Projects

The 6 Projects We Want to Tackle in the next 6 months.

June 12, 2019  —  Written by Julia 

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We have a long-standing relationship with DIY, and love rolling our sleeves up and making it happen. 

Even when you don’t want to rip down a wall, you can make that space in your home better. Right now.

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What’s the first project!? When are you gonna start!? Since the OG 2019 project list is no longer a possibility, we sat down over the weekend and made a new list! For this house! You heard us talk about all of our general plans in yesterday’s video walk through, but here’s where we’d like to start:

The Living Room

I mean, someone get me a paint brush! Stat! I’m dying to bid the faux finish on the walls goodbye but we have some grander plans that require bringing in some pros, too (we’re in the process of finding someone now). The large arched window is almost completely blocked by a fireplace that vents out the back of the house. I know that this had to be some sort of addition at some point because the chimney is on the adjacent wall that separates the living room from a converted porch (psst…that’s going to be our new dining room, see below). Moving the fireplace back (??) over to the wall with a chimney stack and making it double sided into the new dining room will allow us to have an entire wall of window looking into the backyard.

We’d love to keep the shape arched, but modernize the glass and panes a bit. As much as the diagonal flooring makes me itch, flooring for this space might be a phase 2 project because we want to carry it through most of the first floor and additional layout changes could happen in the next year. Besides the fireplace and window and paint and, hi, some furniture would be greeeaaaatttttt, we’re envisioning some beams and updated lighting. Opening up the doorway to the dining room and adding some storage on the other side of the fireplace. I can see it now!

The Dining Room

The kitchen has a small dining area–we’ll call it a breakfast nook–adjacent to it, but our dining room is going to exist in that long space, connected to the living room with the dreamy arched wood doors. Although it appears to be insulated, it feels a little drafty in here. The double sided fireplace will absolutely help. But we’re also going to be replacing the sliding doors which feel cheap in comparison to everything else. Tearing up the tile and adding in-floor heating and a charming patterned tile. Getting rid of the stone columns that feel a little more porch-y and a little less dining room and lining the room with sconces, molding, windows and a big wooden table we’re gonna DIY to seat 20. With 2 chandeliers over it!

We entertain so much and both have such large families and a great group of friends, a space like this is absolutely a dream for us. We want this to be done in conjuction with the living room (since both will benefit from the double sided fireplace and new windows) asap! I’m putting finishing touches on a mood board while Chris scrambles to find a contractor that can take on a project like this.

We’ll also be adding a second doorway into this room where that exterior window is, from the music room.

The Music Room

Our plans for this space seem to be the most controversial and we’re fine with that. Since this is also the space that almost made us pass on this house entirely, we’ve spent the most brain power here brainstorming how to make it work for our family. (The previous owners used this as their formal dining room). A few things that stumped me initially were 1. The Columns. 2. The two-story ceiling felt so elaborate. 3. This is the first thing you see when you walk in our house?!

We already knew that we wanted the larger space for our dining area, and this space to house Chris’s heirloom piano that are girls are learning to play. It was during our second walk-through that we came up with the idea to add a ceiling to the space (it will still be 9 ft like the rest of the first floor) and create a bonus area upstairs (also with 9 ft ceilings) instead of this 20 foot vertical space that would just carry the sound of the piano all over the house. The verdict is still out whether the columns are structural or not but we are going to be walling in this room and just having a nice, large arched entryway into it so there will be a peek into it from the front door, but a little mystery, too.

We’ll also be removing the door to the living room and widening/arching the doorway into the living room, with another one mirrored on the other side going into the dining room.

Phase 1 of our Bedroom

I learned from our last home, don’t wait until very last to make your own space feel like you. To be honest, we’re not sure if we’re feeling like we’re on vacation or strangers in our new house but I know that fixing up our bedroom to some extent will help us feel more at home here. Phase 1 looks like getting a bed frame, new window treatments, lighting, nightstands, a dresser. I’d love to re-do the fireplace entirely down the road, but for now, just removing the mantle and pendants would do wonders.

I don’t like tray ceilings–there I said it. So eventually I’d love to look into what it would be to get rid of ours (a lot—the duct work runs through it), but for now–minimize it.

And paint. paint. paint. paint! I’m excited about this project because it’s one that we can completely do ourselves and we’ll probably go dark for the first couple years and then lighter later again, just a heads up. Haha.

Entry-Phase 1

Since this is the first thing you see when you come in our house, we gotta do something pretty quick. I think new tile, lighting and paint will go a long way. As well as some sort of grand entry table. Because we as a family don’t use our front door much, it can be more form over function here. A pretty mirror. Maybe a chair for guests by the coat closet. We might even be able to hold off on new tile until phase 2 when we redo all the floors!

Windows

I think the windows are really dating our house right now. From the very first walkthrough, we dreamt of updating them. We’re envisioning black on the inside and white/tan/gray/blue? on the outside. We’d love to do this all at once, but I’m worried that as we tackle each room over the years if we’ll want to expand or add more windows. (You know we love doing that). The Living Room and Dining Room will for SURE be getting new windows this year, so it kind of makes sense to do them all, right?

PAINT

I’d love to hire someone to come in and just do a fresh coat of paint on ALL the walls, to be honest. Including all the wood trim. Sorry, not sorry. There is so much power in paint and so many walls that need it. Sometimes paint is all you need to just carry you through until the next project.

 

 

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What do you think?

  1. Hannah says:

    So so excited to see the house progress in the coming months! The antler chandelier in your main family room caught my eye….if by chance you are looking to find that chandelier a new home, I’m looking! We are building an off the grid a-frame in Southern Oregon and have been on the hunt for a antler chandelier for our living room. :) Cheers from our cabin in the woods!

  2. Makila says:

    Fresh paint always goes a long way!!! It will for sure make it feel like your home.

    I cannot wait to see the giant dining room. My dream is to have a table that seats 16-20. With four kids of our own, adding even one more family means we need at least a table for 12. I think it’s so hard to find a table that even seats 12 let alone more! Please consider doing a post about tables or how to go about getting one built.

  3. Carolann Bond says:

    Consider leaving the doors and stairs unpainted, but paint all the trim. You can always paint the doors later and they may keep it warm. They look nice! I agree to paint the trim – not a fan of wood trim either. Love the blog. Followed you guys for YEARS!!

  4. Carolann says:

    Consider leaving the doors and stairs unpainted and painting all trim. Love the ideas! Been following you for years!

  5. Anna says:

    So happy for you guys, can’t wait to see the changes! That’s quite a lot of changes to plan for in just 6 months, if you are comfortable sharing would be interested in what your budget is for these projects.

    We are first time home owners and bought a 1967 ranch in “as is” condition. I am having a really hard time prioritizing projects, figuring out what to outsource, and finding a balance between spending on repairs/major improvements vs furniture and decor so that the house feels “ours”.

  6. Tiffany says:

    I love that you have so many projects to dive in to. I think it would be amazing if you did the arched opening to the music room that had beautiful old wood pocket doors. Also with all of your land and Chris’s cooking I think it would be wonderful for you to use the old windows when they are replaced to make a greenhouse somewhere on your property. Stone on the bottom and all the windows on top. You could have dinners out there. And when it is time for the girl’s weddings…

  7. Christen Guenther says:

    Yes yes yes to painting everything!! It will make such a big difference and to heck with all the haters.

  8. Joanna Bonventre says:

    You might like the tray ceiling better if you simplify or remove the molding. You could install some really soft indirect lighting around it and create a really cozy vibe.

  9. Misha says:

    I loved the house tour! It’s crazy to see you guys in a different space but eagerly awaiting to see how you make this new house your home. I think the idea of putting a ceiling on the piano room is awesome – what a great way to add more useable space! Also, for your entryway lighting conundrum, have you considered hanging two big lights in the entryway?

  10. C Kelly says:

    I love the ideas you have for the cljcottage! My husband and I just relocated and are renting while we look for houses. We’re considering going for a fixer-upper since we’d like to have things just how we want them! How do you know if the projects are manageable and how to avoid getting in over your head!

    Thanks for any advice!

    • Julia says:

      We don’t like to tackle anything structural, or dealing with most plumbing or HVAC ourselves. But everyone has limits! Just take it a room at a time and a phase at a time. Start with paint. Window coverings. Lights!

  11. A fan from Montreal, Canada says:

    I love all of your ideas and everything you’ve done to date on all your projects! One question though, are you planning to convert the fireplace to natural gas or propane? I didn’t see that mentioned anywhere and in this age of global warming, I think it would be the environmentally friendly thing to do. Just a thought.

  12. Christina says:

    This will be so much fun and such an inspiring project to watch! Thank you for sharing it with us. I agree the columns need to go! But will it feel awkward essentially having guests walk into a wall? I know you will have the arched entry, but would that room become more of a pass-through b/c of the wall? I love that you would put your TV upstairs – I dislike TVs in the main living space. We hardly ever watch anything unless it is an Olympics year. I also hate tray ceilings and I thought I was the only one! Anyhow, most of your ideas I love. Those I’m iffy on…well, you seem to have the beatific vision, b/c whatever you touch turns out insanely perfect! Super happy for you and your family…and thrilled to be able to tag along!

  13. Drew Mecham says:

    I am so excited to see how this place turns out! We sure love you guys. Best of luck on the projects.

  14. Vicki says:

    You do not have to apologize for what you want and envision for your family’s home! I remember how many people thought you were wrong about your shower tile in the master bedroom and then how gorgeous everyone had to admit it was when you were finished with it…same with the wallpaper and marble floor in the master bath and painting the wood in the cabin and painting the exterior black! Artists and designers do not listen to the crowd. Artists apply their own unique style to each space they design. That is why people follow you. You are artists…so, case closed! Ha! I so agree about the columns and the stonework that was obviously outside and then just left there when they made the area part of the house. I looked at those for a long time and thought, “I sure hope those go early because how do you work around that!” I have always wanted a space like that for dining! A music room is a great idea for that space off the foyer. I would probably make it a “parlor” where one could briefly visit with someone who dropped by for a moment. But music room sounds perfect and gives it a real purpose and could actually serve both purposes, depending on how you furnish it. As far as the woodwork, I definitely would paint it. I lived with wood trim for a long time in my first house and was so happy when I finally decided to paint it. I never regretted it–not for a minute and mine was “beautiful” wood also. I’m excited for you and also for all of us that get to watch you and Chris make your “magic.”

  15. Joy says:

    I watched the video yesterday and I am so excited to watch you make this house into YOUR home. Loving all the ideas! Like you said in the video, nothing special about the trim, so paint away and make it yours
    We are transitioning a blah 50’s ranch into a updated ranch and oh the comments on painted trim…

  16. Kate says:

    When we moved into our new home last year, the very first thing we did was put a coat of white paint on all the walls…it was a relatively quick and easy way to help us feel like we were in our own home, rather than someone else’s. I am so glad we did it!

  17. Elizabeth says:

    I love all the ideas. I can’t wait to see the transformations! When doing rooms in phases for example flooring in the phase 2, do you have an idea of what flooring you will go with down the line so it ends up coming all together or do you wait to figure that out?

  18. Jennifer says:

    I love the idea of the double sided fireplace between the living and dining! Have you considered opening the wall up fully between the two spaces so you can pass through on either sides of the fireplace? It could help the two spaces feel connected and cohesive especially when entertaining. :)

  19. Hannah B. says:

    I cannot even begin to express the joy I feel about filling in that double height space. Dramatic double height spaces belong in dramatic ultra modern masterpieces – not in cottages! ;) but in all honesty, anything above 11′ ceilings is just a heck ton of wasted space that you have to heat and cool! Go with your gut, Marcums! :)

  20. Veronica says:

    I can’t wait for you to make another paint color go viral!! What color was the living room at the old house, by the way? JK. My house is already painted Hazy Skies. So excited for these projects!

  21. Sara says:

    So excited to see it all unfold! Will you be changing out the banister?

  22. Molly Malim says:

    Hire. That. Ish. Out. Get someone to come in and paint! I know people will be all grumpy that you’re DIY people and should do it all yourself, but ignore them. Ignore them hard. I work part time, and I still have someone clean my house twice a month (I used to have them come every week, but I’m lazy and hate waking up early to have them come). Does it make me less of a stay-at-home mom? Heck no. It makes me a better mom for the people in my life. In the same vein, hiring someone else to come paint your house will help you focus on the big projects you want to tackle…and help you feel more at home in your space.

    More importantly, your plans are lovely! Welcome to Idaho Falls. <3

  23. Carrie says:

    I hate tray ceilings too! And diagonal floors! I’m glad I’m not alone!
    I love that you are adding that bonus room above the music room. I always feel like the two story thing is such a waste of space. Not that you guys are short on space. But still. I love the landing as a chill hang out fun spot. Will you be putting your tv in the living room in the meantime?
    Can’t wait to see this place with a fresh coat of paint!

    • Julia says:

      We actually don’t even own a TV right now! We had two and the buyer of our home bought both of them. So we might just hold off getting a TV until we get that space figured out.

      • Caitlin Low says:

        You sold the FRAME??!!!! That may just be my dream home item!! ????????????????

  24. Katherine says:

    I know I’m going to love everything you do and can’t wait to follow along. But even if I don’t love it, that doesn’t matter because it is your home and if you love it then it’s a win. And if you don’t love it then you can change it again. It’s going to be a fun ride.

  25. Al says:

    Just a thought, when you add the second story, in the open space you could do another closet for the master bedroom instead of doing a full walk in, it could be like a reach in & keep the one in the bathroom as well & you can have a his & hers closet. Congrats on the new house!

  26. I’m wondering if the “fireplace” in the new dining room was actually a wood stove? That stovepipe kind of gives it away, and it makes for sense for an outdoor room. If that’s so, you might need to redo the entire chimney. I love your ideas and can’t wait to just watch the progress. Best wishes on all your new endeavors!

  27. Amy says:

    The List! Yesss!
    So excited to watch you guys transform this house into your home :)

  28. Rachel says:

    All of these ideas and plans are gold. I can’t wait to see it all done! It will be so exciting to follow along :)

  29. I am surprised people are against the music room idea — I thought that was the most creative & beneficial idea for that weird space! Can’t wait to see them all happen.

  30. Katherine says:

    Maybe try to change the look of your tray ceilings to coffered ceilings? My sister’s 1912 farmhouse has them in the dining room, and they’re painted white. The look is of gorgeous historic millwork instead of 21st century suburbia. Adding faux beams with added trim for detail should be cheaper than changing the ductwork! Just a thought. Also, let me put my vote in for a subtle french provence blue for the outside windows! That look is a classic, and one of my favorite! Try convincing people that it isn’t a cottage THEN. ;)

  31. Jennifer says:

    Yes paint paint paint and paint the wood trim. We just painted out all the wood trim at our lake house and it makes all the difference. Congratulations on your new home!! Can’t wait to follow your latest adventure.

  32. Hannah says:

    Yes! I hate tray ceilings too! Someone had to say it!

  33. Hannah Rose says:

    We had a 20 foot ceiling in our living room that we changed to a 9 foot one with a bonus room above. Best decision ever!

    • Emily says:

      I gate the double story great rooms that are popular in my area. I always assumed it was cost prohibitively expensive to cut it in half and make a bonus room, but maybe not? Looking forward to seeing that and hopefully getting a sense of what hoes into that.

  34. Ann says:

    Are you able to remove the mullions from the windows? (Guessing they’re decorative only, not functional pane dividers?) That alone would make a huge difference, since they’re inexplicable prairie-style windows on a Tudor-style home, but it would ALSO allow you to paint the interior window trim much easier to get rid of the wood tone.

  35. Ashley says:

    Ever heard of quadrostyle peel n stick tiles that cover your existing tile? I’d love to see you use those if you do a phase one foyer flooring refresh just because I think they have some good looking things and I am so curious for someone to give a review of how difficult they are to install and if they hold up! I’m so dang excited for what’s to come in this house; I can hardly wait! Ready for new windows, like, tomorrow! ????

  36. We split our windows up into two phases and were so glad because I added one to our bedroom, widened another one and completely widened and heightened the ones in the kitchen, when I really thought I’d never change my mind (me?? no…). It would have been nice to have them all done at once, but in the meantime, we painted the old ones white on the inside to make do and keep things looking clean. Love the idea of the 2nd floor playroom and closing that up btw!

    I’d hire a painter too, but all that texture will mean prep and more $$ or does it blend with the textured walls you have in your area already?

  37. Liz says:

    I like the whole house, fresh paint, done by pros idea. Since kids grow up so fast, why aren’t you making some immediate changes to their rooms – like fresh paint, better lighting, and new carpet. When there is major renovation going on in the living & new dining room areas, they may want have a calm retreat place. Of course, that might be the cleaned up chicken coop!

    And, why is there a screen door on the second floor – was it to keep pets out of the bedroom area? I’d be taking down all unnecessary interior doors just to start getting that open feeling. Will you put in pocket doors where possible?

    Looking forward to the changes.

  38. Jamie says:

    This house is dreamy!! I can’t wait to see what it looks like every step of the way!!! The walls look super textured? Or is that just the faux finish tricking my eyes? If they are textured, will you do a skim coat over the drywall to smooth everything?

    • Julia says:

      It’s just the faux finish! There is a little texture but not bad. Painting everything one color will definitely help us decide what we want to do there.

  39. Amanda says:

    I so hope you’ll do French doors where the living room fireplace was instead of a whole wall of windows. It would be such a nice way to get to your backyard!!! Love all your plans! Will be so fun to watch.

  40. Karell says:

    Yes! I hate tray ceilings too. And I’m always amazed at the huge impact a little bit of paint makes. Excited to follow along.

  41. Katie Edwards says:

    As many windows as you have, I think it is A-OK to just to the ones in the rooms you are working on this year, then do another batch with the next round of renos. No vendor should balk at that.

  42. Kristen says:

    Love. Every. One.

  43. Haley says:

    Do you have to go through the music room to get to the main lining/entertaining parts of the house?

  44. Danielle says:

    For your bedroom fireplace, have you seen what Emily Henderson did on her Mountain House fireplace? The German schmear really transformed it into something beautiful. Maybe you could do something similar for your bedroom fireplace?

    Can’t wait to watch you transform this space!

  45. Linda P. says:

    Ever thought about putting in a big, vertical, paned window in the living room with a slight bump-out, like you see in a lot of tudor-style cottages? I wish I could link a picture of one. Maybe you know the style I’m referring to? Also, when you add a bonus room/pajama lounge upstairs. (an idea I’m 100% behind by the way ????) Will you knock out part of the wall so you have an overlook into the living room? And….will you add windows to your office space? In videos it looks a little dark.

    • Julia says:

      We would love to do a little bump out window in the living room–I know EXACTLY what you’re talking about. We for sure are gonna make it a wall of windows so owe’ll have to price it out to see the cost difference of a bump out. I don’t think we’ll have an overlook from the bonus room to the living room but we’d LOVE to add more windows to our office. So dark right now!

  46. Sarah says:

    I am so excited to watch you guys transform this space and SO happy that you are doing some major changes in the next year. #Dontwait is a great recommendation for enjoying your home before it’s fully finished, and it’s also a reminder to make your house a place you love, as you can afford it, so that you can enjoy those improvements for as much time as you’re given. Both of your previous homes were beautiful, and the sweat equity and design skills you’ve honed from them have allowed you to get to this point, which is something we can all learn from. This house feels like a graduation to something more “permanent”, worthy of larger investments and larger scale projects. Looking forward to following along with you for many years to come!

  47. Jill R says:

    Such great bones to build your dream house on! And the grounds outside are beyond crazy. Whenever I see the two of you in this new space I feel like you’re like a duck out of water because nothing looks like clj now, I cannot wait to start to see the amazing transformation you’ll make on this house. As a follower, the one thing I’m most excited to see is how you refinish the exterior wood door coming into your new dining room, my front door needs to be refinished too and I have no idea where to start.

  48. Sarah says:

    i am just about dying to see everything unfold! i absolutely can’t wait!

  49. Amanda says:

    For the tray ceilings- can you cheat and turn them into coffered ceilings? It might give more of the cottage vibe you’re going for?

  50. Michelle T. says:

    Love the new digs! Have you considered painting the entry tile, especially if you’re going to replace all of the flooring eventually? I’d love to see your take on a project like that.

  51. Sharon says:

    I’m not a fan of those tray ceilings either, but have you seen how thrifty decor chick put beams around the inside? I thought it completely changed the look. https://www.thriftydecorchick.com/2018/11/cozy-tray-ceiling-makeover-in-master.html?m=1

  52. Renee says:

    We had faux paint in our little two person salon when we moved in and it just looked dirty. When we refreshed the black ceiling (it’s 15′ high) with fresh black paint and repainted the walls, it was like a new place. We paid a painter to paint and while pricy, it was done in a few days vs. the weeks it would have taken us.

    The mantel and pendant lights are not the same style as the fireplace…removing will be an improvement.

    So exciting to follow along and see what you’re going to do.

    Question? Do you have a service to mow that massive lawn? It looks like it would take a couple days to mow….even with a riding lawnmower.

  53. gigi says:

    Would you draw /sketch a floor plan? It is hard to visualize how all the rooms connect. I am excited to follow along with your renovations and thank you for sharing them. Whatever you do will look great.

  54. Kacey says:

    I like the idea of the music room. I picture it like Kim and Scott’s music nook off their living room and it seems like it makes total sense :)

  55. elaine says:

    I can’t wait to see this all unfold. How exciting!

  56. ashley jensen says:

    Gah I am excited to see what you do! Hiring out someone to paint the high ceilings is so worth it! Been there and don’t regret it one bit! I think having the interior walls, ceilings and trim painted will instantly help it feel more like yours. it will help camouflage the columns and bring out the arched wood doors, and your belongings will make more sense in the mean time.

  57. SPruitt says:

    I love all of your plans. I really, really appreciate how you guys are patient and tackle projects as you have the money to do them, instead of doing a massive reno all at once. I can’t wait to see what you do with that entryway. As soon as I saw it in the first video I thought it was such a wasted space. I love the idea of making it a music room. So excited to watch this unfold!!

  58. Abby P. says:

    We bought a major fixer upper and tried to do the paint ourselves. Super high ceilings. It needed paint from floor to ceiling. We finally just bit the bullet and paid for it to get finished and holy smokes it was worth every penny and freed our time to work on other things!

  59. Cici Haus says:

    Can’t wait to see you turn this house into your home!

  60. Elizabeth Reynoso says:

    I am so excited to watch you put your amazing touch on this house! The music room idea is a great solution! I can’t wait to see those arched doorways! I agree with hiring someone to paint. I started to do my own home when I moved in and after weeks of painting without no end in site, my husband convinced me just to spend the money and hire it out. . . in less than a week it was done and it was soooooo worth it!!

  61. Kd says:

    Selfishly I think you should do a “Phase 1” strictly regular people reno. What can regular people do when they buy a house where they don’t like any of the finishes? Probably just paint everything, swap out light fixtures, minor construction/changes and decorate. Show the power of that. Then go whole hog in Phase 2 and beyond.

    • D says:

      Agreed! With as fast as you move, phase 1 would probably be done in a few weeks! You mentioned in your video that some rooms were perfectly functional, but not your style. It would be interesting to see how a quick makeover of those rooms and fresh paint throughout would make the house more like your home. Then move onto the more interesting improvements that you have outlined above.

  62. Louise says:

    You guys were talking on the video about removing your wood trim, but I think once you paint it you are going to love it. I would be adding *more* trim
    in the form of crown moulding – I think I spied some rooms without it? It just finishes the room off wonderfully when you have a standard box shape to the roof. I have ten foot ceilings and intricate crown molding in my cottage (it’s a couple different pieces combined to make a substantial and intricate crown molding), along with door trim like yours, it looks great.

  63. Jenna says:

    Have you watched Under the Tuscan Sun (probably since it is one of the best movies) but your comment about strangers in your home made me think of that movie and her letting the house introduce itself to her. That always stuck with me. So excited for this house!

  64. Nicole says:

    An idea for the music room: We had a piano room growing up (which we loved!) and my parents added glass french doors that could close to soundproof the room. It was SO helpful when we were all learning piano growing up – we could practice without disturbing the rest of the house and it was great for when our piano teacher came over for lessons. We simple opened the french doors all the way open when the piano room wasn’t in use and it was a beautiful room open to the rest of the house. Just wanted to share that it might be smart to add in some pocket or glass doors for quiet if you truly intend to use it for music.

    • Ann says:

      I’m really sensitive to noise and live in a small house and our piano is right in the center, so I was very anxious about my 5 and 7 year olds starting to play piano. But surprisingly, as long as the damper is flipped down, it doesn’t bother me at all. Even the wrong notes aren’t that jarring. Just another perspective.

  65. Maggie says:

    I love your plans and your vision! I will second the hiring painting comment. When we bought our new house, we paid someone to paint the main living spaces and it was worth every penny and then some. What our painter did in four days would have taken me a year. Or a decade. I love being taken along for every step of the ride with this beautiful home!

  66. Michelle says:

    Totally agree about the paint! We hired someone to paint our entire house last summer, a week or so after we moved in. It has made all of the difference in helping it feel like our home and it totally changed the whole look and has helped us be okay with waiting on the other bigger things we’d like to update. Anyways, all that to say, it is the best money we spent during our move!!

  67. Jill says:

    Hi Chris and Julia , at first I wasn’t too keen on your new-to-you McMansion style house. But the projects are wonderful and will make beautiful changes to fit your lives perfectly. Good for you!

  68. Aimee says:

    I love all of your ideas! Can’t wait to watch all of this unfold. And, I was thinking the exact same thing about paint! If you could just give everything a nice, clean, neutral coat or two, this will give you a Fresh base to work with over the next several years. I think it would do wonders, and also help make it feel more like it is Your New Home (with fewer headaches as you look around ;) It would feel more like a Fresh Start. This is really exciting!!!

  69. I think the tray ceilings could be updated (keeping the ducting in place too) by doing maybe a coffered look in the center? (You could also run new electrical through the faux beams to add lighting). Either way, removing the crown moulding that wraps them would probably make them a LOT better for the time being.

  70. Julia Laine says:

    Just a comment about the paint and bringing in someone to do it all…. I moved almost two years ago with the same “intense need for paint” in my new house. After a year, I realized I couldn’t do it all (two story staircase and other daunting issues) and finally just shelled out the dollars and hired someone. One week later it was all done and it just felt so fresh and so MINE. Anyway – all that to say, I highly recommend it. :-)

    • Julia says:

      Thank you so much for this!

    • Julie G. says:

      I love your new home and can’t wait to see the Chris and Julia spin on it. I second the motion on the paint! There are so many projects and every space flows into the next. Starting out with fresh coat of paint on walls and trim to make a blank and cohesive slate feels right.

  71. Jeri Gavic says:

    I so enjoy your posts. Your plans sounds amazing and I look forward to watching them become reality as you create your forever home.

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