Our Home Before Reno

Our little 1920s farmhouse is nestled back on 2.5 acres in the middle of the city. I think it’s the perfect set up for our family… enough land to have endless projects, small enough for us to manage, and close to neighbors and stores for inexperienced landowners like us. The house was owned by the sweetest family for several years and then rented out for a year before we bought it. It needs lots of love and some cosmetic updating, but a lot of the major electrical and plumbing work was done prior to us purchasing the home. Over the years, various owners have updated the home as trends and times have changed, so we are hoping to restore some of the home’s historic character and bring back some of her early twentieth-century charm. Here are some of the before photos of our farmhouse along with some of our ideas for reno and restoration!

Enclosed Porch – The porch was enclosed a few years ago, adding a little square footage and a sun-soaked entrance to our home. We don’t really have a front door anymore which makes for a slightly odd looking exterior, but I think this little room will be perfect for sipping coffee and reading in the early morning light… that is if I ever become a morning person!

Living Room (part 1) – The sun room leads into a living room… or two rooms that have been opened up. This part of the house is really dark so we would love to add a window someday, but for now I’m planning on adding some large, floral paintings to mimic the outdoors. We are planning on putting our sectional and TV in this room… and possibly a piano someday if we can score a used one for cheap on Marketplace!

Living Room (part 2) – This room is adjacent to the previous photo. We are planning on using this as our son’s playroom/schoolroom. I have started a modified preschool with him–a combination of the Montessori method and supplemented with Busy Toddlers Playing Preschool. We usually display 8-10 developmentally appropriate toys that are focused on specific skills and rotate them at the end of the week. I’m planning on putting his toys on a shelf and storing the rest in a bench until rotation. This room will also have additional seating and storage.

Dining Room – This room gets some of the best lighting in the house and we are planning on lightening up the floors and walls as well. I found a beautiful, vintage chandelier that will hang over my great-great grandmother’s drop leaf table. I’d love to add wainscotting and wallpaper but want to get the furniture placed before deciding.

Kitchen – This kitchen is pretty tiny, but we are used to having a small kitchen with limited counter space. We’re thinking of adding pantry shelves in the laundry room and possibly a small rolling island. The hardwood floors will extend through the kitchen, and we are replacing the portable dishwasher with a permanent one. We might repaint and update the countertops, but it’s not a priority right away. Even though it’s small, there’s just something about a kitchen with a window over the sink, don’t you think?

Bathroom – This is the only bathroom in the house and it’s pretty far from the bedrooms, so we are hoping to convert one of the rooms upstairs to a second bathroom. Our plans for this bathroom include a walk-in glass shower with white subway tiles and white hex tile floors. We found a classic pedestal sink, a vintage mirror, and some wooden cabinets and shelves for storage.

Laundry Room – I’ve got lots of ideas to finish out this space, but it will be a while before we get to that project!

Stairwell – Can you imagine this finished with drywall, covered with whimsical wallpaper, and turned into a magical reading corner? Yep, me too.

Stairwell – I’m honestly not sure what to do with this space yet other than use it for extra storage or cleaning supplies on a peg rail. Any ideas?

Stairs – I’m trying to decide between a sage green and dusty blue paint for these stairs. On another note, Lincoln can look out the window and see our neighbor’s horse. It’s the perfect height for him!

Loft – These are the original floors painted grey. We are planning on lightening them up with a creamy white complemented with dusty hued walls. The bench doesn’t have storage, but it’s a nice place to sit! The house currently has 3 bedrooms, but since we are hoping to convert one to a bathroom this loft will either become a small nursery or my sewing studio.

Loft – Here’s the other side of the loft. I love the lighting and view from up here!

Bedroom 1 or Bathroom 2 – This room is directly above the kitchen, so several plumbers have said that it will be the easiest space to convert into a bathroom. I’m imagining a double slipper clawfoot tub/ shower with linen curtains and white tiled floors. Maybe some painted bead board and delicate wallpaper? A chandelier with a vintage sink?

Bedroom 2 – This is the largest bedroom in the house and will be our bedroom and probably Carson’s office until we can renovate the outbuilding. I love the big window that overlooks our yard. There is one small closet and a small connected storage room, so we will probably store our out of season clothes when they are not in use.

Bedroom 3 – We haven’t quite decided how this space will be used yet because it will depend on where we put Lincoln’s crib. This will either be his room, a guest room, Carson’s office, or my sewing studio. Our previous home had 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms, so we are going to have to get a little creative and combine spaces here since it is a different set up!

Chicken Coop – This coop is connected to the detached garage. It was pretty overgrown when we moved in, but we have already started clearing it and reattaching the wire. Thankfully, most of the structure is in good shape!

Yard – The front part of our property has a lot of trees, bushes, and vines. There are probably at least 20 mulberry bushes scattered around the yard! My mom, mother-in-law, and sister-in-law recently spent HOURS helping us start to clear a lot of the overgrown brush. I’ll share more pictures of our yard in another post with some of the brush they cleared. We have long-term plans of planting whimsical cottage gardens near the house, but it already looks so much better now that we have started to clean it up. The back of our property is primarily pasture, and we have dreams of having a half-acre garden, soccer goals, and (hopefully!?) goats, chickens, and a few other farm animals!

We have a lot of work to do, but the bones are good and we are ready to breathe new life into our little farmhouse. I can’t wait to share the transformation and look back at where we started. Thanks for following along!

– Lauren

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