How To Add Style With Faux Wood Beams

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

**This post was sponsored by Barron Designs.

When John and I started our house hunt, it became pretty clear that we were looking for one thing in particular: character! Up until that point, we had been living in a townhouse that was just about as “builder basic” as they come. It looked identical to the townhouse next to us, and just felt very safe in terms of design. We had high hopes of finding a home that looked unique, and was packed with one-of-a-kind architectural details.

Happily, we managed to find exactly that in our 1960s retro ranch. The front elevation of our home has a cool A-shaped silhouette that peaks in the middle, which means that the inside spaces feature the same vaulted profile. This feature was the reason we bought the house. It makes it feel so wide open and expansive, and now that we’re mostly stuck at home, it’s a feature that I appreciate these days more than ever before.

The only thing was that our white-painted ceiling and white-painted walls sort of made this cool architectural feature fade away. There are certain times in home design when you want to draw attention to something, and this was definitely one of those times. So, I teamed up with the folks over at Barron Designs to help emphasize our vaulted ceilings by installing two faux wood beams. I hate to spoil the end of today’s story, but this has been the most game-changing design feature we have ever added to our house. Hands down. Keep scrolling for all the details!

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

First, a little more backstory. I’ve made no secret of the fact that John and I have worked extra hard to respect the original architecture of our 1960s home. We haven’t touched the existing stained wood trim, have left all of the original cabinetry alone, and have no plans to rip down walls or mess with the integrity of the quintessential mid-century floor plan. Whenever we needed to add something back to the house, we’ve tried our best to consider what would have been done 50-odd years ago when the house was built.

Which leads to the beams. When we were thinking through different ways to play up the vaulted ceiling in our house, we came up with lots of ideas—lighting, paint, etc.—but it all felt too contemporary for us. Then, the idea of beams came to mind and everything changed. If you look back at old photos of original 1950s and ’60s homes, they often feature sleek wooden beams along the ceiling. After pouring over inspiration photos online, I knew we were onto something.

So, I worked with Barron Designs to choose the right era-specific beams for our project (their Driftwood Beams in the standard color “Walnut”), and then Dad and I got to work planning for the installation. Their engineer was a dream to communicate with when I was in the measuring phase, and we also put their customer service to the test when we ran into a small, easily-worked-around snag with the material itself (keep an eye out for those screws!).

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

I won’t go too in-depth with an installation how-to since every home is different and the Barron Design website has a thorough help section (I hear they’re in the process of developing new installation videos, too!). That said, those photos above should give you a pretty clear idea.

We started by cutting small blocks of wood to fit the inside cavity of our faux wood beams, and attached those to the ceiling along the ceiling rafters, which we found with a stud finder and marked with string. Then, we carefully measured the exact distance from our outside living room wall up to the peak of the roof line, and cut the beam to the right angle to match. Finally, we pre-drilled our holes in the beam, slipped the beam over our blocks in the ceiling, and screwed the beams into the blocks. You can see the final install sequence happen here in this quick timelapse.

Dad and I intended to have John help us, but (“like father, like daughter”) we got antsy and installed the beams just the two of us across one weekend. We had never worked with this type of thing before, but managed to get it done in under four hours with no major mistakes thanks to lots of slow, careful thinking and planning.

We broke the work up into two days: the first beam took two and a half hours to install on Saturday, and the second beam took just one hour to install, start to finish, on Sunday since we had gotten our system down pat the day before. I mention all of this because I want you to know that you can do this! It’s absolutely a DIY project that anyone can do as long as you put the time and energy into planning your process, measurements, and cuts. Now for those gratuitous “after” shots…

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

As you can see in the comparison graphic below, the white ceiling felt lofty before, but it also sort of disappeared. With the addition of those two new faux wood beams, though, the ceiling height jumps right out at you. I honestly was a little worried that it was going to make the ceiling feel lower with the beams, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. I can’t stop staring up at them now, and am convinced that they’re the perfect mid-century-style addition to our retro home. It feels like they’ve always been there.

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

Have you ever thought about adding beams to your space? When I introduced this project over on Instagram, I was surprised to find out just how many of you were hoping to do the same in your own homes. I get the feeling that a lot of people think this project is out of budget and beyond a typical skill level, which is why they wait, but I’ve learned that that’s not the case.

Our two beams each measure 6″x6″x15′ and cost $465.52 apiece. Combined you’re looking at a materials cost of less than you might spend on a new couch or mattress, and beams will ultimately add lots of value to your home. Can you say that about a couch or mattress? Nope! It’s absolutely an investment, but one worth saving up for.

Anyway, in real life I’m just as giddy as I’m coming off here in today’s post. Our new beams have completely changed the look and feel of our house, and I so appreciate the style they add to our living room, too—just in time for an extra cozy fall and winter spent at home. Where would you put faux wood beams in your home? Maybe the bedroom? Your dining room? I’d love to know, so tell me all about it in the comments.

How To Add Style To Your Space With Faux Wood Beams | dreamgreendiy.com + @barron_designs #ad

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Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

**This post was sponsored by RugPadUSA.

The unique thing about talking about home décor for a living when you’re just an “average Jane,” like me, is that we can’t default to easy shortcuts like professional magazine photographers and stylists can. We can’t just temporarily tape curtains to the wall to make it look like we have custom drapery in our bedrooms, and we can’t photoshop in sconce lighting with the touch of a button. That’s just not real life.

We true homemakers and DIY designers have to build a home around everyday situations, and find permanent solutions to problems that crop up during the design process. For example, when our newly layered rugs started wrinkling because of foot traffic a couple months after I had laid them down, I couldn’t just duct tape or nail them to our floor for the sake of a photo. I needed to get strategic and think of a solution that would actually work for real life—and for the long haul, too!

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

The other day, I took to Instagram to ask for your help coming up with a solution, and not long afterward I got a super serendipitous email from the team over at RugPadUSA asking if I’d like to review any of their rug pads. I came back with a resounding, “YES!” and also a desperate “PLEASE HELP!” in case they had a solution for using pads to help layered rugs stay flat.

Turns out they have a few options for making this look feasible at home (with more new products on the way), and today I’m going to talk you through the one that worked for me. Keep scrolling for our full review, and just a heads up that you can get $50 off your RugPadUSA orders of $200 or more using code “DREAMGREEN” (you can use that on top of their current 20% off sale, by the way).

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

For our particular layered bedroom rugs, we went with the “Superior Lock” option from RugPadUSA. It’s one of their bestselling pads, and even though it’s touted as being ideal for hardwood floors, it has worked perfectly for our layered rugs situation because it allows that top rug to not budge an inch over the lower one.

That photo above is a pretty good view of the type of buckling we were dealing with. The top rug in our bedroom is gorgeous, but it’s also really, really thin. It’s almost more like a mat than a rug, and I knew from reading the reviews that most previous buyers recommended using a rug pad with it. They’re right! We’ve needed a proper rug pad for this rug since the moment we laid it down a few months ago. I don’t know why I waited so long!

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

I had John help me move the mattress into the closet, and then we lifted the bed frame right up against the back wall of the space. Then we took the opportunity to give the top rug a good vacuum before rolling it up and vacuuming the lower rug for good measure, too. Next, we laid out our new rug pad centered under the area where we wanted the top rug to go.

After that, it was just a matter of unrolling the top rug right over the pad! We did this really slowly, one of us on each end of the rug, and smoothed it out completely flat as we went, that way the rug had maximum contact with the top of the rug pad. This, we heard, helps the rug stay put for the long haul, and we’ve found out that it’s true now that it has been like this for a couple of weeks.

I felt fairly confident that the rug pad would help with our layering situation, but one thing I didn’t account for is how much softer and more comfortable the rug feels under-foot now that it has a pad. It’s honestly really luxurious to live with a good rug pad, and I’m kicking myself again for waiting so long to do this. Once you go “rug pad,” you never go back, apparently.

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

I had all but given up hope that this look was going to work in our home (I’m far too OCD to deal with smoothing out those wrinkles all the time!), but I think we’ve found a great solution thanks to RugPadUSA. If you want to try this trick in your own house, don’t forget that you can get $50 off $200 or more using code “DREAMGREEN,” and you can use that discount right on top of their current 20% off sale through the end of September. I’m planning to place an order to fix the layered rugs in our family room next!

Layering Rugs Using A Rug Pad | dreamgreendiy.com + @rugpadusa #rugpadusa #ad

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