Before and After: Living Room

To continue the before and after series, here are the realtor walk through pictures from almost 10 years ago, what it looked like for several years, then when the floors were refinished about 2 years ago. Enjoy!

 

REALTOR WALK THROUGH

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TAKING DOWN WALLPAPER, PAINTING.

 

AFTER/PRESENTLY:

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Done!? Are we really?!

I hate to even make an announcement that we are finally finished, after 8 plus years of work (and lots of breaks in between :-D), because as our luck would have it, something big would break…perhaps a geyser in the yard? Or, a random safe falling from the sky making an obscene hole in the roof (hey, I’ve watched the road runner, it happens!). I also realize (cue shaking the head and wiping tears) that you are never *really* done when it comes to old house upkeep. So, maybe I can say that we are done…for now. Will that suffice?

I’ve had a lot of requests for updated pictures and more in depth before/after. In preparation for our appraisal tomorrow, I have cleaned the house and fixed quite a few cosmetic bo-bo’s (I am sure you will find quite a few more I didn’t fix), so I thought it a perfect time to take some 360 videos. Are you game? I will do some before/after photo blogs when I get around to it later this summer.

I only videoed the master bedroom, hall, living areas and kitchen. I’m not brave enough to show the kids’ rooms and who wants to see bathrooms? Coming up tomorrow will be porch and exterior tours. I thought it was fun (and a whole lot easier than taking pictures!) and I can also use it for insurance purposes should that Acme safe ever fall out the sky.

If you are new and would like to see some before pictures, you can search for “realtor walk through”, click on the name of the particular room you want to view in the cloud tag, or click on “before and after”. That should get you some really old photos to look at and compare how far we have come. Here is a post I did right after we updated our major systems (roof, plumbing, paint, mostly exterior projects).

I ordered the videos so that if you watch them in the order I posted them, you will feel that you are walking with me, or at least can make sense of the floor plan. Here you are! Tell me what you think!

PS: Note to all the perfectionists: ignore those cosmetic blemishes.

Note to old house purists: yes, I know I don’t have velvet curtains and Victorian tchotchkes. “Museum style” has never really been my thing.

Note to people who want paint colors: I will publish all paint colors in a future blog post when I do the final before/after pairings.

Did I cover it all? Leave a comment if not ūüôā

Master Bedroom:

Small weird hall and the back of the Great Hall:

Front of the Great Hall, study, living room and dining room:

Kitchen:

Back Wall Painting Done

You may remember this post from March when I was quite indignant about getting a $20,000 bid to paint the back of our house. You will also remember that I decided to buy the tools necessary and paint myself. Since that time, we have been sanding, scraping, priming, caulking and painting on the weekends.

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Today, I totaled all of the receipts on materials and tools we spent.  We spent a grand total of: $1,792.12!!!  That is over a $18,000 savings for doing it ourself!

Here is our cost breakdown:

House Paint (Benjamin Moore, White Heron, bought at Joseph’s Paint) ¬† ¬†$323.06

Primer (Valspar Exterior primer, bought at Lowes) $213.30

Paint brushes and caulk $39.82

2 Wagner paint eater sanders and 8 discs $251.04

Graco paint spray gun and tips $300.00

Scaffolding rental $664.90

Now, we are done! This past weekend, we finished up¬†cleaning the paint overspray from the windows, caulking the windows so they won’t rattle (YAY), and painting the window trim. ¬†Thankfully, that was the last bit needed until we could really call this house DONE!

Of course, I have painting the shed, backyard landscaping and some other spiffy things up my sleeve. But, as far as the house…inside AND out, we are DONE!

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Spiffing things up

I think I am just going to turn this into a picture blog…hahaha. ¬†I have lots of pictures to share, but nothing cute to say. ¬†The last three months we have spiffed up a few rooms including updating Alex’s room. Taking him from toddler to little boy room. I also brought down an iron bed we had in the attic for Lillian. For some unknown reason, she has always hated her little twin size platform bed. ¬†I got it because it was low to the ground and she could get in and out of it easily. Anyway, she loves her new full size “big girl bed”.

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I updated the front porch by putting new plants in the boxes and making spring wreaths. I am not a pastel gal, so I used turquoise and brown/burlap (Thanks Steven for the suggestion!). I also made a wreath for the back porch.

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Back Porch

Back Porch

I bought some gerbera daisies and impatiens a couple weeks back, but I didn’t pay attention to the weather and the late frost got them, so I had to toss them out and buy more. ¬†I went to Fads and Frames and bought some gorgeous ferns! Fads and Frames, hands down, has the best plants in town. I also bought more daisies. ¬†In the next few weeks, when it warms up enough, I am going to landscape the rest of the front yard. I can’t wait!

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I went to Ikea a week or two back and bought a tall skinny cabinet for the bathroom. I have had trouble with storage in that tiny bathroom. This cabinet worked out great! It looks so clean and streamlined in there now.

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I also bought 3 sets of curtains for my gables. ¬†Sometimes I like to leave the lights on upstairs. At night, you can see into our messy attic. So, we put the curtains up last week. I think they make the window look a little more “finished”.

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And…….that’s it! ¬†I have called several paint contractors. Only one showed up to quote me. I got tired of scraping and painting, so I was going to hire someone to finish painting the last two back walls of the house. After receiving estimates between $15 and $20k, I decided that I am not that desperate. So, I put an airless paint sprayer in my cart at Home Depot and am going to put some scaffolding on reserve at the local tool rental place and get to work painting again.

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The absolute LAST two things we have to do on the house are: Paint the back walls and fix some of the bricks crumbling in a few areas around the skirt of the house. After calling 8 brick contractors over the past month, I actually had someone show up this morning!!!! ¬†I was excited. Now, let’s see if he comes back with a bid. That is always the hardest part. Getting someone interested in your project. ¬†So, I will be back to report whether or not that happens. ¬†You can see the bricks in the above picture around the electrical box that I have stacked up to keep the cats out. I have about 5 places like this that need to be repaired. The man I talked to today is going to give me two quotes. 1) to fix the 5 brick holes; 2) to re-point ALL of the bricks around the entire perimeter of the house.

So, there is your little update on progress of the house.

Andrea

A few little projects

Today, I was able to finally finish putting poly on the back part of the hall. I did not take any pics. It looks just like the ones a couple posts down. When it is all dry and I move my furniture back in, I will take pics of the final project. I want to install my pew and picture rail first.

Any-who…in between drying times, I caulked the front hall wainscot to ready it for paint. I also pulled out quite a few misc. boards for holiday and other projects. Here is my line up:

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A couple of them I’m turning in to holiday decor for the porch. I distress painted them and I’m going to put JOY and NOEL in red letters on them. I will lean them on the front porch.

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One of the other smoother boards I am going to make into an oversized chalkboard. Kinda like this one I saw, but much larger.

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I also took some of the old 100 year old wall boards (that were taken down in order to add our bathroom) and made a low hanging coat/book sack rack for the kids. The top piece is a leftover piece of baseboard painted with chalkboard spray paint from Lowes. I will probably write on it too. The knobs were some ugly brass ones I took off of my night stands when I painted them many moons back. I painted them with spray paint leftover from some project or other. The coat hooks are from Target and the chalkboards are from Hobby Lobby.

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Steven painstakingly primed the new back porch rail he built. It took him allll day just to prime them….ick. I also pulled up all the horrifically ugly floor registers and cleaned, rust primed and painted them.

Overall, it was a very productive day and I’m pleased with what we accomplished.

Thanks for stopping by…or sticking with us! It’s been a long road, hasn’t it?

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Kitchen finished

Here is what the kitchen looks like now. Ta-da! In a couple days, I’m going to put together a slideshow of the kitchen evolution from the realtor walk through 6 years ago to present. ¬†Here is what we did in the first phase which included taking out cabinets and creating the laundry room. ¬† Also, here is a link to all of the posts about the kitchen through the years if you would like to see them.

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Refinished Oak Front Door

I wanted to work on floors today but quickly wearied of sanding the poly with a hand sander…lol

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I texted my husband and asked him to bring home a floor sander. I really didn’t want to rent one again so soon, but just can’t imagine hand sanding two rooms between coats of poly. Too hard on my back, neck and knees. I will rock on with the floors tomorrow. In the mean time, I wanted to sand something, so I decided to sand, stain and refinish the front door. Here Is how it went:

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I sanded using 80 grit then 120 grit until it was smooth and the old finish and flaking varnish was completely removed. I tested the stain, I liked it. Stained the doors and rubbed the Rustoleum brand Black Cherry stain into the wood grain. Waited a bit, wiped the excess stain off with a tack cloth. Took a small paint brush and put stain in the corners and small areas my rag did not reach. I wiped off any excess. According to the instructions, I let it dry an hour (actually a little bit more than that) and put a coat of polyurethane on top. Overall, I am happy with it. I hate that the screen doors close over it and you cannot see the wood, but I know it’s there!

Tomorrow: floors and kitchen work

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The Tiny Hall

This has got to be one of the most awkwardest halls ever. There are four doors that swing in to this tiny space. The master bedroom door, bathroom door, Alex’s room door and the door leading to the large (dog trot) hall. This coming weekend my focus will be on refinishing floors in the front part of the house BUT…this hall is my next project! Buh-bye wallpaper!!! There are three jobs that I absolutely abhor. The all time number one most dreaded evil is scraping paint and caulk off of old windows (misery!!!). Followed closely behind that is floating and finishing drywall (ugh!) you can probably guess what number three is…yup! Scraping off nasty old wallpaper that was put up with superman glue. Sigh….I scraped it out of the other rooms. I guess my time of procrastination has come to an end.

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Study Finished

And….the tada! Not sure how I went from having the whole room to myself to having a corner. The closet is my new “craft room”. The wood wall was from reclaimed wood from the attic. We had to take up boards to update the electricity and they were too splintered to put back. So we repurposed them here. It also helps make it look less strange that we bumped a wall out to add a bathroom.

The round window seat is so much more user friendly. The light is beautiful during the day and makes for a great place to study.

Now I can say that one room in the house is completely finished! Ha! Next we will move furniture and refinish floors throughout the rest of the house.

Left on our list: update kitchen counters and sink; strip paint from front hall wainscoting to show original burly pine, refinish exterior wood doors, some exterior touch up paint, front flower beds and porch furniture/beautification, and clean up back yard of all construction materials.

We also have the back porch and some brick work to do, but that is being hired out and will be complete this summer. I am really excited about our plans for the back porch. More about that soon.

Thank you to all my friends for their understanding. I have become quite a hermit over the last six months with so many projects going on. I hope to rejoin society again soon…hehe.

Thank you all for your encouragement and support. After 6 years we are finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel.

Andrea

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The Study Evolution

Just finished putting the last coat of poly on the floor. I’ll be able to move in next week. Yay! These are the pictures of the study evolution from the first being the realtor walk through picture and the last one is from today. I will take more pictures after I move in and get everything settled. But, I love before and after pictures and know you do too. Here you go!

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Study after paint.  I want new paint though!  What color?  What color?

This is the way it stayed until late last year

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This is how it looked for the past 5-6 years. The junk/scrapbook room.

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Bumped out Vivian’s bathroom, removed the fireplace. It didn’t work. All of the chimneys were removed at some point in the past.

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Recycled 100+ year old wood pieces to make a wood interest wall. Plan to put up shelving to house our book collection.

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Interest wall stained and polyurethaned

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Sanding the floors getting ready for stain and poly

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Started staining to see what the color would look like. Minwax Red Chestnut.

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The color came out pretty good, nice and even

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Time for poly!

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Looking pretty good!

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Tada!

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This picture shows the biggest difference in the floor. Can’t wait until it dries. I am trying hard not to go in there and touch it.

Now, on to refinish the floors in the rest of the house!¬† This was the “test” room.