Apr 27, 2013

construction progress: week 25 (big changes!)

i have been waiting for this week for months!
a LOT got done this week!
a crazy amount of work, actually. 
the house no longer feels like a construction site! it feels like a house that will be a HOME in just a few weeks.

here is what happened:
the counter tops were installed! hooray! 

i chose a honed carrara marble for both the kitchen and the master bathroom.

see that HOLE IN the wall?
it's going to a tv, hidden behind a two way mirror, both of which will installed...eventually.
i will be writing a more in-depth post on this project once it is underway!

the sinks were installed, and the holes cut for the plumbing fixtures.
i am really happy with the sinks that i choose. you can read more about my sink adventures here.

we were able to stay on budget with our counter tops because we installed granite remnants in the two upstairs bathrooms. for this bathroom (the girls bathroom) i wanted something really light. there were not many options, but we managed to find one that works with the floor tile. if i had a bigger budget, i would have selected something different, but i am happy with the way it turned out!

the interior doors were hung. the doors are painted benjamin moore's "blackjack"

the electricians started adding the outlets and switches.

that took about two days...

and then, on the last day, a huge crew showed up and installed all of the light  fixtures.

here is my vintage lantern, all rewired and waiting to be hung in the girls upstairs bathroom.

the master bathroom, complete with hardware, faucet  and sconces! we still need to get the backsplash installed.

the restoration hardware barn light over the toilet is such a fun touch!
you can see the entire board that i created for the master bathroom here.

a look at the completed master bathroom shower.

a look at the master bathroom from the master bedroom. the doors at the end are to a linen closet and  will eventually be covered with full length mirrors.

my bargain circa light fixture for the powder room ceiling.

the hardware was installed on the kitchen cabinets, as well as the faucet. you can read more about my hardware selection here.

a look at the kitchen from the great room. 

there will eventually be two pendants over the island, as well as a light fixture in the dining area but they wont be purchased for a while.

another view of the kitchen cabinets.
can you spot the slightly longer pulls on the larger pantry doors and the latches on the cabinets over the fridge/freezer?

i opted for a ballard designs semi flush mount in my younger daughters room.
i will most likely change the finish on this in the coming weeks!

the fronts to the drawers that will be installed under the sink in the island.
getting those pulls in was a bear! (according to my cabinet fabricator.) but totally worth it, according to me.

the (real, working) hood got installed.

there were a few times when the electricians, the plumbers and the cabinet guys were all there at the same time. it was a frenzy of stuff getting DONE. i LOVED it.

a view of the back hallway, leading out the the garage. the laundry room is to the right, and there is a closet and area for some future built-ins is to the left.
you can read about the light fixtures i chose for the hallway here.

the microwave got installed under the island counter top. 
sometime before we move in, the microwave will be trimmed out to make it look more built-in.

on the OUTSIDE of the house...
the mammoth retaining wall in the back of the house was worked on. a lot of labor and sweat has gone into building that thing! A. LOT.

\he front retaining wall was worked on...
(the blocks will eventually be covered in stone just like the bottom of the house. eventually.
notice how the "eventually's" are starting to add up?)

and the side retaining wall along the driveway was started.
in this picture you can see the concrete footing for the wall...

there were also a few long nights doing what else...cleaning!
(at least the piles of stuff are getting smaller and smaller.)
the upstairs floors had to be completely clean in preparation for the carpet!
i actually had to vacuum the ENTIRE upstairs with the tiny attachment that you see in my hand in the above picture.

oh, and of COURSE that attachment doesn't hook up to the "regular/long handle" on the shop vac. it only attaches directly to the hose...
so imagine me, scooting around on my hands and knees vacuuming about 1800 SF with a 5" wide vacuum attachment.
i felt like an 80 year old lady when i was done! "oh...my back! my knees!"

don't be fooled by this picture....she only vaccumed for about 25 square feet...
(child labor is great when you can get the CHILD to actually LABOR!)

ah....but onto more big changes...
(cue the angels singing!)

nothing changes the look of a house more than carpet!
first, the pad went down...

and then the carpet was laid.
the entire house was done in just a few hours. it was amazing!

a look down the upstairs hall--looking towards the bonus room.

the bonus room.
the wall color doesnt look as green in real life, by the way.

ah...the stairs.
ok, so the original plan was just to lay the carpet everywhere, and then come back in a few years and lay wood treads and a nice runner.
well, the pine treads looked so great when they were installed that we thought we would just go ahead and paint them.
but THEN, it became clear that it was going to be more labor intensive, and therefor more $$ than we wanted to spend, so we decided to lay carpet on ALL of the stairs except the bottom 7 stairs from the landing to the main floor. the treads will be painted black, but we will wait until after we move so they don't get damaged.

and my favorite picture:
that's what my 9 year old son yelled as he dropped to the ground and gave the carpet an official "welcome."

anyway, SO much has changed this week! it has been so exciting to watch everything come together!
of course, it also made me realize how many things are "missing".
as i was walking a friend through the house, i kept saying "eventually, there will be a fireplace/crown molding/built-ins/coffered ceiling/a "real" light fixture/paneling/custom storage piece/blah....blah....blah."
 we have 95% of the house done, but its that last 5% that really makes a home feel polished and delicious, don't you think?
and besides, you can follow along with me over the next who-knows-how-long as i add that final 5%!

happy weekend friends!


  1. Oh wow, there really are a lot of things changing and work going on. Everything is looking fabulous. Hugs, Marty

  2. I am glad I am not the only one who shows people around our new home trying to help them see the vision of what it one day will be... darn budgets. Your home is stunning!! Even if it isn't done 100%. I would take your 95% any day.

    Have a great weekend.

  3. So excited/ jealous/thrilled/awed with every single detail of what's been going on! I've been checking your blog every day. I love that its real-time. We did a big addition to our house about 1 year ago and there are so many areas of the house that remain"unfinished" due to budget constraints. But the main stuff is done. Good luck with it all!

  4. Autumn, it's so beautiful!!! I love all the finishes you've chosen, in particular that tile on the floor of your kids' bathroom is so pretty. Your kitchen looks fabulous, the island is different than anything I've seen and I love that about it. The marble is gorgeous and the cabinet door style. So fun to see it all come together….thanks for sharing it here…I am living vicariously through you!

  5. The house is looking so beautiful. Your kitchen island is to die for...can't wait to see everything at the end.

  6. Love seeing all the details and how the spaces are really coming together. Great choice on the carpet by the way.

  7. Okay, I'm having deja vu here! I am in the exact same stage that you are in my beach house renovation and our homes are so similar! I also have a carpenter that wanted to cut me trying to put my campaign hardware on my master vanity. It's going to be beautiful! Check out my renovation if you have time on my blog. :) Vikki

  8. I have just poured over your posts and have loved reading about the thought process behind each decision. I would love to hear how you determine what to spend on each category. Do you say 5% for lighting, 10% on cabinetry that sort of thing? Your home is beautiful. Thank you for sharing it with us.

  9. Everything looks amazing, so exciting to see it all come together. And my guess is that you will enjoy getting the "eventually" stuff done as much if not more than the rest of the house, those finishing touches! Good luck with the rest of the finishing and the move in!

  10. I'm not a fan of carpet (especially over beautiful wood floors) but everything else looks nice, especially your kitchen cabinets!

  11. Autumn, I am the random Atlanta girl you emailed back and forth with last week. And I just sat here, looking at my screen, shaking my head for 10 minutes because EVERY thing you have chosen is exactly what I would pick. I can't wait for the day we can build from scratch. I will save my pennies so I can afford to bring you on board!!!
    The tv in the mirror- I saw this for the first time 2 years ago at the St. Regis when I was getting ready for my friends wedding day. I knew then that I had to have one someday but I didn't know that real people actually did it! I cannot wait to see how!!!

  12. Everything looks amazing! So exciting to see it all come together- your home will be beautiful!

  13. My stone guy is arguing with me about honed carrara marble in my kitchen. He says it will stain more unless it is polished. Advice?

  14. The house looks amazing! I was wondering if you would share what brand, style and color your carpet is? I am in the market for carpet and am having such a hard time finding anything that looks modern. I love what you chose. Thanks!

  15. Yes! It is now looking like a home, so exciting. I love the light fixture in the toilet room, such a cute idea. The whole house is going to be stunning when your done, and all that back breaking labor is going to be so worth it. My husband has the tv behind a two way mirror in his vanity, such a fun way to conceal a tv.

  16. I loved that wooden floor after its completion. I know that construction work is pretty hectic and gives headache to the owner of the house. But once everything is winded up, the person can have a feeling of spirituality in his newly made house.

    Henry Jordan
    Hydraulic Sealing Products

  17. I have loved watching you go through the process of building a home. How fun! I have a quick question, what is the brand of your shower head/handle unit and the master sink faucet? And do you think it is important to have all the metal elements (faucet/drawer fulls/shower frame etc) in a bathroom be the same?

  18. With all the construction happening in your house, it's a great relief to see something that has been done nicely. Your countertops definitely stand out on your kitchen and bathroom. It's very elegant-looking, especially it's been surrounded by light paint and fixtures. -> Robbie @ TNTGranite.ca

  19. This all looks gorgeous! I love that Ballard Designs light fixture and cannot find it!!! Do you know when you bought it? I'd love to see it painted a totally fresh and fun color! (hint hint) Thanks!

    1. it is called the "PHILIPE CEILING MOUNT" light, and i purchased it in mid february. it is no longer available. sorry! it has an interesting texture to it, and it will NOT stay bronze...but not certain if it will be a fun color. i was kinda thinking gold...but i may have to rethink that!

  20. Hi Autumn!
    Your counters are beautiful! I was just wondering who your fabricators were, if you don't mind sharing.
    Thank you!

  21. Great Blog!! That was amazing. Your thought processing is wonderful. The way you tell the thing is awesome. You are really a master.