There’s something about the beginning of fall in Upstate New York that’s pretty magical. The air is getting crisper, the leaves are just starting to change colors, the groundhogs, squirrels and chipmunks are busy gathering their food for the winter and we’re harvesting the final haul of summer produce from our garden. After spending a few months in Santa Barbara, Jeffrey and I are excited to be back for a bit, me mostly buying for the stores, but Jeffrey is wrapping up some exciting projects, including our long-awaited bathroom remodel and exposing the original interior stone walls. Here are some highlights I thought I'd share...
While it may be officially fall, our summer garden isn't ready to quit just yet. We recently harvested fresh raspberries, juicy cucumbers and a variety of hot peppers. September is one of my favorite times for local produce at the farmstands here and there is a wide assortment of summer veggies still, and the first crops of fresh apples... and the varieties are vast!
Wild flowers are blooming throughout the garden, even in these early fall months. These beautiful hydrangeas will bloom for the next month or two, and I've also spotted a few holly plants producing their pretty red berries which should last through to Christmas.
Our guest bathroom remodel has certainly come a long way, remember when we first started (see here two years ago!). Seeing the transformation has been very slow but very rewarding, and we're so happy with the almost final results. I wanted to preserve the original character of the bathroom's beams and wood flooring, expose the stone walls, but give it a much needed update with elements of luxe throughout.
We started the remodel by tearing out old piping and installing an antique vanity, new sink and faucets. We also ripped out the white wall paneling and replaced half of it with reclaimed wood, and the other half with this beautiful custom, hand painted wallpaper from DeGournay.
The less glamorous, but necessary side of remodeling an old home... knocking down walls, putting in new pipes and reworking the electrical. And then putting it all back together, which is what Jeffery is doing in the photo below. He's cutting drywall for a wall on the outside of the bathroom, and scribing it to fit flush with the texture of the stone.
Next up was remodeling the bathtub and shower. Jeffrey spent many hours exposing the original interior stone wall, then he worked with a professional to repoint the walls and match the mortar as close as possible to the original color that would have been used in the house.
We sourced the shower fixtures from Waterworks and used Venetian plaster as a finish on the shower wall that compliments the metallic background of the wallpaper. The double level living brass towel bar is heated which feels wonderful in the winter months.
It's a bit dark in this bathroom, so finding the right lighting was important. I found these pretty vintage crystal sconces, which give off a bright, yet muted light that is perfect for the bathroom. We also hung a Venetian blown glass pendant lamp from the ceiling to add light above the bath and shower.
We've also been working on designing the staircase and banister upstairs in the living room. Jeffrey has been hard at work replacing and widening the pine staircases that were built in the 70's with reclaimed floor boards from period barns. We've also been removing the plaster and exposing the original stone wall along the stairs. Part of the beauty of taking your time with remodeling is that, as you live in the space, the space starts to tell you what it needs to reveal it's true expression of beauty. When I'm designing spaces, it's like I'm in a dance with the home, helping each other move toward the best result.
Thank you for following along on our journey as we preserve, restore, and upgrade elements in a way that honors the original architecture of our 1700's gem. It's been a lesson in patience and a labor of love, and seeing these projects into completion is beyond rewarding. If you'd like to see more, follow along @hudsonvalleyfarm where I post as often as time permits.
Those raspberries keep coming in!