More Or Less {American Dream Builders} Episode #7

This week’s episode was interesting with the team change up. I agreed with the counsel on which team won and I totally agreed with Nate when he told Darren that he was LUCKY his team won. What in the world did he do other than the half a$$ed bedroom? Sorry for that, but I get upset because this home is for a family in need. Forget the fact that it is a competition, you need to do your best and work your guts out because of the family. Rant over :)

When I get the images each week to pick from, I also get the before images. As I scroll through, I see sometimes that they take out a wall that had a cute nook original to the house or some other architectural detail. The house always looks amazing when all is said and done of course, but I wonder what it would have been like if they had kept the things that were original. I am a believer in keeping things as close to the original as possible, architecturally speaking. So when I saw the before of the dining room, I literally said out loud “PLEASE, please, please, let them keep those leaded glass built ins!” I may have even said a quick prayer before clicking “next”.

So you can imagine how giddy I was to see them there and painted in a fresh coat of white paint. Gorgeous!!! That, and the light fixture, were two of the main reasons I picked this space to recreate on a budget.

I love the mix of traditional and modern in this space. Lukas and Elaine really nailed it.

And here are the items I found to get the look for less!

more or less

How to get this look for less! by Stacy Risenmay

French Dining Chairs

I was able to find a chair that was super similar (if not the actual chair). It is pictured first. It is the most expensive at $506 per chair. The second picture is a set (without the arms though) priced at $354. That is much better, but still a chunk of change. If you are up for a DIY project then I found some chairs on Etsy for a much, much better deal. The first set pictured are priced at 6 for $110 while the second set of 4 is also a great deal at $115.

french dining room chairs

(Top Left: Burke Decor     Top Right: Wayfair     Bottom Left: Etsy, Reloved By Danielle     Bottom Right: Reloved By Danielle)

Curtain Fabric

I found the actual fabric they used for the curtains. It sells for $71.60 per yard. This other fabric pictured is thinner but could be lined and would also work. It sells for $7.45 per yard. Gray fabric in a similar fabric is easily found all over. You could find other options if you needed.

gray fabirc

(Left: Calico Corners      Right: Online Fabric Store)

Gray Upholstered Dining Chairs

I loved the lines of these chairs. And if I didn’t have four boys (five if you count the hubby) then I would have upholstered chairs at our dining room table as well. The fist chair pictured sells for $249 per chair. Not the best deal. The one in the middle is the best at $179 for a set of 2.  And the last one pictured is also a set of 2 (which is the closest to the original) and sells for $329.

gray dining room chairs

(Left: Home Design Store    Middle: North Carolina Furniture  Right: A G Home)

Urn Planter

Luckily urn style planters can be found found just about anywhere and made from just about any material. Because of that they range in price from really expensive all the way to very inexpensive. The first one pictured sells for $24.10 and the second sells for $142 each.

white urn planters

(Left: Amazon       Right: Hayneedle)

The plants in the urn were some type of grass and while you can find it at your local nursery, if you are wanting something easier to maintain, IKEA sell this artificial plant for about $35.



I had a hard time finding a table as fabulous as the one from the show. The one in the show had a center base instead of 4 legs and it also have a beveled edge. Obviously a table with real marble is going to be much more than a table with faux marble. I tried to give a couple options of each.

The first table is $1,349.00 and is real marble while the second one picture ( to the right) is faux marble and sells for $216. I found some real marble tables on Ebay that were a better deal ( as far as for real stone) at $700. The other one (on the bottom right) is all marble with the center base but is $1,500.

black marble tables

(Top Left: Modern Euro Design      Top Right: Wendy Furniture      Bottom Left: Ebay      Bottom Right: Ebay)

If I were serious about recreating this look, I would do one of two things. I would either call a local stone shop and see if they had a remnant slab of marble that they could add the decorative edge to and then build a base for it myself, or I would faux paint an existing table top.

If you go the remnant route, the cost would depend on your area and the type of marble you used. BUT asking for a remnant will get you a MUCH better deal because it is basically their scrap pile and they are just happy to get some money out of it. Negotiate if needed :)

If you go the painting route, it is not as hard as it sounds. I have painted a counter top to resemble marble before. I don’t have a good tutorial for it but my friend Diane does. Visit her site to see how to do it. And make sure to seal it with a glossy sealer.


(In My Own Style)

Light Fixture

This is the one item that I was disappointed about. I could NOT for the life of me find a light close enough to the one in the show. And what is sad, is that the light was one of the main things that drew me to the room in the first place. But the important thing about the light was that it was modern and had the candle lights. So I tried to find some that were similar enough. I am sure with more hunting (and more time) I could find even more but here it what I DID find.

The first light sells for $315, the second on pictured sells for $380, and the one on the end is the best price at $149. As far as the shape goes, I like the middle one the best even though it is not white. Not sure if I have the guts to spray paint something that costs $380 though! :)

light fixtures- modern chandeliers_edited-1

(Top Left:  Amazon    Top Right: Lighting Direct   Bottom: Lamps Plus)

Leaded Glass Cabinets

Leaded glass anything is going to be crazy expensive. I saw two small cabinet doors (old) selling for $500. So it took some time to find cabinets with leaded glass, in a similar pattern, that didn’t break the bank. Both of these options would need some white paint. But if you read my blog I am guessing you aren’t afraid of a little DIY :)

The first one sells for $675 and the second one sells for $500. Even if you don’t end up getting these (since there is only one of each for sale) it goes to show you can find them for less than the thousands of dollars I saw most selling for.

leaded glass hutch

(Left: Ebay      Right: Etsy, Good Luxe)


There is a wide array of prices when it comes to candle sticks. I was surprised at how expensive some were. I loved the tall ones on the table in the show and tried to find some that would be just as substantial. The first pair sells for $98 and the set set sells for $29.


(Left: Linen and Things     Right: Macys)

Blue And White Bowls

Again, depending on age, material, and designer, bowls can be super expensive, or very cheap. The first bowl is the same shape as the one from the show but is more money. It is priced at $155 and the second one is only $20.95 for a set of two. This is one of those items where I think you could find a better deal in person (like at a thrift shop, yard sale, or estate sale) than online.

blue and white bowls

(Left: Blue White Vases   Right: Ebay)

So what did you think of this week’s episode? What was your favorite room?

Share your thoughts in the comments below.

More posts:

Episode #1

Episode #2 

Episode #3

Episode #5

Episode #6

Episode #8

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  1. Deneen@dreaming-n-color says

    The leaded glass us amazing. I have some in my store in historic Murfreesboro. I love the old left too. I understand the need to remove walls too. Thanks for posting.

  2. Heart and Haven says

    I’m glad you mentioned the option of finding a marble remnant. I’ve used remnant granite pieces for a couple of different applications in my house and LOVE how it’s turned out! The other benefit of using remnants is you can often find more “exotic” stones than would be available as pre-fabs from big box stores.

    – I found a remnant granite “verde butterfly” for our downstairs bathroom vanity off craigslist from a fabricator from a cancelled order. I paid $250 for the piece and it was fabricated with the more expensive ogee edge, and had holes for vessel sink and single-handle faucet & incl. side & backsplash. We were able to install the countertop ourselves to save money.
    – I recently DIY’ed a butler’s pantry under our staircase and found a remnant granite “honed absolute black” at a nearby stone yard. I paid $150 for the remnant piece, and had enough left-over to also install a countertop in our laundry room (which I normally would’ve NEVER installed granite in a garage laundry room! lol….but it was actually cheaper than if I had purchased laminate since I was able to use the left-over.) I did hire a granite fabricator to cut & install both pieces for $300 (min. charge was $250…so it was almost as if I was able to install the laundry room countertop for only $50 total!)

    • Stacy says

      That is awesome! I am not sure if everyone knows that you can get remnants. But they really do save so much money! Especially if it is a smaller project.

  3. Colleen says

    I loved both bathrooms and I was so impressed with jays bath for the disabled vet it was beautiful and very functional. Even tho I was personally tired of dan I really thought Darren should have gone home just because he was so irresponsible shame on him! Also the kitchens were amazing. As far as this marble table I would build it and use marble tile if I couldn’t find a remnant.

  4. says

    Love. this. ROOM! Like you, I think I would have been sick had they demo’d the built in with the leaded glass! It is fabulous!! And you did a great job rounding up the items to ‘get the look’. I love the curtain fabric and the french dining chairs!

  5. says

    What an over the top gorgeous dining room – I’d LOVE to know which color/brand they used on the walls !
    What a great series you have going here !

  6. Susan M. says

    Loved the dining room and Lukas’ kitchen. Was disappointed that they didn’t show more of how the bedroom spaces were finished in both houses, especially after last week’s bedroom brouhaha. Apparently neither of the deck spaces were finished or did I miss something?

    Darren: you may be a cutie patootie but it’s time to hang up your guitars and apply yourself! His work is so good when he’s assigned to an outside space – it’s time to bring some of that creativity to the inside or be a man and allow those that can do!

    Another great More or Less – thanks so much!

  7. says

    Have I told you how much I love these posts? I absolutely love those French chairs. And p.s., you’re just as cute in person as you are on your blog. Sad I didn’t actually get to meet you at SNAP but you guys did a fantastic job with the Home Depot Charity Build.

  8. Deb says

    Did you find the original light in dining room? I love it and have been looking for it without any luck. If you could please tell me who sells it.