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Category Archives: Renovation

Connecticut Duplex: Reveal

by Sarah on October 13, 2014, 2 comments

The Connecticut duplex is complete!

This project was particularly rewarding because it was relatively quick–about two and half months and the transformation is striking. I drew inspiration from this project from my neighbors 2000 miles to the west in Venice Beach, California. I wanted a little of a Venice bungalow feel and I had to squeeze a completely lackluster 1950s ranch duplex in to that mold.  Many of the Venice bungalows were constructed during the craftsman era and use a lot of the classic craftsman elements and that’s what we did here.

The turquoise doors, boring tan paint color and the rickety railings and posts are gone.

Conn Duplex B&A

Conn duplex paint color

 

connecticut duplex house number

 

 

connecticut duplex 230 windows

 

 

connecticut duplex stairs

Our friends from Butler Constructs landscaping planted the Confederate Jasmine to crawl up our trellis on each end of the duplex to create a green privacy wall and it will produce a sweet fragrance and white flowers in the spring. The variegated plant that thrives in the shade in the foreground is Fatsia.

 

connecticut duplex trellis

 

 

connecticut duplex 240 stairs

 

 

connecticut duplex whole house

The addition of the arbor was key to add dimension and character to the long, straight lines of the duplex. Our carpentry crew from Locklear Brothers Home Improvement executed those brackets perfectly. The style of the bracket under the arbor echoes the straight lines of the simple corbels on the gables over each entrance.

 

connecticut duplex arbor

Benjamin Moore’s Midnight Oil changes during the day and has a beautiful sheen and looks incredibly rich in the shade. It is the perfect color for this project.

 

connecticut duplex 230 stairs2

 

 

connecticut duplex trellis2

 

 

connecticut duplex 230 stairs3

 

 

connecticut duplex 240 entrance

Your thoughts concerning this swan?

Want to see previous posts about the Connecticut Duplex facelift, visit the 1st post, 2nd, 3rd and 4th

Sources: Outdoor Sconces, House Numbers, Entry Doors

 

Connecticut Ave Duplex: The Right Tree

by Sarah on September 30, 2014, no comments

I have to tell you that the Connecticut Ave duplex facelift project is actually complete…except for the landscaping and that’s what the hold up is. We’ve been waiting for cooler temps to plant in and the time has come.

The facelift was a success and I promise to share as soon as the planting is done. You are really, REALLY going to like it but first I had to select the right tree for the front patch of scraggly grass leading up to a drainage ditch.

West Conn front yard before

We’re going to turn scraggles up there in to a mulched bed with a nice flowering tree and some other shrubs and grasses. I knew I wanted a white flowering tree that only grew to about 20′ or so. I started out after a Fringe Tree. It’s a beautiful tree with these awesome white blooms that grows well here in the South that people often overlook, it’s a great alternative to the boring old Crape Myrtle.

tree fringe

But…everyone is out of Fringe trees here. So I travel a bit out of my neighborhood to go to one of my favorite retail garden spots, Garden Supply Co. they are out of Fringe trees too but they do suggest an Amelanchier (am-ə-LAN-sheer) and a Japanese Snowbell.

tree amelanchier

tree snowbell

The helpful people at Garden Supply showed me a few other trees, no dogwoods thank you, no redbuds, no Mom I don’t want to plant a Coral Bark Maple. I liked the Amelanchier and that’s what we’ll plant and enjoy those white blooms against that boldly painted duplex.

 

Connecticut Avenue Duplex: Checking In

by Sarah on August 5, 2014, no comments

The Connecticut Avenue duplex project is a quick exterior facelift project. We are doing a quick renovation of the front exterior of a bland 1960s ranch-style duplex.

Dropping in on the duplex to see where we are at on week 3. We were rained out a bit in NC in week 2 but we’re back in action in the 90+ degree heat. The framing is complete and the columns are set in their permanent spots.The trim out has started. We’ve got new windows and new doors. We’re really getting jazzy with our new wood craftsman doors from Tucker. In a week, we’ll be painting! I’m excited about seeing that dark color go on.

DSC_1277

 

DSC_1276

I’ve been working out the trim plan and here’s where I’m at with some of the finish elements. These are the parts that are really going to make all the difference in this facelift project.

Conn Duplex Trim

 

Connecticut Avenue Duplex: Exterior Paint Selection

by Sarah on July 21, 2014, 4 comments

Lately I feel like I’ve been in a perpetual state of paint color selection.

It was time to begin the color selection process for the Connecticut Avenue Duplex project. You might recall we’re giving a rancher a Venice Beach bungalow inspired facelift. I knew I wanted to go dark because the trim work and arbor we’re adding to the front will really stand out on the dark house. Set that dark house and white trim up with some more green in the landscape and maybe a white flower here and there and we’ll have a solid outcome.

Here are the lead off colors (all Benjamin Moore),

West Conn color samples

In this image, we’re looking at these colors in the harsh morning sun in a spot on the house that gets the most direct light. The reason I put the samples up here is to ensure that I choose a color that has enough substance to stand up to direct sun exposure. I’m looking for a charcoal that has a navy cast at times. So far, French Beret is out. What’s your feeling here?

 

Connecticut Ave Duplex: Venice Beach Inspired

by Sarah on July 10, 2014, 5 comments

I’ve just started a quick exterior renovation of a 1960s duplex that we’ll call the Connecticut Ave Duplex. It is a facelift project where we are only altering the exterior, no interior work just yet. This duplex is in a great downtown spot but it needs some character, charm and architectural dimension. Here’s our project,

West Conn duplex

You love it right?! Was it the turquoise doors that really sold you?

I’m working these elements around in my brain. The pressure is on and it’s order time. The project only moves as fast as your ability to have the decisions made and the materials sitting and waiting for hands to install so I’m trying to stay on top of it.

West Conn Duplex

After this property was purchased, we knew that it would eventually need a renovation and so I began collecting images here and there when I saw something that might fit there. I pinned this image of the Venice Beach Eco Cottages very early on,

eco cottage

I pinned some more modern exteriors over time but ultimately returned to the Venice Beach cottage look. I researched bungalows and cottages in Venice further and found my inspiration. This all amounts to me turning a 1960s ranch duplex in North Carolina in to a Venice Beach cottage inspired duplex in NC.

Further inspirational subjects include,

beach cottage

 

columns

 

 

 

california bungalow

 

 

BHG ranch remodel

 

 

chevron trellis

 

dark beach cottage

 

ace hotel palm springs

Ace Hotel, Palm Springs

venice cottage

 

 

swedish dark exterior

The plan is starting to come together. The front of the duplex was demolished Monday and the framing started Tuesday. We’re on our way!