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House Doctors

06 December 2008

When Justin and I move into a house we usually take our time on projects, especially major projects. Mostly, we don't like spending more money than we have, but we also just feel our way onto projects. Meaning - before we get into the house I will draw a detailed furniture layout and storage plan, (and no I'm not kidding) We put those things where I planned them, and then spend the next few months moving them around, till we find the problem areas.

I am a big "form follows function", type of girl. This used to drive my college professors NUTS! They would be telling me to experiment and make it artistic and all that stuff blah, blah, blah. (I did love my teachers though) BUT, in my mind I am thinking "There is no place to store your shoes in that house" or "If I was having a dinner party, there MUST be a guest half bath that doesn't function as a private bathroom, so they can't see my ..uhem.. ointment" OR "That I simple could not store any food in that tiny kitchen, they must have a pantry." I am just far to logical- I could never work with Frank Gehry, although I love and admire his work!!

I started drawing house plans when I was about 8. I used to draw my dream room, both floor plans and elevations. I remember one clubhouse in particular ( couldn't find the plans, or I would have shared them) The storage plans were very detailed. I drew elevations of drawers for colored pencils, another for crayons, and third for paper, (all labeled) and of course I would need a cubbie for the stapler and tape dispenser, and there would need to be doors covering all these cubbies, cuz who wants to see the mess. In fact, I just have to show you two of my favorite floor plans that I drew as a kid.

My 10 yr old self's Dream Room
You'll notice the little labeled boxes for all my important things. Also, over my desk, the special balloon with a stuffed bunny rabbit in it, that was a party favor at Danielle Frank's B-day party and it made quite an impression! A smiling sink, because everyone needs one of those. It seems I would have be sleeping on a board, but at least I have a few pillows and a wall mounted T.V.(I was probably watching Full House)... You get the point.

A Tree House Plan
I actually dreamt about this, and "had to put it down on paper" the next morning. This is a composite of elevations, floor plans, roof plans and a perspective. Man, what talent! I was really tempted to frame this and put it up at senior exhibit as my humble beginnings, back in the day, but I don't think the department head would have been as impressed!

Ah, reminiscing is so,.. FUN.

But, on with the blog...

So our first main project is the Laundry Room/ Pantry. I all of a sudden feel like such an adult, I have an actual pantry. I am a bit of an obsessive food storage shopper- and I like my pantry to look like a grocery store. I need to have a minimum amount of the regular items I use, ( I hate last minute grocery store runs) The cans must be lined up and in logical order... Wait, maybe I have obsessive compulsive disorder?*** But never you mind! If you need to borrow brown sugar, of course I have it, and I know exactly where it is!

There was a lot of wasted space in our laundry room. I cannot stand having wasted storage space, truly one of my biggest pet peeves. Now you should be beginning to understand my need for order. We have a local Habitat for Humanity Restore. I LUFF IT! I get great deals and feel like I am helping those in need because the proceeds go to local building projects and I am recycling.

So far the project has been under 150.00 and we've done a ton! But we are not done yet. This is a "mid-project" post.

The first problem is the door. It opens into the Laundry room, and must be closed in order to get to the washing machine, directly behind the door. Just frustrating!! Also, we are in and out all day, so I would rather just not have the door. But of course there are occasions that I would like to hide the room. The obvious choice is a pocket door. I love these things. You can gain about 10 square feet when you get rid of the door this way. (oh by the way, I am thinking of doing a post call "Where's Buddy" instead of Waldo, he is almost always in the picture "helping out", look for him)

This is an ALL Justin project. I found the cabinets and he did all the work. But I will be taking it from here, so I will do my part too. Here he is removing the door and it's casings.

The man behind the curtain.
This is our easy out for putting in a pocket door. (Keep in mind, this is not a bearing wall.) We take out the most hidden side, stick in the pocket structure thing, then screw it all back in place and voila! We even reuse the original drywall. All in about 2-3 hours.
We removed the single shelf, then we reused it on the other side of the room.
Here is is almost put in place on the other side, a free shelf!! I love reusing things!Here are the cabinets I got at the Restore. The two 42" inch high ones where $38.00 for both and the doors are the same style as my kitchen cabinets next door! AWESOME! The full height, three door unit was $25.00, and we have doors for this as well, but I threw away the disgusting hardware, and will be getting new stuff. Lastly for now, Justin made four adjustable shelves that can hold laundry detergent and cat food in pretty containers. The whole thing will be painted white and we are wrapping crown molding around the top to make it look like one solid unit.
To be continued...


deidra December 6, 2008 at 11:16 PM  

If/when we ever finally get a house we need you guys for neighbors! (I'm sure you get that a lot.) I'm so impressed. I'll just have to keep gleaning inspiration from you, and watching This Old House!

Marsha December 7, 2008 at 10:08 AM  

Wow! I can so use you in our house!!! We have been here 2 years and are very slowly making improvements.
I love you posts. All the decorating and design tips are so fun to read and see. I did the same thing as a child only mine was complete outfits. Clothing, shoes and jewelry was always my love. And I could put together the perfect outfit with all the accessories.
Your kitty was very cute in the pics.

Mo December 7, 2008 at 11:00 AM  

You guys are so productive, I can't wait to see the finished project, lots of pics please. I'm quite glad to find another big fan of the pocket door. I too need you for my little house.

Destinee December 7, 2008 at 1:51 PM  

You guys are AMAZING! I cannot believe you are already working on your house after all the time you crammed in to the one here right before you left. And I really wish I would have listened to Ryan when he suggested a pocket door for our pantry after seeing ya'll's but I had just finished painting and the thought of tearing that wall up almost brought me to tears. I have a serious itch now though to do something different with these rooms. Instead we'll probably finish the basement. Ryan is hoping that will "get it out of my system". Loved your floor plans from back in the day! So fun!

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