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Posts Tagged ‘first time home owners’

Blue & orange. If you know a thing or two about the color wheel then you know the BAM! that this complementary color scheme has to offer. Blue and orange are definitely a color trend now in film, video, media. Think CSI Miami! Anyways, here are 2 young but not juvenile dining spaces with deep navy walls the perfect accents of orange. This rooms also have something else in common: records! Being a vinyl hoarder, I love to see records used in design.

Celerie Kemble dining nook

The first room is from designer Celerie Kemble’s portfolio. This is a cool space. It’s a little more modern than what I do, but it has vintage. OK, so the room isn’t “navy” but it is a bit of squid ink paint shade, so there is some blue in that gray. This gray appears more “blue” with the touches of orange. I love dark gray walls. It is a bit of a “modern” shade and it can come across as very masculine, but it packs drama. You want to transform a room in a weekend, paint it this color. Everything you own will look completely different. Whites will pop and blacks will shine. Anyways, I love the record storage in this nook! It is so clever to have it under the seating in a small space. I got to tell David. He need to build us one of these.  Anyways, this is a cozy space, very hip. I want to listen to records and lounge around drinking beer and eating guacamole and chips in this nook. *Oh, I love the textiles in here because it keeps this color combo and space from being too masculine. It’s a nice balance.

The other dining room or nook is from Rejuvenation’s website. It is a really cool space as well and totally reminds me of the early 1910-1940’s Craftsman homes in the Seattle area being fixed up by young adults like ourselves. (Rejuvenation is based in the PNW). This dining room is the kind of dining room you’d see in our neighborhood while your taking the dog out for an evening stroll. It’s classic but it has a special type of vintage lust seen in the under 40 crowd. I guess what I’m saying is that I love the look of vintage mid-modern pieces shoved into a Craftsman. The cool thing about this space is that you remove the furniture and the accessories and you have a classic Craftsman home that appeals to everyone. You didn’t do anything to ruin the vibe or the bones of the house. You worked with the house and added your tastes without destroying the authenticity of the home. I’m all about that.

Rejuvenation dining room

Anyways, I love this room. Once again, it is a “squid ink” shade that looks awesome against that white mill work. The orange accents are brilliant in this room. The lighting isn’t very typical of old homes but it has a nice vibe, a young vibe. I love the records on the ledge (recognize a few from our own collection). And one can never go wrong with a Saarinen table.

I guess we are going to try to finish the upstairs bathroom this weekend. I have to admit that I’d rather do something else, you know, like something fun. Oh, well. This house isn’t going to renovate itself. Bummer.

-Victoria

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Frink the frug

No, we’re not Frink. I don’t think we’ll be ever be done. Frink, you may never know a home without projects. You’re a renovation pup. There was a time you enjoyed rolling in torn up carpet foam and tracking through wet paint. Even those exotic textures and smells  bore you now? Sorry, Frink, how do you think I feel?

Tudorks 1 year update: Well, we aren’t divorced yet. That’s good. Everyone says that when you take on a project this huge that a divorce is certain. No, I completely disagree. If anything, it has made our marriage stronger. We have accomplished so much, still working on 1 year before and after pics. We’ve defuzzed, defurred, decarpeted, defunked 2500 square feet of living space. We’ve painted every single room. We’ve waxed every single floor. We’ve put down a new kitchen floor. We’ve electrical and plumbing down. And much, much more. I’ve blanked out half of the nasty projects from my memory. So, what’s left? Here’s the short list as to not bore you, Frink.

  1. Finish upstairs bathroom. Please don’t laugh at us. Wasn’t this supposed to be done months ago? Need to touch up paint, clean up floor, maybe get tub glazed. This should be finished in a weekend.
  2. Finish downstairs powder room. Put up ceiling tiles, rip up old floor and put down new. Maybe get “new” fixtures, meaning something more authentic to the era of the home. Oh, and get them working. A month of weekends?
  3. Random paint touch-ups. We painted every room and then messed it all up in the renovating process. A room could be done nightly.
  4. Repair front porch. Concrete is cracking, chipping. It’s a big mess and we are so intimidated by concrete projects. Pay somebody.
  5. Finish cleaning door hardware and hang up remaining doors. Maybe a weekend?
  6. Fireplace mantel. I will be so happy when that is done. I’m so picky that this may never get finished.
  7. Oh, and all the new things that have to be done: replace windows, roof, make us completely and totally broke. Ughh, do I have to think about this? Welcome to the wonderful world of home ownership. Frink, can’t you get a job posing on a greeting card or something so we can replace a few windows or something? All you do is lay around, complaining, staying in your kennel all day.

So, yeah, these are the main things left. It’s doable considering how much we got done in 1 year on our own, but frankly I’m sick of renovating. I know this feeling is very normal when talking to other people and visiting home forums.  All of you home builders, home restorers, home renovators- how long did your project take? Are you finished? Am I sweating the small stuff? I expect repairs throughout ownership, but how long did it take you finish your “must do now” list? How did you live through it? 🙂

-Victoria

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"salvage" garden shed featured in Sunset

Since the weather is much nicer and we have had enough of winter, we’ve been thinking about our exterior and gardening way too much. I saved this pic of this “salvage” shed from Sunset magazine sometime ago, before we even purchased our home. I loved the fun chartreuse shade of this garden shed hidden in a PNW jungle. It is so striking and sooo West Coast. And this shed is in Port Orchard, WA,  our neighbors across the inlet. The article contained interesting info and listed the plants in this garden. They seem to thrive in our environment. Since I am a transplant, I’ve had to study what works here. Sunset magazine has been very helpful for that.

Anyways, I’ve revisited this article (here) over and over again because this really, really resembles our exterior colors. Our house turned out this green, not what we expected, but we will live with it and like it. Our trim is a chocolate brown just like this shed. The difference is that our house is much larger and taller than this quaint, cute shed and we have no landscaping. Our lawn is naked and neglected. The chartreuse shade of our house can be seen miles away, I think, or so the neighbors tell each other. No lovely hydrangeas are breaking up the green from the curb. When I look at this picture, I realize that our colors didn’t turn out too bad. We will work with it. It’s unexpected and chartreuse is my favorite shade of green and green is my favorite color. This article/feature makes me want to go out and dig, plant, and turn crazy things into planters. It also makes me feel good about our unexpected color choice. I liked it when it was featured in a magazine, why wouldn’t I like it for myself?

-Victoria

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Our unfinished kitchen

I think it is only appropriate to show such a “moody” picture of the kitchen. This is how this kitchen makes me feel. I feel we made many gains quickly and then it stayed in this shape for 4 months. If you need a refresher, I’ll give you one. All of our cabinets and drawers were covered with blue faux fur, think Cookie Monster here, underneath the custom van complex addition, there were layers and layers of paint. This included an adorable mint green with the cutest vintage rose decals ever, too bad that couldn’t be. I think David spent 3 months just removing layers and layers of paint off of the cabinets/drawers. Oh, and Trappy’s Pepper Sauce (rehab homes are not easy may I remind you). Months later and we are still waiting for the fresh coat of white paint to dry on two doors. It then took me a couple of months to find the perfect vintage hardware (not seen in this pic). I did find the perfect hardware and that is a post soon to come. David redid the floor with eco-friendly (I couldn’t resist) and vintage fabulous marmoleum, the white tiles have been salvaged. We ordered the black. The original floor was a wreck, once again, a post in waiting. We did keep the original fixtures. I adore my faucet and my light fixtures and my shallow, long sink. I worked with my pink with gold flake counter top. I do love that as well and would get it new if I could. The walls are painted a ’57 Chevy teal or a milkier Fender Strat in Taos Turquoise, of course not seen in my moody pic.

It’s not the best picture. But, this hasn’t been a picture perfect renovation. It is going to take some time to get there with us both working full-time. I just thought I would share some of the progress we’ve made and to also complain a little about how I live. At least we have a stove and fridge. We lived off of a George Foreman and a mini fridge for many, many months. I guess I shouldn’t complain that one can see my spice collection, tea library, and bare white dishes. There used to be a dead muppet on the doors in there and a wigs worth of crazy bachelor’s hair. Oh, and I forgot the shagadelic, mod felt faces wallpaper!!!

-Victoria

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Painted upstairs bedroom

Painted upstairs bedroom

OK, I apologize for all of the slacking. We’ve been working hard on the house and at our jobs so we can have money to spend on the house. I know we aren’t taking pictures as much as we want and I know we aren’t sharing them enough. This is the upstairs bedroom, the bedroom that we are using, painted up.

It’s a Ralph Lauren $5 mistint. I ended up using this color all over the place because Home Depot had 5 gallons of the same shade. I used it in this bedroom, the “media” room (bedroom downstairs), and on the trim in the boudoir. I still have 3 gallons left.

At first I did not love this color. It was too sage. It was too “contemporary”. It would look taupe during the daytime and green at night. Now I love this color. It is a great neutral. It is a taupe with a bit of olive drab green. Once I got my stuff into this room, I love it. I’m still “decorating”. We just got our light fixture in this week. When this room is finished it will be very nice. Have I mentioned that I love mistints?

Before bedroom

Before bedroom

In case you have forgotten, here is the room before. And in case you have forgotten, this was a hoarder house, not our mess but this is what we had to work with. I like the “original” mint walls but you wouldn’t believe the filth on them! Just black mess, layers and layers. The trim was also painted the same shade as the wall. I wasn’t wild about that. It took 2 coats of primer and 3 coats of trim paint to make that trim not look minty fresh.

More to come…

-Victoria

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Frink the frug

Frink the frug

OK, so we are so freaking crazy. I guess we’ve been inhaling a bit too many toxic chemicals during this renovation and killed too many brain cells. We’ve added a new family member to the family. Let me introduce Frink the frug. Frink is a dumb looking puppy. His mother is a pug and his father is snazzy looking brindle French bulldog. We know we didn’t need to add any more stress to our lives, but Frink is so frugly that he is cute. We’ve been wanting, well, I have been wanting a French bulldog forever. (See my previous buttermilk baby posts.) Frink just happened to happen. I wouldn’t call myself a dog lover. I am very breed specific. I only like French bulldogs and pugs. Frink is a great compromise and quite an original. He has the coloring of a Frenchie and the pig tail of a pug. He has a “win me over” personality that I can’t resist. He’ll be a great older brother and hopefully positive role model for a buttermilk Frenchie sometime in the future.

Frink is very sweet, a bit dumb, but he is only 10 weeks old. I was shitting my britches and screaming at that age as well. Frink is great because he doesn’t judge. He doesn’t care if he is being raised in the chaos of a renovation. In fact, he loves to snack on lead paint chips, just kidding but I bet he would if he could. He doesn’t care if we appear stressed out about exterior paint colors. He just loves us. We’ve had him for 5 days and he is spoiled rotten. He’s a good friend and really well behaved for an infant. We’ve learned so much. We are becoming quite the behaviorist. We needed a distraction from the chaos of our renovation. It also feels very good. It makes us feel like a homeowner. No pet deposits, no asking for approval. Frink has really brought the home ownership, dare I say, home. We love our Frink and he gives us the motivation to finish this huge project 🙂

-Victoria

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So our loan got all the way to closing this week- we signed documents and so did the seller.  It briefly zombified, and I beat it back into it’s grave by supplying even more documentation on our contractors.  Later on, get this, my mortgage brokers had the nerve to complain about the fact that I didn’t have anything good to say about them when I talked to a friend’s secretary.  Never do business in a small town.

The exchange this week went like this:

Lender: You forgot to sign this form that says you’ve physically inspected the entire house and found everything in good working order.

Buyer: No, we refused to sign that.  Have you noticed that some work needed done on the house?

Lender: No one has ever refused to sign this, but the brokers did complain to us that you were “eccentric.”  (true story)

Lender: We need forms XYZ filled out on the plumbing subcontractor, and we need a lock of the plumber’s hair.  After you have done that, smear blood above your front door or we’ll take your first born child.

FHA Consultant: You don’t need those forms.

Lender: Yeah, you’re right.  Why don’t you write us a nice letter about how you’re contractor will take responsibility for the plumber.

Contractor: That’s what a contractor does.  Remember the stacks of insurance papers I sent you?

Lender: Oh, Alright.  Now have the buyer sign this photocopied page from an FHA pamphlet on how the 203K works.  There are no blanks- just sign anywhere.  (seriously they did this)

So at this stage I asked the escrow company to ram it through the county before the lender changes their mind.  Which they were going to do. Then the entire city lost power- just in time.

A couple hours later they got it back, and then they got it done.  So I went over to my new house.

And… I found the old owner living in it.  And his stuff is everywhere- calendars on the walls, food in the fridge, TV plugged up, sheets hung up to satisfy his rodent-like urge to hide, this guy is moved in.  After cleaning the house to satisfy the cleanup addendum, he then moved his clutter back into the house. We allowed him to stay the night tonight because the check to him hasn’t cleared.  There’s a full dumpster out front of the house which he claims will be picked up (yeah right, that’ll be my bill).  It’ll be followed by a 30 yard dumpster which will be filled with, we estimate, about 5 tons.  Can’t wait!

Tomorrow at 10AM I get to chase him out of the house and begin moving his garbage onto, I guess, the front lawn.

-David

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