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Grout Cottage: Apt B Bath & Bedrooms

Grout AptB Day 2 Head

This is the bathroom in Apartment B before the demo and expansion. It leaves umm…much to be desired.

grout apt b bath before

This was in use and although a sight for sore eyes it was operational. The biggest changes to this bathroom were 1) the addition of a window and the gain of natural light and 2) the creation and installation of a custom storage cabinet with glass doors to fill an awkward nook.

grout apt b bath before2

 

grout apt b bath vanity

 

grout apt b bath light

The wall color in this bath is Benjamin Moore Woodlawn Blue, I’m 99% certain that this color would perform well any where.

bm woodlawn blue

The best place to install our towel bar was here,

grout apt b toilet

One of the best parts about this bathroom renovation was the addition of a custom cabinet to fill this nook next to the shower. We put a vintage styled latch on the glass doors not long after this photo was taken.

grout apt b cabinet

The bedrooms were a relatively easy fix. Once we knew where we were going to put the bathroom and we knew that the apartment would remain a two bedroom, we got to work carving out proper closets for each of the bedrooms. Some sheetrock, trim and new maple hardwood flooring and someone could rest easy in these equally sized bedrooms.

grout apt b bedroom1

 

grout apt b bedroom2

 

And that folks concludes our tour of the Grout Cottage. The house has two apartments and a complete exterior renovation so in case you missed everything prior to this post, go back to the beginning here. The whole project reveal can be found in the “Renovation Projects section at the top of our page.

If you want to read about the decisions and the design process when it was happening simply type in the word “Grout” in to our search block.

Tomorrow we’ll have the color palette up for the house.

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Grout Cottage: Apt. A Bath

Grout AptA Day 5 HeadWe started with a shell of a bathroom. When I say shell I mean just framed walls with plywood because the previous owner had at some point demolished the entire bathroom and was in the beginning stages of putting it back in. The shell of a bathroom that we had to work with was not quite big enough so we widened it and gained a few more feet. I also added a window in the bathroom because I just don’t like bathrooms without windows–that really goes for any room, natural light is always a good thing.

Grout AptA Bath Before After

I had a little fun and tried out a vanity in a color other than white in this bath. I waffled for a while about doing a gray vanity or a camo green vanity but finally settled on blue. The vanity is Benjamin Moore’s Stratton Blue mixed in Pittsburgh Paint’s Breakthrough paint line.

stratton blue

 

 

Apt A bath vanity after

 

Grout AptA Bath Vanity detail

I also had been itching to try a patterned tile and a Victorian age home like this was the perfect opportunity. I loved the black and white floral patterns but didn’t want to make it too feminine so I used this starburst SomerTile from Overstock. Along with the blue vanity, the tile gives this small bathroom a little interest and character.

Apt A bath tile closeupAnd to finish it off, we used a standard fiberglass shower/tub surround because its a rental property but if this was a private residence we would certainly go with tiled shower surround.

Sources:

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Grout Cottage: Apt. A Hall & 2nd Bedroom

Grout AptA Day 4 Head

When we began this project, the hallway in this apartment was a dark corridor with some wood paneled closets and some dirty and old beadboard wainscoting. The hallway is worth mentioning and taking a gander at because it’s no longer a hallway straight out of a horror movie.

Peeling back some of the layers in the old hallway,

grout apt a old wall

 

Again we salvaged the little stained glass window that was existing to add some character in our revamped hall. But we enlarged the window and had it made to match with the dimensions of the stained glass window to make it appear as though it was all one window but in fact it’s two separate pieces trimmed together to look like one. We also salvaged all of the old doors but in order to make a custom door for our linen closet, the carpenter cut down one of the old paneled doors to create a slim door for the closet. We added some great schoolhouse flushmounts and bronze hardware and refinished those heart pine floors and things are looking up.

grout apt a hall after

 

The trim is painted a non-traditional satin finish, most would use semi-gloss. The satin still has a pretty sheen. All the trim throughout the apartment is Benjamin Moore Simply White.

grout apt a hall trim detail

 

grout Apt A hall linen closet

We leave the hall and move in to Bedroom Two in the apartment. Bedroom Two is the smaller of the two bedrooms but to compensate for less space we went bigger with the closet. We left the single window in it’s original spot and doubled the size of the tiny closet to make it a walk-in. Refinished the floors, new everything and you have Bedroom Two.

Before, always scary-

grout apt a bedroom 2 before

More door salvage happening in here, we matched up two equally sized doors existing in the house and made a set of double doors for our new expanded closet.

grout apt a bedroom 2 closet after

 

grout apt a bedroom 2 closet after2

Tomorrow we are headed in to the bath complete with blue vanity and retro snowflake tile.

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Grout Cottage: Exterior Reveal

Grout Queen of Hearts top

Grout AptA Day 1 HeadThe Grout Cottage was built in 1895 for the Grout Family, who actually utilized it as their guest house. C.B. Grout and family used the early resort cottage for their guests in the early part of the 20th century. The house was converted to apartments some time in the 1930s.

The earliest photograph that the Moore County Historical Association has of the Grout Cottage looks like its from the 1960s, so we can’t see it in the early 1900s to determine what parts were original and what was patched over time but we have a pretty good idea that those clipped gables, sunburst motif and paneled cornices are original.

We bought this “fixer upper” in the fall of 2012 and before Christmas of 2012 we had started demolition. When we bought the Grout Cottage it was a duplex with two apartments, with an old dilapidated carriage house in the rear, an overgrown yard and two tenants living upstairs. Today, it is still a duplex but everything else changed.

The total renovation took a little more than nine months. The finished product is a unique rental space with modern interior amenities and an exterior that stays true to the Queen Anne architectural style without some of the fuss. We think it folds comfortably in to the landscape of the small quaint town it stands in.

The Grout Cottage now stands between a bunch of new narrow houses that resemble free-standing row houses. Some members of my family were a little concerned that the Grout Cottage would look out of place even though it was the native in the neighborhood. I wasn’t concerned, if you stand there for 119 years, neglected and most recently existing in the middle of a construction zone you deserve some time to shine and I think that’s what happened.

A lot of time, careful choices and consideration went in to every detail of this renovation. I’ll let the images tell the story.

Grout Exterior Before & After

Working in the spring on straightening those clipped gables out, before we got scaffolding,

Grout exterior ladders_optRight side of the front porch,

 

Grout exterior porch side before_opt

 

Grout right front porch

 

Grout exterior front entry before_opt

 

Grout front entry

Straightened out those dog-eared gables,

Grout exterior gable front before2_opt

 

Grout front gable after

 

Grout exteropr 2nd floor before_opt

 

Grout top right gable

 

Grout exterior brackets before_opt

 

Grout Exterior porch bracket after_opt

 

Grout exterior light_opt

 

Grout Exterior porch closeup_opt

Crusty brackets and railing before,

Grout exterior front porch columns before

 

Grout exterior columns & brackets after

 

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DSC_0216

 

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So tell me was it worth the wait?

Sources: Light fixtures, porch brackets, porch railing, front door, house numbers

 

 

 

 

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Connecticut Duplex: Reveal

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

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Connecticut Ave Duplex: The Right Tree

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.

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