Tag Archives: shutters

Lauren Liess On HGTV

So.  Flash back to just a few days ago.

Remember when we were all psyched about designer Lauren Liess’ HGTV pilot?

They named it Best House On The Block.

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Her book is called HABITAT / A Field Guide To Decorating.

You can buy a signed copy (it’s good) on her website.

HABITAT COVER

I just went to her website, but there was no mention of whether HGTV

was going to pick them up for an entire season.

While we wait for good news, let’s look at + judge my bad photos of the TV screen!

Here are the lucky homeowners:

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Their 60’s brick ranch was in a neighborhood filled with identical brick ranches.

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They had $60 grand to spend on their re-do, + here’s what they were getting:

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I’m always surprised at the amount of money that’s allotted for painting on HGTV.

$5,000?  Really?

That’s why you do the painting YOURSELVES, you whippersnappers!

Seriously.  I am going to insist that you get off my lawn.

*****

But first, this, speaking of paint:

 

Raise your hand if you knew they were going to paint their brick.

That makes G.O. cross, but I’m usually on board.

More on this, later.

*****

I failed to take many before  or during snapshots, because who cares, really?

Ha!  I “kid”!

Here’s one before look at the back door + stairway to the basement.

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Lauren was able to level that area by reversing the basement steps!

Genius!

Here’s a good look at it in the after floor plan:

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In real life:

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You can also see that they removed the wall between the kitchen + family room.

How I love the black cabs with the warm wood counter tops!

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Everything’s so wonderfully staged!

THAT GINORMOUS WALL O’ WINDOWS!

Yes, it’s unconventional to put the stove under the windows,

but I think those are fixed + not made to open.

WOW, that’s a stunning stove, isn’t it?

The exhaust fan is probably along the back.

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Did all this black + warm wood remind you of this house boat from Fixer Upper?

If you’d like to see more of it, check out my blog post devoted to it.

fixer upper boat after

The island is custom made with old barn wood.

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Lauren + her husband, David, went to a reclaimed lumber business in Virginia.

The boards they chose came from an old barn that was built just after the Civil War.

Come ON, though!

Look at her!  How stylish is she?

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Back to the island:

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Wait.  What is that artwork in the family room?

Lauren foraged for botanicals in the homeowner’s wooded back yard,

gathering enough to press, frame + hang multiples in a grid.

This is one of her signature “looks”, + I love it!

 

Here is a view across that new basement staircase,

from the new dining room.

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Homeowner hubby, David, is inspecting the new shelves

Lauren designed for their daughter’s toys:

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The couple already owned the round Saarenin “tulip” table,

+ Lauren added a few pieces to make the dining room complete.

I’m glad to see that pairs of lamps are still a thing.

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Here’s a photo of the after front exterior.

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Some asbestos was discovered in the kitchen,

+ it cost $3000 to be removed.

As you can see, they took that amount from the furnish + style fund.

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I really loved the show, didn’t you?

Fingers crossed there will be more episodes!


My Love Of The Interior Shutters

This just in:

much progress has been made at the Dutch colonial!

Its wonderful, original woodwork has finally been restored!

Have a look-see for yourselves.

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That is the view from our dining room,

looking through our pocket doors into the living room.

Here are the dining room’s beautiful windows:

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Hell-O gorgeous, am-I-right?

But wait.

How on earth could I cover any of that with window treatments?

I couldn’t!

So here’s what I want (lower half of the window only):

Faux wood shutters from JC Penney.

shutters

Notice that, in this version, there are 4 panels per window.

This style is what I like to call old school,  

 + wouldn’t that be perfect for our vintage Dutch colonial?

But wait.

I always fear that old school might actually be the dreaded GRANNY!

In fact, when I showed the shutters to G.O.,

even he said something about their being too Seventies!

surprised boy

Ha ha ha!  What!!??

So.  Here’s why I blog (today, anyway):

 I need your votes, re: the old school shutters . . .

shutters.

. . . versus something a little more now, like this:

shutters 2 panel

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I have to admit that I’m loving the what’s-happening-now version!

Yikes!

shutters 2 panel

Either way, they’re really not that expensive,

+ the Penney’s window lady will come out to your house,

with samples + everything!

I need to make time to call JC Penney today!

But wait.

 If you would give me your opinion, which shutter style has your vote?

OLD SCHOOL, yay or nay?

 shutters

Or would you prefer the What’s-Happening-NOW version?

shutters 2 panel

Thumbs up or thumbs down?

Disclaimer: Actually, I’d prefer the old schools,

as they would be age appropriate for our Dutch colonial

(unlike how I dress ** — HAA!)

**  See ME, rocking the 10-year-old boy “look”.

Stay tuned!

.


Country Bumpkin Christmasi, C. early 90’s

In yesterday’s blog post,

I went down memory lane to my country bumpkin Christmasi of the past.

Here’s the building I bought way back in 1993,

to house my country bumpkin retail store,

Heart-in-Hand:

heart in hand

Christmas 1993
Oregon, Illinois

Just a few years after this,

we built a home upstairs for me, my boys +

Susie, our beloved miniature Dachshund.

christmas -- ben + jon + susie + fireplace

Ben, Susie + Jon
seated on an old bench
I bought at auction when I was 19 or so.

I splurged on that gas fireplace

+ am currently obsessing about doing said-same

in our current re-do.

Stay tuned!

Meanwhile, check out my delightful red woodwork

+ my dozens of Santa’s!

christmas -- apartment -- fireplace

* * *

Now let’s back track just a bit, to the BEFORE:

christmas -- living room before

Whoa!  Kind of looks like a bomb went off, doesn’t it?

* * *

Here’s the same shot, AFTER:

christmas -- apartment -- living room with windows

Currently, I find myself wanting old school shutters like these
for the bottom halves of our Dutch colonial’s windows.
Stay tuned, part II!

My then-beau, an upholsterer, covered my couch

in that awesome coverlet-style fabric.

It was the height of country bumpkin awesomeness

at the time!

Also noteworthy: the original pressed tin ceiling

+ my hand-stenciled border!

* * *

Imagine that — back then, I was even less skilled

at photography than I am now,

but this does show that pressed tin ceiling:

christmas -- apartment -- living room diagonal

Here I am in ‘mid-decorating mode’:

christmas -- apartment -- kay in squalor living room

I hosted open houses of our pad, all decked out for Christmas,

during our town’s annual Candlelight Walk.

Good X’s.

* * *

My beloved floors were new, wide-plank pine boards,

secured with square-head nail look-alikes.

Here’s a nice view of it:

christmas -- apartment -- susie #1 + max

Susie the mini Dachsie
with my upholsterer beau’s dog Max

These days, I find myself wanting light wood floors like this

for our Dutch colonial fixer.

Stay tuned, part III!

* * *

The main living spaces were all together.

Here’s a photo of Ben, seated at the dining table.

He’s facing the living room + those front windows,

with the country bumpkin kitchen in the background.

christmas -- ben at dining table in apartment

Oh, please note the skylight — 1 of 3 (another splurge).

I’m still loving the large buffalo check wallpaper

+ am thinking about using said-same NOW!

buffalo check

YUM + stay tuned, yet again!!

But I digress.  Back to my old kitchen:

christmas apartment kitchen island

Wow, this photo’s bad,

but it does show my antique red workbench

that I thought made the most perfect kitchen island.

* * *

Let’s head down the hallway

to our very country bumpkin bathroom!

christmas -- apartment -- bathroom patchwork shower curtain

I super loved that homespun wallpaper.

There’s the patchwork shower curtain that I made

by sewing together antique 4-Patch quilt squares.

It was always a crowd pleaser during my open houses.

christmas -- apartment -- bathroom

Loving the shelf above this door, behind which

we’d tucked in a stackable washer + dryer:

christmas -- apartment bathroom washer-dryer

Just say NO to the tunic-length sweater when one is 5’0″!

Look!  I still clasp my hands together like that in photos:

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Ditto on the unflattering blue top, for some reason!?
Somebody call a stylist!
I “keed” (a little!)

* * *

But I digress.  Back to our apartment.

It contained 3 bedrooms.

Each boy had his own, but for some reason,

there are no photos of said-same.

Here’s mine:

christmas -- apartment -- shaker bed

I seriously wish I still had that pencil post bed,

but NOT those swag + jabot curtains.

I did love them at the time (Country Curtains catalog).

Another of my splurges: the wood-clad, vaulted ceiling,

with its (not shown) skylight.

* * *

Isn’t it funny that, while I poke fun of my fondness

for the country bumpkin décor . . .

. . . there are still quite a few things I did here

that I am considering doing again, TODAY!

Stay tuned!


Windows, Siding + Foundation Musings

After we waited for weeks-on-end,

our replacement windows finally arrived at Home Depot last week!

We chose American Craftsman windows from Andersen.

We considered this grill configuration:

window grill -- farmhouse with 2 stripes

But we decided upon this simpler ‘Farmhouse’ grill, instead:

window grill -- farmhouse

We sprung for grills which rest outside the glass,

hoping it would make the windows look more original.

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Here’s our kitchen window,

which was switched from its original single self

to a pair, side-by-side:

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That item on the roof is a solar tube

for adding light to the kitchen below.

Next up, one of 2 large bays in our house.

This one is in the dining room,

which is next to the kitchen.

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The front bay which is in our living room:

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I know this is premature,

but for both bays, I would love to have old-school shutters

on the lower sashes, like here:

kitchen window #4

You don’t see these all that much, but I still love them!

I think they look good from both inside + out.

$ $ $ $  Stay tuned, though.  $ $ $ $

* * * *

Meanwhile, while the windows are fab,

the rest of the house is still looking pretty hiddy.

After foam, bats + blown-in insulation,

they’ll wrap the house before winter.

I can’t wait until spring, so we can add siding!

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I’m still undecided on what color, although gray is my fave.

And seriously, wouldn’t gray siding complement

the colors of that groovy stone foundation of ours?

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What's prettier than a Dutch colonial done right?

I’m a fan of shingle siding on a Dutch colonial:

certainteed -- granite gray shakes

Certainteed

It’s more spendy than clapboard,

but  maybe we could do just the second story gables, like here:

Houzz.com

Houzz.com

dutch colonial darker upper story

Hurry, spring — am I right?


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