A few of you have asked to see a bit more of our whole house remodel so I thought I would share some pictures of our new living and dining room combination.
When we bought the house nearly 3 years ago, these two rooms were separate. They were perfectly serviceable as they were, but they simply didn't work for how we live. We like a more open floor plan and the walls which separated the living and dining rooms made them feel dark and isolated from one another.
Before we remodeled, when you walked in the front door you were immediately greeted by a large wall. This awkward arrangement forced guests to funnel left to a hallway, or right into the living room. It wasn't the best concept when you had a large number of people over, simply because it created a big bottleneck.
Above is how the living room and entry looked just before we went to settlement, and before the previous owners had completely moved out. You can barely see the front door on the left and how the entryway led right into a wall.
An even earlier picture taken the second time we came to look at the house shows the wall that divided the living room and dining room. The wall behind the sofa made the dining room, located behind it, feel like a tiny box.
This "before" picture of the dining room shows how closed off and cramped it really was. The previous owner's dining table stuck out into the walkway that led from the dining room into the kitchen. We actually used this space as our office when we first moved in.
Before we even started the remodel, I convinced Mr. Tide to let me take a hammer to the drywall on these two walls to see if I really wanted to take them both down. I already knew the answer would be a resounding YES, but it made it seem like I was trying to be methodical and logical...something he likes!
Once the walls were gone it was like a new house, so much brighter! Above, the front door is to the left and you can see the wall just inside the entry is gone. We took out part of the wall on either side of the doorway that leads into the hallway to install a pocket door and a new opening to the kitchen. What a difference taking things "out" can make!
If anyone tells you that remodeling is fun, fast, or not messy...they are lying!!! We lived in utter chaos for a long time and our house often resembled a very bad version of an antiques store!
On the far end of the living room was a gas stove that the previous owners had overheated at some point and the glass was all cloudy. Mr. Tide had a few choice words while removing both it and the floor tiles by the door that leads to the garage.
I have to say that it was worth every dusty, noisy minute though, because instead of having two rooms that didn't function well at all, we ended up with this!
Instead of two dark under-utilized spaces we now have a large open space, perfect for entertaining. Where the gas stove once was, is now a large entertainment center to hide Mr. Tide's 52 inch TV.
Instead of this...
We now have this...
Where "once" we had this...
This is what we now have...
We had originally thought that we would use columns to provide a little definition between the living and dining rooms, but once the room was wide open we realized the columns blocked the view to the water, so we now have several columns neatly tucked away in the garage...anyone need some columns?!
The mock-ups for the columns made it pretty clear that they had to go!
Now we have views out to the water from nearly every seat.
I love the interior views almost as much as the ones out to the creek, like this one from the kitchen into the new living and dining room.
And this one from the dining room into the new kitchen.
Now, instead of guests being greeted by a wall, they are welcomed into a bright open space.
The mahogany Duncan Phyfe dining room suite once belong to my grandparents. It's been with us in 3 previous homes, and although it's more formal than I would have chosen for myself, the sentimental value makes it perfect!
One of my favorite things in the whole room is this chandelier, which our son has named "the atom"! I already had a nice Hubbardton Forge chandelier, but when I saw this one I knew it was a must have! Thanks to my friend Shari, who is also a decorator (more about her in an upcoming post) I also got it for a great price! Thanks Shari!
The living room and dining room are filled with treasured items that we've purchased or inherited. These silver (they need a nice cleaning but salt water and silver do NOT mix! and I have to admit I kind of like this look) candelabras were a wedding gift to my Great Aunt Frances back in the 1920's.
I love having the TV tucked away behind closed doors, especially since this is the first room you see when you enter the house. We had a formal living room in our last house and never used it, so we decided to put the TV in here so that we would use the space more often.
My Great Aunt Margaret and Uncle George's dropleaf table fits perfectly in the spot to the left of the front door. The gilded mirror was a bargain find at Lowe's. Someone special ordered it and then didn't like it so it was on clearance for $65.00!
The new pocket door keeps the noise contained if someone wants to watch a loud action movie, and it keeps the dogs corralled when our son has friends over.
Because our ceilings are only 8 feet tall, the new entryway light needed to be a flush mount design. I liked this one, which was inexpensive and came from Lowes, because it reminded me of a seashell.
Mr. Tide and I met racing sailboats a little over 24 years ago, so it seemed appropriate to have some sort of sailing themed artwork in the room. This print was another inexpensive find from a favorite local store The Apple Basket.
This glass sided cabinet houses all of the little "pretties" that I don't want to get broken by puppy dog tails! I stumbled upon it at Traditions of Loveville and bought it before the remodel...only "I" would buy furniture when I knew it was only going to add to the jumbled mess of a renovation! I'm glad I did though, I love the black and how it has glass on all 4 sides!
This cream ginger jar lamp, another inherited piece from my Great Aunt Frances, sits atop a tiger maple tavern table built by my mother and father. I love the detail on this lamp and remember it sitting on a table in my Aunt's living room.
This hepplewhite chest has been in my mother's family for generations. It came to her from her Aunt Ann and I inherited it from my mother. My mom used to store wrapping paper and greeting cards in the upper drawers and table linens in the lower drawers. I also use it for table linen storage.
Another family heirloom is the Waterford lamp left to us by my mother and father. It sits on the drop leaf table illuminating the many family photos we have placed there, including a favorite picture of my in-laws.
So there you have it! A tour of our living/dining room remodel. I still have grand plans for this room. I'd like to slipcover the furniture in white duck cloth, get a lovely piece of driftwood and maybe a few ironstone pitchers to go on top of the TV armoire. I also hope to pass the dining room furniture down to one of my own children and replace it with a round table and built-in china cabinet with an open hutch similar to the one in the movie "Something's Gotta Give," but for now I'm happy and pleased with how well the new space turned out. I hope you enjoyed the tour!
I'm linking up for Remodelaholics Anonymous over at Remodelaholic!
I'm linking up for Metamorphosis Monday over at Between Naps on the Porch. To see more great transformations head on over to Susan's wonderful blog!