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More Progress at the Curbly House

by on Sep 9, 2017

Summer has ended, school has started, and we are racing towards the finish line on the Curbly House 2017 project. Here’s a quick update on what’s going on:        

Interior painting is (almost) complete

In what seemed like no time at all, the interior walls transformed from a boring beige-on-beige wall-and-trim combo, into something with a lot more contrast and style: 

Bedroom, before

bedroom, after

Maybe it’s hard to tell from these quick snapshots, but by adding a fresh coat of white on all the trim (throughout the whole house), we were able to make the wall color pop (our trim color is Sherwin-Williams Pure White SW 7005). That, plus a new coat of white ceiling paint, and these rooms feel brand new.

Emerald interior paint for the Curbly House (2017)
All it took was a little time and many, many gallons of this stuff (Sherwin-Williams Simple White SW 7021)

Gahh! This master bedroom is going to be so awesome (Although I will admit I put that heating vent cover back on upside down for this shot … oops!)!

Curbly House master bedroom snapshot

Electrical work is in full swing

Electrical box being installed

Our electrician started working this week, and let’s just say he had a bit of a mess to untangle. The previous wiring job was kind of haphazard, with circuits running every which way, and it took him a while just to figure out what was going on. But now the new outlet boxes are starting to appear all over the house, and it’s nice to know that this important phase of the work is progressing. If you’ve never been through a remodel before, you might not know that electrical (and plumbing) are usually the things that can hold you up, because your inspector won’t let you close up the walls until those are approved. 

HVAC is done

Last week, everything stopped at the house for one day, while our asbestos abatement contractor got in and removed the old furnace. It was a huge, octopus-style gravity-fed furnace, and it looked a lot like this:

A dark room shows a large metal water heater.
Photo: Constant Craftsman

Obviously, that was going to be a turn-off for any potential buyer. Plus, it was wrapped in asbestos, so it definitely had to go. After a professional abatement, our HVAC contractor came in this week and installed a brand new furnace and air conditioning unit. It’s not a glamor shot, but I think it looks pretty:

A large silver appliance is sitting in a room.

A silver outdoor air conditioning unit that is currently not operating.

The jungle is gone!

Remember the back yard?

Green land with white fence and dry trees.

Just a forest of hostas and lillies. Not all bad, if you’re into that sort of thing, but we wanted our buyer to have, you know, a way to get through their backyard with groceries that didn’t involve a machete. So here’s what we did:

Concrete being poured

Curbly House new concrete walkway and driveway

Now there’s a place to park in the back of the house, and a nice walkway leading to our new rear door. Obviously some more landscaping will still be needed to clean this space up, but I think it’s going to be a huge aesthetic and functional improvement.

Closets are ready to install

Modular Closets boxes


Closets are kind of an overlooked feature, maybe because they’re sort of hard to photograph, but we’re working with Modular Closets to put in all new closet organization systems in every room that has one. In an old house where the closet spaces aren’t huge, having a good system really helps maximize the storage. 

By ordering online and installing our shelves ourselves (sorry, couldn’t help it), we found an affordable option that will still be attractive and functional.

Diagrams show the measurements of shelving units.

Light fixtures are ordered

Different types of shandlers and wall lights for home decor.
1. Crystorama Broche (White) 2. Crystorama Traux 12″ 3. Crystorama Broche (Gold) 4. Felton White & Wood Mini Pendant 5. Hinkley Porter High Aged Zinc Outdoor Wall Light 6. Hubbardton Forge Rhythm Dark Smoke Mini Pendant

The folks at Lamps Plus were on board when we asked if they wanted to provide fixtures, and we were thrilled too, because we’ve used them before (a living room, studio, and our house), and love their stuff. We’re just waiting for the boxes to start arriving so we can see all the new fixtures in place; a good light selection can really be the finishing touch on a room makeover. 

What’s next?

So that’s where we are today… up next is new carpet for the basement, exterior landscaping, cabinetry, appliances, and finally, furniture and staging! Alicia, M.E. and I have already started scheduling our photo shoots for each room, and when I look at my calendar for late September, it’s just a tiny bit intimidating, but also super exciting. I can’t wait to get this house finished and start looking at it through a camera lens, instead of construction goggles.


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