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My small house (cottage)

Posted by eclecticcottage (My Page) on
Tue, Jul 30, 13 at 11:14

We live in a cottage, as in a real live former summer cottage vs the cottage style house, lol. We are blessed to have finally found this place after about 10 years of hunting for one that we could afford AND wasn't in such rough shape that we weren't sure we could take it on (several we passed on have since been torn down). We measure in at just under 700 sq ft (like 696), with one bedroom, a kitchen, dining room and living room as well as a small addition that serves as a laundry room (or really, will, as the laundry currently lives in the living room). We have embraced the cottage style, in that typically these homes were filled with cast offs from the main home. Our style is eclectic, with antiques from the 20's in the same room as things from the 50's, and a few more modern items (mainly the couches). I also prefer old to new.

We have been catching up on "deferred maintainance" as well as general fixing up since we bought it. It was a cottage, then full time residence, then rental, then finally vacant when we bought it. It's seen an addition and at least one remodel. There are several others in the area that resemble it, and it seems our floor plan might have changed-although it's possible it wasn't built the same as the others either. Who knows.

More photos can be found on my blog, but here are some before and afters! We've had to do some fairly major work, especially in the living room, and the photos of the destructon are on there.

Dining room before and after:

The hallway before and after:

The kitchen before and after:

I don't have a good one of the living room, I just realized. This is the best I've got, it's before and afters one piece at a time!

And the floors, which are reclaimed garage sheathing


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: My small house (cottage)

oh! I am enchanted! That place brims with character! Is this your only home or a vacation space? Looks like it is in the north woods somewhere... am I close? I am going to love seeing what you do with it! Love the cabinets in the kitchen and all the wood wainscot and paneling.
It adds so much texture and really adds to the cottage feel. Please post lots of pictures. This is going to be fun!


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RE: My small house (cottage)

looking closer, I have to ask, what are all the sparkly lights behind the curtains? Would love to see pictures of the outside too!


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RE: My small house (cottage)

Thank you!

It's our all the time home. We bought this two years ago, and our Old House was also a small house, at just about 900 sq ft. We've just done some remodeling there (see the "new cottage" posts on the blog) and are now renting it out.

We're mostly done now, except the bedroom (partly done, I need to get on it and finish painting the old shutters we're using as closet doors on the built ins we built) and the laundry room. Actually, the living room needs finished too, we have to finish putting up wood on the ceiling and one more wall of the white washed paneling (we had to remove two closets in the rebuild, and ended up short on paneling-hopefully we'll find anough eventually to finish!). And some detail work on the hearth pad where the stones come out over the wood trim we've put on. Probably just some more grout.

We are actually on the shore of Lake Ontario. This is looking out of one of the sliding glass doors last winter:


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RE: My small house (cottage)

I love it! Your view is to die for and the inside of the house is just so cozy and beautiful. You've done a great job!!


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Thanks! It's been a lot of work, but we had ten years to think about finally getting a place on the lake so once we got it, it just came right together! It helps that I love "cottage" as well as vintage, lol.

The black cabinet in the livingroom and the greenish one in the dining room both came from "curb shopping" (they were being thrown out). The black one needed a REALLY good cleaning and the glass was broken on the doors (so I just removed it) and the veneer is really coming off now so I'll have to pull it off the bottom doors and either redo it or just leave it, then repaint it. The green one needed a dusting and someone had stuck contact paper on the glass, so I peeled that off. One of the chairs in the dining room was also a "garbage pick", one was .25 at a garage sale, one was $5 and one came from our old set at our other house-I painted each of them with what I refer to as a "dry brush" technique, and each is a different color. The table came from a salvage company that had closed down and the new building owners were liquidating the inventory. The old radio on the green cabinet was $2.50-one of these days we'll get some new tubes in it and see if it works, right now it doesn't even hum so it's either tubes or it's shot.

egbar, I missed your question about the lights! They are (indoor) icicle lights. The photos was taken around Christmas time in 2011, before I put up the tree. We have a floor down now, and some other things finished-I just haven't taken a new pic for some reason!


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RE: My small house (cottage)

This is my current project that's taking much longer than it should! We're helping our neighbors with some repairs on their house so it's taking up some of my time.

We are using these old shutters as doors on our built in closets in the bedroom. They came from an old house in town that's since been torn down :(

before during and after, using the "dry brush" technique again!

comparison with one that I've only scraped and one I've painted

One needs a little repair first, and then I need to figure out what to treat them with because they are DRY. I don't know if I want to use tongue oil though, I don't want it getting on our clothes if they come in contact with one of the shutters. I imagine it would soak right it, but I am not 100% sure yet!

I've got two sets of old shutter dogs to use to keep them closed once we hang them. I also have to figure out hinges, since we only have the one side of the old ones (we didn't get the "house side" just the "shutter side"). I might just use hidden style ones.


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RE: My small house (cottage)

So cute! Would you post a link to your blog? I'd love to see more pictures, especially the exterior. What a view!


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RE: My small house (cottage)

Thanks! I thought I did post a link...Ooops. See below, lol.

Here is a link that might be useful: The Eclectic Cottage Blog


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RE: My small house (cottage)

I went to your blog and thoroughly enjoyed myself, traveling thru it. You guys are amazing.


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Thanks dody! I have to give DH props for doing most of the construction work. He works from home, so the living room was done one week while I was at work between him and a friend that is a contractor. We did have someone put in the woodstove, although DH framed in the hearthpad and I did the stone work. He more or less let me have free reign design wise although a few things were up fro debate until he gave in, lol Whitewashing the paneling was one-we had all natural wood in our old house and he wasn't sure about white washing this-but it was sooo dark before. He "invented" the technique he ended up using though (I can't seem to replicate it) because he got impatient with it for not absorbing enough white so he put WAY more on that you're supposed to. Then when he tried to wipe off the excess, we found that it left more in some places than others, giving it that almost worn barnwood look. He also wasn't sold on the colors for the hall and dining room, the beadboard in the dining room or the faux brick. He changed his mind pretty quick on all but the colors, which he still says aren't his favorite but he's ok with them.


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just got through looking at the blog. Ohmygoodness such a lot of work and love poured in throughout. How wonderful to have it right on the lake as well! I love the colors and the finishes you chose throughout. I love posts like this because they inspire me and give me so many good ideas to borrow from! Looking forward to seeing the photos of the finished shutter project. : )


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I love it!!!


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EclecticCottage,

So cute and what a view. It looks comfy and relaxed. More than enough room when you're spending days by the lake.

I remember a cottage Dh and I rented for a couple years in Maine. As you say, it was summer cottage with no insulation, basic kitchen, the ell to the garage would flood during rainy season [and somehow we got snails on the board we laid down to keep our tootsies dry.] The trains ran behind once a day and made everything shake. Lovely old plantings with lilacs, lilies of the valley, forsythia, snow drops, hydrangea, daffodils and pyrocantha. Had huge veggie garden...good memories.


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RE: My small house (cottage)

EclecticCottage,

So cute and what a view. It looks comfy and relaxed. More than enough room when you're spending days by the lake.

I remember a cottage Dh and I rented for a couple years in Maine. As you say, it was summer cottage with no insulation, basic kitchen, the ell to the garage would flood during rainy season [and somehow we got snails on the board we laid down to keep our tootsies dry.] The trains ran behind once a day and made everything shake. Lovely old plantings with lilacs, lilies of the valley, forsythia, snow drops, hydrangea, daffodils and pyrocantha. Had huge veggie garden...good memories.


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RE: My small house (cottage)

Can't wait to read your blog. Your house looks so warm and invited. And what a gorgeous view!


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RE: My small house (cottage)

Thanks! I'll have to update the blog soon, we finally got the shutters painted and hung on the closets. I did treat them with tung oil, then used a milk paint sealer on them. There's still a slight tung oil scent, but nothing too strong. We used regular cabinet door hinges and didn't need the shutter dogs, so I have to decide if I'll use them anyway because they're neat or leave them off and either use them elsewhere or sell them. We're also working on the laundry room, putting in a brick floor, bead board and some nautical wallpaper (well, the floor for sure, and the others will morph as we go-the plan is beadboard about half way up and a neutral beigey wallpaper with maps and ships and things on it above-plans seem to change as we go here though so that remains to be seen).


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Well the house looks great to me, as it contained almost every basic need. It is decorated beautifully. I like to have a home like to have home like that to spend vacations.
Architecture Gold Coast

This post was edited by smith321 on Sat, Sep 14, 13 at 0:13


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RE: My small house (cottage)

I love the kitchen cabinetry and the walls! Is that cedar or cypress? Also love the reclaimed flooring. Your cottage is lovely. Thanks for sharing the photos.


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"This is looking out of one of the sliding glass doors last winter"

OH MY !!!
How beautiful.I love the floors.


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RE: My small house (cottage)

"This is looking out of one of the sliding glass doors last winter"

OH MY !!!
How beautiful.I love the floors.


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RE: My small house (cottage)

I think you are blessed with a superb talent, what a great jog you have done. The wooden work I like the most, floor, ceiling, lights I mean everything is looking beautiful.


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The wood is all pine :)

Thank you all! We've decorated the dining room already for Christmas, and the laundry room too! We weren't sure the bricks would work for the floors since it's also a mudroom, but if they do get muddy, we just let them dry then sweep up the dirt!

Some pics:

We use the vintage poloron cooler for extra storage.


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And the shutters are now hung on the closets!

Still have to paint some trim and some of the beadboard.


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So charming & cozy. I can smell the pine needles on the tree!!!! LOVE the dining room. FIREPLACE (sigh), wish I had one ......


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RE: My small house (cottage)

Thanks!! It's a propane vent free, we use it as a "just in case" backup to our wood stove since we heat with wood/have no central heat :)


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