Windows, Siding, Roof – Progress on the Exterior!

August 11, 2020

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While we’ve been working on our own DIY projects, the outside of our house continues to move forward, and we’re so excited to share some progress! The biggest item – our roof!

We’ve been without any real covering on our roof since middle of June now. There have been a couple rainstorms since then, which got a little dicy (water pouring through the ceiling in our bathroom), but the cedar shake-style composite roofing is going on and we are over the moon with how it’s looking.

We’re working with Brava Roof Tile on our new roof, and the product is really outstanding. You can read more about it in their FAQ, but we’ve been so impressed. It’s sustainably made, fully recyclable, Class 4 impact rated (the highest there is), with a 50-year warranty. A bigger investment up front, for sure, but will last for decades.

Installation of the roof tile is slow-going. It installs like a standard cedar shake roof, using the same equipment. Of course this product doesn’t mold or dry out and become brittle/break when you shoot a nail through it. But they told us up front for a roof our size it would be about 2-3 weeks. We’re just starting week 2 and feel like they’re making great progress.

We also opted to layer roofing felt in between each layer of roofing tiles. It’s not required with the product, but can help with ice-damming in the winters and keep water-shed consistent through all seasons. An extra expense on our end, but we want our underlayment to last as long as the roofing itself, and this will really help with that.

Most of the new windows are now installed. The above image shows the new window for our main bathroom, which was a little tricky. The roofline is higher than the floor line, so finding a balance between how it looks from the outside vs. how it looks from the inside took some time, but I think we landed on a good spot. You can also see the mocked up outline of our big round window, which will hopefully get installed this week!

And of course, our siding. Every time we look at it, we pinch ourselves. It’s perfect! We went with LP® SmartSide (not sponsored) because of it’s durable, easy to install, and paintable. Once it’s all installed, all of the siding around the house will get painted BM Graphite (the same color used on our play set makeover).

I am so in love with the shorter spacing for the siding planks. SmartSide comes in 12, 8, and 6in widths. We went with the 6in – after a 1in overlap that leaves around a 5in space. And though we debated smooth vs. wood-textured, we’re so happy we went with smooth. It was the right call for this house.

We have a few video shoots scheduled for late September, so this exterior project officially has a deadline! And though there’s lots to do, we’re working closely with our contractors to make sure we have all current projects (including our bathroom!) buttoned up in time. Let’s do this!

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What do you think?

  1. Alyssa says:

    Would love to know what sheen you are using for your siding? We are painting our siding on our exterior and I can’t decide!

  2. Hayley Snarr says:

    Hi, your roof looks fantastic! :) We are in the process of choosing Brava Cedar Shakes right now and I have to say its SO hard to choose from just comparing all their samples. It almost looks like your roof has multiple/custom colors. Did you customize it with more than one choice of shake? The samples to me look so different from online pictures, wondering if you have any advice before we pull the trigger. I know they’re made to order so we can’t mess this up! Thank you!

  3. Alicia @rhodyaframe says:

    I have a question about where the siding meets up at the corner. I love that it has a mitered look and no trim piece. What did your contractor do on the corner where it is currently white? We are remodeling our a-frame and attaching a modern box off the back. I love the clean look, and of course want to copy your impeccable decisions.

  4. Arren says:

    We have the Brava barrel tile roof and absolutely love it. We’ve had it about 4 mo and I love the idea that it’s built to last the rest of our lifetime. So beautiful too! Would like to hear more about your windows. We are considering replacing ours.

  5. Jordan Magni says:

    I love your windows! My husband and I need to replace the single pane windows in our new (old) house. I’m a bit overwhelmed at all the choices! How did you choose yours? What material is the frame? Would appreciate any insight to your thought process. Thanks

  6. Susan says:

    Your home is going to be beautiful! I love your style.

    As someone who grew up in your area, the last photo shows some familiar landmarks that could make it possible to find your home’s location. Just want your family to be safe.

  7. Julie says:

    It’s so mind boggling how much windows transform the look of a home! Gee, I would have never thought that. This roof is so unique, I think it is going to look so nice. Once again, I am impressed with your vision for this house. It was sooooo trendy from it’s time period and I wouldn’t have thought it would look as awesome as it is now. Do the girls mind the construction all the time? How do you all cope with it all and do you get burned out? What do you do to stay motivated and positive about it all?

  8. Ally says:

    I love that you got rid of the weird gable returns! It looks so much more streamlined with the new windows. And that roof! I’m in love with it! Is the roof sponsored by the company?

  9. It’s such a good looking roof! So worth it to invest in something so important

  10. Amy says:

    I literally have a new roof going up on my house right now too. We are doing a foam roof to try to combat the heat of our mid-century home. Fingers crossed that it works.

  11. Julie S says:

    Aaaahhhh! It is getting really easy to envision the final look, and it looks amazing. I was and still am a little skeptical about the cottage label for your house but less so lately – I totally give you credit for hitting the bullseye on the style qualities.

  12. Brenda says:

    Thanks for the update!! Everything is beautiful!!

  13. Lydia says:

    Will there be maintenance you have to do with the LP smart side? I read online that it needs to be repainted every 5 years, but I’m not sure if that’s true?

    • Julia says:

      Every 25 years! And the siding itself has a 50 year warranty

      • Kelly says:

        I would love to repaint my house, it currently has a factory finish that has held up beautifully, but I’m over the color we’ve had for 17 years. What brand of paint will you be using that will last 25 years? (or until I get tired of it!)

      • Kacie says:

        I’m also curious about this. We will be installing LP in the next month but are unsure if we want to go with the primed finish and paint it a color we want or with a pre-finished color. My husband is convinced that priming and painting are not going to last long. Help!

  14. Janelle says:

    You guys are doing a great job! I voted for the smooth siding and it’s looks so clean with all the other textures. Getting rid of the garage columns was also so smart. Hang in there, it’s so close!

  15. Cher says:

    It is going to be amazing, and I bet your neighbors are going to appreciate such a beautiful home in the neighborhood. ( I know I would)

  16. Abby says:


  17. Melkorka says:

    amazing! looking so forward to the eventual reveal!!!

  18. Jessica Merrill says:

    The shingles are so beautiful and really go SUCH a long way towards your English cottage look! Between those and your new entry bench , you’re adding a lot of historical vibes that bring richness to the whole look! I LOVE it!

  19. Edith says:

    So beautiful and exciting! What did you decide about the window in the kitchen? Did you keep the existing or change it?

    • Julia says:

      It’s the only where we kept because when we renovate the kitchen, the layout is changing and the windows. I wish we could have done it the same time but it just didn’t make sense

  20. Becca says:

    Love that roof! Everything looks great!

  21. Cici Haus says:

    This is so exciting!! I can’t wait to see the finish CLJ Cottage!

  22. Laura says:

    This is just so stunning! I can not believe this is the same house! We have renovated our 100+ year old home but never would I have imagined taking it on with something one wasn’t so “vintage.” I have no idea why! Thanks for sharing! I’m so inspired!

  23. Linda says:

    Gorgeous roof!

  24. Rachel says:

    So exciting, it’s looking gorgeous

  25. Anne says:

    Looks great! Can’t wait to see the finished siding once it’s painted. And those windows – gorgeous. Thanks for bringing us along for the ride!

  26. Ashley Jensen says:

    The texture and variation of colors on the shingles! It’s gorgeous! I can’t wait to see what the dark siding looks like next to it. I’m trying to imagine it looking at black underlayment next to the shingles in the aerial photo. Lol!

  27. katy says:

    It legit looks like cedar! What a perfect product for your home. I have to ask though: what happened to your grass?!

  28. Sharon says:

    Progress posts, and you sharing your thoughts on them, are always my fav. Love!

    Can’t wait to see it come together, especially that round window. I’m crushing that window so hard, and I purposely looked for where it would be when you posted your last interior video tour. It’s going to be awesome! Hang in there these next few weeks of roofing noise and construction!

    A post I would be interested in is a post about the girls homework space. I know you made changes/ updates since moving in, but would love to hear you backtrack and talk about them, as well as share ideas for getting ready for this school year. Thanks for considering!

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We’re a couple of homebodies, working to uncover the home our home wants to be. And we’re so happy to have you here. 

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