DIY Barn Doors

Barn doors via Drum Homes

Barn doors were a no brainer in our most recent Boxwood renovation.  The dining area had doors on both walls, one leading to the basement and the other a master suite.  Since this dining room was already a bit cozy AND because it's one of the first things you see when you walk in the door, regular hinged doors just wouldn't do.  The problem arose when the doors were two different widths - there was no way I was going to find reclaimed barn doors that looked good together and were the perfect sizes.  There are many companies that build beautiful custom barn doors BUT I was 100% sure that our finance department would not OK that expense (right Nate?).

So...time to get out the tools...

DIY Barn Doors via Drum Homes
  • Start with good ol' pine 1x6's for the boards and 1x4's for the cross pieces (and yes I got a couple of raised eyebrows from the boys when I suggested this).  Choose a length longer than the height of your door to allow for cutting the ends.  Make sure your pieces are as straight as took me a couple of trips to get enough straight boards.
  • Since I wanted the doors to cover the trim we used 9 boards for our 4' wide door and 7 boards for our 3' wide door.
  • On a flat surface butt all of your boards up as close together as possible. Try to get ends lined up fairly close but we will be cutting both the top and the bottom so that the edges are straight.
  • About an inch from the bottom of your "door" draw a line with a carpenter's square and a straight edge.  From that line measure the desired height of your door and draw another line.
  • Cut your 1x4 cross pieces to the width of the door.  Place one piece approx 10" above your bottom line and one piece 10" below your top line.  Nail to each board.
  • Place your door upside down on sawhorses. From the back side use screws to secure your crosspieces...preferably 2 screws for each board.  Fill holes with wood putty.
  • Flip the door back to the front side and using a circular saw cut both ends along your lines.  Now you're ready for the fun part!
DIY Barn doors via Drum Homes


  • Using an orbital sander and 60 grit paper sand both sides of your doors paying special attention to "wearing" down all edges and corners.  When your door is "weathered" to your satisfaction sand again with 120 grit paper.
  • Paint both sides of your door with one coat of a lighter color paint (I used Ben Moore's Edgecomb Gray). This does not have to be a perfect application as we will sand a fair amount of the paint off in the next step! 
DIY barn doors via Drum Homes
  • Using fresh 120 grit sandpaper, sand over your painted door after it has dried.  Do not worry if you remove the paint in want to "weather" the paint.  I like to sand the paint off the edges of the door where any natural wear and tear would occur



DIY barn doors via Drum Homes
  • Now using the Karate Kid wax on/wax off method wipe wood stain over the painted door and immediately wipe off with a clean rag.  Work in sections so that the stain doesn't have too much time to sink in.  The color of stain you choose depends on how aged/dirty you want the door to look.  The darker...the dirtier.  
  • The stain is meant to sink into the sanded wood more than the paint and it is ok if the stain is darker in some areas than others.  It does not have to be perfect!  
  • Step back and admire your completed work!  Once dry...hang.
DIY barn doors via Drum Homes

My barn door hardware was purchased from

Posted on January 19, 2016 and filed under diy.

Turning Your Home Into Your Haven

Turn Your Home Into Your Haven

Renovating and decorating your home isn't just about updating,  gaining more space or making it look pretty,  it's really about turning your home into your haven.  As our lives are getting increasingly busy, it's becoming more and more important that we have an escape; our homes can be that oasis.

As our list of Drum projects continually grows, Nate and I have to remind ourselves to occasionally take a break and take a breath.  

I loved this article on Houzz and thought I'd share...

Posted on October 1, 2015 and filed under slow living.

Quick and Simple Cabinet Facelift

The title does not lie folks.  I promise you, with the help of my adhesive buddy (that'd be Nate) this project took no more than a half an hour.  It may take you just as long to read this blog, so if you're in a hurry I will not be offended if you just skip to the end...



This all starts with a media cabinet that Nate made years ago to house all our, simply put, crap.  You know - TV, DVD player, satellite box, CDs, etcetera, etcetera.

***Nate would like me to take a moment to say on his behalf that when he made this cabinet he had no idea we would have it for 12+ years and if he had known he would have taken more time on the doors and drawers ;-) *** 

ANYHOOS... our recent upgrade to a monstrously large TV required us to take off the doors and open up the inside of the cabinet.  And while the new TV is nice, it could not distract me from the hideous back wall of the cabinet. 

ENTER pallet wood.

quick and simple cabinet facelift via Drum Homes

 I simply dragged out some pallet wood leftover from previous projects, measured the height of the cabinet interior and started cutting.  Using construction adhesive, Nate lined them up and glued them to the back of the cabinet.

quick and simple cabinet facelift via Drum Homes

Easy Peasy!

quick and simple cabinet facelift via Drum Homes

To recap...

  1. measure
  2. cut
  3. glue





Posted on September 23, 2015 and filed under diy.

Summer Cabin

Here at Drum Homes we strive to meet the custom hopes and needs of EVERY client.

 Although his winter condo was pretty darn nice, Yertle the Turtle (ok,technically he's a tortoise, but Yertle the Tortoise sounds ridiculous...) came to us with the hopes of building a summer "cabin" where he could reconnect with nature.

tortoise cabin via Drum Homes

Yertle's needs were few, but specific.

  • a spacious cabin nestled among the trees
  • a patio for sunning
  • a pool for dipping
  • skylights galore
  • a man cave
  • state of the art security from intruders
  • food delivery service (we referred him to Boston's Produce Delivery) 
Tortoise cabin via Drum Homes

Yertle said he would give us excellent online reviews, if only he could type... 

But we think his smile says it all!

Posted on July 1, 2015 and filed under custom build.

May Renovation

Amanda had set her sights on one of our new builds, but when that didn't work out she simply took matters into her own hands.  Amanda found herself a quaint fixer upper in East Atlanta and hired Drum to completely renovate it for her.  Now she has her own custom Drum Home!

The house, though quaint, was too chopped up with a tiny kitchen, a separate dining area and a small living room.  By tearing down several walls and moving the water heater closet, we were able to open up the entire right side of the house and provide an open space for living and gathering.

fixer upper from Drum Homes

Removing the kitchen walls gave us more room to "spill" into the dining space and allowed for an island, pantry cabinets and an inviting space for entertaining.

fixer upper from Drum Homes
Kitchen renovation via Drum Homes
kitchen remodel via Drum Homes

Although we all loved the fireplace, it was non functioning and once the wall between the living and dining was removed, it was completely off center.  In an effort to shift the center of the living room closer to the kitchen and away from the door, we removed the fireplace.  In it's place we built some narrow bookshelves and added a reclaimed wood accent wall, both help to anchor the space and designate the living area. The vintage industrial sconces make it look like it's always been there!

fixer upper from Drum Homes
reclaimed wood accent wall via Drum Homes

The master bath just needed a little TLC.  The fluorescent pot lights, metal medicine cabinets and all that gray tile gave the room a bit of a gas station feel...  Opening up the overhead space, removing the tile from walls, repainting and adding a new custom vanity and distressed mirrors helped to both lighten and warm the room at the same time.

fixer upper from Drum Homes

Adding a walk-in closet and replacing infrequently used doors with windows helped this master bedroom become functional and inviting.

fixer upper from Drum Homes

We are so glad Amanda let us turn her hopes into a reality, she truly has become part of the Drum family!

Posted on May 28, 2015 and filed under renovation, kitchen.

Reclaiming a Home

Since we first used reclaimed wood walls in our most recent new build we have had MANY requests for something similar.  The wood we used at 1817 Braeburn was pulled out of a house that we were tearing down and that was almost gone... So my quest for more reclaimed wood began.






Enter Pamela.  I found Pamela on Craigslist and her reclaimed tongue and groove heart pine caught my eye, but as is often the case there is much more to her story than simply some old wood in the price range that I was looking for.







Reclaiming a home via Drum Homes
Reclaiming a home via Drum Homes

Pamela has taken on the physically and emotionally challenging task of disassembling her Georgia family home board by board.  


This house had been home to her family for 4 generations.  Built by her grandparents, her mother was born in the home, Pamela was raised there and she even lived there with her young son.  

Reclaiming a home via Drum Homes

The house as a whole was beyond repair but Pamela couldn't bear to see the beautiful, windows, doors, walls and floors that were still in good shape just torn down and discarded.

Reclaiming a home via Drum Homes

I'm sure that tearing down a home and stacking up all those memories must come with its fair share of sadness for Pamela, but there is something so lovely about a home that has been exposed.  After all the adornment is stripped away, most buildings seem stronger and wiser and far from vulnerable.  I love that some of the tenacious spirit of this home continues on in a new home and with a new generation.

Reclaiming a home via Drum Homes


Posted on April 10, 2015 and filed under renovation.

Adams Kitchen Renovation

Kitchen reno via Drum Homes

The Adams' are a couple that love to cook and entertain and the kitchen they were living with was far too closed off and cramped.  

kitchen reno via Drum Homes

The high u-shaped bank of cabinetry completely closed off the kitchen.  Tearing that out was the first thing we did, and in it's place went an island with seating and a sink.  Now the kitchen is open, welcoming and perfect for entertaining.

kitchen reno via Drum Homes

Keeping the floors, wall cabinetry and back splash light but textural helps to visually open up the space without getting boring.

kitchen reno via Drum Homes

The addition of a large pantry, high end appliances and gorgeous granite really makes this a chef's dream kitchen!

Posted on April 1, 2015 and filed under renovation, kitchen.

Renovation Realities :: Kitchen and Bath Budget

It happens to the best of us...

We're watching HGTV for the fifth hour straight while pinning all of those fabulous ideas on our Pinterest boards and can't help but think, "How much could that cost? Really?!?  You simply move that over there...add a cabinet over here... then a counter top there.... and poof! you're done!

Kitchen reno via Drum Homes

Most of us fail to remember the nuts and bolts, or shall we say lumber and nails, of those not-so-glamorous but oh-so-necessary costs.   I'm sure most people don't have Pinterest boards titled "Sub floor" or "Grout" and rarely do they talk about labor costs on HGTV.  That's where general contractors and designers come in handy.  They can help turn those wishes and dreams into an accurate budget with a cohesive plan.

Bath reno via Drum Homes

We often get asked what a kitchen or bathroom renovation would cost and, unfortunately, there's really no exact answer to that question.  So much depends on what you are starting with and what you want the finished space to be.  Therefore, being the remarkably helpful renovators that we are, we have compiled some articles that we think are pretty accurate and helpful in explaining the realities of renovating.

Kitchen reno via Drum Homes

When you're finished reading the articles, don't forget to hop back on Pinterest and check out our Grout's inspiring...really! ;-) 



Budget, Timeline and Inconvenience Realities of Renovation

from Atlanta Home Improvement

Kitchen & Bath Remodel - What’s Really Possible with Your Budget?

from Atlanta Home Improvement

Bathroom Workbook: How Much Does a Bathroom Remodel Cost?

from Houzz

Posted on March 6, 2015 .

Got Sink?

table to sink

Well we didn't.

Searching for the perfect sink for one of our properties, or someone else's, often becomes one of the greatest design challenges.  Either I know what I want, but the Budget Master (aka Nate) won't grant me his approval, or the I'm just plain bored with what's out there.

Such was the case with one of the properties we recently built.  I wanted a wow factor sink for the downstairs powder room, but everything that said "wow" to me translated to "whoa" when I saw to the price tag.  So I decided to take matters into our own DIY hands and find a piece of furniture that we could turn into the sink that couldn't be found.

Here are some tips when looking for furniture to turn in to a sink...

  • Make sure the width, depth and height are what you need.  
    - Widths will vary depending on the space where you want to put the sink.
    - The depth will vary depending on the sink you choose, so it's best to decide on that ahead of time.  Even if you choose a vessel sink (where the bowl sits on top) you will still need to allow extra room for the faucet.
    - The height of the sink should be between 34" and 36", but if what you find is a bit low, investigate to see if adding feet is an option.

  • A wood top is easiest to drill and cut... If you find something with a different material for the top, make sure that SOMEONE has the tools and ability to cut the holes for the faucet and sink.

  • A table, a dresser or a storage piece with doors are all viable options.  If you are dropping the sink in, make sure that there are doors or drawers, or that there is enough of a skirt in the front so you don't see the bottom of the sink hanging down.

In our case, since it was a powder room, I wasn't too concerned about storage. I just needed to make sure that the skirt was deep enough to hide the underside of the sink.  After searching EVERYWHERE from antique stores to Target to TJMaxx, I finally came across this reclaimed wood table intended, possibly, for a foyer.   

table to sink transformation

This table was taller than most of the other prospects that I had encountered, but it still came up a bit short.  I wasn't worried though, because after inspecting the existing wood feet I knew that screwing additional feet to the bottom to add height wouldn't be much of a problem.

add feet
stain feet to match

So after adding feet to the bottom, staining them to match and adding a protective coat of wax to the top I passed it on the "the guys" to cut the hole and drop in the sink.  I fully intended to cut and install the sink on my own, but when Nate offered to take it on site and get it done, well, I'm no idiot...

table to sink

If I had had more time, I would have changed out the pulls on the front, but all in all it turned out just as I was hoping.  It's an unexpected surprise in the powder room and although it took a bit more time and effort, this one-of-a-kind sink cost less than an in stock sink from Home Depot or Lowes!

To see more of 1817 Braeburn Ave
(the home that this sink get's to live in)




Posted on January 28, 2015 and filed under diy.

Gratitude Banner

grateful banner

When asked that inevitable question at the Thanksgiving table every year, “what are you thankful for?” I always freeze.  What’s the one perfect answer?  What if I answer incorrectly? So. Much. Pressure.

Family? True, of course, but corny.

Health? Unoriginal.

Food and this well-deserved glass of wine? Both obvious and a bit shallow.

I’m the type of person that needs to mull things over.  I like to be able to add thoughts, subtract thoughts, amend my previous statements…  

The truth is there is NO WAY I could come up with just one answer. 

I am blessed and thankful not for one meal, one person, or one moment, but because of the many moments that make up a blessed life.  And shouldn’t we all be grateful for the bigs and the smalls?  What we have, and often, what we don’t have?

This gratitude banner is my way of avoiding that awkward moment at the Thanksgiving table and of encouraging my family to be grateful at their leisure - often and honestly.


Fabric (I used muslin)
Pinking Shears
Spray paint (I used gold)
Letter stencils
Postal tags
Scrapbook paper of choice (optional)
Yarn, string or twine


Place letter stencils 2" from bottom and centered on fabric and spray with paint.


Start by cutting your fabric with pinking shears to approximately 8"x10".  If you want to get really kooky cut the bottom corners like I did.

Fold over top of rope or thick twine and hot glue. Your simple banner is made, but we're not done yet!


I found a 6x6 pad of scrapbook paper with patterns I liked, and cut tags to size for a pop of color .  I also mixed in some plain postal tags for variety.


Add some string, yarn or twine (cut to 10") to your tags and invite family and friends to share the things they're thankful for.... no pressure!

grateful banner
Posted on November 13, 2014 and filed under crafty.