My House Remodel Part One: Exterior Before & After

My House Remodel Part One: Exterior Before & After

Since completing our house remodel five years ago, I’ve received numerous inquiries regarding the specific details, manufacturers, colors and brands we used, so I  created a series of posts that highlight each part of the house and include the information that you might be interested in. If I’ve left anything out, please feel free to inquire in the comments section below and I will reply there.

To start, I thought it would make sense to take a look at the exterior of the house before:

The biggest flow issue we faced, was the lack of a front door or even any sort of a clear entry to the house. That’s a problem! The glass doors in the center of the house (black square above) opened to a brick floored, 6′ x 6′ interior ‘courtyard’. There were two exterior doors – one on each side wall leading to different parts of the house. This was an issue because visitors would never in a million years know this. They would twirl around in the driveway looking around as if the entrance would eventually reveal itself. So, the kitchen door (where the stairs lead above) by default, became the main entry to the house.

Another big issue –  there wasn’t a garage only a one car carport. Notice the driveway on the right. Whether or not to give up that extra parking and turnaround space was a big decision. In the end, we were able to take space from the basement to make a 2-car garage and the new driveway allowed for several cars, so we were able to add fruit trees, landscaping and a stone pathway.

You are probably saying to yourself right about now, ‘What on earth was she thinking buying that ugly thing?’ To be totally honest, it was love at first sight. To me, the house had the right bones – big rooms, not much wasted space, great natural light, but mostly it was because it just felt happy, like it had good ghosts.

So, to make things easier for you, I created a cheat sheet at the bottom of this post with all the specifications, links and details about each item for which I receive the most inquiries.

Here are the afters:

Board & batten modern farmhouse

Modern Farmhouse landscaping

modern farmhouse landscaping

Modern Farmhouse renovation

Exterior Paint Color – Benjamin Moore White Dove

Exterior Door Color – Restoration Hardware – Charcoal

Front Door Hardware – Rocky Mountain

Outdoor Lighting (Sconces) – Restoration Hardware Union Filament Sconce

Outdoor Lighting (Galvanized Straight Arm) – Barnlight Electric

Board & Batten Dimensions – 2.5: x 9.25″

Adirondack Chairs – Custom

Outdoor Pillows – Pottery Barn

Decking Material – Ipe

Fire Pit – Solus

Thanks for all the interest over the years! I hope you find this helpful 🙂

xo

Serena

 

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Fashion Edit: My hi lo favorites

Fashion Edit: My hi lo favorites

Hi. Sigh. This is the last week of high school for Lily. She graduates tomorrow. In a way it’s a bigger deal than when her brother graduated three years ago….It marks a significant change in my mothering life as I’ve known it for the past 22 years. I cried everyday for six months prior to Luke graduating and everyday after that until he left for college. With Lily, I have a different reaction, but not one bit less emotionally charged. Has this happened to you? Different reactions for each child? This time, I’m filled with excitement as I watch her take this leap, the baby that never left my hip, who never stopped crying when she had a babysitter, who still likes to hang out with me…occassionally 🙂 I have exponential admiration, respect and straight up awe for this girl for so many reasons. My little peanut is ready to leave the nest and soar and I will be cheering her on every step of the way. I hope I prepared her enough. 

xo

s

When I’m asked where I purchased a piece of clothing or where I shop, most people are surprised when I say I buy the majority of my clothes online. Sure it’s safer and  more fun to try things on in person, go with a friend, etc. But online shopping is not only getting more convenient with accurate sizing guides, and free shipping and returns, but the fun factor has been and continues to be upped with inspiring editorials, amazing packaging and speedy delivery. I have a few go-to’s when I’m in need of something or just want to satisfy that itch. The two on the top of my list currently are both extremely fashion forward, but at opposite ends of the price point range. Here they are with my picks for the season:

  1. Zara – This is my happy place. They have so much fun with fashion, t’s infectious. The inventory is vast and is constantly changing (as I was putting this post together, they kept adding more things, which made me keep changing my picks) and the prices are very reasonable. This is where I shop when I want to try out a trend but don’t want to make a big commitment.

1. Dress 2. Sandals 3. Bag

1. Jacket 2. Jumper 3. Shoes

1. Top 2. Skirt 3. Shoes

 2. Matches Fashion – I’ve been a fan of this British online shop for years, so when they recently started offering free shipping and easy returns, I was a goner. There is one thing, however that makes MatchesFashion standout as the BEST shopping experience ever…. Their packaging. It’s unlike anything I have every seen. Marbled paper covered boxes with a magnetic closure. Inside, each item is meticulously wrapped in layers of tissue paper and sealed with a beautiful sticker. Even the invoice is enclosed in a matching envelope.

1.Dress 2. Shoes 3. Bag

1. Jacket 2. Jumper 3. Shoes

1. Shoes 2. Top 3. Skirt

 

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The Summer of Love

The Summer of Love

Hello sweet reader. For those in the US, I hope this past Memorial Day weekend slash kick-off to summer slash official start to white-jeans-season was wonderful. Mine was super fun and productive. I washed the outdoor furniture and got new pillows. Then I ordered a badminton set and wait for it…. a corn hole game! (why is there not a better name?) It’s potentially my last summer with both kids in the house so instead of getting the inflatable pool and bubble blowing kits of so many summers gone by, I found some more age appropriate summer games that will (hopefully) keep them and their friends hanging out here as much as possible. The highlight of the weekend, however – attending Bottlerock – an outdoor music festival in Napa.:))

xo

s

 

 

 

Another fun thing I did this past week was to attend the “Summer of Love” exhibit at the de Young Museum in San Francisco. It’s an homage to the historic social phenomenon that happened in the Haight Ashbury neighborhood 50 years ago when approximately 100,000 people (aka hippies) converged in this part of the city and basically camped out for the summer. As someone who is approximately this age, and was raised in an extremely flowerchild-like household, I was super stoked for the exhibit and to take in all the fashion, music, art and groovy vibes, man. Ya dig? Ok, I’ll stop.

As I’ve said here before, if there’s one era that I relate to fashion-wise, it’s the late 60’s, early 70’s. While trends come and go, I stay pretty true to the same look – bohemian prepster. So, as I share photos from the exhibit that caught my eye, I will add a few other images from this time period that inspire me. I hope they do for you as well.

Vintage band posters from The Fillmore

There is an entire room with these posters from the floor to the ceiling. The style of typeface, colors and use of negative space creates a sense of movement. Supposedly, you can only read them if you’re on LSD. The legendary music venue – The Fillmore – gives a poster to all concert goers dating back to it’s first days. The creators of these posters from The Fillmore and other SF venues are these guys:

The “big Five” San Francisco poster artists Lto R Alton Kelly, Victor moscosso, Rick Griffin, Wes Wilson, Stanley Mouse.

I would wear either of the two outfits above today.

I think my Mom had the dress on the right. Or maybe it was the same pattern as the wallpaper in our kitchen… Yes, we did have rust colored paisley wallpaper in our kitchen.

George Harrison and Patti Hansen

This is George Harrison and Patti Hansen. The shoes,,,,

The detail of the hand stitching on these patchwork jeans is amazing – not extremely intricate but, delicate, whimsical and artistic.

This unbelievable work of art is a crocheted wedding dress.

This photo from a 1960’s Vogue would also make an incredible wedding dress,

For information about the Summer of Love exhibit click here.

For more of my boho inspirations click here.

For more of my fashion inspirations click here.

I hope you enjoyed this post. It was fun to put together… here’s to a summer of love!

 

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Technical Difficulties

Technical Difficulties

Hi to you! I seem to have encountered a crash of sorts and am trying to get all of my photos restored. Staying calm, breathing deeply, Apple Genius Bar here I come. 

Tech_support

So please stay tuned… Just wanted to let you know 🙂

xo

s

 

 

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Pick It Up And Don’t Put It Down

Pick It Up And Don’t Put It Down

**Note: I wrote this on Sunday, and then thought twice about publishing it… I just read Vicki Archer's blog – French Essence (one of my must reads despite the number of unread emails that pile up). Anyway, today she wrote a very inspiring post about weight loss and it made me think we can all use a little 'just do it' encouragement! More fun decor stuff and LOTS of photos coming in next post! Until then…

Here is a little vitamin to get your week started…It occurred to me today that this phrase which I use daily, is so embedded in my brain, that I never actually think of it consciously. It bubbled up to the surface this morning and I thought I would share it. 

A loooong time ago, we went on vacation with my husband's family. My sister-in-law who is about my same age, headed out bright and early for a run. I also ran, but never more than five miles and always felt like the badass that one is when they run five miles, but I wanted to up my game. Just not that day, because I was jet-lagged,  on vacation, blah blah blah. Yet my sister-in-law, who had the same amount of sleep, took the same flight, was also on vacation somehow managed a 10-mile run. When she got back, I asked her from my comfy perch on the couch in my pj's, how she did it and she simply said, "I pick it up and I don't put it down."

Life changer for me.  

I realized this morning – while running – which, incidentally, is when I seem to solve all the world's problems, figure out exactly where that missing plane is, come up with the most creative ideas, remember things I have forgotten for years, analyze the crap out of everything and then forget half of it by the time I am out of the shower – that this phrase can be applied to all areas of our lives. For example:

A promotion:

Office_window_corner_

Saving money

Purse

Finding true love

Love

And of course, six pack abs

Sixpack

 Have a great week! 

 

 

 

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