I'm back with the last installment of before and after photos of Sycamore Street Cottage. If you missed the other posts on this you can catch up here. It has been really fun for me to dig up all these old photos from our past renovations. It may sound strange, but looking back at what we have accomplished really helps keep us motivated on our current house renovation (it should make us tired, because holy hannah that was a lot of work!) Looking at these photos, I realize how much we have learned about creating a well designed, well loved home that is welcoming for all. After all, that is what we are striving for. But back to why you really came here: The photos...
Before: The house had no bedrooms on the main floor. Seriously. Some genius decided that a wood paneled, shag carpeted, wood-stove heated, drop ceilinged great room would be a good idea. So sometime in the 70s said genius removed the walls between the two bedrooms on the main floor and made a shag-a-delic space fit for Powers himself. On a side note: My next door neighbor once mentioned that said genius happened to be an architect. To which I responded: An architect of what? Surely not houses. An actual architect could have never lived in this house. Maybe he was a George Castanza type of architect? Maybe he also designed the new addition to the Guggenheim? (geez Cate, watch Seinfeld much?) Notice the window in the above picture. That window was the one that the "Rabid Ivy Monster" ate. Look closely and you'll see his green beady eyes.
After: Yeah, I didn't have a photo of the entire bedroom, but you get the idea. New wall, new closets, new molding, new...new...new...except for the floors which were hidden under all that shagginess. This closet is actually where the old stove in the above picture lived. On the other side of the room is another closet that used to be a coat closet that opened into the living room. Simple fix, we closed it off from the living room side and opened it on the bedroom side. You have to be creative about storage in such a small cottage.
Close-up of new molding. We are big proponents of adding molding wherever we can and we put a lot of thought into it. It really adds the architectural detail that this home was lacking.
Before: Basement bedroom. Yes, someone actually slept here. Shocking.
After: We added a board and batten wainscot to add some detail to the downstairs family room. I am not sure why I can't for the life of me get a good photo of the colors in this house. The walls are actually a very light neutral, and the carpet is not pink. We added tons of recessed lighting because the ceilings are fairly low and I didn't want anyone banging their heads on a hanging light fixture. We put in the same doors that we did upstairs, as well as the same baseboard. We opted for a different window and door molding because the header piece on the upstairs molding (that is the piece on the top of the door) would have been cut off so much, due to the lower ceilings in the basement, that it was pointless. We still stayed with the craftsman look, though, by using a flat piece of MDF that was cut on an angle for the header piece.
After: Looking towards the stairwell. There is a bedroom through that door, and to the right is another bedroom, a laundry, and bathroom. We purposefully left the stairwell open because I like it that way. It looks cleaner. BUT, it is not code (just in case you are thinking of doing the same), and if we had kids we probably would have done it differently.
After: This is looking from the bedroom into the family room. The wall color looks better in this one, but the carpet is still off. Drat.
Before: Through that door lies a bathroom. Or so I've been told. It was too scary to step foot through that door.
After: Bathroom. White subway tile to the ceiling made the ceilings appear taller. There is a linen closet to the right of the bathtub.
This is the tile we put on the floor of the bathroom and also the laundry. I love it. It has an Ann Sacks look with a Home Depot price. They might still carry it, I haven't checked.
So there you have it, Sycamore Street Cottage. I miss that little home, with all its quirks. But when I start getting sentimental about selling it, Mr. always reminds me that if we did it once, we can do it again, and the next home renovation will be the better for it. And you know what? I think he is right.