Our Last House Renovation

There were many days that I thought the end of this renovation would never come.  We had to repaint every.single.surface. inside and out - the trim, walls, stairs, ceilings, doors.  I often told people the house was held together with caulking and plaster.

Nevertheless, we made it and were luckily able to sell it very quickly when we put it on the market. Here's a little reminder of the exterior we started with:
ahhhh, so pretty...as was the overgrown/jungle-esque backyard.  You can't see it in the picture, but the previous owner had dug a 4' trench around the red door and window.  Nice. 

Here are the remainder of the lovely BEFORE pictures. (Grab your hardhat and enter at your own risk) 

 And now, finally, here are some pictures of the "after."  Please know that we were decorating on NO budget while trying to attract a higher-end buyer... and had to sell ASAP because we had another baby on the way.  I'll try to point out places where we scrimped/saved money.

Back of the house- notice we took the "bump" off the basement level.  Also, on the left (where the round window is located), we added stairs to the basement.  Prior to adding these stairs, you had to go through the old SCARY cellar to get to the newly finished basement.

Front exterior -we removed MOUNTAINS of english ivy and planted grass/added landscaping.  We redid the porch ceiling with beadboard. We eventually repainted the front door red before we listed it to sell.

This is looking into the foyer from the living room.  This is a scanned picture, so I'm sorry for the poor quality (you'll see several throughout this post)  The door is a closet, and to the right is the dining room, kitchen, sun room, office/playroom, and stairs to the new basement.

Please excuse the stroller...this is the sun room.  It use to be an exterior porch, so it was built on a tilt for water drainage.  We built the cornice to try to camouflage the slant in the room.  I made the "curtains" out of some really discounted fabric at JoAnn's.  I painted the quote, "Dwell in possibility - Emily Dickenson," by hand.  Although out realtor told us to repaint the room in a more neutral color, I left it as is because I thought it was so fun. 

Kitchen, completely gutted and redone

Standing in the sun room, dining area is to the right.  

You can kind of see the sun room on the right, dining room is to the left. On the other side of the double oven is a room that could be used as a bedroom, office, den, or playroom.

This is the dining room, complete with my childhood dining table (free!) that I painted dark blue. (Sorry for another icky picture)  The light fixture isn't one I'd pick for myself, but it was simple, and more importantly, it was very inexpensive! 

Only one more icky picture after this.  This is the den-bedroom-playroom.  The laundry room that use to me in the dirt-floor cellar (was a closet) in the back left corner.  There's a half bath that we added (it was another closet).  We had planned on putting french doors where the large window is located and we wanted to build a deck - but we ran out of time, energy and money. 

Please excuse the horrible picture and the grumpy bulldog.  This is the only picture I have of the top of the stair case...it use to be a wall and was one of the bigger challenges we faced in trying to complete so that it matched the lower portion (existing) of the stairs.  The end result turned out beautifully - I wish I had a better picture to share!

This is the master bedroom closet.  We added the wall to make it a closet. 

Master bedroom - with my $15 headboard I painted black.  Master bath is on the right. 

Master Bedroom - on the right you can see the hall we added, the door to the nursery, and the top of the stairs (that was originally closed off)

Master Bathroom

This is the finished portion of the basement.  The stairs originate in the kitchen, behind the stove.  The dresser and bed and linens are from Ikea. The lamp is from a thrift store. New laminate floors.  The closet door is one of the original wood doors from the house that we didn't need, and we cut it down to fit the space.

 The picture on the back of the bed is one of the old wood windows from the house.  I printed some graphics out onto cardstock and colored them in.  I painted the border, and taped the pages onto the back of the window.  Free art (if you can call it "art"). 

The other half of the basement - you can see the foot of the bed to the left. (And a nice pic of our AC unit out the window!)

 I think that's all the pictures I have...and I've only shown you maybe half the house.  I'm impressed if you've made it this far with me though!  I loved this house - it made me so happy when another young family bought it and loved it maybe more than we did (no nightmarish reno experiences!)

Just to bring it full-circle - the house BEFORE. 


Now, (sigh), we begin again...but we were smarter this time...at least we can live in the house we just bought....with its blue carpet and red countertops.



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