Archive for the ‘Remodeling’ Category

The master closet is by far the biggest eye sore left in our house. After the A/C issue which flooded the closet, the ceiling has looked like this.

Closet 1 Closet


We’re finally having it re-drywalled this week, so stay tuned!


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It’s been a while…. About 9 months it seems.

We took a break from the house. Admittedly, we were dragging our feet. After about 2.5 years in a state of constant construction, we decided we needed a break, and we chose to just live with what we had for a while… i.e. concrete floors, no baseboards, no doors etc. It was crazy to say the least, but we just wanted some semblance of of a normal life and routine for a while.

After the busiest part of this session passed, we came to our senses and decided to just buck up. lol… Now, things are moving at a rapid pace with the goal of having a finished house in July! Just in time for Matt’s birthday! ūüôā

While we’re very excited about the prospect of new floors, doors, and everything in between, we do plan to put the house on the market as soon as it’s finished, and that’s bitter sweet to say the least.

Anyway, now you’re up to date and you can expect to see lot’s of pictures of the progress.

After several visits from contractors, we were told that my idea for a front door with side lights and a transom could not be done without serious structural modifications, so we opted to replace the existing door with something that was the same size. It has not been painted yet, and the hardware isn’t on, but here’s a sneak peak!

Entry Door

Front Door

We’ve also been working on the flooring, which meant that I had to empty out the hallway closet. If you need any holiday/entertaining items, I appear to have a one-stop-shop! lol

Closet Stuff

More to come! The only downside is that the mess seems like it will continue to get worse before it gets better.

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Last fall, I purchased a set of glass drop sconces with burlap shades to match the rest of our lighting from Pottery Barn.

The sconces matched our Celeste and Audrina chandeliers as well as the Francis sconce¬†in our hallway… and I have plans to get the Hundi lantern for our entry way as soon as our front door has been replaced.

I can’t find the sconces on the Pottery Barn website anymore, but here is a picture of what they looked like in our room.¬†

Please ignore my poor bed making skills. It was done in a hurry, and I probably should have at least centered the pillows for the picture. ūüôā

As you can see, the sconces were made to plug-in, and were not designed to be hard-wired, which was a source of constant frustration for me. I attempted to hide the tacky looking wires with these burlap covers.  (Also from Pottery Barn.)

The problem however, was that the chord covers kept slipping and they were impossible to keep straight.

So, I talked to my dad about the possibility of hard-wiring the sconces and hooking them up to the switch. He told me that he thought he could to it, and this was probably the ideal time because the bathroom on the other side of the wall is already still gutted. (See here.)

On Saturday, we made a trip to purchase the necessary materials and¬†then got straight to work! The project took a few hours, and we did run into a few bumps along the way…¬†In the end, we wound up tearing out¬†two more walls in the guest bathroom in order to find a place to feed the wire, but when it came to the electrical work, we didn’t have any hiccups. Thank¬†God!¬†

Now we are able to turn on the sconces with the flip of one switch, and I am much happier with the way they look as well.

Now, I suppose it’s time to start considering some artwork for above the bed. I’m thinking about this piece from Restoration Hardware. What do you think?

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I’m embarrassed to say that when I bought¬†our house, the stairs had no flooring… Really…

Whoever lived there before us had the bright idea of taking off the carpet, and painting the wood bright red!

I don’t have a picture of that horrific red color, but of course it was the same shade as the powder room:

At least they were trying to make things match???

Anyway, we weren’t quite ready to make a decision about flooring or stairs in general, and there were a few other projects that we thought more important at the time. So, we decided to live with them for a while and just paint them a “more acceptable” color. (As if painting stairs is ever an acceptable thing to do.)

… and they were… at least slightly more acceptable until one day, I spilled an entire gallon of white paint on them, and there was just no saving them from there.

So, we came up with a plan to have matching hardwood installed on the stair treads along with beadboard on the risers, and I am happy to report that our second adventure with a contractor this weekend had a much happier ending.

I just wish my photography skills could do them justice, and I probably shouldn’t have taken the pictures at night.

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… As in, we decided to hire some home-improvement¬†professionals.

Over the holiday weekend, Matt and I decided to tackle a couple of large-scale projects on the house¬†which we determined we weren’t really qualified for, or interested in doing ourselves.

However, the first project¬†didn’t go as planned, and we wound up DIYing anyway. (Matt did most of the work.)

It seemed like a fairly simple¬†task at first… removing the tile in the living room, kitchen, hallway, and powder room (approximately¬†500-700 sq ft… I’m not actually¬†going to measure it for you.) I mean, it wasn’t something that I wanted to do, but I figured we could hire someone who would get it done rather quickly…¬†

HOWEVER, the project took¬†two days instead of one because the crew kept breaking their tools and running off for “lunch” breaks… or listening¬†to the football game instead of working. And after the third time they broke their thinset¬†remover and called to tell me they would be back in a couple of hours, I politely told them that they would get paid for the work that they had completed, but we didn’t have time for this… So, Matt and I went to home depot at 5pm on Sunday to rent a thinset remover ourselves.

Here is what the tile looked like before the tile removal:

There were two different options for tool rental at The Home Depot. The first option was a small version of a jack hammer with an insertable scraper bit that looked like this:

This option was¬†the most¬†cost-effective, but we were afraid that we would be sorry if we went this route. 1) It looked like a lot more work, and 2) this was the same tool that the contractors were using… and breaking.

So, we chose option #2) A buffer with a hexpin¬†hexblade¬†and¬†carbide teeth. (The guy in the tool rental department assured us that we could not break this even if we tried lol.) Of course, this option was more than double¬†in cost, and in the end I think it created a lot more dust than the hand tool would have, but the process was comparatively quick, and we didn’t have to worry about breakage.

Here is Matt surrounded by a cloud of dust:

I spent all day on Monday cleaning dust¬†off of and out of¬†just about everything… and I’m sure I will be doing so for the next few weeks. I am very excited to have this project finished though, and I am not at all sad that those ugly tiles are no longer a part of my life. ūüôā (The wooden ones reminded me of the cheap dance floor at uncle Bob’s 5th wedding… you know what I’m talking about.)

Oh, and as for the contractors, I don’t want to name names, but let’s just say I won’t be recommending them to any of my friends.

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Despite all of the puppy chaos this weekend, we managed to “finish” the laundry room!

I had already finished tiling the back splash and floors last weekend, and we just needed to paint and add new base boards.

So, without further adieu, here is the big reveal:

And here it is with the washer and dryer:

We still need a new light for the room, some shelving on the left side as well as on the wall, and we need to have the marble counter top installed, but it still feels like we’ve made so much progress!

Here  is the light that I am thinking of using:

I think the almost see-through glass will add a lot to the room.

Oh, and for those of you who are interested, here is a breakdown of what we used:

  • ¬†The paint color I chose was Martha Stewart’s Bedford Gray from Home Depot. (I had them do a color match with Behr¬†paint plus primer in eggshell because I like Behr paint better.)
  • 3 inch¬† baseboard with quarter round. (We use Behr Swiss Coffee in semi-gloss for all of our trim.)
  • 12×12 Carrara¬†marble tiles for the floor – (snow white grout)
  • 3×6 bright white ceramic subway tiles – (misty grey grout)

…. and one of my favorite¬†things in the room¬†is¬†this¬†antique washboard on the back wall:

It feels so good to have a working laundry room again, and I can’t wait until the rest of the little details are completed.

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This wine exhibited dark cherry flavors, some earth, a hint of strawberry with a bland finish. It left much to be desired. It was drinkable, but lacked complexity. Overall, I was rather disappointed.

On the other hand, here’s a sneak peak of the laundry room. I have a few things left to do before I can give you a full review (like putting the washer and dryer back in the room.)

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