Life in the Wildwood

I’ve been cheating on you with another dreamy house. This one’s in a great neighborhood in Holland with mature trees, close to schools, etc etc. All the good things. You can find the details for this house on Zillow. And if you’d like to search the MLS it’s identifying number is 14008346.

Home on Wildwood

As a side note: I know Zillow is crazy easy and awesome to look at for home searching but it’s not always up to date. Hard as they try, the monster of a multiple listing service is ever changing and hard to manage. Up to date and current information is accurate on the MLS – THIS LINK. But the MLS hasn’t figured out how to allow people to link back to specific listings (like Zillow does so nicely for the purposes of posts such as these.) and well … lets just hold hands and work together.

Here’s what I like about this house:

Location. Square footage. Yard. Possibilities with better layout. It feels good.

This is one of those homes you could buy, do a few key things to (not gut it) and live in it happily or rent it or even flip it (which is what I would do if I were buying it) and from what I’ve seen it would be a good thing for the house, neighborhood, and folks looking for homes.

I’m not an agent, I just work for one. You can ask Terry anything by emailing him, he’d love to show this house to you.

Now, the house:

Life in the Wildwood

When you walk in the front door there’s a partition wall and a coat closet. And a lot of carpet. I would remove the partition wall opening up the view from the front door all the way to the back yard. This house has a great yard and it’s fenced in. Awesome little patio that, from what I can remember, stretches the length of the house. Simply adding some french doors to the outside from the living room would open the space up and bring the outside in.

Life in the Wildwood

Looking back at the front door again, we see the partition and the possibility to open up the entry way.

Life in the Wildwood

And turning just slightly to our right – we see the living room wall in full view.

Life in the Wildwood

The red wall is shared with the kitchen which is on the other side of it. I would (wait for it) take the wall out!

I would rearrange the kitchen layout (more on that soon) to something more along the lines of this:

I’m not sure I would close up the door way to the dining room from the kitchen:

Life in the Wildwood

but you could … because there’s another doorway into the kitchen from an office space with adorable built ins (hello play room/office/den/reading nook/library/homeschool room …)

Home on Wildwood

Imagine this:

And other side, looking in to the kitchen:

Home on Wildwood

But the kitchen, the garage must have been an addition to the house at some point because the window above the sink looks into the garage. Sad face.

Life in the Wildwood

So I would close up the window and move things around – by taking the shared wall down it opens up the kitchen and makes it feel larger. To keep the kitchen space as functional as possible I would add a peninsula where the wall was OR a peninsula where the shared wall with the dining room is.

You could do something creative with your dining space if you removed that wall … it could extend the kitchen into that room and create an eating area.

I see a lot of possibility with removing that one wall.

The bedrooms and bathroom are great sized rooms. Other than adding some closet doors again (there were curtains instead) and taking up the carpet in the whole house – there’s not much else I would do.

Home on Wildwood

There’s another room off the garage that I would make a mudroom (this is where the laundry room is as well) – from the garage you walk into this mud room and then into the office/homeschool room … to the kitchen, dining room and finally into the whole house. Removing that one wall would open up the back spaces as well.

There is a down side to this house: no basement. But it’s still 1,300 square feet and the fenced in yard and the neighborhood … the perks outweigh the no basement in my book. I think this could be a great house for someone starting out or just married or a small family.

I haven’t stopped dreaming about the little cottage and there are two other homes I’ve been scheming up plans for in the works as well. Coming soon … unless you buy them first šŸ˜‰ Which you should.

Just ask Terry.

An update on the Project house!

It’s been a few weeks since I last checked in with you about the 34th St Project … it’s been busy. Since we last talked the colors are all picked out along with carpets, laundry room flooring, and formica counter surfaces.

Just like that colors, counter tops, and flooring decided! #34thstproject

The driveway has been finished (there was an unfinished section, unpaved) and it went from gravel and dirt to cement!


The bonus room upstairs was a toss up for a while, redo the drywall or not? Beadboard? Trim? And it went from this:

Progress on 34th St Project

To today:

34th St Project
34th St Project

We’re doing trim on the sloped ceiling sections to mimic (lightly) a board and batten wall like below.

And there will be 2 new pendant lights in the bonus room as well. We didn’t go ahead with any closets or builtins at this time, but it’s always an option down the road or for the new owner.

The floors upstairs are done and refinished, they sparkle.

34th st

We’re installing trim on the main floor right now and I believe the wood floors will be refinished next week. I met with a Tree guy today to talk about the dead trees in the yard, posted the pool for free on craigslist, handed over the landscaping renovation plan (and saw some of it start today!), I meet with kitchen people next week about cabinets, gave a start date to our painters and have tile going in the main floor bathroom this weekend.

This …

34th St Project

will soon look like this …

Basement bathroom

Minus the drain in the middle of the floor. And the walls in the bathroom are getting their trim treatment for the board and batten (you can DIY your own with these instructions!).

34th St Project

That will be painted white to look similar to the below inspiration.


On my list yet is:

Order new front door
Oversee the locker built in’s in the mudroom
Work on getting the vintage dresser outfitted as the vanity
Double check my lighting source sheet
Convince Terry to do a Dutch Door from the back of the mudroom to the patio out back
Decide on new arrangement of patio pavers for walkway to front door and get grass to grow
Get the kitchen under control, possibly order cabinets
Finalize plans for the bar area under the stairs (wine storage, cabinet storage, counter top)
Cross my fingers I thought of everything.

It’s go time … almost

While we’re waiting for the Electrical Inspection I’m getting everything lined up and ready for “Go time”.

I can’t believe it’s been almost 2 months since I introduced this house and only 2 weeks ago that we started demo. You can see the progress we’ve made up to now if you haven’t checked in for a while.

The beam was installed this past week as well as most of the new electrical in the form of can lights, new wiring, etc.

Details and decisions for 34th st home

Details and decisions for 34th st home

And I’ve bought most of the new fixtures for the house but I’m still looking for bedroom fixtures, something funky for the bonus room, and outdoor lights.

Today though I want to get specific about the main floor bathroom and the laundry room:

Here’s the laundry room from the very beginning:

34th St home

Nothing much has changed in here in way of demo yet. We’ll be replacing the floors and painting and the doorway that was once open to a second bathroom is now going to be a solid wall with folding table installed. Maybe this product installed like this.

My inspiration for the laundry space was loosely based on this photo:

So let’s talk turkey.

Painting the walls and cabinets and updating the lighting in this space is an easy fix. But we’re also adding a wash basin, folding table and redoing the floors. There’s a huge closet in the laundry room perfect for storing your vacuum, broom, cleaning supplies or out of season coats.

The new wash basin will go underneath the window – my inspiration was this … on the left.

Laundry room sink inspiration on the left: Awesome find at a flea market on the right. Having the wash basin sand blasted to get rid of rust and ready to restore - total cost will be less than $60! #34thStProject

And on the right is the wash basin I found at the Allegan Antique Market this past weekend. The basin itself was $32 out the door, tax included, and I brought it to Stu’s Welding in Holland to have them sand blast the rust off and ready it for restoration. A new coat of paint on the legs, I’m not sure yet on the basin … I’m looking into how to seal it if possible. The cost of sand blasting will be $25-30 depending on the time it takes.

Which would make this laundry room the golden gem of the house on it’s own but guys!! I have the lights too.

Inspired by the color of these pendants, I set out to get the look for less …

These beauties are painted and ready for the laundry room of the #34thStProject! There are 2 of them. #yay #giddy #laundryroomsarethenewbathrooms

I bought 2 of these lights from a garage sale a couple years ago (five bucks each) and always planned on using them in a home (laundry room to be exact) and did for a while before we renovated our basement, then the lights sat in our garage waiting for a home in the studio … and then this house happened. I brought the pendants to our painters and asked how I could get the jadeite color for the lamps – BEST TRICK EVER: I picked a color to match as closely as I could, they took it to the paint store, the paint store MADE A SPRAY CAN OF THE PAINT and then our painters took it back and sprayed it.

Cost of customized spray can? $8.

We’ll paint the cabinets in the laundry area a creamy white, keep the hardware. I’m thinking of floors similar to this (vinyl) and I’m unsure yet of the color scheme for the walls. Work in progress.

Now for the bathroom:

34th St home

Seeing as this is the only bathroom left for visitors and there’s literally no storage available – I begged for a small budget for this space to add a bit of personality and functionality. Here’s what we came up with: new tile flooring, it’s a small bathroom and the littlest things can go a long way in my opinion. (Paying attention to the details like flooring, overall flow, comfort, and storage can make the tiniest space memorable AND functional.) A new and bigger vanity, different lights and a wall treatment with shelves.

SO: new tile flooring? Check.

Details and decisions for 34th st home

We’ll do this tile with a dark grey grout and the walls are getting a board and batten feature wrapped around as well.

Replacing the vanity with this old dresser (picked up for $95 at an antique store) we’ll retrofit a sink to the top, waterproof it and install it.

34th st project

From the same antique store I picked up the new lighting for the bathroom for $20 each these pendants are a fun story element to the space – coming out of a home in Chicago, the booth owner I got these from was an 8th grade teacher of mine, the family these lights came from I knew as well. That won’t carry over to the new owners but I really like the idea of keeping reusable elements mixed with new and functional ones. Maybe it’s just me, but it feels like keeping a soul in a home.

34th st project

I’m pretty sure I’m going to do a tinted shade of pink on the ceiling in the bathroom, with no natural light in this room and only the vanity lights to offer brightness something like a tinted ceiling can do the trick.

The board and batten portion of the walls will be Decorator White and the small portion of the wall to ceiling to paint will be ??? I’m working on it.

The top of the board/batten will be a shelf all the way around the perimeter of the bathroom for the added storage as well … and there you have it.

Two small spaces in the home with the biggest bang for your buck. I like a little luxe šŸ˜‰

**The previous owners of the home walked through with me before we started the project to give me their ideas and dreams for the home, it was honestly one of the greatest things. I got to walk through their home with them and they let me in on their hopes for the space. We won’t be able to incorporate all of them but a few key elements I wanted to be sure to adjust to their vision of the space that they lived in for over 20 years raising a family. Stay tuned.

Weekly recap: 34th St Project

So much more has happened since Day 1 of demo with the house.

It’s nuts. Take a second to familiarize yourself with the progress and the vision and we’ll meet back here to discuss what’s currently going on.


Just a few days later that same space Jessica is getting after in the photo above looked like the photo below:



And now with new windows …

Progress on 34th St Project

The obvious transformation is the removal of the load bearing wall and the kitchen wall. The house is open when you walk into it now. Late in the afternoon yesterday Terry and I walked the house and discussed the layout of the kitchen, where the island is going to go (5X4 feet, lots of counter!), a few key changes to the sole remaining bathroom for the house after we made the second bathroom a master en-suite. Electrical, the hallway cut out (wine bar storage and coffee counter), and the under the stairs storage options.

From the blue room (used to be a bedroom) we exposed the chimney and cut out the empty space beneath the stairs:


Here’s the plan for this wall:


This space has been the most changeable day to day. We just didn’t know what was going to happen until we opened it up and could see where the options lay. Adding storage on this side of the stairs (instead of drywalling it and using the whole wall for media storage etc) was an option. But because of how the other side of this space lays out and functions we came to a different conclusion. (Chip in, fresh eyes help!)

So let’s discuss:

hallway and under stairs

1. This arch is coming out – from the original vision of the space the fridge is going to be put where the pantry is now and the pantry will be where the desk is in this photo. When you do that it closes that section of the walkway in. So the arch is coming out to open up the walk way. Because …

2. This can’t change. The doorway that was here before (for the closet) is gone and the closet is gone, but the opening is as big as it’s going to get so we have to deal with that.

3. The pantry will live here. We tried it out in this photo.

4. This post has to stay and that makes #2 a little more frustrating for me. We have to be really creative with how we execute this space. I’m thinking of anchoring the counter top (seen here) with a matching column to this one. A loose interpretation of what I’m thinking can be seen here or here.

5. Actual under the stairs storage! Most likely we’ll have doors on this so it can utalized as storage. The open chimney? I’m thinking wrapping it like this.

And the dormer upstairs (if you don’t mind jumping floors with me) will get a great little built in homework station.

While we’re upstairs the Bonus Room has gotten some love!


We’re taking the rest of the drywall down as well. It’ll get some more electrical and lights, new walls (obviously) and either bead-board or board and batten. We probably won’t build in beds or desks from our original vision but the room itself will be easy to do either with once someone moves in šŸ™‚

There’s been a lot of interest actually, we had to wait to make a few decisions because there’s been so many people asking about how to buy it. Right now we’re moving forward with no buyers on board, but that’s the fun of this … we get to keep going with our original vision but if someone comes along and says “This is our house! I love it!” it’ll take a few changes on as there’s always the option to customize a few things for interested buyers.

That was a lot of words and none of which matter much if you just love the process of the remodel. It’s going well! I’m headed over there to check on things again today. Next week we’ll have another open house with flooring samples, some light fixtures to look at, and colors to choose from.

It moves fast so stop in and ask if I’m not taking you along for the ride enough! And guys, I’m there all the time – wanna see it? Just ask!! I’d love to have your input and ideas.

Demo, Day 1

Last night I went to check in on the 34th St Project because demolition began. (Woo-hoo!)

We started with knocking some walls down on the main floor – so let’s take a look. When you walk into the home and up some stairs, you enter the kitchen – we planned on removing one load bearing wall from the main floor and a wall in the kitchen to really open up the space:

34th St Home

Last night she was a little worse for wear:

#34thStProject progress shots! Demo!! Day 1. (A few more photos to come rapidly)

When you walk through that arched doorway you enter the living room, let’s do that – and then pivot 180 degrees.

Proposed plan:
34th St Home

Day 1:
Demo! Wall removal #34thstproject (in living room)

The other side of the load bearing wall you see removed (and helllloooo Chimney!) was a bedroom:

34th St home

See the proposed plan in photo here.

Day 1:
Bedroom - chimney was hidden in a closet, now removed - opened the wall to the living room #34thstproject

Looking from living room into the bedroom, now one big living space (almost).


When I stop there today I think we’ll see the wall from the kitchen to the living space removed. I can’t wait to see it blown wide open.

To answer a few questions:

Yes! We’re keeping the chimney exposed. As seen here, here, and here the closet under the stairs will be removed yet as well. What do we think of something like this for the chimney? Once the closet is gone there’ll be more room to work with. Possibly built in shelving? A coffee cart?

Yes! You can help. Please do, actually. Hop on to the Pinterest board and pin away with suggestions, comment or send me ideas. We’ll have a color class in a few weeks to determine the overall pallet for the home (paint swatch party!). Wanna be there? I’d love to have your input.

Yes! It’s easy to see the progress as it happens. Just follow along on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

We’ll check in as changes are made and please speak up if you have questions!