Back with plan for farmhouse remodel

lavender_lassDecember 27, 2010

Well, I know some of you think it's VERY bad to take down walls, but I'm planning to do it...and hoping you see why, when I post my plan.

We have a farmhouse, we inherited (with the farm) from my huband's father...belonged to his grandparents. The original part is from 1904, with a 1950's addition. The addition was built by my husband's great uncle and the fireplaces (living room and family room) were built by my husband's uncle.

We also have a very large family on my husband's side (30-40 people at parties) so a small space needs to live big. We like the original layout, more or less, but I think a big country kitchen is more practical and works better, on a farm.

The old house...originally, was the living room in front, the kitchen in back (with a small table) and the porch, stairs, and little room (that I made the entry) was the master bedroom! Celllar under and attic/big bedroom upstairs. The bath was added a little later. In the 1950's, the living room (with fireplace) back bedroom and bath were added. Upstairs, more attic space and downstairs, a family room (with another fireplace) and back bedroom.

Here's the before and after plans...each square is = 2 feet, but the first plan seems to be smaller (from the scanner, I guess). Also, I've included some pictures of the wood stove in the kitchen seating area...and a few inspiration pictures from the kitchen forum.

I always draw furniture in my plans, to make sure the room is big enough, to work as a finished space. Too many remodeling shows end up with beautiful rooms...that the furniture they'd like doesn't seem to fit!

Thank you for taking the time to look. Maybe taking the wall down will make sense to some, maybe not, but I appreciate your input and suggestions :)

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From what you describe your family like, I think the new plan works much better - for you. Opening the walls will give you the room and feeling of more space as well. I would love to open the wall between my kitchen and dining room, but cannot bring myself to do it because of the wainscoting and built-in in my home. But, my family is not that large, so it isn't a necessity for me either.

I would love to see interior photos of the 'before' look to your farmhouse. Some farmhouses were built to be just basic farmhouses, without the lovely parts some old houses have (built-ins, large moldings, intricate details), some had more character than others. In doing your remodel, if you started with the first, you could make it the latter....., I think a lot of old house folks don't necessarily mind tearing out walls, but tearing out the character gets them upset!

The PO to my house could never understand all the work I have been doing on this house, saying, "It's just an old farmhouse!" Well, to her it was, but to me it was so much more- by highlighting the special things (moldings, built-ins, plaster walls, divided light windows) and getting rid of the stuff that covered them up-or replacing those that she'd torn our- it made even this old 'farmhouse' better. Btw- she didn't know what she was talking about- it may have been a 'farmhouse' to her, but it's truly a craftsman style, and now those details really show!

I love your pantry/laundry area. What a great idea and so close to the kitchen will make doing chores so much easier. I'm afraid I have to keep mine in the basement- not due to space, but keeping it there gives me more exercise going down stairs and after all the sweets this winter, I'll need it!

    Bookmark   December 28, 2010 at 2:05PM
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LOL! I'm sure you don't need the stairs, but it is good exercise.

Thank you for the positive feedback. My old house doesn't have the nice built in features, but it does has a beautiful fireplace in the living room.

I'm excited to open up the kitchen, since I think it will be much more practical and look more like a farmhouse kitchen should look :)

    Bookmark   December 28, 2010 at 4:42PM
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Summerfield just drew the most beautiful plan for me, on the Building forum. What a sweet thing to do and I'm so excited to have such a wonderful plan :)

    Bookmark   December 30, 2010 at 2:03PM
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Wow, that is nice! Looks like your ideas are solidifying. How exciting. Best of luck with it all. I think it will be very nice when you are all finished.

(Hmm... I've lived in my old house 18 years now and it still isn't "finished"... maybe that's a concept I can't really grasp. I hope you have more timely remodeling than we have had!) -Kim

    Bookmark   December 30, 2010 at 3:52PM
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if it were my house, I'd have a little door in the wall between the sink and the toilet in the master bath, about 3' up. It would be a horizontal laundry chute into a basket or cabinet in the next bathroom. Then, when you wanted to do laundry, you would just be a few steps from the laundry room with it.

Also I caution against a fridge next to a wall. we had that situation for 3 years and I could never get the door open all the way. Couldn't even pull out drawers or shelves to clean them. I finally took a pry bar to my kitchen and swapped some cabinetry with the fridge so it could open fully. I almost love my kitchen now!

Here is a link that might be useful: moving my fridge

    Bookmark   January 1, 2011 at 12:43PM
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Slateberry- Interesting idea about the laundry. As for the fridge, it's supposed to be okay, if the wall doesn't come out too far.

Kim- Thanks, I really like the plan. Hope your remodel finishes soon :)

Summerfield had a few suggestions and I asked for a few small changes, so here's the slightly amended plan. Notice the wall is not all the way up to the edge of the fridge...that was Summerfield's idea. Love the plan and I really appreciate all the work done...thanks again, Summerfield!

    Bookmark   January 1, 2011 at 7:20PM
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Wow, Summerfield did a fantastic job! I wonder what program was used to do that plan....because I want it!

I love the layout, especially the super large pantry. One thing has me puzzled though...why such a large bathroom off of the kitchen and a smaller one for the master? You don't have a guest bedroom on the first floor, so I don't understand the need for the oversized bathroom. Especially since it seems like the master bath could use the space more.

I'd also love to see some interior before pictures of your home...I'm very interested in seeing the transformation as it progresses!!

    Bookmark   January 2, 2011 at 12:13AM
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Jiggreen- I'll try to get some pictures, soon. Here's one I took the other day, that shows the farmhouse (please ignore the shed). It was -4 F. and a foot of snow, so I took it out the window, from our manufactured home. The roof looks a little strange, because my husband and his friends put sheet metal over it, to keep the melting snow from getting into a couple of small leaks, where the addition meets the big gable.

As for the bathrooms, this is the way they are now (for the most part) and the wall between them is the wall between the original house and the addition. I really don't want to move it...too many worries.

The good thing, I get a beautiful bath (hers) that also looks great for company. The master bath, mostly so we don't have to walk by the entry to use the bathroom, also gives my husband his walk in shower...and the hot tub! LOL Besides his bar/TV area in the basement, that's all he really wants.

Here's a picture I saw months ago, that I'm using for my inspiration for the hall bath...Summerfield drew everything from my description only...then I finally found the picture, again. Of course, I only need one set of drapes, one light fixture and probably beadboard rather than wainscoating...but it's beautiful. Even the pink tiles are pretty, but I'd probably go with something a little more neutral :)

And here's an idea of what I want to use for the storage, across from the toilet...maybe not quite this big.

I'm basing the remodel on a 1920's home, and back then indoor plumbing was something that most people didn't mind showing off, a bit.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2011 at 7:24PM
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