Restaurant Refresh Reveal!!!

Before & After, DIY PROJECT

I am SO EXCITED to share the reveal of our first Restaurant Refresh!! To give you a little backstory, when the pandemic began, we saw businesses that we love get hit hard. Mr. Yolo and I started brainstorming how we could help, and one way was reaching out to businesses and offering to donate our DIY and Design services. A real passion for me is shining light on Women-owned businesses, so when my favorite neighborhood brunch spot, Lazy Susan, closed their doors during the quarantine, I pitched the idea of doing a refresh. Her space is so beautiful, I knew that fresh paint colors and a few decor changes would make a big impact and get patrons excited to visit when she opens back up!

The amazing power of paint!!! There is so much I want to talk about: new lights! new paneling behind the bar! simplified decor! But let’s start with paint, because that was the most dramatic change.

I wanted to keep the color scheme already in place, but soften it up for the refresh. We are so thankful to Zinsser, who donated all the paint for this project. I am just so happy with the colors, they all feel very fresh! The bar went from bright blue to this beautiful blue/green, called Terrarium. I wanted to bring the pale yellow from the exterior into the interior and used the color Cream Puff (fitting for Wisconsin!). I toned down the bright yellow walls by painting them an off-white, Chiffon. And darken the ceiling a bit with the brownish/purple color, called Midnight Mulberry. We hired out the painting, because it was a big job with TALL ceilings. The crew knocked it out in 3 days and then it was time to do some wood work.

I liked the idea of defining the back of the bar area with some vertical paneling that would mimic the bar front. Mr. Yolo used tongue and groove paneling, then trimmed it out with some decorative molding. I picked a creamy color, Bubble Tea, so it would pop off the wall a bit.

Now that the walls are white, it allows the pendants to shine, so I picked these black ones with a little copper accent on the top and gold inside. You know how I love mixing medals!

The cutting board wall! I love how it tuned out! Stay tuned because we worked with Rust-Oleum to create them and I will have a full tutorial on these DIY decorative cutting boards soon!

Snapped this pic when they just received a big order of to-go boxes for carry out service.

Opposite of the bar is the dining area, where a local artist, Sara Terrell, had just painted this chalk mural (featuring the building exterior)! I wanted the chalkboard to be the focal point for this wall, so we framed it out with 1x4s. We then broke up the large wall with a peg rail where diners could hang their coats. The bottom half is painted a beautiful sage, called Stonehenge. To finish the wall, I added a few thrift store finds!

If you all have been following along on stories, you know I had a vision that all the chairs would be black. So I volunteered Mr. Yolo and I to paint all 40 of them…which (surprise, surprise) was a bit more work than anticipated. My neighborhood girls pitched in and we got. it. done! I have all the steps over @ISPYDIY Instagram under the CHAIRS highlight.

All the existing plates were so darn charming that they went back up when the painting was done! Plus I thrifted a few more floral ones to hang above the bar. Each was $1-2 dollars, such an inexpensive way to make a big impact on a wall.

Now down to the lower dining area, I just love this view! Lemon art from Vintage Supply & Citrus art from Juniper Print Shop.

I wanted a shelf where a bunch of art and tchotchkes could be displayed (they have added a bunch more of their signature salt & pepper shakers since I snapped this photo!) We built a long shelf that extended the whole wall (similar tutorial here). The lower half was originally painted the sage Stonehenge color, but it got washed out by the restaurant lights and there was not a drastic enough contrast between the upper and lower wall. Restaurant lighting is something I definitely needed to learn about in this process. I usually rely on natural lighting, and restaurants have lights on all the time. After much deliberating, we ended up re-painting the lower wall the same Terrarium color as the bar.

The Lazy Susan logo is so sweet, I thought it need to be painted somewhere in the interior. A local artist, Alison, painted it on the back wall in the dining room, and I just love it! The black in the chairs, logo, and lighting really pop.

There you have it, our first ever Restaurant Refresh! We are so thankful to the owner, AJ, for trusting us with her space. We learned so much in the process! Thankful for Rustoleum who donated paint, and sponsored projects at the restaurant. And thank you to Mr. Yolo for sticking with me even after I volunteered to paint all 40 chairs! We are excited to work with more businesses!!




  1. Michelle says:

    This looks so amazing, I am definitely in love with that coffee table, and the staircase!

  2. What Mum Loves says:

    wow, the coffee table is beautiful! Amazing transformation x

  3. Kait says:

    HOLY MOLY! I just love everything about this! It look UH-MAZING!

  4. Melissa says:

    This looks soooo good!!

    xx, Melissa

  5. Monelle says:

    Amazing! Did you have to also sand down the curvy outer bark area as well? I presume it was also rough and had pieces of bark stickiny ouy everywhere. If so, how did you get into all the grooves & curves?

    1. Jenni says:

      That part was left natural, And just covered with poly to keep it from chipping!

  6. Nausikaä says:

    This transformation is absolutely incredible! Love this! XX

  7. Alicia S says:

    This is an amazing transformation the room looks so open and bright now and I adore the coffee table! I love dark wood combined with white furniture.
    Alicia x

  8. Brittney says:

    I LOVED your show, and can’t wait to see more! Fingers crossed you get a season!! That living room was gorgeous, and I loved the kitchen, and the bathroom tile too!

  9. Bea says:

    Woahhhh, this is incredible! The difference is so amazing!

  10. Katherine says:

    This is amazing, I love it!

  11. Sharon S. (SS) says:

    Wow this looks great! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  12. MamaRose says:

    All of this is absolutely beautiful. I am not a lover of white, but you have made it tempting to re-examine its flexibility. Love, love, love what I have seen…..LOVE IT!

  13. Jess Koerner says:

    I think my little girls and I just “spied” you at Wastecap Salvage! Wanted to tell you we love your show and style! Happy Milwaukee Day?

    1. Jenni says:

      Love that place! Next time come say hi!

  14. Good site! I truly love how it is easy on my eyes and the data are well written. I’m wondering how I might be notified when a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your RSS feed which must do the trick! Have a great day!

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