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Category Archives: Renovation

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, 3 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 the 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!

 

 

 

 

Laney’s Big Girl Room Before

by Sarah on April 4, 2014, one comment

This is Laney’s future big girl room right after the crew started removing the old trim, 5 gazillion phone jacks and repairing the walls. Sorry ’bout the blur.

DSC_0429laney room before small

This is the room after a few days of re-coating the walls with and some new trim. We also added a light.

laney room progress

laney room progress3

This is one seriously tiny and dark closet with no door. I expanded to two hanging bars that are each about 24″ long, it’s a good thing she’s a toddler. We also added those two little shelves in the back for baskets and maybe some shoes.

laney room closet

laney room progress2

laney room progress4

This is the girl that room will belong to,

Laney small

She told me maybe the blanket on her big girl bed “could be pink, then purple then black”. I said we’ll think about it. Then she said not “light blue or dark blue, that wouldn’t be good”. She is not quite 2 1/2 and she’s got some opinions.

 

a Quick Bath Upgrade

by Sarah on November 19, 2013, no comments

Before I officially listed my previous home for sale one of the things on the punch list was to give the master bath a quick upgrade without remodeling the entire thing. Out of necessity we had the entire shower re-tiled months before. The whole story about the mystery leak is here.

I previously posted the before of this bathroom and talked about the plans I had for the upgrade. I needed a fix that stayed consistent with the overall style of the house and a look that would be pleasing to most. Here’s what I set out to do with this quick fix-up:

  • upgrade cabinetry
  • replace existing mirror with 2 framed mirrors
  • eliminate recessed lighting and replace with sconces
  • paint walls & ceiling
  • replace window
  • install new hardware
  • install new vent fan

The cabinets were clearly the biggest eye sore in the room. They were vinyl coated, particle board cabinets with flat fronts. Some of the vinyl veneer was pealing away revealing the particle board.

sarah CT bath before2We needed new lighting, some new jewelry (hardware) and to make the biggest impact we needed to tweak the cabinets and replace the dated mirror. Clearly I’m stoked about taking photos of myself at 7:00 am and likely the workout that day at the gym too!

sarah CT bath before To avoid ripping all of the cabinetry out and everything with that I decided that the most cost effective and attractive way to go would be to have the Quality Cabinet Co. fabricate new drawer fronts and new cabinet doors and install them on the existing cabinet frame. After measurements were taken the building commenced and this is what we ended up with,

Sarah CT cabinet closeupThe next big element to tackle on the list was the very ugly and huge frame-less mirror that was glued to the wall. The regular carpentry crew came over to remove the mirror and remove the recessed lighting and patch those holes. The electrician followed closely on their heels to rough in for the sconces. I had our regular painters do the ceiling for me because I like to avoid holding things over my head for a sustained amount of time whenever possible and then I painted the trim and walls myself with Benjamin Moore’s Dove Wing.

dove wingSconces are the Steiner from Pottery Barn which are really substantial fixtures for the price but unfortunately are no longer available. All  hardware including the pulls, knobs and towel rings are from Lowe’s.

And here’s the result,

CT bathI think it turned out great without spending 10K. Here are some suggested things you can do to get a quick upgrade in your bath,

CT shower list