Porch House Master Suite // Paint and Hardwoods (ORC Week 2)

THE PORCH HOUSE

This post is part of a 6-week series for the One Room Challenge, a blogger makeover challenge hosted by Calling it Home every Fall and Spring. We’re tackling the Porch House’s master bathroom and closet this go around.  Thanks for following along! You can get caught up on previous posts here: part 1.

We’re back to the Porch House today, in another installment of the One Room Challenge.  I’m not one to branch out too much with paint colors.  Honestly, I wish I was a little more fearless with picking colors, but I usually stick to a handful of trusted colors.  And that’s exactly what I did here.  We painted the closet and bathroom in a bright and warm white – Benjamin Moore’s Simply White – with the walls in an eggshell finish and the trim in a satin finish.  You may be thinking, “satin…on the trim?!” and my answer is, yes!  Satin is in-between a matte and gloss finish and it looks beautiful on trim.  We used it throughout the main floor of the Porch House (both in BM’s Simply White and C2’s Vex colors) and it’s definitely my new go-to trim finish.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Master Suite Paint 1The Grit and Polish - Porch Master Suite Paint 3

Speaking of trim, you may have noticed that the trim is up now too.  We replicated the original trim profile in places where it was lacking and reused the original trim everywhere else.  Our goal is that you can’t tell where the trim is original and where it’s new.   Hopefully, all you notice is that it’s beautiful!

I should mention that Garrett is the one who installed the trim and painted, while I hung out with baby Daphne.  She isn’t taking a bottle yet, meaning it’s a 2-for-1 deal with us right now, so messy/smelly tasks are out.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Master Suite Paint 2The Grit and Polish - Porch Master Suite Paint 4The Grit and Polish - Porch Paint Mask Removal C

I did get to help remove all the masking after the paint was dry, which is a task I actually really like because it’s instant gratification.  It was extra fun this go around because I’ve missed out on so much of this renovation due to being pregnant and then having a newborn.  Honestly, I’m just psyched to be doing anything these days.  Of course, Daphne wasn’t far away when Garrett snapped this photo – she was napping in her carseat in the next room.  Ha!

This week we also working on finishing the hardwood floors.  Way back this Spring, we deemed the original floors in too rough of shape to refinish, so laid new white oak flooring throughout the main floor of the house (minus the master bathroom).  Uncle Dougie once again hooked us up with 2 1/2″ wide flooring, which admittedly took a long time to lay, but feel really appropriate in an old house.  This week Garrett and my dad finally got around to finishing all those hardwoods, about 1200sf in total.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Hardwood Refinish G in Closet 1

In the past, we’ve often hired out refinishing the hardwoods, because it’s just such a messy, unpleasant job.  But on this project, we couldn’t justify the cost.  We were quoted $5.75/sf (in Seattle it was more like $3.50/sf) which wasn’t in the budget.  So Garrett tackled this job with my dad’s help and he should be finishing up today or tomorrow.  They followed a similar method to what we did at the Farmhouse, which you can read about here.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Hardwood Refinish G in Closet 3

That’s a hardworking fella there.  I’m pretty sure he wanted to fire me as ‘budget master’ when I told him there wasn’t money for hiring out the refinish, but he didn’t say anything.  And that right there is the secret to our 13-year marriage 😉

Next week I’ll share all about our experience commissioning a custom vanity and stay tuned for the finished photos of these beautiful floors!

ORC guest

xoxo

-Cathy

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Porch House Master Suite // Introductions (ORC Week 1)

THE PORCH HOUSE

This post is part of a 6-week series for the One Room Challenge, a blogger makeover challenge hosted by Calling it Home every Fall and Spring. We’re tackling the Porch House’s master bathroom and closet this go around.  Thanks for following along!

Without a doubt, the biggest renovation that Garrett and I have taken on to date is the Porch House.  Not only did we renovate a big chunk of the house in 16 days for our HGTV pilot (which should air soon!), but we’ve been tackling the rest of the house ever since.  Every square inch of this house needs work, but one of my favorite projects has been reconfiguring the main floor to accommodate a master suite.  Master suites were a rare commodity in 1900, when the Porch House was built, and adding this feature should make the house a whole lot more relevant in 2017, not to mention help with resale.

Since some of you may be new to the Grit and Polish, let me do a quick introduction.  My husband, Garrett, and I renovate old houses in Washington state, but our start on this path was less than auspicious.  Like many young couples, we bought our first old house with the intent to fix it up and live in it forever. But the recession made quick work of those plans and through a series of unpredictable events, we turned into landlords (you can read more about that here).  Thankfully, we liked being landlords, and as rental income began filling our savings account, we saw a new path forward for ourselves.  Over the next few years, we purchased and renovated 3 more homes, and eventually turned them into rental properties (the Bryant, Ravenna, and Dexter houses) all while working full-time jobs and having babies.  In 2016, it was time to slow down, so we quit our jobs, moved to a Farmhouse in the country, and became full-time parents, landlords, and renovators.  This year, we also picked up our first flip project, filmed a pilot for HGTV, and had our third child, a baby girl named Daphne.  Apparently we’re not that great at slowing down 😉

Okay, back to the One Room Challenge.  Last year I joined in the Fall One Room Challenge as a guest participant for the first time and made over our Farmhouse master bedroom, shown below.  It was a really fun experience as a blogger, and I’ve been eager to join in ever since.

the-grit-and-polish-master-bedroom-open-windows-2

I’m excited that this go around, I get to do a bigger renovation project.  See when we bought the Porch House, it needed a lot of work, and the future master bathroom and closet were no exception.  The space was dark and dull and totally uninspired.  Take a look for yourself:

The Grit and Polish - Porch Bedroom Coversion 2The Grit and Polish - Porch Before Bathroom 2The Grit and Polish - Porch Before BathroomThe Grit and Polish - Porch Before Bedroom to Bathroom 1The Grit and Polish - Porch Before Bedroom to Bathroom 3

That last photo is of the second main-floor bedroom, which we’ll also be working on during the One Room Challenge.  We are planning to convert both the existing bathroom and this second bedroom into the master bathroom and closet plus a powder bathroom.  That may be a bit confusing, so here is what it looks like in plan view.  This is the original layout:

708 E Tacoma_Floor plan3

And here’s what we’re planning:

708 E Tacoma_Floor plan3

Thankfully we are a little ahead of the curve and have already finished demo, framing, drywall, and rough-in plumbing.  So we are ready to hit the ground running with this 6-week makeover!

The Grit and Polish - Porch Master Bath Progress Framing 1

That little bit of navy blue wall you see is the master bedroom, which is a darker and moodier bedroom than I’ve ever done before.  That space was made over as part of our HGTV pilot, so you can catch the reveal when the show airs (slated to be this Fall!).

The Grit and Polish - Porch Master Bath Progress Drywall 1The Grit and Polish - Porch Master Bath Progress Framing 2

So let’s talk about my design plans for this master bathroom and closet.  I’m envisioning a bright, classic space that feels at home in an old house, but yet also fresh and relevant.  There will be lots of white, per my usual, plus chrome, wood, marble, and a bit of slate.  Here is the inspiration I’m drawing from.

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Master Suite Inspiration

Inspiration, clockwise from top left: 1 // 2 // 3

The top, left inspiration photo is from a design duo out of Portland called Kaemingk Design.  They create amazing bathrooms (and all spaces, really), and we’ll be using similar tiles in our shower and a long cloth curtain in lieu of a glass enclosure.  I’m planning on laying a slate tile floor in the bathroom just as Studio McGee did in the mudroom image.  And lastly, we’re planning on a custom wood vanity in a similar style to the one shown.

Next week I’ll catch you up on paint and hopefully recap the hardwood floor refinish (we laid hardwoods in the closet).  The refinish is going down right now, so you can catch a peek on my stories. I can’t wait to share our progress with you!

ORC guest

Be sure to check out all the featured designers and the guests designers here!

xoxo

-Cathy

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Life Around the Kitchen Sink

THE PORCH HOUSE

this post is sponsored by Elkay

Our boys, Wilder and Brooks (4 and 22 months) are little rascals.  They are curious, loud, bold, adventurous, and a wee bit wild.  But best of all, they have the most amazing ability to turn just about anything into a good time.

In fact, that’s one of my favorite things about being a mama, watching these two turn the most mundane, dirty, or boring of activities into something exciting.  They can make messes out of chores and fun out of work, and I am certain it will serve them well in life.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Boys in Elkay Sink 1.2

sources // sink / faucet (in lustrous steel)

Thankfully, our boys have this same attitude about their baby sister.  Whether it’s diapering, feeding, or putting Daphne down for a nap, they want to help and have fun doing it.  I can’t even get Daphne’s diaper off quick enough before Brooks has the wipes out and Wilder is comforting her tears away.  And when I ask Wilder to throw away the dirty diaper, he makes us all laugh by plugging his nose, holding his breath, and grinning all the way to the trash can.

Earlier this month, when the kids and I stopped by the Porch House and Daphne overheated, the boys were eager to help.  August is the heat of the summer around here and temperatures hit 104 degrees that day.  With the AC yet to be installed and Daphne’s skin flaming with a heat rash, we decided a quick bath was in order. The Porch House has a super-deep, Elkay Crosstown stainless steel kitchen sink and Elkay Explore faucet which couldn’t be better designed for a newborn bath.  Honestly, I’d been dying to test them out since we installed these beauties back in April, and I wasn’t about to miss our opportunity before this house goes on the market.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen G and Daphne legsThe Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen G and Daphne bathThe Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Sink Parents

We were lucky enough to discover Elkay right about the time our HGTV pilot started filming.  They offered us a sink and faucet for our kitchen renovation and after doing a little research, I happily picked these out.

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Elkay Sink and FaucetThe Grit and Polish - Porch House Elkay Sink and Faucet Top

I can’t tell you how pleased Garrett was with the strength and durability of Elkay’s products (they are heaaavy and well made!) and I was thrilled with how effortlessly they fit in our historic/crafted/welcoming kitchen design.  We went with an undermount sink and a faucet with a pull-down-nozzle sprayer for ease of use and I only wish we had gotten to install both of these in our own home 😉  I’m really digging the look of the mixed metals (both brass and stainless steel rule in this kitchen) and am so happy with the style.  I toyed with the idea of using an apron-front sink in here, but in the end, I wanted something a little more modern and utilitarian.  Something a little unexpected and fresh.  And I love how they turned out!

But enough about design.  Let’s get back to Daphne’s bath…

The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Sink Bath all kids 1

No surprise here, but our little rascals turned that bath into a chaotic sprayer-fight/splash-contest of a good time within seconds.  Daphne wasn’t having much of it, so I took her out and let her brothers play for a bit.  For the record, this is business as usual for our family.  We let our kiddos play anywhere and everywhere at home (as long as it’s not too messy), especially in the kitchen sink.  Dinner dishes commonly turn into an hour long bubble-making and/or see-how-many-pots-fit-in-the-sink session.  And it’s almost a daily occurrence that we wash these kiddos’ feet in our kitchen sink after they find, yet again, all the creatures there are to discover in our backyard pond.

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Elkay Sink Brooks Feet 2

But that mess I prefer to the game that Wilder and Brooks like to play of seeing how many of mama’s baking utensils they can pull out clean from the drawer, cover in soap and water, and put back away wet and soapy.  Ha! rascals indeed.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Boys in Sink Shoe 1.2The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Boys in Elkay Sink 5.2The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Boys in Elkay Sink 4.2

Pretty soon there will be three little rascals around our kitchen sink, making messes out of chores and fun out of work and my mama heart can hardly wait!

Thanks to Elkay for sponsoring this post and making really sturdy and beautiful sinks and faucets.  And thanks to you for supporting the brands that support this blog.

xox0

-Cathy

p.s. the Porch House kitchen before + inspiration and the butcherblock

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Porch House Kitchen // The Island Butcherblock

THE PORCH HOUSE

As I mentioned last week, I love the look and feel of natural materials in a kitchen.  Not only do they seem more historically-appropriate in old homes, but natural elements add warmth, character, and a timeless appeal that you just can’t get with the man-made stuff.

When it came time to pick out the Porch House kitchen countertops, I knew right away that I wanted to use wood on the island.  Garrett and I went back and forth with whether to go with something basic and fairly inexpensive (like a classic edge grain butcherblock) or splurge on a custom design.  In the end, we decided to splurge.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Kitchen Butcherblock Close

The white oak, end-grain butcherblock on the Porch House’s kitchen island is a custom design we did with Hardwood Industries, my brother-in-law’s family business.  You may remember that Uncle Dougie always provides flooring and/or butcherblock for our renovations (like at the Bryant House, Ravenna House, and the Dexter House) and this renovation was no different. Once Garrett talked me into splurging on the kitchen island, I immediately called Doug to start the design process.  Over a few days and a dozen or so emails, Doug and I settled on a 2 1/2″-thick butcherblock in an end-grain pattern (which is reminiscent of a real butcher’s cutting block) in white oak to match the floors.

Over the following weeks, the butcherblock was crafted by Juan, a long-time employee at Hardwood Industries.  I can’t imagine how many hours he put into this piece – cutting, gluing, and sanding it over and over again – but when he finished, it weighted more than 250lbs and was pure beauty.

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Butcherblock Close

With such a short timeline to complete this kitchen renovation (the 16-day schedule was set by the producers of our HGTV pilot), we didn’t get a finish on the butcher block before we had to film the reveal.  But we will eventually seal it with a food grade wax before we put the house on the market.

Thank you to the talented folks at Hardwood Industries for making such a stunning addition to the kitchen (and for giving us the family discount ;)!

xoxo

-Cathy

p.s. more about butcherblocks

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Porch House Kitchen // Before + Inspiration

THE PORCH HOUSE

It’s been awhile since I talked about the Porch House here on the blog, and it’s high time we get back to it. As a quick reminder, Garrett and I bought this 1900 home early this year as a flip project.  We quickly got down to the business of renovating, tackling the kitchen, sunroom, living room, master bedroom, and exterior, which were filmed by HGTV as a pilot for a new show, ‘Rehab Crazy’ (more about that experience here and here).  The pilot is still in post-production and I don’t want to give away too much until we hear if it will air or not, so we won’t be getting around to the reveals for a little bit.  But that won’t stop me from sharing the kitchen design and inspiration today.

The kitchen at the Porch House is one of my favorite rooms that we’ve ever renovated.  I’m pretty sure I say that about every kitchen we do, but this project was definitely special.  Not only did we complete the transformation in 16 days (a timeline required by our production company), but we had some great help in the form of talented contractors, learned some new DIY skills, and put in a lot of my dream kitchen finishes.  It’s a good one guys, and I can’t wait to show you the finished space!

But let’s start at the beginning.  Here’s what the kitchen looked like before we got out the sledge hammer.

The Grit and Polish - Flip House Kitchen Before 2The Grit and Polish - Flip House Kitchen 2The Grit and Polish - Porch House Sink BeforeThe Grit and Polish - Flip House Kitchen Before 3

Not awful, but not exactly a chef’s dream.  As with most century-old homes, the Porch House kitchen had been previously renovated.  The ceilings were dropped to 8′ (the rest of the original main floor has 9′), the moldings were stripped, and a back ‘storage’ room was added on behind the kitchen.  The general affect was a blah kitchen that was completely closed off, dark, and anything but inspiring.

Right away we knew this would be a gut remodel because there really wasn’t anything to save.  And that was okay in my book, because kitchen renovations are my favorite.  Plus we intended to flip this property, and kitchens sell homes, so we needed an amazing kitchen.

I will say that for all it’s negatives, this kitchen did have one thing going for itself: it’s size.  For an old house, it was pretty spacious, and right away I saw the potential to enlarge it even more by opening it up to the adjacent storage room (aka future sunroom).  The end result would be a bright and family-friendly kitchen/living space, which would surely be the heart of this home.

Modernizing the kitchen was also a top priority, which would entail new electrical, lighting, gas piping, plumbing, appliances, etc.  But modern amenities didn’t mean I wanted a modern-feeling space; quite the opposite in fact.  I’m a firm believer that renovations should fit the vintage and style of a home, so making this kitchen feel like it belonged inside a 1900 farmhouse (while still having all the luxuries of a 2017 kitchen) was the most important goal of the entire renovation.  Another design goal was to bring back some of the ‘old house charm’ found elsewhere in the Porch House, mainly replicating the original chunky moldings and the 9′ ceilings.

If I had to wrap up the kitchen design in a few words, I’d call it a subtle, current, and welcoming space.  This room is all about craft, simplicity, and understated elegance, much like these inspiration images:

The Grit and Polish - Flip Kitchen Inspo

clockwise from top left: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4

Pretty, right?  Everything feels simple, muted, and vintage, but also well-crafted, fresh, and clean.  I decided pretty early on in the design process to nix tiles from this kitchen, opting instead for a marble slab backsplash behind the range and a short 4″ marble backsplash everywhere else.  There were two reasons for this.  First, I wanted to keep the shine and gloss to a minimum so that the crafted elements would stand out.  And secondly, with only 16 days to complete the renovation for the cameras, setting and grouting tiles just wasn’t in the schedule.

Another major element of the kitchen design, was the use of natural materials.  Not only do I always gravitate towards natural materials, but they also lend an authentic and character-rich feel to old spaces that the man-made alternatives just can’t compete with.  Thus I relied heavily on marble, wood, and brass.

This is what all of that looks like:

The Grit and Polish - Flip House Kitchen Elements

I put this board together even before we started demo, and while a couple things changed during the course of construction, it still holds pretty true to the end product.  Goodness, I’m dying to show you the ‘after’ photos!  Soon enough.  In the meantime, I’ll be sharing more about the butcher block countertop and the appliances we picked (with a few sneak peeks of the finished space thrown in)!

xoxo

-Cathy

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Porch House // Powder Bath Design

THE PORCH HOUSE

You were probably expecting to see the ‘after’ photos of the Porch House exterior today, but I’ve been asked to wait on publishing photos until after our pilot airs, so that you can see the transformation first on HGTV!  In the meantime, I’ll be sharing my inspiration for the designs you’ll get to see on HGTV as well as the spaces that we’re still renovating at the Porch House and a few going ons at the Farmhouse.  Thanks for your patience!

The Porch House is getting a powder bathroom, and I’m pretty darn excited about it!  Powder rooms are a great place to go a little darker, take a bigger risk, and be a little bolder – at least that’s my philosophy – so I’ll be doing just that.  Within the confines of a 1900s home, anyway.

We carved out 40sf for the powder room from the original front bedroom, accessed off the front entry.  I should mention that this house had 5 bedrooms (2 down, 3 up) and 2 bathrooms when we bought it, and seeing as it’s only 2,000sf, we felt confident that swapping a bedroom to create a master suite and a powder room would be a win for the home’s future owners.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Powder Framing 2The Grit and Polish - Porch Powder Room Framing

In the picture above, the new powder room is in front of the 2×4 wall, and everything behind it will be a future master bathroom (another project I’m REALLY excited about and will share soon!).  The powder bathroom is long and narrow – essentially a 4’x10′ rectangle – so we were limited with the layout, but I was very careful to position the toilet and sink outside of the sightline of the front door since the powder room is visible from it.  Like very visible…

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Powder from Front Door The Grit and Polish - Porch House Powder from Front Door 2

If the powder bathroom door is open like in that second picture, you will only see the beautiful wallpaper and board and wainscot I have planned.  The toilet will be hidden behind the door to the right and the sink will be to the left.  Admittedly the location of the powder bathroom door is not ideal, but hopefully the fact that you can’t see any plumbing fixtures from outside of the bathroom mitigates the issue.

One other ‘issue’ with this room is that there is no natural light.  The one window in the original bedroom that we’re carving up will be located in the new master bath, but I suppose that if I had to pick one room to be windowless, it would definitely be the powder room.  To deal with the lack of natural light, I’ve designed a space that is darker, cozier, and glitzier than the bright, historic farmhouse vibe going on in the rest of the house.  I want this room to feel like a little jewel box and make the low light feel intentional.

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Powder Bath Design text

wallpaper // paint color // mirror // white oak floors // accent light // toilet // faucet // pedestal sink // basket

The wallpaper is definitely the main design element in this space and a big splurge at $230/roll.  It’s from Farrow & Ball and a pattern that I’ve been eyeing for quite some time.  I only managed to sneak the wallpaper into the budget by adding board and batten wainscot on the bottom 5′ of wall.  This means we should only need 2 rolls of wallpaper instead of 4.  I’m planning to paint the board and batten in C2’s Vex, the same color as on the trim in the entry and living room.  This should help the spaces feel more cohesive and give the bathroom a warmer look.  The navy background of the wallpaper should also play nicely off of the exterior color of the home, BM Hale Navy.

Although I LOVE the mirror in the design board, I’ll likely use a brass-framed vintage one that I found last month at an antique store.  It’s a little chunkier than the pretty one pictured, but at one-fifth the cost, I’m calling it pretty enough.  I’m really not set on the lighting in here, either.  We’ll probably put a pendant or sconce by the vanity and an overhead fixture.  But this space is so small, I’m not convinced it even needs two lights.  As long as a potty-training toddler can see what they’re doing, I’ll be satisfied it’s bright enough.  Mama standards definitely rule in this case 😉

The inspiration for this powder bathroom is tucked in my head since I haven’t found any images that relay exactly what I’m thinking, but here are two images of the wallpaper in vintage homes that I love!

Jersey Ice Cream Co wallpaper Inspiration

source

Farrow and Ball wallpaper inspiration

source

This bathroom won’t be complete for a couple of months, so I’ll be bouncing around on the blog between projects a bit.  In the meantime, we’re hard at work on the other 2 bathrooms, dining room, mudroom, and upstairs bedrooms.  It’s going to be a fun couple of months!

xoxo

-Cathy

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Porch House // Introductions & the Exterior

THE PORCH HOUSE

**update: I got a little ahead of myself in sharing the exterior transformation of the Porch House with you guys.  I’ve been asked to wait to publish the photos until after our pilot airs so that you guys can see the transformation first on HGTV!  Thanks for your patience 🙂

The camera crews have gone home and life has *almost* returned to normal around here.  Even now, we’re still catching up on sleep and family time from all those looong days.  Filming a pilot for HGTV was a whirlwind!  Exciting and exhausting but soooo much fun.  Our whole town seemed to find out about the pilot, and excitement was palpable in the community.  While we felt so lucky to be in the talented hands of our film crew, production company, HGTV exec, and contractor, I wouldn’t have minded a couple more days in our 16-day filming/renovation schedule just to cut down on all the late, late nights and to eat dinner sitting down once or twice.  If this pilot airs and you notice that I look a little disheveled, know that I was in do-makeup-in-the-car mode, was up at night a lot with a sick kiddo, and I fully admit that you’re seeing 8-day hair with plenty of renovation dust in it (don’t worry, I did shower every night).  Ha!

HGTV pilot aside, I wanted to introduce you guys to the Porch House because it is an awesome house in its own right.  I’ll be sharing more of the renovation that we completed in front of the cameras if/once the pilot airs, including the kitchen/sunroom, living room, and master bedroom.  You may have gathered by now that we didn’t actually complete the whole house renovation in those 16 days, so we’ll be continuing the renovation over the next 2 (ish) months at a more reasonable pace while we prepare the house for sale.

The Porch House was an off-market property, meaning it wasn’t listed for sale, but our realtors had an inside scoop that the owner might be interested in selling.  The house had been a rental for many years and was in a bit of disrepair.  Thankfully lots of the original charm was in tact like moldings, windows, tall ceilings (except where they had been dropped), and a wrap-around porch.  The home was built in 1900 but the history is a bit of a mystery.  We’ve heard from previous owners and neighbors that the home was actually built somewhere else in Ellensburg and moved here in the early 1900s by oxen cart.  The house definitely has the look of a farmhouse, so I wouldn’t be surprised if it was originally built in the country, but one neighbor thought it was built in the historic district by the university, which is where I grew up.

With this renovaiton, my goal for the exterior was to highlight the farmhouse charm and historic feel of the home.  What that meant was improving the landscaping, replacing anything that had been updated in the 70s (i.e. the front door and the upstairs windows), and giving the color a drastic change.  The original wood siding was in okay shape, but blown-in insulation holes, cracks, and general wear over the years had left it in less than ideal condition.  Garrett had the great idea of painting the body of the house in a dark, matte color to hide some of the wear, which I liked because it would also serve to give the HGTV cameras a big ‘before and after’ transformation without us having to do a ton of big changes.  Turns out the painters and pressure washer did such a nice job prepping the siding for paint that we wouldn’t have needed the dark color, but I’m so glad we did because the end result is stunning (if I do say so myself)!

The landscaping also went through a big change.  We are lucky to have some great friends who are killer landscapers (you may remember Julia and Garrett from their kitchen renovation last year).  Julia and I designed the landscaping to fit in the space and use what was available locally at this time of year.  Julia and Garrett put in some loooong days with us, and by the time they left, the landscaping was done!

Soon I’ll show you guys how the exterior turned out (spoiler: it’s SO good!).  In the meantime, here’s a look at the colors and materials I selected.

the Grit and Polish - Exterior Inspiration Collage

sources: porch light | metal basket | mailbox | corbels (similar to our’s)

I’m planning to be back on my Tuesday/Friday post schedule so stay tuned for that, at least until baby arrives and we’re back to turmoil 😉

xoxo

-Cathy

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We’re STILL Filming a Pilot for HGTV

THE PORCH HOUSE

Sorry for the radio silence around here.  It’s been a busy (and exciting) couple of weeks.  In case you’ve forgotten, we’ve been working away on the Porch House renovation under the watchful eyes of HGTV cameras.

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Living Rm Progress

Renovating a house – well the majority of it, at least – in 16 days, is crazy.  Renovating a house in 16 days and filming the process for HGTV is pure insanity.  We have put in some looong, hard days at the Porch House over the past 2 weeks.  We’re renovating, landscaping, and staging this house at light speed all while filming scenes and interviews in front of the cameras.  Yup, insanity!

Luckily, this whole experience has been as fun and rewarding, as it has been exhausting.  We’re fortunate to have a great show runner and crew behind us, who keep things moving smoothly and the mood light and fun.  We also have a great contractor on board who knows old houses and does amazing work. Lots of family and friends have stopped by to lend a hand, which always makes the job site more fun.  Oh and did I mention that the Porch House itself is really amazing and full of hidden gems?!  We found a 5-foot-wide pocket door hidden in a wall two days ago, and I’m not sure I’ve ever been more excited in my entire life.  Garrett may even have referred to the door as my unborn child :0

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Floors and belly

Thankfully, we’re in the final stretch now.  Construction and staging wrap up on Wednesday (or more likely, early Thursday morning) and the reveal will be filmed on Thursday.  I’m really looking forward to seeing how this renovation turns out (and finally getting some sleep!!).  But I’ll definitely miss the folks that we’ve shared this journey with and the excitement this pilot has brought to our community.  I’ll share tons more about this renovation and the whole HGTV pilot experience later this month, but in the meantime check out my Instagram Stories for daily updates.  And wish us luck in this final stretch…we’re going to need it!

xoxo

-Cathy

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We’re Filming a Pilot for HGTV!

THE PORCH HOUSE

We’ve been working on something really big behind the scenes around here and I’m so excited to finally share it with you. We’re filming a pilot for HGTV!

The Grit and Polish - Sizzle Filming 3 10-2016

The pilot is for a 30-minute show currently titled ‘Rehab Crazy’, and if it gets picked up, it will focus on Garrett and I as we renovate old houses in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.  The kiddos will make an appearance too, of course. But before I get into more details, let me back up and start at the beginning…

Last year I got an email from an HGTV exec asking if we’d be interested in doing a TV show.  It was totally crazy, but not altogether unprecedented.  We get emails from production companies asking us that same question about once a month or so (and we aren’t the only ones).  We even filmed a sizzle on HGTV’s dime in 2015.  A sizzle is a short, 5-minute clip that gives the network an idea of who you are and what you do and takes 2+ days to film.  The first sizzle was a really fun experience, but didn’t lead anywhere (you can read about that experience here).  It was the type of opportunity that doesn’t usually come around once let alone twice so we never expected to get that email from the HGTV exec last Spring.  But we were sure flattered when we did!  So we happily filmed a little introductory video of ourselves and our projects and sent it to her, which she pitched to her team.  Can’t you just imagine a bunch of HGTV folks sitting around a conference table watching yours truly and my peeps in a self-produced iPhone video?!  Talk about a cringe moment!  Thankfully they liked it and we found ourselves filming another sizzle, which was shot over two days.  During our road trip last Fall, we got the call that HGTV commissioned a 30-minute pilot about us!

The Grit and Polish - Sizzle Filming 2 10-2016.jpg The Grit and Polish - Sizzle Filming 1 10-2016 The Grit and Polish - Sizzle Filming 4 10-2016

Garrett and I were immediately tasked with buying an old house to renovate for the pilot, which was convenient timing since we were already looking for a renovation project in Ellensburg. We closed on the Porch House in February and dug into pre-production for the pilot.  Let me just say, that I had no idea how much work goes into a 30-minute show!  Both the network and our production company have been busy preparing for the shoot and making sure we craft the best show possible. The filming timeline is super tight so Garrett and I have also been deep in construction prep to make sure we can actually pull this whole thing off.

We don’t know if our pilot will air yet or not – I’ve been told that HGTV makes plenty of pilots that never see the light of day – but we hope it does!  Either way, we’re excited to tackle our renovation on the Porch House, put together the best possible pilot, and soak up this crazy experience.

The Grit and Polish - Sizzle Filming 5 10-2016

I’m hoping to share updates during filming over the next couple of weeks via Instagram Stories.  Once the crew goes home and we can take a breath, I’ll share more of the Porch House renovation here on the blog.  In the meantime wish us luck!

xoxo

-Cathy

p.s. these photos are from the Sizzle filmed last Fall and taken by me and our great onsite Producer, Michael.

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