Growing up, my parents had some friends who were multi-millionaires, and visiting their home left a lasting impression on me. Her style was minimalistic and ultra-modern, which is not my personal style, but I appreciate clean lines and barren surfaces because they give off a feeling of simplicity and refreshment. I love to look at these homes in magazines and books, but I don’t know how cozy n’ comfortable I would feel living in one? There’s a fine balance between clean and sterile, wouldn’t you say? Where industrial crosses over to, “am I in a hospital?” She knew that line. I wish I had pictures to show you, because she had great (balanced) taste, and certainly knew what she was doing when she designed and decorated their custom-built home! Most of all, I was obsessed with her wrought iron spiral staircase! It went straight up, fully exposed from the main floor to the roof, creating access to a beautiful loft. She probably doesn’t know how much influence her extreme taste in design has had on me, or that I have been saying, “I WILL HAVE A SPIRAL STAIRCASE SOMEDAY” for the last 15 years! But the difficulty is, the chintzy, “after-market” spiral staircase kits you can buy online don’t even compare to the quality and shock factor that comes with a custom built staircase.
This is why I fell in love with this foreclosure a few months before making an offer on the colonial!
Not only did it have an unfinished daylight basement, which was originally very high on my husband’s priority list (man-cave anybody?), but it had a custom spiral staircase that was built into the original 1951 floor plan! When we first went to go see the property, we were expecting a lot of work would need to be done given it’s age, but to our surprise, the previous owners had JUST remodeled the whole house! It had a new roof, new siding, new windows, new paint, new plumbing, new electrical… the list goes on! It even had beautiful refinished hardwood floors throughout (which we would have stained ebony of course… you know me!) Some other UH-MAZING features about this home: white galley kitchen (my dream), serving window from kitchen into bedroom hallway (I’m imagining kids requesting water at bedtime… “come n’ get it, water’s lined up and waiting for you!”), a second story nook with french doors to balcony that overlooked the 1/2 acre yard, and a pink magnolia tree so close I could’ve reached out and picked a bouquet of fresh flowers every morning while reading the Bible and sipping on my hot-steaming coffee! [Run on sentence.] This moment melted my heart ❤ And lastly, but not the least, it had a detached garage with a ROOFTOP deck! I know most people would hate a detached garage… but I’m weird I guess! I don’t really care for the current design of homes where the garage is front and center, making it the outer focal point. When a garage is detached, it can be pushed back and away from the house, so that it almost disappears. The rooftop deck, another dream, was the ONLY pressing project we would have had to work on. It was NOT safe for our baby, as it lacked a railing and had major drainage issues with water standing on the surface. BUT, that seems like nothing now that we are in the middle of our huge remodel! And finishing the daylight basement could’ve been treated as a hobby on the side… not a lifestyle haha! Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t trade My Colonial Remodel for the world.
When all is said and done, there is a reason for everything, and I had to tell myself that it wasn’t meant to be. During the bidding war, our last offer was actually OVER asking price, and we still didn’t come close to the bank entertaining our offer. Later, after we had already started the pending process on our colonial, we found out that the buyers walked away from this home only days before closing! When I heard this, I got a lump in my throat and a knot in my stomach. “OH NO! Are we in the middle of buying the wrong house? What if we acted too soon and caused ourselves to miss out on the perfect house!?” But upon laying awake all night after hearing the news, I weighed out the pros and cons between the two homes: Perfect house in a not-so-perfect neighborhood, or not-so-perfect house in a perfect neighborhood? I decided the neighborhood meant more to me. Because you can fix up a house, but you can’t fix up your neighborhood if all your neighbors don’t take care of their houses!!! Plus the Hyland Hills area, where the colonial is located, happened to be an extremely desirable spot. So, I have let go of my emotional tie that I developed to this house, and I’m determined to somehow duplicate ALL these features that I loved so much. For starters, our wonderful and amazing realtor (we go way back to high school) bought us a pink magnolia tree as our house-warming gift! I will be sure to post about that soon!
Here is a gallery so you too can walk through “the perfect house?”. You may not appreciate it as much as I did through my visionary eyes, but like I said, it’s all about finding and creating a place where YOU can be you!
To enlarge, click on first photo then scroll through the slides. Warning: some pics may be blurry 🙂