plans

to paint or not to paint?

Well we have cleaned the place up a little bit (so we no longer look like squatters) but more like devout minimalists. This room is SO big it is hard to even grasp from a photo. That is the same 10 foot long sofa from our A-frame that took up the entire room and it is just floating in a sea of rust carpet with one lonely Smith chair in the corner about 10 more feet away. How the heck am I going to fill this space?!  Anyway… we are still living in limbo until construction starts so only unpacking the essentials. Mostly we are waiting on me to finalize designs and get all the materials on order so we can kick this big ole project off and the real reason I am writing this post is because I finally made one big step in the right direction.

It took some major deliberating but I finally made my decision on the plan for the ceiling and flooring materials and I’ll tell you, it wasn’t easy. Really, it was the first decision I had to make before any other finish decisions could be made. Those soaring wood paneled ceilings were one of the main things that drew us to the house in the first place and whether we were going to keep them as is, try and refinish them, or paint them was debilitating!

While I have made up my mind (for now), I had to run through every possible combination because… designer brain never stops. From the realtor photos the wood looked very orange… it is, after all, the 80’s pine wood tongue and groove. In person it doesn’t look nearly as orange and it does make the space feel special. So once we saw the house in person, I initially wanted to keep the ceiling wood because it is what sets it apart, however, the house is dark and of course I want to brighten it up (getting rid of that rust carpeting will help). Having darker tones on the ceiling and the floor isn’t an option with me, so that meant I would have to go light on the flooring and from what I found, that was getting expensive quick (yes terrazzo, I’m looking at you). I also did not like the idea of having wood on the ceiling and wood of a different tone on the floor (like in the kitchen), that is just too much. The more I thought about it, the easiest and most cost effective route was hands down to paint the ceilings white and do light oak wood flooring throughout. It is light and modern but warm, very California and very simple to execute. It would definitely brighten and unify the spaces compared to all the different flooring materials that are going on right now. And of course I found a bazillion beautiful examples of white painted ceilings…

This one is white/bright on the ceiling AND the floor and I love every last detail.

From the book  Surf Shack  shot by Brittany Ambridge.

And this one with the painted white ceiling and a light grey/concrete looking floor, I would definitely take it.

Design by Gordana Golubovic, photographer, Lauren Moore via EST magazine.

And then here we are with a painted white ceiling with light wood flooring looking stunning as usual.

Found via Casa Vogue

and then again (by amber interiors). See what I mean? Easy Peasy. Except, I apparently am not one that likes to go the easy route.

 

So back to keeping the wood ceiling… do I refinish it and see if we can restore it to its more natural color? Do I roll with it and find a light wood flooring that goes with it (no), do I paint the dark stained beams only (I think so) and find a white/light flooring to go with? Can I do poured concrete on a second story? What if I splurged on terrazzo in the main living spaces and source other light/whiteish floorings for the other rooms? DING DING DING! winner winner… at least for now. I haven’t fully pulled the trigger but I’ve got all the material estimates in hand and I’m holding my breath while I wait for the labor costs. It’s difficult splurging at the very beginning of a renovation when you know there is a very very long road ahead of you, but that is the plan and as soon as I made that decision things started to come together for the rest of the house. So I think it will be worth it.

While I did find a ton of inspiration for the white ceilings I found it WAY harder to round up any that felt like me with the natural wood ceilings, which has me a little freaked tbh, but I like to push myself and the few I did find are pretty spectacular.

Especially this one… wood ceiling, white floors and all my favorite golden warm tones. YES!

Via Atelier Vime

and this one from  This one breaks my rule of no wood on the ceiling and the floor but they are drastically different tones which makes it work and the incredible fireplace and little wood nook (a mini version like the one in our house!) more than makes up for it in this stunning space.

Found via @interiortonic

And finally, this one also has the wood on the floors and the ceiling but the kitchen is beautiful and can’t you just see this being Clover and I in a couple years? One could hope ours will look this good, as right now I am in a sea of wood, on wood, on wood, on a rusty wood color in our kitchen (below).

Jessica De Ruiter’s home via The Hive, Photo by Miha Matei.

Along with keeping the wood ceiling as is, I am planning to use a mix of different flooring materials throughout the house in the same light ivory/whiteish shades to keep it cohesive. It will be some combination of terrazzo, carpet, and cement tile. So there we are, one decision down, 8,000,000,000 more to go. Unless of course you guys can change my mind… but really, what would you do?

To see all of the posts on this renovation check here. 

#samuelfamilyfixer main floor plans

sss-family-fixer-inspirationWe’ve been living, no scratch that… camping out, in our new Michigan house for three weeks now (how is that even possible?!). Just wait until you see (below) how we’ve been living for nearly a month. It’s straight up squatter status. Luckily (or rather not so luckily since it was over a month late), our movers finally showed up on Friday with all of our belongings from LA. So maybe we will get a little more settled soon, that is until we start construction, Lord help us. Somewhere between work and the kids, getting our bearings in a new city, and work and the kids I have only just now started to dig into setting a visual tone for our own house. Putting together the little inspiration/mood board above helped get my creative juices flowing for my worst/pickiest client yet (yes, me) and now I’m gearing up to get going on all the fun stuff, kitchen and bathroom designs, hard finish selections and allll the furniture.

Thankfully I had the “as built” floorplans drawn up while I was still in LA by the lovely local west Michigan folks at KLH Custom Homes, so I was able to work on the renovation plans and layout changes before we even set foot in the house. I made all the changes to the floorplan months ago, starting on them as soon as we closed on the sale, but I wanted to live in the house a little to see if what I had planned actually makes sense for how we naturally use the space. Surprisingly, I haven’t made any further changes (yet, at least). So without further ado, I’m sharing the tour and outlining our plans for the top floor of the house.

Starting at the very beginning, The entryway feels grand when you walk up to it, (see a video of our first time entering it here) but then you open it and walk right into a wall so one change we wanted to make was instead of two small separate pocket doors into the sitting room, we are going to move the opening to the center of the wall and mimic the size of the front doors.

ENTRY

Samuel family fixerIf you were able to walk straight through that wall at the entry, as it is now, you’d end up in the sitting room. A room with no windows. It does have an enormous round sky-light, which I love, so it is the brightest room of the house, BUT I do not want to spend time in a room with no windows, even with the skylight bringing in the natural light (thoughts of “The Room” come to mind). So, we are also going to take down the wall that divides the sitting room from the kitchen to make that all one big open space. With the changes, you’ll be able to see out through the wall of windows in the kitchen while in the sitting room as well as be able to be a part of the conversation in the sitting room while in the kitchen.

SITTING ROOM

The loft area, you’ll see next, is at one end of the sitting room. Above is a shot looking down from the loft that I took yesterday, in its current ‘this is how we’ve been living for a little too long’ state with a halfway assembled crib (Clover has been sleeping in a Pack & Play for a month now!), random tile samples, a blanket for Clover to roll around on and Cracker the dog for scale. We let Archie and his cousins and friends paint on the wall that is coming down (the one dividing this room from the kitchen) and I’m currently working on a way to incorporate their art into the house because it is actually really cool!

LOFT

This loft was possibly half the reason we fell in love with the house, with its’ cool unexpected features like the half moon shape spiral staircase leading to the lower level, it had me from the photos. It was however a death trap for toddlers and babies so we had to make some temporary changes until I can redesign it a touch to be kid and pop pop friendly (he already fell down the stairs once). So, the challenge is on to rework the staircase and integrate some railings and banisters.

KITCHEN

The kitchen is getting a total overhaul. Instead of a small L shaped kitchen in the corner of the room, we are going to re-work the window and door layout, to center the kitchen in the space (you can see the changes in the floor plans at the top). For how large the house is, the kitchen feels small, so I am excited to open it up to the sitting room and extend it along the back wall. I am all about symmetry in the kitchen if possible so that’s what I am going to make happen. We are also going to tear out the bathroom that is just to the right of the refrigerator and convert it into the walk-in pantry of my dreams. woot!

Here is said bathroom that we will turn pantry, but don’t worry we are adding another bathroom just down the hallway so we won’t be losing one completely.

SCREENED IN PORCH

Off to the other side of the kitchen is the screened in porch, aka a three season room. Is this a Michigan thing? No one has these in LA I guess because bugs aren’t that big of a problem there. How far does the three season room trend span across the country? Holler at me southerners with a screened in porch. Either way I am obsessed with this space. We’ve been spending nights out here after the kids go to bed, just relaxing in the super comfortable seating above (insert eye roll). But seriously it’s nice on these warm summer nights to be outside but still under cover. We had our first rainstorm and it was magic. I kind of missed having weather (remind me of that come February will you?). Plans in here include a comfortable lounge space and a small dining area. Painting away that red and tiling the floor.

Now onto the “bedroom wing” of the house.

MASTER BEDROOM

Oh the joys of moving, it’s so glamorous right? We currently only have two bedrooms on the main floor so Archie has been sleeping on a camp cot in our room, right next to our mattress on the floor with borrowed sheets and blankets from my parents. Aside from getting rid of the dark carpet in this room, getting Arch his own room is priority one. You

MASTER BATHROOM

The master bathroom is also getting a total overhaul. Currently it is made up of two small rooms. Navy shag carpeting and yellow walls included. We are planning to open this space up by taking down the walls and adding onto the space by converting the neighboring old “hot tub room” into one big master bathroom. WHAT AM I GOING TO DO WITH ALL THAT SPACE? A bathtub and a shower… I will never leave. I can’t even contain my excitement about finally having a grown up master bath.

HOT TUB ROOM

And the view out the backyard won’t be to shabby either.

KIDS ROOM

There’s not much to report from Clover’s room, new flooring, some paint and furniture. We also have to close up her access doorway to the hot tub room and maybe put a more comfortable chair to nurse in would be nice. At least the pack and play can go away now that her crib has arrived.

LAUNDRY ROOM

The laundry room is getting demoted to the lower level while we expand this space and turn it into the new kid’s bathroom and Archie’s new bedroom. I’m pretty exited to be able to have a dedicated “kids bathroom” in this house, I have to say. No more having guests over and having them step over bath toys and potty step stools to go to the loo.

Timing  wise I am hoping to get the hard finishes selected and on order ASAP so we can start construction, ideally, first of September. We are also hoping (oh the hope at the beginning of a renovation) that it will take roughly three months to complete. I have the powder bath designed and that is it so far. But heck if it isn’t one great powder bath. Design and finish selects coming soon!

Many of you asked questions over IG if we are getting a contractor or doing the work ourselves and if we are living through the renovation and the answer is yes to all! We are planning to use a contractor and sub-contractors for some of the projects (like plumbing and such), doing the work ourselves for everything that we can and we will be living through the renovations. Our plan is to concentrate on one floor at a time which is why I only have plans started for the top floor right now. We will be living in the lower level while all the work is happening on this top level. Then when that is all finished and we can move to the top level, we will tackle the lower. Wish us luck!! Until then I will be pretending our house looks like the inspiration. Good thing I am V good at visualizing. ha

To get caught up on the why and where we moved check here.

You might also like to see our LA home renovations or our Palm Spring A-frame renovations.

 

A-frame exterior plans + progress

a-frame exterior - desert landscapingNow that construction is starting to wrap up on the inside of our A-frame, we have turned our attention to the exterior! The front yard, the back yard, the patios and all that good stuff. And as you can see we ended up going ALL white for the outside. We did it bit by bit, painting another section then living with it for a bit, and painting another section and living with it, and then finally we knew we had to go all the way.

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a-frame kitchen plans & progress

a-frame-kitchen-rendering2It is happening!!!  We have made some progress in the A-frame cabin kitchen… finally. Now that things are underway, I’m excited to share my plans for the space and what made it onto my must have list…

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