Home Renovation, Inspiration

The Connector House

We purchased the Connector house in the fall of 2017 and sold it in the fall of 2018.  It was our sixth home remodel.

All of the textured ceilings in the house were sanded down, re-mudded and sanded again.  Then, of course multiple coats of fresh paint.

All of the stained woodwork in the house was removed and replaced with 5″ colonial baseboard and farmhouse trim painted Behr Satin white.

We used the same wall color, Chelsea Gray by Sherwin Williams throughout the house.

All of the cabinetry in the home is custom built.  

Product links are provided throughout the post, some of them being affiliate links.  


THE KITCHEN

We completely rearranged the kitchen at the Connector house.  We took out all of the cabinets in the kitchen and friends of ours reused them in theirs.

The wall dividing the kitchen was removed and an exterior door was moved down so we could make room for the 5’x7’ island.  Now the kitchen and dining room are all one giant space—perfect for gatherings.

Can lights were moved and replaced, and many were added.  The pendant lights and barn lights are from Home Depot.  I’ve provided the links below.

As you can see from the “before” picture, this kitchen originally had a peninsula, but if I see an opportunity to design an island into a kitchen—I go for it.

The island countertops are distressed pine and the countertops over by the sink are concrete.

The floors are bamboo from Lumber Liquidators.  The hardware is from Historic Houseparts (links below).

One of the big decisions I struggled with in this space was the single-basin sink.  I’ve always had a double-basin sink, but according to several people we’ve “interviewed” that have the single—they testify that if I went with the single, I’d never go back to the double.

This is the second time we’ve done concrete countertops in a kitchen and I love them (the island is pine, not concrete).  There’s so much texture and character in concrete.  I want them in my kitchen!

I ordered the cabinets for this space, and then woke up in a cold sweat one night because it hit me that when we enlarged and stretched the kitchen window to the left, it would change the cabinet spacing below.  Thankfully I caught the mistake before our cabinet maker got to that section of the kitchen.  Details can be exhausting!  I make so many mistakes—but I’ve learned from each one.

Click on the images for product links…

I’m not a huge fan of Lazy Susans, so I asked our cabinet maker to create a pull-out with canisters inside for utensils beside the stove.  He kept reminding me that I was wasting space in the corner, but I still liked this option better (See picture below).

The floor-to-ceiling pantry has pull-out trays inside its doors.  I have one of these pantries in my kitchen, and I think it’s fantastic.

Another view of the island…

The canister pull-out…

The pantry pull-outs…

The single basin sink…

Because we included a floor-to-ceiling pantry on the opposite side of the kitchen, we didn’t feel like the little pantry in the “before” picture below was needed any longer.  So—we eliminated it all together and gave the space to a built-in in the upstairs bathroom (it makes more sense if you know that the home is a split level—so half way up and on the opposite side of this wall is the main bathroom.)  This new found space provided a perfect place for towels, linens and toiletries for the new homeowners.

The chalkboard is made by painting chalkboard paint on a 1/4” sheet of plywood and giving it a simple wood frame (stained with General Finishes java gel stain.)

The barn lights are from Home Depot.  The 10’ bank of drawers was custom made with a distressed pine top.  The bin pulls are from Historic Houseparts.

Click on the images for product links.


THE DINING ROOM

We added a couple of feet to the width of the front windows in the dining room.  Our contractor had to redo the header over the window to be able to make the windows larger.  The things we do for a view, right?!?

The wall in the picture below was removed, and we slid the exterior door down to the left to be able to expand the kitchen and make room for the kitchen island.


THE UPSTAIRS BATHROOM

We enlarged the width of the new bathroom vanity and designed it to look like a piece of furniture.  Some of the “drawers” on the vanity are actually doors.  Can you tell which ones?

Behind the bathroom door, there was a small medicine cabinet. When we pulled out the cabinet, we noticed there was extra, unused space behind the wall.  In the end, we were able to install a floor-to-ceiling cabinet that allowed for huge amounts of storage.


THE LIVING ROOM

The back yard of the Connector House is so private and beautiful, and we knew if we lived here, this would be our “hang out” room.  So, we decided to rebuild the bump-out in this room, add a bench and some drawers, and of course, all new windows.

We wanted to highlight the vaulted ceiling in this room with wood—and while we were at it, we added “wood” to the walls.  It’s actually called “nickel gap”, and it’s made of mdf.  We used 8″ boards.  Our contractor sprayed the walls, ceiling and woodwork with Behr white satin paint (Home Depot).

Our cabinet maker made the built-ins and bench top.  The top is made of pine that he matched to the floors.  He added faux “worm holes” and distressed it perfectly.

The barn lights are from Home Depot and the chandelier is from Lowe’s (links below).


THE BASEMENT FAMILY ROOM

The room in the picture below is located on the third level down in this split level home.  The floors are concrete and part of the walls are block (partially underground).

When we were showing this house to family members for the first time after purchasing the home, we stood on the patio outside this room and began to brainstorm ideas.  I had initially wanted to build a fireplace with cabinets flanking each side and bookshelves up to the ceiling, but once we stood outside we realized how amazing (and possible) adding extra windows to this dark room would be.

My uncle is an extremely talented brick/block mason, and it was fascinating to watch how labor intensive it is to build a “real” fireplace.  There was already a chimney on the side of the house with just a hole in the wall of this room (as you can see from the picture), so we decided to just go for it and build something fantastic.

You would think I was lying if I told you how many times I had our contractor build and re-build the wood surround on this fireplace.  Let’s just say it took a lot of tries for me to figure out just what I wanted.  

This room is adjacent to the laundry room, so we thought the new homeowners would appreciate a barn door to block the noise.

The floors are concrete in this room, so we chose vinyl planks for the floor covering.  These vinyl planks are a great option for basements—they’re very durable, easy to clean, and extremely simple to install.

We replaced the stair treads, newel post, and hand rail as well.

The barn door track is from Amazon.


THE LAUNDRY ROOM

I love the amount of space in this laundry room!  The exterior door is also great—extra convenient for coming in from playing/working outside and having a designated spot to leave clothes.

I wanted to add a little fun and texture to this room with the painted faux brick wall (I have a full tutorial on how to create a faux brick wall if you click here.  In the tutorial I sealed the brick with a polycrylic, but on this wall, I simply painted it white.)—and function with the built-ins.

The top cabinet in the tower is hiding the electric panel for the house, but the rest of the drawers in the space are functioning and usable.

The “Wash & Dry” sign is from Antique Farmhouse (one of my favorite websites).


THE DOWNSTAIRS BATHROOM

We carried the vinyl planks from Lumber Liquidators into all of the rooms on the bottom two levels of this home.  The gentleman that helped us choose our flooring said that our house could “float away” and these floors would still be in great condition.  So, obviously a great choice for concrete floors–especially in a basement bathroom.

We had the vanity custom made for this bathroom also.  

The countertops are concrete.  They have a leathery texture to them which I think is great.  It’s always exciting to see how concrete will turn out—it’s different every time.

The walls in here were really rough—so we went over them with 6” strips ripped down from 4’x8′ sheets of plywood.


The Connector House is a split level home, so the area in the picture below is partially underground—which means part of the wall is block.  When we tore the paneling off, the drywall butted right up against the block.  So, to fix this problem we just went right over top of the block (and drywall) with wainscoting.

The top is painted in chalkboard paint.  The floors, again, are vinyl planks.  

Thank you so much for reading about the Connector House.  Please let me know if you have any questions in the comment box below and I’d be happy to reply.

I’ve provided links to our other home remodels below if you would like to check them out.  Thanks again.

Colonial house remodel
The Colonial House
The Crestview House
Mulberry House remodel
The Mulberry House

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18 thoughts on “The Connector House

  1. I would love to see a picture of the outside of the house to be able to see what those windows look like especially the one in the living room with the bump out but also the front ones that you used to replaced the bay window. I have both of these scenarios and although they look great on the inside I’m really curious about how they look outside. Thanks

    1. Hi Rebecca. I will send you the pictures I have of the outside. I didn’t focus too much on my outside pics…I should have. I’ll send what I have to your email. 🙂

  2. I noticed in the before shot of your kitchen there was a HVAC vent in the wall that was removed. Can you tell me if you relocated the vent or what happened to it? We have a similar wall that I want to take down, but we’re unsure if the vent will be a problem. Thanks!

    1. Hi Betsy. Yes, we relocated vents and ductwork in this house to allow for the floor plan change. We hired a professional for this job. He said it wasn’t difficult. 🙂

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