Hi everyone. As I write this the movers are loading up their truck, and I am trying to finish up this post before I need to return our modem to our internet company. We have so many new readers that I thought it would be fun to do a before and after of our 1928 bungalow. The “befores” will be the photos on the MLS listing when we bought the house five years ago. We were not blogging then, and I wasn’t taking photos like the blogger me is doing now. We are on vacation now in Southeast Asia, and when we return we will be going straight to Charlotte, NC. (You can follow us on Instagram where I will post photos of us on our trip.)
Of course, I have to start with my favorite – the outside.
I still can’t believe how the house looks so different now. I am glad I had a vision and that Yankee was willing to trust me. When we first saw the house while house hunting, he didn’t even want to get out of the car and go in.
My vision (and our hard work) paid off because the new buyers pretty much had their minds made up that they wanted the house by the time they got in the door. (The first people who looked at it bought it at full price.) The improvements we made were a new roof, new windows on the lower front, new landscaping, window boxes, red paint on the doors, and a faux runner on the steps.
This is the front room that we call the Florida room. We knew this could be a great room. It just needed some TLC. The first thing we did was install more energy efficient windows, and then we got removed the tile and added hardwood. I have to say installing the hardwood was smooth sailing, and it is a project we said we would do again.
The Florida room in fact was used a lot with our new set up. We had the bar that Yankee built, and it was a great game/hangout area when we had parties or just for the two of us. The bar was so perfect in that spot. We even sold it to the new owners. While we love it and Yankee worked so hard to build it, our new house doesn’t have a spot for it. We know the new owners will enjoy this room as much as we did.
I could not find a picture of the living room before. But this was my very first blog picture and project at our house. Mom painted this brown fire place white. I’m glad to say that my camera skills have evolved since our early blog days.
Can you imagine if we had never painted that fireplace? Yankee was very, very hesitant at first, but now he’s on board with my decorating choices. We also painted the room a fresh gray.
Here is the dining room before when we bought the house. I love this room, and it was one of the first rooms we tackled when we moved in. We added a chair rail, painted, made new curtains, added a different light, painted a hutch, and of course, tackled the staining of the table. This room was bright even on the gray days in Syracuse.
One thing we did that is hard to see in the photos is the dining room table is not centered in the room. We moved it a little towards the windows to open up a walkway. That really helped make the room feel bigger. The other side of the room has the hutch I purchased and painted.
This back room is what we used as the study. The previous owner had it setup as his TV room. The ceiling was black (which the owner painted white before we moved in), and it had a very dark red on the walls. The painting was tackled early on because I wanted to lighten it up.
We bought Ikea Billy bookcases and made them into built-ins and added a window seat. Fun modern art was also created for this room as well as our travel map.
This room was nice and airy and a great room to have as my office since I work from home most days. You can see the globe I made into a light but never blogged about.
The kitchen needed a lot of TLC. While I loved the Craftsman style of the cabinets, I was not a fan of the wood color or the color of the kitchen. Everything was blending together. We didn’t mind the white appliance but slowly they started to lose their working power and eventually we upgraded.
Yankee built a new ceiling-height cabinet for our new stainless oven, and we added an Ikea cabinet/island where the previous owner had a small table. We ate all of our meals in the dining room.
This corner of the kitchen was bare, but one time when I was away, Yankee surprised me by building this mini-mudroom which was a perfect surprise.
If you look closely at this picture you will not see one blade of grass in the backyard. Well, this is the project that caused us blood, sweat and tears. We thought hmm…… this won’t be hard. Let’s move all the rocks, and the rock gardens, put down grass, and build a patio. We did it, and I think I am stronger, literally, because of all of those rocks. We gave the rocks away on Craigslist. It was a great way to not have to haul them away after we shoveled them out of the yard. It was also worth it as we enjoyed every minute we could in our backyard and on our patio. We joke that one day owners will not like the grass or patio and put in rocks. If that happens I just don’t want to know about it.
The porch was unfinished and unpainted when we moved it. Mom and I painted it the same color as the house, and I painted the ceiling the same soft blue as the kitchen. Then we bought this set of outdoor furniture. It will fit perfectly on the back porch at our new home in North Carolina.
As far as the three bedrooms go, we ended up just painting each of them. (I don’t have before photos.) This is the master bedroom. It was large and bright.
This is one of the guest rooms. The area behind the big curtain was my craft space. The previous owner removed the wall, and we never replaced it. If we had not moved, this would have been a child’s room, and we would have done something about a wall then.
Just last winter we painted the only full bathroom and added a new heated tile floor. Unfortunately, we hardly got to use the warm floor.
Our washer and dryer were in a corner in the basement. Mom and I did our best to make it a nice spot to do laundry. I painted the walls and made a fake wall on three sides using Ikea curtains. She painted the rug out of a children’s play mat, and made curtains for the shelves that had no doors. It was a huge improvement.