Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The First Photos of Our House / Before Any Work

I realized it may be helpful to post together all of the photos we have of the house before we start renovations.  Since all the rooms need some sort of renovation, some rooms more than others-- all the "before" photos will be all together here.

Living Room

Big window in living room

One corner of the coved ceiling in the living room 

Front door and front hall closet



Kitchen, looking into hall and living room

Kitchen wall

Kitchen floor

Kitchen ceiling

Kitchen ceiling and cupbaords

Kitchen cupboards and counters -- Guessing all the cupboards looked like this once

Kitchen into hallway to basement & mudroom

Above kitchen doorway into mudroom

Main floor bathroom

Main floor bathroom

Hall closet

Bedroom 1 on main floor

Bedroom 1 on main floor -- closet doors

Bedroom 1 ceiling

Paint in bedroom 1
Paint in bedroom 1

Bedroom 2


Hallway to mudroom and basement

Basement stairs

Basement family room

Fireplace in basement

Basement bedroom

Basement bedroom

Basement bathroom

Laundry room

Basement storage room 1

Basement storage room 2

Stairs to second floor

Stairs to second floor

Second floor

Second floor

Front yard

Front yard

Back yard

Back yard

Back of the house

Front of the house

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Our Kitchen Mural

Welcome to our kitchen!  Isn't it pretty?
We're pretty sure this kitchen scared away other potential buyers.  And of course, we're glad about it now!  But once we'd been in the house for a couple days, K said she couldn't stand it anymore -- it always feels like those 10 eyes are watching her...

Oh, and parts of it GLOW IN THE DARK!!  Parts of the eyes and teeth, and other various marks and spots are painted on in glow-in-the-dark paint.  No wonder K feels the eyes watching her.

Since I had the day off on a Tuesday, I decided to prime over it for her, so she wouldn't have to look at it anymore.

I took some time-lapse photos and turned them into a short video to document the covering-up of this masterpiece.
(For those of you with SLR experience, you might notice the video gets darker because I forgot to set my manual metering.  Oops.  Oh, well -- can't do it over!)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Kitchen Drop Ceiling

Our kitchen has an industrial-looking drop ceiling...  I understand that this place was a rental for ages, and florescent tube lighting is energy-efficient.  And judging by how many broken light fixtures there are in this house, it's possible that the kitchen lighting just didn't stand a chance.  Not sure when this ceiling and lights was put up, but it doesn't appear to be original.

I started pulling the panels down pretty quickly after we moved in.  And then today we pulled down the metal frames.  The ceiling is a good 4 inches higher now, with patchy paint and small holes every few inches.  The cool thing is that we can see a green paint near the top of the walls-- possibly the original paint in the kitchen?  The color is really pretty!  Very exciting, too, because I have been imagining doing green in the kitchen.

Metal frame coming down...  Popcorn ceiling in the kitchen, too.  Green paint in the middle seems to be much older than all the other paint.

Happy!  Taking down the panels!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

We Got The House!

After 3 years of stop-and-start house shopping, being outbid on 4 homes, a bidding war on this house, a screw-up by our credit union that set us back a month, and a whirlwind process with our mortgage broker, we finally have a house!

Since we looked at SO many houses, it actually enabled us to confirm what we really wanted in a house, and what we wouldn't compromise on.  This house fulfilled all those requirements, except for one--  It doesn't have a garage.  Yet.  There is a lot of yard in the back of the house, and my partner will definitely be building a garage in the near future.

Jack Templeton Paul Irwin Diane Irwin Angelo Cremisino
Photo from the MLS Listing
This house is definitely a fixer-upper.  We're pretty sure that probably scared off a lot of potential buyers.  Which is fine with us!  The house is structurally fine, the heat and appliances all work great, but it does need a LOT of cosmetic work.  Luckily for us, my partner is a carpenter and I'm a very willing student.  We looked at so many 1900s houses here in Minneapolis that needed structural work, were missing floors or walls, etc.  The good thing about this house is that it's completely liveable-- it's just really ugly.

Why is it really ugly?  It's been a rental for the last 10 years or so, and we get the feeling that no one ever checked up on how the renters were treating the house.  Just about every wall and surface on the main floor and the basement is painted with murals and bright colors, crayons and puffy paint.  It's going to take a bit of work to repair all the walls, but once they're all painted it will make a huge difference.

This house was built in 1952.  There's a little bit of character here and there, but it's mostly just a blank slate.  Our plan is to go mid-century modern with most of it.  There are a ton of resources in Minneapolis for mid-century furniture, so we'll see what we can find!  How quickly this all gets done is certainly going to depend on our budget, as well as working our projects around our full-time jobs.  So, this is where we'll document our progress!

Jack Templeton Paul Irwin Diane Irwin Angelo Cremisino
K and me, the morning of our closing.  The lawn hasn't been mowed in 2 months!