September 23, 2010
Friends and neighbors warned us that we'd have tons of decisions to make during our renovation, so we thought we knew what to expect. NOT! As it turns out, picking all of the interior finishes for the house—especially with our open floor plan, where all the rooms need to work together—has been even more overwhelming than we anticipated. I thought I'd use this post to give you a glimpse into some the things we've decided on thus far, and to say how incredibly fortunate we are to have interior designer Melissa Gulley guiding us through the decision process.
When the folks at This Old House first asked us whether we had an interior designer, I thought, "Seriously? We're not fancy, decorator-type people." The term 'interior designer' evoked visions of ultra-formal furniture, and overly fancy window treatments. But when Melissa joined our project team back in June, she quickly understood the style that we like. ( Hint: it doesn't include ultra-formal furniture and overly fancy window treatments.) Since then, Melissa's helped us choose everything from lighting fixtures to rugs, from kitchen countertops to paint colors, and from tile to—yep—window treatments. (Not overly fancy, just simple and colorful.) She's also helped ensure that the colors, styles, and finishes in one room work well with those in the next room (again, pretty key with our open floorplan). Thus, while the decisions are still overwhelming—due, primarily, to the sheer volume of them—we feel great about what we've picked with Melissa's guidance, and confident that the finished product is going to look fantastic.
(Side note... have I mentioned how much I can't wait to see 'the finished product'? By my estimation the finished product will be ready 12.5 weeks from today, but really... who's counting?!)
Here's a glimpse into some of the many interior choices we've made over the past month or two:
Melissa with Danny Puccio from Stone Technologies. They're looking at the Antiqued Black Zimbabwe granite we chose for the perimeter counters in the kitchen, juxtaposed with the green glass tile we're using for our backsplash, the green (island) and white (perimeter) cabinets colors, and our wood island top.
Melissa showing us how the calacatta marble top we've chosen for our master bath vanity will look with the mosaic tile we've chosen for the floor in that bathroom, the bluish grey vanity, and the white and grey fabric we'll use for simple window valances in that room.
Raveen, Melissa and Jaime Ferris from Tile Showcase, choosing 'fun but simple' black and white tile for the kids' bathroom. Our kids are 7 and 9 now, but will be pre-teens and teens before we know it... so we wanted something sort of ageless that can be easily updated with paint and accessories as the kids get older.
Raveen and Melissa using paper towels to mock up furniture placement in our new sunroom. We were measuring for a new rug that day, and wanted to see how the furniture (our existing couches and chair/ottoman combo) might be laid out. We're planning to use an amazingly soft tufted rug from Merida Meridian. Since they custom-make their natural-fiber rugs, we can pick just the right colors to tie into the adjoining living room/dining room/kitchen area. Stay tuned to the show to see one of our rugs being made at their factory in Fall River, Massachusetts!
(21) CommentsComment on this Blog
Wow I think your place is really going to look great and I like some of your choices. I personally think I like quartz countertops more than granite but that is just my personal preference for that kind of countertop. Otherwise I really like your choices and wish we had as much room as you do for a big kitchen but really don't. I also think you made a wise choice in getting an interior designer especially since time wasn't all yours with This Old House being there and then too it helps to have an impartial person give you ideas as to what you can do with each room. Good luck to you and I hope the webcams are back on line as I really have enjoyed seeing your house being transformed. I hope they keep them up for the party that they have after they are finished and then take them down.
Yeahh!! another post on the blog, can't wait for the season premire and the web cams are the spoliers for the season. DID you ever consult with the people who to the 3D renederings on a PC screen of what the finished cabinets and areas would look like? TOH did it a few yrs ago and We wonder how far the tech has progressed? GOOD JOB!
Allison, you are so wonderful to write such a nice post. I belive this house will be as great as I know it will be because every decision and detail has the stamp of your Family. You have been a joy to work with and make everyday on this project fun for everyone involved.
PS. I had no idea you were collecting all these pictures of me!
all the best- Melissa
My house need a little renovation but as of now I am looking for a cute design on my kitchen and room. what color and accessories is appropriate in this season? I need some suggestions from you guys.
Love your tile/marble combos! That mosaic tile is gorgeous! Can't wait to see your finished rooms! I'm glad you are getting to the "fun" part with Melissa Gulley! She's looks like she's having a blast too!
Very frustrating that now that there is finally some activity the web cams are "down" more than they are "up". When will the first episode be broadcast???
Checked under show descriptions and it seems that the new season begins on Saturday, Oct. 9th. Looking forward to it.
Hi I am a bit frustrated too I was hoping the webcams would be up through the final finishes as I like seeing the behind the scenes work on the kitchen. hopefully someone will see this and see that it is corrected. Still though through all of the problems they have had with the webcams I consider myself among one of the fortunate ones to have a computer and be able to see their work. What I have seen so far I am impressed with it.
Web cams are up..cross your fingers!
Saw the first episode last night. Biggest surprise for me was all the land in the back. Somehow I had envisioned the bank behind the house leading down directly to the water. The view of the unusual street plan gave you a real feel for the neighborhood.
Are the roof shingles going to be fixed? Appear to be several colors on the main roof.
Hi I saw the first show of your house and I have to agree the webcams don't tell the whole story. They certainly help fill in some gaps though left that isn't told on television. Speaking of the webcams they are down again. I looked before sun up and saw daylight. I had looked earlier and didn't see the trees move and thought I would look again. I hope you guys have one more post so we can see a glimpse again of what the webcams don't see and what isn't before the televison camera. So far though as I said before it looks great!
Finally!!!! MORE TOH, another season (31) and we get the views with the homeowners andit's a nice touch with the kiddies and the hamster, BTW. Was impressed by the property views from the river and wonder if you have river acess from back yard where you can Launch watercraft and such? TOH ROCKS 4 2010!!!
Great post Allison! You are in such capable hands with Melissa! You have had to make SO many decisions in such a short amount of time. It will all be worth it very soon!
Web cams "stuck" again...just when they had them nicely positioned to show some activity on the first floor. Last year I asked if there was someone I could e-mail at TOH tec staff when this happened but I never got an answer.
I too have enjoyed progress on the project house all summer. And yes,the web cams have been a bit frustrating. I love the location of the home on the river and the first two segments on TV reinforce the impression that it will be a beautiful reno. Having said that, something on TV just made my blood boil. The EPA has mandated new regulations that contractors must follow for homes built prior to 1978. A gentleman on the show explained that he helped write the legislation and went to great lengths to explain the dangers of lead paint and asbestos to workers,homeowners,children,etc. They went on to show all the procedures that apply. How many barrels of oil went into making all the plastic bags, sheeting,etc. they used is anyones guess. Workers just couldn't carry the bags of refuse to a dumpster. They were considered contaminated,so they had to hand off the refuse to someone else. I knew what was coming when Kevin asked if these regulations applied to the average do-it-yourself homeowner. The gentleman who explained the damgers of this stuff said "No"! I consider myself very environmentally sensitive, but this looked like political correctness run amuk. Kevin was right on when he questioned how expensive it would be to follow these regulations. How contradictory. The stuff is dangerous,but a do-it-yourself homeowner and his family are free to wade through a reno unencumbered??? Either this stuff is really dangerous or it isn't. If it is,then rules should apply to any circumstance. This reminded me of the TOH project house in Chicago. Many of us enjoy the simplicity of pvc plumbing and Romex wiring,yet in Chicago, you couldn't use pvc amd had to run your wires through 'hard pipe'. Just another example of Bureaucrats in Washington totally out of touch with the real world.
I must say I am really enjoying seeing the progress both on tv and on the webcam. The house is really shaping up. One other thing I have noticed though relates to the discussion board on this website. It appears as though someone has hacked into their server and has done a number on it. I tried posting to the administrator but my post was messed up too. So I hope someone sees this and talks to someone who can do something. A real shame too as they have worked real hard on the discussion board and now it is messed up again. I hope they find whoever is responsible and put that person in jail. So far the blog here looks fine but who knows how long that will last?
So..I'm all ready to post a thank you to who ever moved the dining room light and say how much I like the lattice work on the bottom of the deck but instead I'm going to compain once more about the web cams freexing up. I think if I were EarthCam I would ask TOH to take my name down.
I would agree with Judy. To bad someone can't keep the webcams working.
I have noticed that the webcams are out and I am hoping that if the cameras can't be fixed that one more post will show us some of the progress that has been made in the kitchen. I think many people are curious as to how things are going.
The decisions are seemingly endless - we did a renovation 2 plus years ago so it is still fresh in my mind. You are lucky to have such a great team in place.
Paper towels to use as mock up furniture. What a brilliant idea! Also I like the color choice for the Zimbabwe granite. I don't think I've seen them in that shade before.
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