Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Devil Really Is In The Details!

Going through this renovation I am learning that it's the little details in life that really make the difference. The first detail being that, if you start shooting your renovation photos in RAW format on your camera, make sure that your circa 2008 computer can process them. This minor oversight has lead to two-and-a-half weeks of computer sorrows as I have tried to update an antiquated operating system in order to install Photoshop Elements 11 to process RAW photos. Well, long story short, several calls to the Apple helpline and several hours at the Mac store with my personal lifesaver Mac Genius and (drum roll please)…….problem solved! Woohoo‼! So hopefully this will be end of my absence from blogland, because a TON has happened at our house these past 3 weeks since the reno kicked off. But I digress.

One of my all-time favorite parts of the blogs that I follow are all the wonderful before and after photos. I love watching the transformations of a room or a project from start to finish. So, I thought I would step back a few week and take you on a tour of the house with my first set of "Before and After Progress" photos showing the casa pre-reno and what is looked like after Day 1 of demo. However, since this is a another long, photo-intensive post, we will tour the first floor today and the second floor tomorrow.

First off is the outside of the house. We plan to enlarge the dormer, change the roof, replace the cedar siding with Hardy Plank and install new garage doors.

When you enter the front door, you come into the foyer with the death trap stairs to your left, the dining room to your right and the family room straight ahead. This is the first floor as it exists today with the foyer, dining room, living room and stairs highlighted in red.

Here is a picture of the current the foyer and stairs taken from the dining room. In addition to changing the layout, we are also romoving the wood panneling and the drop beams.

This is a close-up of the super steep staircase. This picture does not do them justice, but just imagine 7" treads instead of 10". I am here to tell you, 3" makes a huge difference!

Here is a view of the dining room from the foyer with the kitchen through the doors to the left.

This picture is the view of the family room with the dining room and foyer to the right and the kitchen in the background (before all of our non-esential belongings were moved to storage).

Here is a second view of the living room taken from the entrance to the kitchen. We are removing the built-in and the entrance to the master suite will move to the right (where the built-in is currently).

The plan on the main floor is to extend the front of the house five foot so that we can relocate the stairs and expand on Rose's "open concept" floor plan with the dining room and living room. Here is the revised first floor plan with the new foyer, stairs, dining room and living room highlighted in red and pictures of these areas after Day 1 of Demo.

This is a picture taken from the stairs of the foyer, dining room and living room after the first day of demo. As you can see, no more paneling and no more drop-beams!

Here is another picture of the living room after the first day of demo with the wood paneling and drop beams removed.

This is a third picture of the living room post "Day 1 Demo" that was taken from the kitchen. As you can see, the built-ins are gone but the door to the "master suite" has not yet been relocated.

To the left of the family room is the master bedroom, the master bath and the study. The first time we viewed the house, it was clear that the tiny master bath would be a problem for Matt and me and I immediately knew that I wanted to turn this area into a master suite. The existing layout has plenty of room to create a large master bath and closet by simply moving a few interior walls. This is how the first floor looks currently with the master bedroom, master bathroom and study highlighted in red.

This is a picture of the master bedroom when we bought the house. After we moved in, we painted the walls turquois and the trim dark brown. However, a few months before we started the renovation, our AC flooded the master bedroom and we had to start demo for the insurance.

So here is the master bedroom post-paint job and after the insurance demo. This picture was taken from the hallway.

This is a second view of the master bedroom after the insurance demo and shows our closet. This picture was taken from the outside corner of the room.

Here is the fist view of our "master" bath. This picture was taken from the hallway and shows the built-in vanity.

This is a second view of the master bath that was taken from the master bedroom. This picture shows the built-in linen closet with the sink to the right.

This is a third view of the master bath with my back to the vanity. I can stand in the middle of the room and touch the walls on either side of the shower and toilete. It is a tiny room!

Here is a picture of the study before we started demo and was taken from the corner of the room with the stairs and foyer in front and the hallway to the master bathroom and bedroom to the left. This room will become our master closet. So exciting!!!!

As I mentioned above, I knew that I wanted to turn this area into a master suite after the first time we viewed the house. However, it took several tries of me playing with the layout to figure out the best plan (and many, many sheets of graph paper, pencils and erasers). Here is one of my early designs for the house, which was before I had my "Lightbulb!" moment for the final placement of the stairs. This design relied on us being able to put the WC below the existing stairs. I bet you can guess which was going to be my closet!

Once I decided to relocate the stairs to the front of the house, however, I had to rearrange the space to allow for a WC. This meant creating one large walk-in closet and moving the WC down towards the master bedroom. But the biggest benefit of this change and my second favorite "creative engineering" moment to date on the project (the first being the stairs) is the fact that I was able to make the master WC double as our powder bath by simply adding a sink. Although the earlier floorplan had a half-bath in the foyer, I did not like the thought of taking away from family room. While I accepted the fact that we do not have room on the first floor for a separate half-bath without sacrificing space in the living area, I hated the idea of making our guests tramps through our master bathroom to use the toilette. So back to the drawing board I went and came up with this alternative design which allows us to shut off the master bedroom and master bath and just leave the "half-bath" for our guests when we have visitors. So here is the updated floor plan for the "master suite", which is highlighted in red and pictures of the demo after day one.

This is the master bedroom after the first day of demo. Not much changed from the insurance demo other than the fact that all of the trim has been removed.

Here is a second view of the master bedroom with after "Day 1 Demo" with the trim removed and the closet doors removed.

This is picture of the "master bath" with the built-in linen closet and trim removed.

Here is the study after Day 1 of Demo. The only thing that has changed is that the wood paneling and trim has been removed.

This is another picture taken in the study. When we removed the wood paneling, we found that someone "tagged" the wall back in 1967. I am so curious who Mary is!!!

So there you go! We will come back tomorrow with the second floor and the progress being made there. Have a great day and thanks for visiting!

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