So this is what our house looked like when it wasn't ours yet...
Now it looks like this...
(The real estate agent must've had a super wide angle lens because this is all I could fit it.)
Painting the fireplace was one of the first things that I did. (Well, actually I've just primed it. It looks great to me (and I'm lazy) so I don't think I'll "paint it paint it".
When we first moved in there was this wall that separated the living room from the kitchen:
We hated the wall (we did before we bought the house, too) so Jake took it out. The wall was not load bearing because the trusses above the wall are vaulted... so the ceiling in the kitchen was built down from the trusses and the wall was just there to separate the spaces (the house was built in 1991).
There were 3 light switches on the wall so Jake re-located them to another wall before the demo.
(Sorry, almost all of these pictures were taken at night... because that's the only time we can get anything done!)
The sheetrockers stuffed all of the scraps/trash into this wall so there was a ton of sheetrock that had to be taken out. But Jake did it all... every last piece. (It's common for sheetrockers to stuff the scraps into the wall. They do it so that they don't have to pay to take it to the dump... but now we do...)
Oh, and when he took the baseboards off there was tons of dog hair between the flooring and the wall. Barf.
Once the sheetrock was gone he took out the studs... and wa-lah! Open floor plan.
(For anyone that wants to know the details... the blue and yellow parts of the ceiling are just built down from the trusses- so we plan on taking all of that out and re-vaulting it to look like the rest of the ceiling. It will look great but it will be a lot of work so it'll be a little while until we feel up to the task.)
Details... because we took the cabinets above the stove out there isn't a vent/fan anymore. Technically, that's not up to code (which we totally knew but we hated the cabinets too much to care.) We plan on moving the stove up against the wall and mounting our microwave/vent combo above it. (Until then, the microwave is above the fridge because it won't fit on the counter!) Since we'll be moving the stove, we'll lose the much coveted island... so we plan on putting in an island (which we couldn't do until the wall was gone).
No before... just an after:
Details... we hated the wall too much to be worried about the new gap in the carpet/vinyl. The hardwood-looking vinyl has definitely seen a better day and needed to be replaced anyway. So we plan on putting down hardwood in the entire space (which will also help it look bigger). But our to-do list is pretty long (and Everett has already learned to jump over the gap) so it might be a while before that gets done, too.
But this house it going to look great by the time we are done with it!
I'm so glad Jake is handy and can do almost anything I dream up. I love having my own Handy Man-y!