new client’s new beginnings

When did it turn August?? So much has happened since my last post back in… March?! oy… anyhoo, on with it… big time exciting project with Kim and Scott from yellowbrickhome! (Please take note of their buddy Half-y Giraffe-y – I swear, it’s destiny – Giraffe’s are my FAV!) I met this fantastic duo earlier in the year… I definitely believe that sometimes you are ‘meant’ to meet certain people… cross paths at certain points, and I’m super happy to have met this awesome pair! The first time I saw Kim and Scott was at a local small business meetup group. It was the first time I went and I thought they were super cute, cool and seemed fun but I didn’t really have the guts to talk to any of the total strangers at this thing for the first few months… I mean, come on, it might be pretty easy to participate in a guided conversation during an event, but sometimes trying to strike up a conversation with complete strangers afterward is just more than anyone (or at least this girl) has energy for, right? So I just enjoyed my time and the experience and then headed home. A few months later they came a few minutes late and ended up sitting by me – I was kind of happy b/c at that point they were familiar(ish) faces – and whaddya know, at the end before I could even get up they said they’d wanted to talk to me at the last event but I left too quickly – that’ll teach me not to stick around for small talk! Long story still not finished… they said that they were in need of an architect because they had put in an offer on a fixer upper and while they felt like they had things under control with the design part (r i g h t … we’ll see about that, I thought to myself) they really needed some help/guidance with some of the bigger things like moving and tearing down walls. I did appreciate that they realized that at least some of the walls actually held up the roof and said I’d love to chat more about their plans!

Before we met next I took a look at their home tour on their blog to get a sense of their style. PHEW, the DO have a great design sense! Such. A. Relief. What I loved as I looked through the images is that the energy of their space, the colors, the art on the walls, the furniture… the whole feel – really matches their personalities and who they are as people. I loved it and it just made me more excited to work with them and be a part of their new home adventure.

We met for coffee so that I could learn a little more about what they were planning and Kim showed me some photos of the place from the listing so that I could hopefully start to get an idea of the space – and see the awesome sagging living room ceiling. We talked and strategized a little bit about what they might be able to do themselves and what it would be best to bring in a contractor for, but really you can’t tell without actually being in the space, so when their offer was approved on the house we made plans to go see it.

This house is definitely one of those gems that has so much potential, but if you can’t use your imagination, you might turn and run like you’re on fire… especially before it was empty of tenants… kidding (only sort of). I love Kim and Scott because they can see the potential of the house and I really love the opportunity that a fixer upper provides. You get to really transform a space into exactly what you want and create a space that really reflects who you are and totally serves your needs and lifestyle.

This house is one that Kim and Scott will be in for a while, so their first project is to fix big picture items – like the sagging floor/ceiling  – and make the big transformation of the first floor entry and living area… then, over time, they’ll tackle each space to make the whole house really amazing and really theirs. Love it!

Here is what the house looks like from the front and some before photos of the first floor (courtesy of the talented Kim herself, note to self: sign up for a photography class)


Welcome home!


The house was formerly a two flat that they will be turning into a single family home. The existing entry is rather dark and closed off since it was separating multiple dwellings. Goal: open up the entry way & bring in lots of light


If you look at the ceiling in this photo you can see what looks kind of like a gentle sag in the ceiling… nope, it’s not just weird light. The whole ceiling (and floor above) are sagging… and more than just slightly [watch Kim and Scott’s video capturing this awesomeness here]. This was mystery number one, and without starting to demo the space you really can’t be sure what’s going on other than making some educated guesses. Before I saw the space myself I was optimistically thinking that Kim and Scott might be able to DIY their floor/ceiling straight, but once I saw that the sag basically ran half the length of the house I thought it would definitely be less stressful to let a pro handle this one! Goal: straighten out ceiling/floor before buying any furniture on wheels.


This is the living room looking back toward the entry (on left) The door on the right is a classic Chicago third ‘bedroom’ that is basically a glorified closet. Goal: definitely going to open up this space somehow!


This is inside the teeny tiny bedroom.


The living area on the first floor is pretty much broken up into two sections via a header and two wing walls that are, of course, not the same size. This is a little further back toward the kitchen. you can see that the sag in the ceiling is not nearly as dramatic at this orange wall, the center of the room is the worst.


Turning around looking back at the front of the house (sagging ceiling included). Goal: if possible, eliminate the random wing walls to create one big open room. At this point we weren’t sure if this would be possible until we found out more about the ceiling issue.


This is the second bedroom on the first floor. Pretty standard two flat layout.



The kitchen is a huge room but really not functional. Too bad this puppy will have to wait a bit for it’s facelift.


Tiny room off the side of the kitchen… pantry maybe? Lot’s of potential definitely.


The first floor bathroom is small. Okay, both bathrooms are small, but they both have windows, which in my book is a big plus, so definitely not hopeless but staying as is for now.

Coming up in the next post are existing plans and all of the options we looked at for transforming the downstairs space – stay tuned :)

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