our English Tudor remodel: it keeps getting better!


The crew finished the stucco on the front facade yesterday and I have to say that we are more than pleased!  Once the major work is done, we’ll be going back and painting the fence and figuring out how to clean up the brick.  There really isn’t more to say than that, so I’ll leave you with the latest photos.  They’ll finish the sides of the house today and hopefully a good portion of the mammoth backside as well.




our English Tudor remodel: stucco part II


We were delighted the evening before the Fourth to see a pallet full of the stucco color component delivered to our little construction area.  And, yesterday was the day!  The crew braved our current heat wave and started applying the more exciting stucco layer….color!

You might be surprised that not a lot of time or even effort went into selecting these exterior hues.  The first consideration was definitely not “what color do we want our house to be?”  Continue reading

while waiting


While we are waiting for the gray stucco to “cure”, I decided it might be a good idea to finish a little project I started back in April!  Life just happened, as it does, and my painting project stalled.  How did it get to be July anyways?

We’ve had this little vintage “telephone cabinet” for over a decade.  Back in the day, a rotary phone would be placed on top and the phone book, etc. placed on the open shelf.  The drawers were for miscellaneous doo-dads I suppose.  This piece has been a sheet music cabinet for us, an awkward bedside table, and most recently has sat in our entryway.  As most folks know, its just nice to have a surface in the entryway so there is a place for packages, a guest’s purse, etc.  Or flowers are always nice too. Continue reading

our English Tudor remodel: waiting


The stucco crew finished applying the initial gray layer yesterday and now all we are doing is waiting.  Waiting for the gray to “cure”. It should take about a week, maybe less, so stay tuned for our next and even more exciting stage…color!   In the meantime, we’ll be addressing more minor projects…..

our English Tudor remodel: stucco part 1


When we arrived home from our trip earlier this week, it was a kick to see the house partially covered in styrofoam and “chicken wire” as well as the initial gray stucco layer. Besides eliminating the house’s perforated state (as I mentioned before, it had lots of holes!), the main design idea behind the remodel is to eliminate the older traditional Tudor aesthetic and replace it with a more contemporary look that still hints at the Tudor style.  One way we are hopefully accomplishing this is through stucco bumpouts with a “cottage” look that will frame the windows as well as with the larger bumpouts that will run horizontally along the exterior walls.  There won’t be any vertical bumpouts since those just come across as too traditional. Continue reading

our English Tudor remodel: doors and windows


Before leaving for the Midwest for about a week for our oldest Sprout’s baseball tournament, the guys installed the new French door in the dining area as well as the new windows for the garage.  All are by Milgard and energy efficient.  When the previous owners had the windows replaced a few years back, they never got around to the garage windows.  My guess is that this was due to the budget.  Anyways, now the old brown trimmed 1980s windows are finally gone and the new ones match the others as closely as possible.  They’re just standard white trimmed windows due to the others being white.  If we were installing new windows throughout the house, I would’ve selected a different color but projects are always about budget and compromise!

The amount of natural light these new additions allow make a huge difference.  The garage, while still an enormous mess, seems bigger.  And since the side of the door facing into the dining area is still primed (no color yet!), the room seems bigger.  Its an amazing visual difference between it and the old wooden door.  The primed side isn’t too bad and we will probably leave it as is until we decide what to do with the dining area millwork sometime down the road.  The other side of the door is “tweed” and coordinates with the metal soffit and fascia.  The great thing is that it won’t need to be painted!  Low maintenance is definitely key in this busy family home.

We also love the new oiled bronzed hardware as it seems to go better with the English Tudor style.  We’re gradually changing our metal finishes in the house from cheap looking 1980s “brass” to a mix of the oiled bronze and antique brass.  When done well, mixing metals can make a home look more customized.  I’m crossing my fingers that we will successfully pull this off in time!

updating our ugly 80’s powder room

this is the best “before” photo I have (I’m terrible about taking photos since I often just spontaneously jump into a project!)  Check out the groovy oak toilet seat too!

Our powder room lies  nestled in the walk through laundry area off of our garage.  With three Sprouts, you can imagine how frequently this wee bathroom is accessed!  We have aspirations to paint it just to freshen it up, but recently we jumped at the opportunity to have the fixtures replaced (have I mentioned that I have the most awesome father-in-law ever?).  Continue reading