Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Morningside House

"Patti, would you like to buy my house?"

The morning we were moving from our house in the suburbs, the owner of this house called me and asked if I'd like to buy it.

What could we say? It was a great house in a wonderful intown neighborhood.


Of course we wanted to buy it.

This picture of the living room is a little blurry, but you get the idea;
The big windows with transoms,  the high ceilings, plaster walls, granite fireplace, hardwood floors were in great shape.

This foyer has a barrel ceiling- incredible!

Be still my heart!

Okay, so the window airconditioner isn't all that great but
I'm sure this wallpaper was all the rage in the 1970s.

Steve absolutely loves the doors and the door knobs.

Mature plantings are already there. 
 Tea Olives, small Magnolias, hydrangeas, gardenias, and roses are all over the place.
I can't wait to see what comes up in the spring.

Of course it comes with car parts and a dilapidated garage.

We were smitten!

Friends and Family, please join me as we renovate and learn to live "InTown."


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Housewives Finish What they Start

It's amazing what a few coats of paint will do.  The color is Sherwin Williams "Relaxed Khaki".  We used it through the whole house, even the bathrooms.  I think one color throughout really helps the house "flow."  The trim is oil based Sherwin Williams "Creamy" in a high gloss finish.  Oil based is used on old houses on trim because the trim is often already oil based.  You don't paint water based on oil based.  I hate cleaning up oil based paint.  I hire the pros for that.

Here's the living room "after."
My den furniture from the old house fits just fine.  We went back to using one of the first pieces we ever bought; the teak tv stand from House of Denmark.  (Boy that was a long time ago.) The shelves are long gone, but the cabinet is really useful and just the right height for the big tv.

Our 26 year old rocking chair from Ethan Allen always seems to find a place.  This room is half-decorated.
If you want to make some changes to your decorating but don't know what to do--just take a picture.  All the flaws will show up.

The kitchen was a little more involved.  We "took it back to the studs" as they say.
Here's how it looked when we moved in:

This is a really great kitchen with room for our little glass topped Pier One table and Pottery Barn wicker chairs.  We put in black appliances--if I did it over I'd use stainless to lighten up the room.

The downstairs bath went "back to the studs", too.  We added the beadboard and vintage type tile on the floor.  There wasn't much room for a big vanity so we picked this one from Lowe's or maybe it was Home Depot.  I like how it looks and the storage space underneath is nice. 

The Roman shade is from Lowes. It was one panel too long so I cut it off--very carefully.

The tub is new with a white subway tile surround that goes all the way to the ceiling.  I'll always take the tile to the ceiling--I love how it looks and there's no getting the wall wet when tall people shower.

I always love the hardwood floors in old houses.  Here's how ours turned out:

At first we thought they were a little too red, but I like the color now.  I don't know what stain the floor guys used.   I had to throw in a shot of the floor intake.  Some people don't like them.  I don't like seeing the dust down in there so I try not to look.

It feels good to finish something. 


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Suburban Housewives Listen to their Friends

 Since Steve and I threw away, gave away and packed up all our earthly belongings and moved to "town" our friends ask us how things are going.  This blog is my way of keeping everybody up-to-date on our adventure.

As many of you know, we moved into a house we'd renovated as an investment. 
I think it looked very "New England" in the snow.

Here's a shot of how it looked when we bought it.


Here's how it really looked.

It had a shed which is a real bonus.  And a very nice deck.

We weren't too crazy.  Remember, we'd bought run down old houses before.  This one wasn't all that bad.

Take two Tylenol, lie down in a dark room and try not to think too much about the images you just saw.
It gets better, I promise.