One of my big goals for 2018 was to finish replacing all of the first floor moulding, and I am stoked to report that it is all done. A previous owner replaced the original millwork with trim that wasn’t as appropriate for the house, and I undid his work. I’m generally not a sentimental or nostalgic person, but I do feel sincerely bummed (and a little angry) when I think about the historical elements that have been stripped from this house over the decades. I’m grateful some remain (like our staircase) and I’m pleased to be able to restore other details to make the house feel more cohesive.
Here’s when we bought the house, looking from the kitchen into the entryway and living room:
And here’s that view today:
The headers (AKA architrave) throughout the first floor are now this Interior Primed MDF Window and Door Casing from Lowe’s – it’s a Metrie product.
Here’s the reverse view, from the living room into the kitchen:
And now – it will look even better once I get around to finishing the staircase (my one 2018 goal that I did not a single minute of work on in 2018):
The biggest change is to the west wall of the living room – we went from this:
To this, thanks to our contractor:
And now finally to this:
I found matching baseboard at Evanston Lumberyard (it’s from Metrie) and I made the window stool myself using a router for the first time. Very pleased with how the corners turned out.
The living room is coming together nicely. It’s not 100% ~finished~ yet: I’m still fussing around with the decoration. The rug is from Rejuvenation; they don’t cary it anymore. The chairs and coffee table are Craigslist finds from 10+ years ago.
When we bought the house, the mantle was in a state of disrepair: the wood was parched, one of the shelves was missing, and the brick was painted red with gray paint mortar lines.
Back in 2016, I painted the fireplace brick white:
When we did our basement cleanup, my friend Kimberly spotted the missing shelf in a trash pile (good eyes, Priebe!). I sanded, stained, and rebuilt the bookcases.
Did you know that people use the term “shelfie” for bookcase photos? I’m not going to do that.
My teammate Grace (1310 Studios on IG) made this drawing, which I love, of Lola and Doozy at our desk. We put Doozy to sleep this past spring – it was very sad (sadder than I even expected it to be), but Lola is feeling better now and we’ve all adjusted to being a one-cat household.
Here’s the desk area that inspired the drawing. All the details on our two-person desk setup are in this post.
We’ve had this Room & Board sofa for 10+ years as well. I had it reupholstered last year in indestructible Sunbrella fabric.
Lately I’ve been daydreaming about adding a pair of windows above the bookcases: it’s a very common detail in bungalows, but our house seemingly never had them (the exterior brick doesn’t appear to be patched).
Thanks for reading, and happy holidays! I’ll be back in 2019 with more – evermore – house goals.