Friday, September 13, 2013

First the ugly pictures then you get the pretty ones

I'm so glad people are still out there following along with us! Thanks for the comments. And without further ado, here are some pictures of how the house looked when the previous owners lived here. It's actually not too terrible, and some of the rooms (okay, just the bathrooms) look the same now. 

 Here is the outside. Isn't it purty??
 We have a little entry/foyer type of thing. This room has been painted a nice clean looking creamy gray. That gold color on the bottom half was worse in person. Oh boy.
 It's hard to tell in this picture, but the walls had a faux paint sponge look. I'm sorry if some of you still like this look, but man alive it is horrible in my book. It makes the walls looks dirty in my opinion. This room has been painted (the first one I tackled) a creamy white. Some people think I'm weird that I painted the walls white when most people hate white walls when they are renting. I love it. It feels clean and it allows me to change up for seasons/decorating whims much more easily. Plus I feel like it looks nice with the dark floors. Another note on this room--it is right off the foyer and has three doorways and a window which makes it tricky to put furniture in it. You can see they used it as a formal dining room. The table sat right in the pathway to get to the kitchen and the whole room felt awkward and crowded. But I can appreciate their dilemma now because now it is my dilemma. :) I am pretty pleased with where it is now. That will be coming soon.

Here we go, I found a better picture of the sponge painting. See what I mean about it looking dirty??

 The kitchen. Oh man, I can't even believe this was what things looked like only a few months ago. It looks completely different now. The cabinets were pretty damaged and of course had the water damage. What you can't see from this angle (but I know I have more pictures of so I will search) is that the sink was WAY off center from the window. It was so ugly and weird and it caused me A LOT of stress when planning. Also stressful was the fact that the stove and dishwasher are right next to each other and very difficult to place elsewhere without incurring a lot of expense. Oh, and do you see that weird strip of white in the floor? That was where the linoleum ran out and they had to put a seam in the middle of the kitchen. HIDEOUS and we were always tripping over it. Also--no pantry! See that tall cabinet at the end there? That was their pantry. No bueno. It was broken too. I really thought going into this house that we were going to paint these cabinets and make it work, but there were so many issues and in the end it didn't make sense not to try and rip it out while we had a rental house overlap of a month and a half. I'm glad we did it, but it was super duper stressful all the same. :)
 One of the things I mentioned we had to do was scrape the popcorn ceilings in the kitchen and laundry room. We only did the laundry room because it was super small and we wanted to see how hard it was to scrape and what it would look like with our amateur finishing powers.
 It was grunt work and the popcorn got everywhere, but the result was worth it. As for the rest of the house, well I would pay a professional to do it if I ever had the money because it makes a huge mess and your arms and back are super sore for days. But since we had to take down the flourescent light fixtures and you could see lines beneath it, we decided to go for it and I'm glad we did. It doesn't look professional, but it looks good enough for me. :)

 Here are those other angles of the kitchen that I knew I had somewhere. You can see that the appliances were actually pretty nice looking.

 Here you can see what I meant about the sink and the window. you can also see how close the dishwasher and oven were. They are still that close (closer in fact with only a panel of wood separating them now) but it kept costs down to keep them together and I felt getting the sink under the window would really help the kitchen look more normal. (Also, can you see the plug right next to the sink. What in the world were they thinking?? Now I have to deal with that. Ugh.)
 There's a nice close up of the floors. Take a close look folks, that there is original linoleum from the birth of this house. It's practically vintage (in the bad way).
 On the other side of the kitchen is this little bank of lower cabinets. I SO wanted to make this all open and change these cabinets into an island into the living room. This didn't happen for several reasons 1. cost (that terrible word again ha)--to tear down the wall and get it to work as an island would have been pricey and probably not even very useful because of the wall that is on the right side. 2. You can barely see that there is a countertop overhang from the window into the living room. I didn't like this for several reasons: it was super tall and my kids would never be able to use it, and it was really close to one of the doorways that you can see through the window. It blocked the flow and made the living room feel small and weird. I thought about filling in the window pass through, but it lets in a lot of light into the living room so I decided to keep it but take out the counter in the pass through portion. I don't know if that makes sense, but it will when I get to the after pictures. :)

Here you can see that I was trying to get an idea of whether blocking in the pass-through window was a good idea. Snowflake tablecloths are very good for that sort of thing.

Who said the Savages aren't scientific?? That tablecloth idea was obviously genius. (hangs head in shame).

Some more photos of the kitchen. I'm sure you're getting tired of them, but I can't get over how different things look now!

It also helps gives you an idea of the size of things and how it all went together. That doorway above is goes into the laundry room and then into the garage.

That, my friends, is a very small eat-in dining room. I knew I would have my work cut out for me because I knew I wouldn't be using the other room as a formal dining so I had to make it work.
Isn't the placement of that tall pantry cabinet so awkward?? I swear it was an add on.

So one night when I was there by myself I just took it down. It was super fun

until I saw this piece and realized that we really did have to replace the floor. Ah the memories.

I originally was planning on keeping the upper cabinets and was going to paint them to save money. That didn't work out because the shelves inside bowed when you put things in the middle. I seriously am unsure how the people before us were able to use this kitchen. It was in sad shape. I was discouraged about losing the upper cabinets for a long while, but we have decided to do open shelves until we can afford to add a couple of upper cabinets in the future.

Here is the laundry room. I was actually pretty excited that there were cabinets in here. We ended up taking a few of them down and installing an ikea pantry in here since it is right next to the kitchen and we knew we definitely needed the storage. The flooring in here stayed for now. Maybe someday it will get a cheap face-lift, but it doesn't bother me for now. :) Painting the room helped.

Now on to the living room. Here you can see what I meant about the countertop protruding into the family room and being really close to a doorway. That pass through window caused me a lot of sleepless nights.

The dark green caused nightmares. Just kidding. It wasn't too awful, just not my cup of tea. The room doesn't get all that much light because outside is a covered patio (which we love) and the room is sort of in the middle of all of the other rooms. So I decided it needed a nice bright color. My Mom and sister are probably shaking their heads in disgust, but I chose a crisp white in here to brighten things up.

 This room has also been difficult to figure out where to place furniture. In fact, I contacted one of my favorite bloggers and asked for her advice and she responded and gave me some great ideas! With all of the doors, windows, fireplace, etc. it was a challenge.

 This is the view coming from the entry. See that tiny bit of space next to the backdoor? That is where the previous owners had their t.v. See below.

 In my opinion it was terribly awkward. It was right in the way of the door and super off center and really far away from the couch on the other side of the room. I was REALLY happy when my sweet new blogger friend helped me out, she's a genius!!

This is the fourth bedroom. It's right next to the entry way, which you can kind of tell by looking up two photos. We are using it as a playroom/craft closet/guest room. You know, the usual. ha!

 The room that became Maddy's room. She begged for a pink room. I really became parent of the year in my book and finally gave in. I know, I know...I'm wiping away tears thinking of how generous I was too.
I called this room the smurf blue room. It was just too vibrant for my taste. I would have never been able to tackle this room's paint color (or Maddy's room, or our Master bedroom) without John's amazing Mom. She SAVED me. I love the color that is in there now.

 The kids' bathroom. It hasn't changed much. My kids like that instead of a lever it has buttons on the top to flush. Fancy.
You would think that me being the queen of white walls these days that I would have left this one alone. I actually strongly dislike white in bedrooms. It feels too cold. I am a blue bedroom girl all of the way and have been for many houses. It calms me right down and makes me feel cozy. So this room got changed. Also, interesting to me is that I think their bed was a king sized bed, but makes this room feel super tiny. We have a king sized bed but we placed it on a different wall and I think it feels bigger. But that may just be in my head.

 Last room on the tour is the master bathroom. Pretty standard stuff here. Someday I would like to paint and do something with the vanity.
 But I love the big tub. I'm a bath lover, so this was a big selling point for us.
 And last of all, here are the pictures of how the backyard looked with the previous owners furniture.

The backyard is actually smaller than the front yard, but is still a good size for us and our kids and we really like it. I haven't really come up with any schemes for making the yard cuter yet as I am still super focused on the house, but I'm sure we'll get to it someday.

WHEW!! You made it! You got through all of the ugly pictures (sorry to previous owners). :) Coming soon are the pretty pictures because gosh darn it, you earned it, and so did we!


Emily Foley said...

I'm a little surprised at the inside of the house given how pretty it is outside. I love it, and your yards. I have one of those tall cabinet pantries. It's the worst thing that ever happened to a kitchen, seriously. I also love white walls, it does wonders for brightening up a house. I can't wait to see what you've done with it!

RaeLynn said...

Please fast forward time so I can see these pictures!!

Melanie and Jared said...

I have pins and needles that I am sitting on. Next post please!

luvnmy10 said...

I love this house! I can't wait to see the Jennifer touch, which will make it even more charming. I love finding something and seeing the possibilities. That's what you've done!

Anne Lake said...

I am so jealous you have a gas stove! The house looks like it has great potential, I am excited to see what you are doing with it. I am jealous of your green yard.

liz said...

The house is a gem!!! Good find. I can't wait to see what you've done!

liz said...

The house is a gem!!! Good find. I can't wait to see what you've done!