Tag Archives: curb appeal

Walkway re-do

12 May

A few years ago, I asked my friends in Boston for what turned out to be a very labor-intensive birthday present — I wanted to take-up the old asphalt walkway at the house in Boston and replace it with tumbled brick.

I was pretty naive about what this would entail. I can literally say it was probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done and the fact that it was June and hot and humid didn’t make it any easier. 

The entrance to the house is on the side so really wanted the walkway to make an impression and complement the house.  The asphalt had a bad slope, lots of bumpy bits from tree roots and also came in too close to the house so you had to step off the walkway in the summer when the AC units were in windows.

The final result was beautiful but there was jack-hammering, tree root decimation, tile cutting, brick-laying and moving a lot of heavy material first from the site and then back on with the new brick.  To John Mc, Normie, Ben and Steve, I am forever grateful.  Thanks Ruthie, Toni and Lauren for the treats and moral support. 

Another ranch renovation

6 May

This one is a bit more straight-forward looking renovation than the first ranch re-do I posted but I think they managed to vastly improve the curb appeal of this split ranch.  I like the quote from the architect that there’s “hope for every house.” I agree. .

Inspirational House Numbers

17 Apr


I’ve been  holding out for some good house numbers for Tilly’s Cottage.  I bought all the door hardware already — just waiting until the time is right to re-paint the front door after all the work is done to use it.  But I couldn’t find any house numbers that I really liked so I’ve been holding out until I find something that catches my eye.  In the meantime, I thought these were fun and inspirational ways to present the number of your house to the world…  The ceramic one below if topping my list at the moment.  From Lucienne de Mauny  http://www.luciennedemauny.co.uk/

Ranch Re-Do

28 Jan

Check out the black and white “before” photo – there are lots (and I mean LOTS) of these types of houses all over Massachusetts.  You don’t see many ranches in Ireland but if I were still living in Boston, this renovation would inspire me to buy and re-do a ranch. The renovation gives this house a lot more curb appeal not to mention the light that must have transformed the interior of this house.  Whereas before, it looks drab and depressing, I think the re-do is very inviting. So if you’re in the market to buy a house and have been put off by ranches, I hope this provides a bit of inspiration for the possibilities.

Another project from Lora

10 Jan

Regular readers will be familiar with Lora’s first renovation project ( http://tiny.cc/gontf ) — well, she’s managed to work her magic again!

I thought the front courtyard was a huge improvement to the entrance to the house — it really needed that bit of wood to balance all the siding and the color is a huge improvement from the drab brown it was before, no?

One of the other things that I’m really impressed with in terms of Lora’s approach is the fact that she does exactly what she needs to do to sell the house and nothing that she doesn’t.  I’m an avid follower of UK developer, Sarah Beeny’s property shows and she’s constantly hammering home the point (get the pun?) that if you’re looking to flip a house, you need to keep firmly focused on the fact that it’s not personal – it’s an investment.  Far too many developers buy a place to flip and fix it up as if they were going to live in it themselves versus looking at it as a buyer would.

At any rate, I’m sure you’ll agree that this is another job well done by Lora and team!

Christmas decor courtesy of David Stark

10 Dec

Here are some  fun ideas for anyone looking for a way to spice up the house this Christmas — I’m especially fond of pink and black as a break from the traditional Christmas palette.  And if you’re like me, I never know what to do with all the Christmas cards — the Card Tree is a great solution!

Beck & Bob’s Curb Appeal

18 Nov

My sister, Rebecca, and her husband, Bobby, have done a ton of work on their house.  These before and after photos were taken over two years ago (and sadly, I haven’t been back since) but the first thing they tackled was the front of the house.  They tore down the tattered old porch and put up a new portico, painted the front door a cheerful green, resuscitated the grass and Bobby created the two posts and the front of the path leading up to their house. 

I love where they’d taken the place and I hope to share even more photos with you all!

Lora’s Cottage Before and After

23 Oct

Christiana’s good friend, Lora, is living my life (or at least the one I want).  She recently renovated this little cottage and I love all the little touches she’s used in the house.  You can immediately tell from the outside that the inside will have a lot of class and style.  And I’m amazed what a big difference the mullioned windows make to the change of the look of the house.  It goes from common to craftsman instantly. And she made a rake of beautiful internal changes but I was especially impressed that she didn’t really change anything structurally — just brought out the beauty of what was already there.  A perfect example:  the wood-burning stove below.

Greeted with cheer

9 Oct

My sister has a front door that’s not too far off of this one and I just love it.  I can’t think of a better way to be greeted to someone’s home than a cheery door. 

I’ve been looking at doors a lot lately as I think of colors for the new door at Tilly’s Cottage.  I was originally thinking a Provinçal blue but then, when I started looking around, I’ve discovered a lot of beautiful door colors (well…it’s Dublin — it stands to reason that I would have seen a lot of beautiful door colors…).  A lot depends on whether I’m able to get the paint off the brickwork at the cottage and if not, I’ll have to start thinking of paint colors for not just the door, but the façade of the house as well. 

Have you seen a door color or a door / house paint combo that you particularly like?  Please comment or send me a pic.