Renovation Results

Renovations are truly labors of love. One day you are smitten with the vision you are seeing come together before your eyes, the next it is four months later and you are still trying to cross those final items off the list. 

Our new house had been completely renovated recently, except for the basement level. While finished, it needed a complete gut. We took everything down to the studs (about 1200 sq ft) and came up with a simple design that would be functional, airy, and satisfy our needs for years to come. 

Since it was a basement, the entire concept was to keep it fresh and light. Matt and I worked alone with our contractor, which was a learning experience, especially for me. My desire to use a designer was trumped by our enthusiasm to conquer this project ourselves. The outcome is fantastic, but I absolutely learned a lot. While there are a few details I overlooked because of my "amateur" status, they most likely would never be noticed by anyone else. 

The basement consists of a large family room, half kitchen, bathroom, and bedroom. It was not a walkout basement when we started, so we had a door cut (through the foundation) into the stairwell to the outside. This alone took two more weeks than we had planned, but it is amazing to have that access to the backyard. 

We are still waiting for furniture for the family room, so I will wait to share pictures of that space. I have also not decorated the spaces yet. Nothing on the walls, accessories, etc. All in due time! I am so excited to show you what we have done. 


To make all the spaces cohesive, we used Benjamin Moore Pebble Beach on all of the walls with white trim. To contrast with the light walls and ceiling, we picked slate tiles on the floors. 

The granite is absolute black to keep it really clean looking. We used very affordable fixtures throughout since this space will not be used very often. Everything is from the Moen Banbury line. The nautical light fixtures are from Shades of Light. We chose white subway tile to keep it classic with one band of cobalt glass tiles to break it up a bit. My contractor used some extra trim to build the mirror.


The nice thing about this bedroom is that it has a full size window, something you do not normally see in basements. The carpet (wish I would have vacuumed it before taking the picture!) is Martha Stewart in Thunderhead. 

Everything was from our old house except for the dresser, which I got at Ikea. I am obsessed with the glossy white front and patina colored wood. 


We used the same materials in the kitchen as the bath to be cohesive. The granite bar top matches the bathroom, then we used butcher block for the rest of the space. I am really into the mix of materials. We used a carpenter to build everything, including the counter tops. It took a lot less time then ordering them through a cabinetry company. 

He built these deep drawers and tons of space to hold just about everything in our house. I am on the hunt for some art to hang on that empty wall. 

While tiles was not our first choice to finish out the ceiling, we decided on not dry walling since we are unsure of other work we might want to do soon. Tiles make it a lot easier to get to any duct work, wiring, etc. The washer and dryer is a bit bigger than we anticipated, but the fact we have a second set of full size machines makes me giddy. The microwave is also a convection, which doubles up the cooking appliances. 

And there it is! Months of work and still working on the rest of it. It has been so fun to start using the space a bit and this "in-law" suite will be well used over the holidays. Once the couch that Kate Marker Interiors ordered for me comes in, I will share the family room. Think tons of built ins, toy chest bench, and a comfy deep navy couch to curl up on. 



  1. Hi Erin, Do you by chance remember the color you used for paint? Thanks

    1. It is Benjamin Moore Pebble Beach. I love it. A little gray, but closer to white than most. Keeps the space really bright even though there is not a lot of windows.

    2. Its beautiful, thanks : )

    3. Does the pebble beach have a hint of blue in it?

  2. You're so lucky - you got a shower with a window. I love showers with windows!

    Oh, and all your renovations look great too :) though I have to admit the kitchen looks a little crowded with the washer/dryer in there.

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