If you're visiting our blog for the first time, you can see the starting point of our home's transformation here: House Tour - Before. Also, have a peek at the look that inspired all these changes here: Our Dream Home... Isn't really a home.
We l-o-v-e our open-concept, split-level 1950's home. We've got quaint bedrooms upstairs, office space, a basement and garage... but our main floor was in need of some major opening up.
The tricky part is, we wanted to update it... and in an open concept, everything is visible all the time! How do you work on one area or project at a time when it's all one big open space?
It felt like it took a long time - and like we always had lots of mess and unfinished projects on the go - until we got everything just the way we liked it. But finally, we did it! Here's how:
Kitchen - Living - Dining - Entry: a 4-in-1 Update
The space before:
|Living Room - awkward furniture layout - and oh so brown!|
|brown, brown and more brown furniture|
|so much stuff, and nowhere to put it... So we have piles.|
|too much furniture!|
|Fireplace... not so cozy.|
|Even Billy the dog is bored in this dining room.|
|front vestibule... I'll try to find a better pic!|
The wishlist:Click on the links to read more about each project! More links coming soon.
- Remove the wall separating kitchen and dining room
- Make a larger opening on the existing wall, near the stove
- Paint cabinets white
- Add hardware to cabinets
- Add a food pantry and extra storage
- Replace the hood vent
- Repaint the room
- Add crown molding
- Install under-cabinet lighting
- Repaint door trim, doors, and window trim
- Create more counter space by putting up a shelf for the microwave
- Put in a new countertop
- Install a back-splash
- Find a solution to conceal the large garbage bin (so far it lived on the floor)
- Find a place to store dog food (so far it lived on the floor)
- Repaint walls in 2 tones of grey: charcoal and soft dove grey
- Tear out window valance boxes on top of the windows, repair damage to walls and ceiling
- Repaint the entire main floor ceiling (yikes!)
- Have potlights put in and chandelier moved by an electrician
- Refinish Ikea Billy bookcases in white and turquoise, make faux built-ins
- Build farmhouse-style dining room table and coffee table
- Build a banquette storage bench
- Put up a photo gallery wall
- Makeover the electric fireplace
- Build a faux fireplace hearth
- Dismantle the previous owner's blinds and curtains
- Put up new curtain-rod and curtains in living room
- Add double-height crown molding
- Remove and replace base molding
- Oh and, last but certainly not least, change all the flooring.
|Our Living Room Charcoal Color: Antique Tin by Behr|
|The use of greys makes the 3 spaces flow together into one|
|Hanging a gallery wall in a grid is easy with the method shown here.|
Despite the rather drastic changes, in the living room and dining room we did not buy any new furniture. All our projects are very budget-conscious, so we repurposed things we already had elsewhere, and refinished furniture we were tired of. We also built a banquette storage bench, coffee table, dining table, fireplace hearth and mantle!
- Remove or do something over existing wallpaper
- Change lighting (vestibule)
- Put a striking and functional piece in the foyer, where we can store loads of stuff
- Add a large mirror
- Change flooring, making one unified space between the vestibule and foyer
- Add better lighting (foyer)
|Joining the two spaces with flooring makes a larger, more welcoming entry|
|This refurbished dresser stores hats, scarves, mitts, loose change and miscellaneous stuff|
The vast majority of these projects were to be done by yours truly and the hubby, DIY style. We're not rich and don't have tons of free time, so we advanced when we could, how we could. How long would this all take? That was the real question. All told, nearly a year.
In the coming weeks I'll do my best to create posts and add links to all these projects, revealing all the final touches.
Till next time!