After a lengthy hiatus, one of my biggest fans demanded that I resume blogging, so here I go.
Curb appeal is very important to me, and I am not really sure why exactly. As I explained in a previous post, I have always fallen for historic cottagey or farmhouse looking homes with cute exteriors! So, it stands to reason that one of the first things I wanted to update on our new house was the exterior. Considering that it is a recent build, I think our house started out with a pretty cute exterior. It has a nice street presence with an easy-to-find front door. I think that is an absolute must after living in a house for four years with a nearly invisible front door.
As part of the repairs we negotiated with the seller, the house was re-painted. The white paint was pretty dingy after the excavations for the new streets around the front and side of the house. We ended up picking a white color again. I thought about going with a dark grey color, but I have always loved white homes. I knew I already liked the white exterior. Plus, we had to seek HOA approval and seller approval for the paint color so it seemed pretty easy to go with a shade of white again. We picked my go-to shade of white, Benjamin Moore Simply White. Since the contractors were already working on the exterior, we asked for some additional work to be done at our expense. This could have seemed like a risky decision, since we hadn’t actually closed escrow, but we were very confident that wouldn’t be an issue.
The additional changes we requested included: removing security speakers, removing security doors, removing a large security light above the garage door, and removing address numbers permanently. It seems like Josephine, the former owner of our home, must have been concerned with security. To be fair, at the time when she lived here, the home was at the end of a dead-end street on a large parcel of land by itself. If I was an elderly woman out on my own, I probably would have taken some security measures too. Now, our house is part of a well-lit neighborhood with sidewalks and street lamps. I didn’t think the metal security doors, light, and alarm speakers were necessary, and they were really creating an eyesore. The light was removed and the siding was patched and painted, and all the door trim was repaired and painted where the security doors were removed.
Before and after the security light was removed.
As soon as we moved in, we made more changes to add some of the character I was hoping to find in a home. We replaced the front exterior light fixtures with farmhouse style gooseneck lamps from Barnlight Electric.
My generous sister and brother-in-law gave us a housewarming gift of new address numbers from Design Within Reach. The Neutra house numbers add just the right amount of modern into the mix! My dad helped me replace the doorbell with something a little more simple and modern.
The lamppost at the front of the house was completely broken and unusable. The post itself was broken and unstable, and the light fixture was broken as well. I searched online for days before I finally found something that seemed the right scale and style for replacement. I honestly can’t even remember where I finally found it online. If someone really wants to know the source, I can dig deeper in my email to see if I can figure it out. Just comment below, and let me know. My father-in-law helped us install the post in concrete so that it is even sturdier than the original post.
Before and after the lamppost replacement.
We did leave some of the original security floodlight fixtures on the sides and rear of our home. They are all motion-sensing and in good condition. My father-in-law brought his extension ladder and helped us replace all the bulbs with new LED bulbs. We also replaced the back patio light fixture. On the weekend we moved in, my dad was with me on one of about ten trips to Home Depot and Lowe’s. I picked out the light I wanted for the back patio, in Home Depot. It was actually the cheapest exterior sconce they had in the store at $4.97. It is a jelly jar sconce. My dad thought I was crazy for liking it, but I love the simple vintage style!
In the end, I couldn’t be happier with all the changes we made to the exterior. There is still one more change we have planned in the immediate future…a new front door. Hopefully, that will be a change coming later this year. Our current front door is a wood Victorian door with oval beveled glass inset that must have had some sentimental value to the previous owner. It is a cool vintage door, but it doesn’t offer as much security and privacy as we would like. Although it is a vintage feature, the oval glass makes it look a little 1980’s from the street. I added frosted window film to give a little more privacy until we can replace it with the solid door we have picked. I am leaning toward this Simpson door below, painted in Railings by Farrow and Ball with one of these Schlage handlesets. Which color handleset would you choose? I am on the fence. Normally, I would automatically pick the aged bronze color, but I am worried the dark handleset might be too camoflauged in a dark door color, so then, I think the pop of the matte brass might be nice.
Another change I dream about making far into the future is replacing the roof with a dark grey or black metal roof, as in this inspiration photo. Since our current roof is thankfully in great shape, we hope we won’t need to make that change for quite awhile.