Monday, June 29, 2009

Week Nine: Lights Up!

Hope everyone had a great weekend. I'm back again today with my weekly update on the progress over at the new house. [By the way, am I overloading you with new house pictures and posts?] We visited our soon-to-be-home on Sunday and were surprised to see how much progress had been made over the course of the past week. With the exception of the front door (which has not yet been installed), the exterior of the house looks 99% complete. I was particularly pleased to see that the columns got a good dose of "Afternoon Tea" to match the shutters.

Despite soaring temperatures and a continued drought, my builder saw fit to go ahead and landscape several weeks prior to completion -- fortunately for me, if they'll be obligated to replace the sod and/or any dead plants prior to closing. I just hope they water liberally. While I'm sure Dave and I will fill-in these beds a bit more (especially the ones left bare underneath the oak trees), I'm fairly pleased with their "standard" landscaping package.

Aside from the exterior, the most progress was probably made in the kitchen, where the backsplash was tiled (but not grouted) and the granite countertops were installed. Overall, I'm happy with interplay between the backsplash and the counters, though I still wish I'd been given some more options for backsplash (or that they'd let me install my own later). Ah well. I'm going to have to let that one go.

Another view of the kitchen. This sink and faucet were both upgrades -- the models that came standard just looked far too cheap for the rest of the kitchen. [Edit: That is apparently NOT my faucet. It's a "placeholder" until the one I selected comes in. Just goes to show that I have already completely forgotten what I picked out in the first place waaaaay back in February/March.] I am continuously amazed at the places many builders decide to cut costs and where they really go for the good upgrades. In my current house, I have cheap cabinets, but beautiful moldings and doors. In the new house, I have nice moldings and better-than-average cabinets, but cheap doors. It's just bizarre.

The chandelier in the dining room. Not my favorite chandelier of all time, but it's fine (though maybe a smidge too big for the room) and it will certainly work for the next few years until I can afford to replace it with something I love.

The master bathroom definitely went under some big changes this week as well. The Silestone counters are in as well as the under mount sinks. I really like the contrast between the light counters and the dark cabinets.

The tile in the shower came out pretty well, don't you think? Certainly looks a lot better now that it's grouted. There's a pretty ho-hum flush mount fixture currently in the bathroom that I'd love to replace with a small chandelier or Moravian star.

Here's a shot of the ceiling in the master bedroom. Don't you think a pewter metallic finish on the ceiling would be lovely here? The ceiling fan (alas) is going to have to go...I wonder if I can just replace the blades (in person they have a very strange plastic-y, tortoise-shell finish)? Does anyone know if you can purchase blades separately and swap them out?

The pendant lanterns in the entryway. I actually really like these but I'm thinking they should be lowered some more and sit closer to the top of the doorway (or at least below the clerestory windows). What do you think?

The window seat. Still my favorite spot in the house!

I saw the pendant lights that were going into all the bathrooms and nearly fainted. I hate them. I know, I know they don't look that bad here, but in person they look cheap and fussy and they completely don't match the antique bronze faucets and towel bars. So I'm going to replace them pronto. Suggestions on replacements are more than welcome!

The landscaping in the backyard is just sod -- so we've definitely got a tabula rasa when it comes to setting up the backyard just how we like it. The wrought-iron railings for the upstairs' porch also went in last week. I also love how the back of the house is brick and not hardiplank (like our current house!). It's always nice when the back looks as good as the front, don't you think?

Based on their current progress, I'm expecting the house to be complete (or nearly so) by the time we get back from our vacation, so I think this will be the last "progress" post before the "after" pictures!


Dumbwit Tellher ♥ said...

Averill your house is starting to look like a home. I love the exterior shutters. I agree about the entryway lighting. For some odd reason builders tend to install the lighting incredibly high. I am fussy about lighting too & I see what you mean about the bathroom fixture. So many terrific options out there now. I am fond of Restoration Hardware's bathroom fixtures but noticed that none of the styles come with 4-sconces. They do come in oil rubbed bronze. Your back yard is going to be terrific. I wish we had an upstairs balcony. You must be incredibly excited to live in your new home & to go on your impending vacation?!

Sanity Fair said...

aw, averill, you must be so excited! The house is going to be gorgeous - great bones already. can't wait to see what you do with it!

Lovely Little Nest said...

Wow, your home is already so so so beautiful! :)

Jenn said...

What a beautiful home. I'm so excited to see what you end up doing with it!

Things That Inspire said...

I love your house posts! I have never built a house, and I think the process is fascinating.

I am working on a post about my favorite house in Newport, and I noted that the back of the house is just as beautiful (perhaps more so) than the front - so I can relate to your observation about your home! I have a friend who is an architect, and that is one of his mantras - that the back should look as good as the front.

Kellie ~ Ada and Darcy said...

Just lovely! WoW!! x

Anonymous said...

You must be so excited! This home is beautiful. You've made such great choices. Can't wait to see the finished product!

Christy said...

OMG! I love it - it looks move-in ready already! I'm so sorry I haven't sent you the London message yet - will do that NOW.

Yes, the pewter paint would look fab on the ceiling. Yes, pretty sure you can put in any old fan blades - but talk to the guys at Home Depot to be sure. Yes, I'd definitely have those lights in the foyer lowered - they look odd so high up, but they are pretty! I do like the kitchen backsplash - I think it looks perfect! And I agree - it's so nice when the back of the house looks as nice as the front. Something funny -when I first read this post last night I didn't have time to comment, but when I was reading about the backyard I read 'sad' instead of sod! haha!

Okay - shooting you an email about London now.

How freaking excited you must be! London tomorrow and then home to a new house! And I'm assuming the sale of your old house is going through? I hope so!

Kara said...

Wow! It really looks amazing. I can't believe you are leaving on vacation right now. I would be totally itching to get in the house every day at this point. It's all so exciting.

Yes! lower the lights - Way too high.

Style Redux 2 said...

The house is looking great. I think your blues will look wonderful with all the brown tones in the house. Yes, lower the foyer fixture which is quite nice. You can replace the fan blades, but make sure they are the same size, etc. The bathroom fixture needs to go-I agree that Restoration Hardware is your look! Enjoy your trip. Make sure you do Harrod's, Harvey Nichols, the Ivy, Nobu, the Blue Bar, the Artesian Bar, King's Road, high tea at the Ritz. Do you really have daily posts ready to go? You are as compulsive as I am! LOL

Liz said...

Wow, it looks fab as always! I agree about switching out those sconces in the bathrooms - they definitely seem too frilly. I love your lights in the foyer and you're right, they'll look even better once they're lowered! Have a great time on your trip, it will be amazing!

Rev Kim said...

Beautiful! I love the window seat!

Maple said...

AHHHHHHHHHH Love it! I especially love your front porch! Have you met any of your neighbors in your trips to visit the house?

Alicia said...

Lovin it soo much. Craigs List for a chandelier, seriously my parents just scored a gorgeous one from a couple who are remodeling.
I agree with the bathroom fixture..way to fussy.
Restoration Hardware is my go to as well.

Lauren said...

I really like how the backsplash turned out! It looks nice and modern. On the lighting and fixtures, check out Ebay. Find one you want, and then keep an eye on some of the Ebay stores. They sell stuff new.

marty39 said...

What a thrill to find your blog. We just went through this process 4 yrs. ago with a new built house. A lot of decisions to make and sometime a lot of limitations. I do have one suggestion that I used. Those bathroom light fixtures can be salvaged by just taking them down and spray painting them with Rust-oleum Metallic Oil Rubbed Bronze spray paint. It looks exactly like the faucet finishes. Even though the can says metallic it is not that sparkly stuff. It is identical to the finishes on all the faucets and pulls that I have. Pretty easy to do and saves a bundle when there's a new home and a million other things you need. I look forward to seeing more. Hugs, Marty

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