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Tag Archives demolition

Grout Cottage: Bye Bye Carriage House

To reviewthe Grout Cottage is a Queen Anne built in 1895. It is a duplex that we began remodeling in December 2012. Here’s the introduction post to the house.

grout carriage house

I know I said that we were going to keep the old carriage house but after taking a serious look at it in the back yard of the Grout Cottage, we decided that it would cost too much to save it. We wouldn’t really be able to recoup the cost to basically rebuild the dilapidated carriage house so last week it came down.

My Dad skillfully demolished it with the backhoe. Here’s a snippet of the action,

well that was fun if you like watching buildings being demolished…and then after a few hours work it was reduced to this,

Grout shed demoNice view of the neighbor’s pool now. They’ve got to love us after rehabbing this dump and they’ll love us even more after we plant some barrier trees.



Grout Cottage: Demolition Update

After almost a week of demolition, here is an update on the first floor apartment in the Grout Cottage.

Looking at pictures of houses with nothing but the framing left standing can be difficult, I know. I’ll do my best to explain and show before images. I’m considering a video tour, you can share your thoughts on that in the comment section.

Living Room

drastic changes took place in the removal of two closets, one that was an add on with bi-fold doors and the other was original with a wooden door.

Same view and now the closets are gone exposing the whole cavity between the living room and a bedroom to restructure better closet layout for future residents. The box was also removed to expose a flue that has no real purpose.

Looking toward the front door in the living room,

Acoustic ceiling tiles are gone revealing the original bead board ceiling. The walls in this room were actually painted paneling with crusty bead board wainscoting


The previous owner started a second rate remodel of the kitchen by putting down cement board (an underlay for tile) on the floor and installed some cabinets.

Not good enough for me so all of that had to go. I’d like to change the layout of the kitchen to maximize usage of the space.

There are three chimneys coming through in to this apartment from above, they all need to be taken out. This is a portion of one of the chimneys in the kitchen.

The previous owner took most of it out but because they didn’t have access to the upstairs they decided to frame a pantry around it. I have a much better place in mind for a pantry and I think this area would be better suited for a small dining area.

Still in the kitchen, the door on the right leads to a strange closed in porch and pretty gross laundry closet, door on left goes to hall

And…the door is gone and the area is stripped out to reveal a new workable space for rear entry (spot for coats and maybe a bench), laundry, pantry and a small linen closet. Can’t visualize it? You will soon enough.

More pictures of this cavity,


Bedroom 1

Our third chimney is in this room.

And now the view is this,

This room will lose two doors, one exterior and one leading in to the other bedroom and gain a walk-in closet. The door on the left leads to the other bedroom. I go in to a lot of older homes where all of the bedrooms are connected and all of the rooms are closed off for heat conservation.

Bedroom 2

The room is now stripped out except for that pesky chimney which we will remedy soon enough.


And so this is where we stand for the next week or so. I’m also working on a master bedroom remodel and a dream closet for a friend, I think you’ll want to see this one. We’re talking dedicated sunglasses drawer, this is the level of organization we’re seeking.


Sarah’s House: Extraction

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My husband Dan decided that it was time to put his crowbar to good use. There was a set of old pine folding doors that could be closed to separate the dining room from the living room. I’m not entirely sure these doors were original to the house but they do appear to be old.

They were screwed in to a frame made from the same wood that was then nailed to the existing moulding around the cased opening to the dining room.

So first the before,


Someone wanted to be in the picture, that’s my little sweetie DC. OK- lets try this again,

pine doors closed

Some detailed views,

pine door hardware

pine door knob

Unscrewing the hinges,

working on pine doors

And after the frame is successfully pulled off and doors unscrewed,

dining room opening

There’s not much going in my oversized dining room design wise, in fact there is still a lot of miscellaneous stuff sitting in there leftover from the January move. But the pine doors are gone and that is a step in the right direction.

pine doors removed