Well folks, this new to us house thing has turned into quite the journey.
Way back in May, I announced that we were under contract for the purchase of a new home. We closed and moved into the house exactly on schedule and didn’t waste any time getting right to work. And it has been bedlam ever since.
We were, and still are, uber excited about all of the possibilities this house presented to us. But boy, it seems like turning the possibility into reality is taking forevvvver.
It isn’t much to look at right now, but a lot of you have asked to see it – so, even though I’m still in construction, unpacking, organizing, non-decorating mode, I thought that I’d give you a little mini tour of what some of the rooms on the main floor of the house are like. It’s helping me to look back and see how far we’ve come since we started the reno in early August.
One of the first projects that we tackled was to open up the view of the house from the street. This is what we saw the very first time that we looked at the house. It was an overgrown jungle.
And this is what it looks like after we limbed up the huge oak trees, removed some of the scraggly under-plantings and ripped out every single one of the overgrown shrubs along the front of the house. We also reduced the size of the natural space, which allowed us to add more grass. Eventually I want to replace the brick columns with a normal mailbox at the end of the driveway. I’m planning to paint the shutters and storage building a charcoal gray.
I dearly love the two turrets on the back of the house, but I’m not wild about the triangular shaped windows that are in the family room. All of the vegetation along the deck and porch is overgrown and will be ripped out at some point.
Not much has changed on the back of the house or on the screen porch yet, except that we’re having the rotted deck boards replaced this week. I doubt that I’ll have time to do much out here until next spring.
It was obvious from the git-go (that’s Southern for ‘from the beginning’) that the house was last decorated in the mid 90’s, which is when it was built. Nearly every room in the house was decorated in shades of pink, mauve and lavender with some hunter green thrown in for good measure – pink carpet, pink and lavender walls, wallpaper and tile, even pink light bulbs. Keep in mind that all of the BEFORE photos were taken when the previous owners furnishings were still in the house.
The foyer was one of the mauve areas in the home. It was a very dark space filled with lots of brown wood.
We painted the walls Sherwin Williams Accessible Beige, painted the handrail black and all of the wood trim white, stained the steps darker and replaced the carpet runner on the steps. What a difference that made. BTW – Sherwin Williams Accessible Beige is the wall color that I’ve used throughout the entire house. Sorry, but I forgot to take a photo of the foyer with our furniture in it and the new carpet runner, but this one gives you an idea of what the painted handrail and trim look like.
The living room, which is right off of the foyer, had pale pink carpet, lavender walls and was filled with Victorian’ish furniture.
We don’t need a living room, so we’re going to use it as an office. We painted the walls and replaced the carpeting with hardwoods. My plan is to recover the chairs, paint the bookcase, add wainscoting to the wall behind the desk and maybe replace the desk chair.
You can see that living room (now office) opens into the dining room. It was covered in wallpaper and was another room where all of the wood was brown.
We removed all of the wallpaper, painted the trim white and refinished the wood floors. The table is currently filled with a lot of white dishes and crockery that I’ll be using on some open shelves in the kitchen. I’ll be recovering the chair seats. The new chandelier is stashed away in its box and hasn’t been hung yet.
The kitchen/breakfast area was one of the few rooms that wasn’t either covered in wallpaper or painted an awful color.
I was so excited to see white cabinets when we first looked at the house. That was exactly what I wanted! I had planned to work with what was already there = save money. I thought that I could move some of the cabinets around to change the layout and add cabinets above the existing uppers to add height.
Sadly, we discovered that the cabinets were covered with almost twenty year old Thermafoil. Even though the Thermafoil was in good shape, I didn’t think it made sense to put granite countertops onto cabinets where the finish would probably eventually fail. Don’t worry – we didn’t trash the old cabinets. Some of them were reused in the laundry room and others were given away. So began the hunt for new kitchen cabinets and this is how the kitchen looked a few days ago. No counter tops yet.
We haven’t painted in here yet, but we did replace the linoleum with hardwood floors. It’s difficult to tell, but the island is gray. It will have an overhang for some bar stools once the granite is added and I have two lanterns waiting to be hung above the island when it’s completed.
Since I’m the host for any family gatherings, I’m really grateful to be able to have double wall ovens. My sink and dishwasher will be in the island and you can see that we still have some trim to finish up on the cabinets on this side of the room.
In spite of the poor layout and dated/non-working appliances, it was love at first sight in this space. The kitchen includes a breakfast area that extends into a turret on the back of the house and is filled with light during the day.
For my birthday, Pookie treated me to a table from World Market that I paired with side chairs ordered online from Walmart. At the ends of table, I’ll place two rattan chairs that I already own. They’ll be painted and I’ll recover the cushions. I’ve been scouring Craigslist for just the right dresser to makeover and use on the wall beside the table where the boxes are currently stacked. Those boxes contain linens and other items that I’ll store in the dresser. I plan to put open shelves above the dresser that will hold a lot of the white items lying in wait on my dining room table.
The kitchen has a large opening to the family room. I didn’t realize how large the room is until the former owner moved out because it was so filled with large furniture pieces when we looked at the house.
This is how it looks right now – it’s pretty empty looking. We painted the walls and brown trim, refinished the hardwood floors and I’ve applied one coat of white wash to the red brick fireplace. I’ll be adding another coat of white or gray wash to the fireplace, but I may wind up painting it solid white. The tv and entertainment center were in our basement at the last house. We haven’t completely put the entertainment center together since we have to have the painters come back in and it will have to be taken apart and moved.
The laundry room in this house was a big surprise to me because of its large size. It’s as big as a bedroom! I’ve never been able to figure out why the previous owner had it arranged the way that it was. You had to walk between the washer and dryer because they were so far apart.
In addition to removing the wallpaper, painting and replacing the vinyl, we moved the dryer connection so that my dryer could be right beside the washer and moved the sink connection slightly to the right to accommodate the its new location. The previous owner left her very nice refrigerator with the house and it fits perfectly in here. This is one of the rooms where Pookie reused some of the original kitchen cabinets. He still has to add a cabinet above the refrigerator and the laundry room sink, which is the original kitchen sink, hasn’t been installed yet.
The master bedroom was painted red and was filled with bulky furniture and pink carpet.
We’ve replaced the carpeting and painted the room. One thing that I love in this room is the sitting area that is in the second turret on the back of the house. And in case you’re wondering why the coverlet is so wrinkled, it’s because this is the first time that the bed has been fully made since we moved in. Ha!
I’ll end this little tour with the master bathroom. Before it held a huge jacuzzi tub with a step up to it and a shower that was dark and cramped because of the dropped soffit. The tile was beige with pink and lavender accent tiles.
We removed all of the wallpaper and floor tile and ripped out the tub, shower and half wall beside the potty. The shower was enlarged to include a bench and a room was built around the potty (the potty room isn’t visible in this photo). The glass for the shower is scheduled to be installed this coming Friday. I’m reserving the open space in between the shower and potty room for an armoire of some sort. Obviously, we haven’t repainted in here yet.
Can I just tell you how much I love this tile?!? My photo doesn’t do the mosaic justice – it is made up of natural stone, glass and mother-of-pearl. Yum.
Two large vanities were on the other side of the bathroom.
We reused the vanities and kept them in their original spots, but we added height to them by building a base with scrap boards. They’ll have to be trimmed out to cover all of the joints and bare wood. We replaced the counters and faucets, added a ceiling fan and will be replacing the light fixtures and mirrors. I’ll probably paint the vanities gray. That french door that you see goes out onto the deck.
That’s it for today. There are other bedrooms, bathrooms and a bonus room that will become my sewing/craft room, but this post is long enough. Bless your heart if you stuck around to the very end. I’ll be sharing details and resources as we go along.
I’m worn out just thinking about all that is left to be done, but I’m having a blast!
Inspiration Monday at Refresh Restyle, Inspire Me Monday at Sand and Sisal, Monday Funday at That’s What Che Said, Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch, The Scoop, Inspire Me Tuesday at A Stroll Thru Life, The Inspiration Exachange on Tuesday at Ella Claire Inspired, Wow Us Wednesdays at Savvy Southern Style, Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage, The Inspiration Gallery On Fridays at Craftberry Bush, Show-Licious on Saturday at 3 Little Greenwoods