Thursday, September 23, 2010

mudroom and bathroom

Over the next few days and weeks, I'll be posting some house updates.

I'm so glad to finally have some photos ready to show. 2 years ago in the fall of 2008, we heard about this property being available for sale. When Greg and I drove out to look at it, there were deer in the east field and even though there were tons of weeds, mold on the fencing, and the house was barely discernable behind the overgrown bushes and weeds, I knew we had found the right place.

To this day, Greg is thankful for those deer being there that night.

In order to get the property and run a farm, we knew we couldn't do it alone. Luckily, mom and dad were looking to downsize and invest their money in land at the same time. So, a plan was born. Greg and I put our house on the market first and sold it right away. Around that time, we made an offer on the farm, which was accepted. Thinking it wouldn't be long until we were ready to move in, we decided to store our furniture and boxes in the garage on the property and move in with mom and dad. So, they put their house up for sale. And in less than 60 days from us moving in with them, they had sold their house.

The only problem was, we hadn't closed on the farm and there was no date in sight since we had learned the property was divided into 3 tracts, and was part of a divorce settlement that hadn't been finalized. So, there we were in April 2009 with two sold houses and no place to live. Also, the house wasn't livable in the condition we would be purchasing it, so we knew we'd have to get an apartment.

We signed a 6-month lease, thinking that was plenty of time and we would live together with mom & dad in a 2 bedroom apartment. After all, mine and Greg's belongings were packed up except for our winter, huh?
And, I should insert here that in January of 2009, Greg and I began infertility treatment, which lasted until January of 2010.

By the summer of 2009, we had closed on the farm and had begun remodeling plans. Part of those plans were emptying the house of all the contents that were left behind. We decided to build a barn on site, which truly we couldn't have lived without since it was our source of electricity and a bathroom for about 9 months while we worked the cows, which were delivered that summer. The cabinets from the house, a toilet, and the fridge made their way to the barn which was completed quickly by July 2009.

Then, the slow work of the house began. Slow, as in watching paint dry would have been faster. It took months to finalize the remodeling plans and to find out glitches along the way not to mention having a couple of yard sales to get rid of all the junk that was left behind. But, by April 2010, we had moved in. We were here, but definitely not in showable condition. Oh, and mom and dad came along too. They had begun construction of their house on the same property, which is more like a guest house than a residence, in January 2010, but construction wasn't complete for them.

You can see now why I'm happy to have photos to share with you. finally.

I'll begin my posts with the mudroom and bathroom because they are the only real addition to the house that we had to pour a foundation for. Originally the plan was to include a pool with the house, but we ran out of time this year, so that's on the agenda for next fall. But, this mudroom and bathroom have been nice for dirty guys coming in from the outdoors anyway.

The mudroom was inspired by this photo from Martha Stewart Living (not sure which issue). I loved the concrete walls, exposed plumbing, and pavers on the floor. It seemed so practical to have pavers on the floor since they're porous and would prevent slipping from wet feet coming in from the pool.

I'll try to be as descriptive as I can about the sources for the items in my photos. On some, I will have no idea where they came from, and others I've forgotten. So, if it's not listed and you know the source, feel free to add it in the comments section.

Sink: 1929 antique bought and shipped from California. This thing weighed a TON!
Faucet: unknown, but it was a cheapy. $65 that we bought from the guy in California who sold us the sink. The faucet is not antique.
Mirror: Antique, Jenni Bowlin found it and saved it for me knowing I was looking for one.
Lighting: Schoolhouse Electric (shade & fixture in oil-rubbed bronze purchased separately)
Towel Bar: Delta
Towel: Dillard's
Toilet: Kohler
Pavers: Boral

The concrete wall is not as thick as it appears. We jetted the wall out to give it dimension and the concrete technique was skim-coated over top of a waterproof backer the same way a tile shower is backed.

The shower head is Kohler, but the copper is just regular fitting. The faucet knobs are from an outdoor fixture that was cheap. It came in a set with the knobs, shower head, and piping, but we threw everything away except the knobs.

Bench: bought it with the property and scrubbed it down.
Pail: unknown
Hooks: Delta
White Towels: Vera Wang for Kohl's (on sale)

Magazine holder: Pottery Barn from ages ago.

There were so many challenges in this bathroom, I can't even begin to tell you. First, we were putting non-waterproof material (pavers & concrete) in an interior space. That could create problems if water leaked to the subfloor. Mold could happen, or worse, the floor could cave in if it rotted. Also, the weight of the pavers was a problem because they're much heavier than tile. Not to mention, the pavers would be difficult to slope to the drain since they are so thick, and we couldn't find a soul who wanted to apply concrete to the wall. Oh, and at first we had no idea on sourcing the faucet for the shower or the sink/faucet.

To solve these problems, we first got a weight approval by an engineer so we knew we were safe to lay the thinnest pavers we had sourced. Then, a waterproof layer was applied to the entire floor of the mudroom and bathroom and the pavers were laid and grouted with mortar. We then found the sink (for more than I intended to pay, but saved money on the faucet), and found a guy willing to try the concrete walls. Last, we convinced the plumbers that this idea of mixing all type of fittings would work and that we had confidence they could do it. At this point, I know all the construction workers thought I was crazy with a capital "C." But the end result is gorgeous.

Looking from the bathroom into the mudroom.

Shelf: Pottery Barn Cubby Organizer
Mat: Pottery Barn (no longer available)
Chalkboard: Pottery Barn (no longer available)
Door: Found at a flea market

Baskets: The Basket Lady in Natural Finish
Poster: Found at an antique store in Paducah, KY

Looking into the bathroom from the mudroom. The door on the right leads to the backyard. There's a door where I'm standing that leads to the garage. Plus, the flea market door and bathroom door, add up to 4 doors in a small space which is why two of them are pocket-doors.

That's it for now. I'll have more to post in the next few days.


Anonymous said...

WOW! wonderful!

Cari Skuse said...

It is beautiful April! You have a lot to be proud of. I very jealous. I've been living in our renovation for 4 years and it's still not done (but we are doing all the work ourselves).
Isn't is just the best to have things just the way you envisioned them? I love that everything in my house was chosen by me and it's just the way I wanted it.
Can't wait to see more of your home. :)

Laura said...

When do we move in? Because seriously I could just live in the mudroom.

Laura Evangeline said...

I love open houses! :-) You're home is beautiful. I can't wait to have my own dream home.

AllyW said...

Wow! Seriously cool looking! Can't wait to see more.

LaceyA said...

Wow April! Thank you soo much for showing this! YOu know how much I love your house! As much as a pain as it was to get it going, and just the way you must be so over the moon :) Even though im a city girl, living in a house like this in the country would make me totally happy! Can't wait to see the rest! :)

Christina O said...

Wow! Just beautiful!!!!

Keshet said...

Gorgeous! I'm having so much fun with these posts, can't wait to see more!

sylvie said...

Love the tour of what you did, you added a lot of warmth to this house. You can remodel my house anytime!

Michelle said...

Gorgeous! Thanks for sharing, I'm getting ready to do some redecorating and I love reading your posts for inspiration.

Oli said...

That photo is from Martha Stewart Living June 2009 issue. I love that home tour! Here is the link: