Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Wire fence with wood frame

 Here is a really cool fence I saw in Northeast Portland when we went out for dinner last Saturday. Light and airy. It gives some separtation to the front yard without closing it off to the rest of the neighborhood. Could maybe keep small kids in and miniature deer with a bum leg out so they won't eat your fresh veggies.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Concrete Retaining Wall with Visual Interest

When adding a retaining wall, you can create a pattern to add visual interest. On this wall, when the concrete form was being built, the contractor added the pattern by cutting out rectangles in 3/4 inch plywood and attaching them to the forms.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Changing a ranch style home to a cute bungalow

 By adding a proch to this 1950's plain Jane  home, it went from ordinary to WOW! The large cedar shigles were replaced by board and batten siding with smaller shigles above the door. The open post and beam construction adds to the bungalow look. A new wood porch deck was added above the existing concrete stoop. A new wood panel door completes the makeover. Now the home looks bigger and has major street appeal. Great job! Nice way to add value to a home.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Fence with wood and corrugated sheet metal

Here is a really cool fence in the neighborhood. Panels of wood slats mixed with panels of corrugated metal. And I love the gate and triangle arch. Haven't seen this before.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

No Grass! Parking strip plantings

Are you tired of cutting grass in your parking strip? Plantings can change all of that for you and make your landscaping more dramatic. Here are two great examples using flowers, ground cover, and decorative grass to create the wow factor. (I'm thinking someone should get a teenager out of bed, get a broom, and sweep the gutter in the first photo to spiff it up.)

Monday, June 4, 2012

New Corian Kitchen Countertops

 This kitchen was updated in 1990 with white tile countertops, backsplash, and oak trim. It looked good for the times and was very functional. However the grout did not hold up well and after 22 years it was looking a little tired.
The home owner's removed the tile and countertops and prepared the cabinets for new Corian counters. In removing the backsplash, the sheetrock ripped off with the tile adhesive. This made for easy access to fish electrical cable through the wall to add under cabinet lighting.
The lights were installed, the sheetrock repaired, and the new Corian installed. With a solid surface, coved backsplash, and seamless Corain sink, cleanup is a breeze.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Dining Room- before and after

 This 1914 bungalow had been updated in the 1960's but was looking mighty tired. Some changes to this dining room add a lot of value to the home. The old wallpaper was removed. Tall wainscoting with a plate rail on top was added. The doors and wood trim were all painted white. Warm paint colors were added to the walls giving the dining room and  hall a sunny feel. The wood floors were refinished. Some art, a piece of furniture, and a table lamp were added. What a transformation!

What may look like wainscoting in the before photo was really just a piece of painted wood trim at chair rail height with two types of wallpaper above and below. The tall wainscoting in the after photo is vertical trim boards approximately 18 inches apart with trim molding on top forming a plate rail. The main part of the wainscoting is not made of wood panels. It is just the existing wall plaster, smoothed, and painted with semigloss white. All fairly inexpensive.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

A great looking fence: copper pipe and lumber

 Here is a great looking fence made with lumber and copper tubing. Visually, it has a unique, attractive, open feeling. It keeps pets and kids in and passerbys out without closing off the house from the street and neighborhood.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Farmers Markets- locations

If you’re looking for some of the freshest fruits and vegetables to put on your table this spring and summer, then look no further than your local farmers market. Shopping for your produce and more at these local markets ensure outstanding flavor and freshness while supporting your local family operated farms.

Farmers markets around Portland are known for their vast variety, healthy choices and fun atmosphere. Often, you can find beautiful flowers, artisan crafts, fresh local honey, tasty baked goods and more at the market.

Just click on the link below. 

(Courtesy of First American Title)

Fabulous Light-filled Kitchen!

This is a very cool kitchen. How many times have you seen dark galley kitchens with a tiny window over the sink. Here they opened it up by adding a huge window to bring in the light, installed white cabinets, and a sunny room color and turned the ordinary into the extraordinary! Who wouldn't love to work in this kitchen?

Friday, May 4, 2012

Water features- fountains

 Installing a water feature in your yard can add value to your home and give it a nice outdoor focal point. The bubbling sound is soothing and the water attracts birds.
A fountain in a courtyard paired with potted plants creates a nice ambiance.
Although water features do add value to your property, one this size may be a little aggressive for the novice gardener's first time project.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Basement Living Space Illusion #2

Here is another basement that has been fixed up to have more "livable space" for little money. The concrete walls have been painted and furniture and area rugs added. Throw in a game table and for very little money you have a place for the kids to play with the noise a floor away.  Buyers will see more value in the home.
In this basement they used a warm, sunny color on the concrete walls. Then added some artwork and some furniture to make it feel homey. One thing to keep in mind, though, when doing a bedroom in the basement, it needs a fire escape window to make it legal and safe. Check with you local building codes to be sure you are in compliance.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

The Illusion of More Finished Space

When selling your home, the more livable square footage, the higher price you will get. If you have an unfinished basement you can give the illusion of more finished space with some minor changes at minimal cost. Spray paint the walls white or a light tan or wheat color to warm it up and stage it with furniture to make it function as a family room, game room, craft room, etc. If you paint the unfinished ceiling so much the better. Add an area rug to warm it up. Now you have a friendly, get away space on another level of the home! Buyers will love it!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Southeast Art Walk

We saw this fun art work at the Southeast Art Walk this past weekend. It is by Anna VonRosenstiel. Had to buy a piece for my dining room. The Art Walk is a fun activity each year in early March in the Richmond Neighborhood along SE Division Street and the surrounding blocks. It showcases artists that live in the neighborhood. Come out and support them. Put it on your calendar to attend next year. You’ll be glad you did!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Under Sink Dishwasher Space Saver

We saw this dishwasher in my daughter's apartment when we were visiting back in New York. I had not seen one before where it fits in under the sink. Clever space saving idea for small condos.


Monday, February 20, 2012

Victorian Style House- Great looking!

This home has a lot going for it. Victorians are one of the two most popular style homes in the inner neighborhoods. It has a great, four color paint combination. The restoration is wonderful, the landscaping interesting, and everything feels immaculate. I recommend if people want a fence in the front yard for kids, pets, or security, they use a light, airy feeling one so the house doesn't feel cut off from the street. The home owner did just that with a black wrought iron fence. And it has a period look. What a great job! This property is a big 10+!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Exterior Paint Color on a Split Level Home

I love the paint combination on this home. Most split level houses I see have the same color on the entire house which makes it look dull, tiresome, and tedious. In other words- boring. This house, though, looks fresh and interesting and I think would command a higher sales price than one with a monotone paint color. The darker color on the lower level grounds the house. The lighter body color, white trim and the red door make it sparkle. Someone had a real good sense of color on this project!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Acid-etched, Stained, Concrete Floors

For my basement, I wanted a versatile space that could be used as a workshop and get messy with sawdust. And yet at other times I wanted to be able to use it as a big family room by adding an area rug and couches. Tile and wall-to-wall carpet do not hold up to the abuse of shop work. So going with a stained, concrete floor with several coats of wax works really well. We love it! We looked at floors in commercial stores with stained floors and found a color we liked. Something with warm tones. The photo shows the finished look


Saturday, February 11, 2012

Great looking back yard!

I like what the homeowners did with this yard. It has a nice architectural feel to it with a deck, lawn, gardens, and walkway - structure without being too formal. Just enough grass for kids and dogs but you don't spend your life mowing it. There is also some structure to the plants with repetition and grouping so it doesn't look haphazard.