004

Below, you can see our old refrigerator on the right (it’s since been moved into the garage), our attempt at choosing a wall color (all have been axed to the chopping block; we need to go a bit darker, don’t you think?), a tiny side table holding our tiny toaster and our one measly wall of cabinets. We have many, many ideas for this space, and although an entire kitchen overhaul may be a bit further down the road, we know a big impact can be made with a few affordable upgrades and some fresh coats of paint.

white-fridge-005

Until then, we invite you to beeline to the fancy fridge and grab yourself a drink. You’d fit right in!

  • Emily - July 23, 2014 - 7:41 AM

    I love white appliances and am so happy they are making a comeback! I’d say the only thing I’d change about yours would be to make it a counter depth. I just don’t dig giant fridges, but to each their own! Looks great. Can’t wait to see progress on the kitchen.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 23, 2014 - 8:36 AM

      We considered the counter depth… Hope we don’t regret that decision?! Eeks.ReplyCancel

      • Jaime - July 23, 2014 - 10:37 AM

        I LOVE that you went white!! I am going to bet you will NOT regret skipping out on counter depth!! We now rent, and our landlord put in a sweet stainless steel, french door, freezer drawer, counter depth fridge, and we previously had (in our condo) a pretty plain, white, standard depth fridge on top,freezer on the bottom and…..I HATE OUR NEW FANCY ONE AND MISS THE OLD ONE! :( You lose SO MUCH space going to counter depth vs standard (its really absurd!!), and I really didn’t mind that the old fridge didn’t sit flush with the counters. I also despise the stainless steel for keeping clean (I have a dog and a toddler…ARGH!!) and the french doors are a real PITA in my opinion (wait until the first time you leave one open and you have to throw all your food out…those door alarms they have are about as loud as a pin drop). Don’t get me wrong, its a beautiful fridge, but man, all these new trendy things are just not for us. At least now we know not to waste our money and when we finally get our own place again we will go with a simple fridge. The manufacturers keep adding all these fancy compartments and drawers etc but everytime one of those things gets added, it takes away from the usable space in the fridge. Just give me 3 straight shelves and my 2 drawers and I am a happy camper! Haha!!ReplyCancel

  • Sarge in Charge - July 23, 2014 - 7:56 AM

    You made the right call with white, in my opinion! Clean, classic, and doesn’t date to a particular era. While stainless has had some longevity and is probably no longer a trend, in a couple of years I do think it will date to a particular decade. I also find stainless much harder to keep clean than white.ReplyCancel

  • emily - July 23, 2014 - 7:59 AM

    Congrats on your purchase!
    We had to unexpectedly buy a new fridge shortly after buying our second house (I went to paint behind the old one and it had rusted to the wall… yuck). Anyway, it was an unexpected expense but it made me so happy. It held so much! It was so much easier to get the milk out! It didn’t freeze my lettuce! I was seriously in love with it for about a year (and then we got our new dishwasher! It is so awesome!!) and now it’s just a fridge. But I understand how an appliance can bring such happiness. :)

    And I also love the white.ReplyCancel

  • Michelle - July 23, 2014 - 8:34 AM

    We bought a similar Samsung french door refrigerator back in ’09 and loved it so much we brought it with us when we moved across country three years later! The storage capacity is amazing! Great choice, promise.ReplyCancel

  • Jaclyn - July 23, 2014 - 8:42 AM

    Fridge looks good! Can’t wait to buy new appliances. Question – where did you buy your island? Or did you build it?
    Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • Laura @ Rather Square - July 23, 2014 - 8:51 AM

    We had to replace our fridge as well last winter. We went with stainless and we got side-by-side instead of a bottom freezer. And we have a water dispenser. And it’s counter-depth. So we kind of went the opposite direction as you! But much of our decision making revolved around our own specific kitchen space and the functionality we needed. I think it’s totally dependent on that kind of thing as well as personal preference. You have almost a blank slate since you’ll be renovating your kitchen – nice choice! Sounds like the storage capacity is amazing. :)ReplyCancel

  • Heather - July 23, 2014 - 9:49 AM

    Great choice! I have the same frig in a stainless steel finish. If I had to do it over, I would totally pick the white. Me and that stainless finish have had a few battles already. :) When you are ready for your oven, take a look at the LG 30″ convection oven. I love mine…and the inside it the most brilliant blue!ReplyCancel

  • Monika & Sam - July 23, 2014 - 10:41 AM

    Welcome to the world of adult homeowners where stuff breaks down at the most untimely times and costs way more than you think it should. That said, congrats on the swank new frig. I was one of those pushing the white and you guys smartly went big with the freezer below. Kudos on the acquisition as well as the decision. Good luck with the kitchen rehab. Baby steps, right? :)ReplyCancel

  • Jenn - July 23, 2014 - 1:19 PM

    Those 4th of July sales were amazing–we took advantage of the Lowes/Whirlpool sale and replaced the ancient dishwasher that didn’t work after all (despite what we thought at the inspection) with a pretty, quiet SS number. A new fridge is on the list, too, but not in the immediate future.ReplyCancel

  • I found choosing a new, bigger fridge (after having to live with a tiny one at our condo) to be a lot of fun. The only goof is that we didn’t get a counter-depth model. Doh! That might come back to bite us when we get to the kitchen reno. I keep telling Aaron we can make it work…

    We went with stainless steel to match our over-sized range (which had no options besides stainless and was a MUCH harder decision… and more expensive purchase than the fridge), but white is definitely trending!ReplyCancel

  • ann - July 23, 2014 - 4:27 PM

    I love the white and wish we had purchased one with bottom freezer. The cost of appliances has skyrocketed!ReplyCancel

  • Melanie - July 23, 2014 - 4:43 PM

    I love white appliances too! Everyone says to get stainless steal because they look more expensive. but, white just looks so fresh and clean and bright. Great choice.ReplyCancel

  • Kathryn - July 23, 2014 - 8:06 PM

    Although our fridge is stainless, all our other appliances are Whirlpool Ice collection in white. They are featured in House Beautiful magazine. White will soon become the new stainless if companies continue to make them sleek and modern.

    Check ours out in our renovated kitchen @ vintagetovoguerevivals.com!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 24, 2014 - 9:29 AM

      Beautiful renovation! And yes, white refrigerators have come a LONG way, thank goodness!ReplyCancel

  • emily @ go haus go - July 23, 2014 - 8:25 PM

    Modern white appliance lovers unite!! Love the look!ReplyCancel

  • Debra - July 23, 2014 - 10:21 PM

    I actually am beginning to loathe my stainless appliances. Good choice on the white.ReplyCancel

  • Trude - July 24, 2014 - 4:14 PM

    Congrats on the big purchase! My roommate and I got a similar one three years ago (I think Whirlpool?) and we love it. So much more storage and super easy to get things in and out (especially with the 2 drawers and divider in the freezer!).ReplyCancel

  • Anna - July 25, 2014 - 2:02 AM

    I’ve run the gamut with appliance colors! Got my first stainless setup (in 1997!) back when stainless was almost exclusively in commercial kitchens. But I quickly got sick of it because of the smudge factor, and soon everyone and their brother had stainless. Next house, I spent a fortune on Viking when they had all these great colors! But then, you guessed it, I got bored of that too. (I have trouble with color commitment.) Sold that house and next put stainless in my two rental properties because dang, stainless still sells! Meanwhile I live quite happily in Japan with my small nondescript WHITE fridge from Muji. True story! Anyway, stainless, white, black, blue, metallic pink – it’s all good, as long as you’re happy and the thing WORKS, right? Can’t wait to see how the rest of your kitchen turns out!ReplyCancel

  • Erin Haslag - July 28, 2014 - 2:11 PM

    Love the white fridge! Our house has a dark kitchen (espresso wood cabinets, black tile blacksplashes, marbled grays for countertops) and the appliances from our builder were all stainless steel … but no fridge! So we, too, had to put on our grown-up pants and spend a week and a few weekends searching for a fridge (sliding by on an almost 10-year old mini fridge while we deliberated). We ended up with the same model you and Scott purchased, but in a stainless steel finish. I love-love-love the bottom freezer and holy space inside! It’s like we’re barely using 50% of the space and we cook from, eat from home for 90% of our meals.

    Next house – NO stainless steel! Between 2 dogs I already feel like a crazy woman trailing around the kitchen removing smudges on the daily!ReplyCancel

BACK TO TOP