Hey there friend! La Rae here! Owner, photographer, and videographer here at Wild Soul Weddings! So excited you’re here today because I am sharing a more personal post today….our main living space renovation!
I truly believe that your environment makes a huge impact on your life, and I have never believed that more now that this huge renovation is nearing completion. Of course, just as humans are ever evolving, I do believe our spaces continue to evolve as well, but this renovation feels so nourishing as a human, as a creative, and as a business owner.
My husband and I both work from home full time, so having a space that feels good to us is a top priority.
Let me start with a little history of our house!
Our house was once called the Lincoln Center School house and is located about 6 miles North of Grundy Center, Iowa, in the Lincoln Center Township. My husband’s grandma even went to school here!
Here are some photos of our house from when it was a school house!
I was lucky enough to stumble upon these images from a local Historical Facebook Group!
I simply could not believe it when I found them because just a few days prior, I had been thinking about how cool it would be find photos from her schoolhouse days, and then I did! It was truly a beautiful moment.
Our history with the house:
My husband Chris, who is our video editor here at Wild Soul Weddings, and I bought the house in August 2012, before we got married. We had been living in a very small home in West Waterloo when I found this adorable home on a small acreage near Grundy Center. We really didn’t care much about the interior of the house because it ticked off two main boxes we were hoping for: near Grundy Center, where my husband’s company is based, and enough land for my husband to have his own shooting range (if you don’t know, my husband’s desire for a shooting range became a big deal when he started a gun review YouTube channel and is now a YouTube celebrity and a social media influencer! You can view his channel here if you like guns and stuff.)
Honestly we messed up throughout the first 5 years of living here A LOT. We repainted almost every room 2-4 times, we went through stages of design, and finally the current iteration of the space began when I remodeled the kitchen in 2015/2016. Then in 2018, we began an entire overhaul of the space.
So, here are the before photos from the real estate listing when we purchased the house. They aren’t very big images, so I’m sorry if you can’t quite see!
Here is a photo of our TV area before the remodel, which got a HUGE facelift, as you will see in the upcoming photos!
The remodel details:
Our kitchen remodel was only around $1000-$1200 when I did it in 2015/2016, and the rest of the renovations that we did in 2018 probably totaled $4000. We hired a local handyman/friend to tear up the crappy plank flooring and refinish the original hardwoods, put up new trim, my husband and I built the huge entertainment center ourselves (with a little bit of help from our handyman friend), my husband built a brand new sturdy railing, new curtains, added bamboo shades, bought a small couch since we don’t do a lot of lounging, bought a correct size rug, bought a recliner. All the major furniture items that you will see in this afters were built by my husband and I (island, storage piece, entertainment center, ugly desk).
The upstairs bathroom was a whole separate renovation, but it ties in with the rest of the living area, so I included the before and after photos as well!
I didn’t take photos from the exact angles, but here are some side by side before and afters.
Bar stools + black metal storage baskets: 319 Decor + Design, Grundy Center, IA
Leather pillow on couch: cover from Etsy, pillow from Hobby Lobby
Rug: Overstock (out of stock)
Blinds: Overstock (out of stock)
Curtains: Ikea Ritva
Curtain rods: Kohls
Little black and white buffalo check rug: Amazon
Kitchen light: Menards
Kitchen window Roman Shade: Pottery Barn, but purchased on Ebay for half price!
Wood for entertainment center: Home Depot-highest quality wood around!
Trim: Home Depot
Lights over entertainment center: Lamps Plus
Woven baskets in entertainment center: Target
Painting of our beloved dog Chance, who passed away last year, which is on our ancestor shelf: art by Mallory Scribner
Kitchen drawer pulls and knobs: Amazon
Styled items in entertainment center shelves are from: Gin + Tarnish, JB Knacker, Gravy Home Goods, 319 Decor + Design, my book collection, Etsy, and a flea market find from my mom.
Dog beds: One is Hearth and Hand floor pillow, the other is just a Target brand pillow.
Dog food container is a trash can from Ikea
Blanket ladder was purchased second hand via Facebook
Brown plaid blanket was purchased from JB Knacker
Blue and white ticking blanket is from Target
Tribal blue blanket was purchased by Parks Apparel from my hubby as a holiday gift!
Most vintage items are from:
Vintage scale was my husband’s grandparents’
Vintage kitchen books were found in my grandfather’s home
Vintage Copper containers were from a local business that has closed, but you could probably find similar on Ebay!
Vintage copper pots and pans found on Ebay.
We aren’t TOTALLY done with the renovations, but all of the big things are done! The weird wood desk in the living room will be going away once we finish our office/video studio and will be replaced with another comfy recliner (the recliner we have is ugly-ish but so comfy!!), and we are not so patiently awaiting our dining table, which has been in the process of being built for over 2 years…. (yep, I’m not a happy camper about that!).
Ever since we have started this renovation, the energy of our life and home has felt so much better. Your home should be a cocoon of love, joy, and support. It should feel like a hug. It should be filled with things that say something about who you are and what you love. And I feel like we have finally done that.
NOW, we are onto the BASEMENT!! We’ve decided that we are going to try to do most of the basement renovation ourselves, with the exception of painting the ceiling.
WISH US LUCK!
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