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Sixth House Renovation Plan - The Entryway

We have lived in our current house for about eight months. When we came for the inspection before we purchased the house we found that the original blueprints had been left in one of the kitchen cabinets. I snapped a lot of pictures of those blueprints and started working on changes I would like to make to the house before our deal was even done.


We were moving into this house from a brand new home and I wanted the house, still original to its 1996 build, to have that same new and shiny feeling we were leaving as soon as possible. As time passes and the reality of the wait time for contractors and builders increases daily, I think, I know actually, that I have tempered some of my desires.


I thought it would be helpful to me, and hopefully of interest to you, if I looked at each room and the changes/updates I would like to make to them here on the blog. After I go through each area structurally, I will revisit them with the decorating vision. Then, undoubtedly, I will follow all of that up along the way with the realities of unforeseen discoveries behind the walls and what those do to these plans. These "working posts" will not contain a lot of pretty pictures as there is no "after" yet to match these "before" pictures. They will come though!


When my older daughter and I walked into this house when it was for sale, my first thought was it was dark and that the stairs were very close to the front door (I have talked before that not seeing the stairs right when you walk in the front door is a favorite design feature of mine). All of the trim in this house is dark wood and the walls are mostly beige-brown so it feels dark and heavy.


As a reminder, here is the listing photo of the front hall:

You cannot see from the above picture that there is a double sliding door closet to the left of the stairs with the same dark wood. Here is a picture taken from the other angle after we moved in:

Here is a picture I took from the original blueprints we found during the inspection detailing the front hall space:

When we got back home from the inspection, I immediately drew my own set of plans for the house on graph paper and started to mark up changes I wanted to make to the house. Here is my initial design to revise the front entryway:

Here are the main changes I wanted to make:

  1. push the front door back (or forward, I guess) to be flush with front of the house, this would

  2. eliminate the window ledge above the front door, making the window flush on the wall with the door

  3. install French doors in place of the current front door

  4. remove the closet

  5. center the opening to the room to left of stairs and enlarge that room with the removal of the closet

  6. open up the wall under the upstairs stairs to reveal the stairs to the basement

Here are some pictures marking up the blueprints and photos to give an idea of the changes:


Soon after we moved in I started meeting with contractors and building companies to go through my plans. Since we had just completed building a home from my design my wish was to work with a contractor rather than a full service design firm as I have already put the design together. I am not sure we will end up working with a contractor as they are so busy and booked that they have their pick of jobs. Still praying for and working on that. To prepare for the contractor meetings though, I worked with an architect (Brenda Parker with The Columbus Architectural Studio) to put my plans into permit ready drawings.


Here are some of Brenda's drawings of the front hall:

Brenda said we would be able to open up the full wall to the right of the front door, across from the stairs, and not just the door opening portion as I had in my design plans. This gives considerably more space between the entry doors and the stairs which makes me very happy.


This is how it would change the original blueprints:

Making these changes will immediately brighten the house and change the vibe when you enter, setting the stage for what will hopefully be a warm, welcoming, and attractive home. Next time we'll look at the room to the left of the front door. I hope you will follow along this journey with me. Moral support and ideas welcome!


Thank you for coming by today,

Kerry

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Welcome!

Hi, I’m Kerry, a true lover of all things home design.  Thank you for stopping by to check in on the journey.  Please feel free to reach out to me, I love to talk design!

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