Tuesday, March 29, 2016

The Fixer Upper House: When To Save and When To Splurge

Making decisions for this Fixer Upper house has been a full-time job for me. I am constantly keeping track of the budget because I know that we have a very slim profit margin for this future flip. I cannot out-price the neighborhood with our remodel, but I also have to make every room over to give the house an updated uniform style and flow.

Some renovations are budget friendly...paint, a few decor changes, and done.

Other renovations took a big chunk of change... Hello, Andersen windows and new house color!

The kitchen has been a work-in-progress remodel. One month we replaced all of the old and barely functioning mismatched appliances. Next, we "cut the mustard" and painted the walls.

But two things continued to nag at me. For starters, the ceiling fan in the adjoining sun room was ugly with a capital UGH. Furthermore, we never used it except to bring light to the room at night, and even then it had no dimmer switch to control.

The other puzzling piece: I didn't like our kitchen table and chairs in this room. The rectangle shape did a poor job of filling the space. The cottage style and cream color matched nothing else in the house. It just looked out of place with all of the other wood elements here.

My real dilemma is that I still love the old kitchen table and chairs. That shabby cottage style? Totally me. But I knew it wasn't working here. I simply cannot part with it. Who knows? One day in the not so distant future, we could move again and that table will be perfect in the next house. But in this house, I knew it would continue to bug me.

I finally found a light fixture that really encapsulated the look I am going for in this house, which is a sort of modern rustic farmhouse style. Not totally over-the-top Chip and Joanna Gaines, but with a few of those elements. I think the exterior of the house, with its wrap around front porch and picket fence and cottage garden landscaping, is a good representation of what the house should look like on the interior as well. (Can you tell that I obsess and over-think these things?)

This light fixture was ordered from Ballard Designs, and it is just the big statement piece that the space needed. I love that it is visible from the front foyer, too...a little peek of what's to come in the house.

With its wrought iron and rope detailing, I think it really has great style. It was a bit of a splurge at just over $300 on sale. But really, that's not a huge price to pay for good lighting. I know, because I've been looking for quite some time. At night, we can dim the lighting now, and it casts the most beautiful shadows up onto the vaulted ceiling.

That was the splurge.

When it came to the kitchen table and chairs, I knew that's where I'd have to save.

Furniture is so darn expensive!

A woman I know from church told me that she has a furniture repurposing business. She snags old pieces and brings them back to life with Annie Sloan paint. Yep! And every pinner on Pinterest does this now, too! You used to be able to find cheap pieces at places like Goodwill or the thrift stores. Not anymore!

I've been checking the postings on Craigslist for months, and I finally found a set that I knew would work perfectly in the space.

This traditional set is solid oak, with a pedestal base, two leaves, and six chairs, giving us plenty of options. It is made really really well, and the seats are super comfy, too. $300 for the whole set. I couldn't find a new table for that price, and even if I had, I knew it would not be this nice. I consider this one a great buy.

Two of the Windsor chairs have arms. I will order cushions for the seats and turn this into a sweet seating area, with a small table or chest or buffet between the two and maybe an ottoman.

I'm so happy with the way that the vertical arrow slats of the chairs mimics the detailing on the wrought iron cage of the chandelier above.

My plan is to do a little detailing on this set in the future. I plan to paint the pedestal, chair backs, and chair legs black, but leave the top of the table and seats in oak. I think it will really ground the set, while helping it stand out from the floors and wood trim. It will also be a better compliment to the light fixture.

Only one job left to do in the kitchen: transform the oak cabinets with paint. We've decided to put that project off for a few more weeks. The kitchen is part of Miss Jemma's zone, and until she's fully house broken, we think it will be best to save this job for later.

My husband asked that I mention the strapping handsome delivery man who made this furniture possible. Thank you, Hon, for driving an hour away to snag and retrieve my Craigslist find!

Later this week, I will show you how I've repurposed the old kitchen table and chairs. It's AWESOME!

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