What to do with built-ins and some original wood details
October 31, 2013 in Design Dilemma
My father is delving into the world of flipping and I dying to get my hands dirty and help him in any way I can. He currently has an offer in on a home built in the 1920s. It has original wood floors, trim, and amaaaazing built ins around the fire place (as well as several other places in the house). We just can't agree on what to do with them. Refinish and keep them dark stained wood? Sand them and paint them? As far as style goes, do they need to match the trim and window sills if we keep them dark? I think we really want to preserve the integrity of the era the house was built but, obviously, make them as appealing as possible to potential buyers.

Also, in there picture you can see the wood on the ceiling. I actually really like it and if I were going to live here I would keep it. I do agree with my dad who said it makes the room feel dark and the ceilings feel low. Should we keep it?
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I agree that the dark ceilings are oppressive. Maybe it's the light, but your walls look minty green, which is a cool color which doesn't go with the dark wood. I'd get a warmer white or cream. Other than the ceiling, I'd leave the wood as is.
October 31, 2013 at 11:22pm   
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They are white, must have been the crappy lighting. That being said, the walls are definitely getting painted. They are peeling and in pretty bad shape. Thanks for the input in the ceiling though, Sigrid!
October 31, 2013 at 11:27pm   
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hi, timber ceilings are beautiful, gorgeous, but **only** if they're more than normal height. At a standard height they create a dark box. Saying that, the detail on your windows is wonderful, and I'd be tempted to do something like this colour scheme - traditional but with modern touches, and the sanded floor is lighter which I think really sets off the darker original detail.
October 31, 2013 at 11:43pm     
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Michelle Ashby
Hi o3lissao, also found a few pics to show you, i think keep the wood ceiling, but go white :) will light up the room, and save lots: Living Room/Kitchen,Cary Bernstein Architect Potrero House,Beadboard family room,Shy Rabbit Farm
October 31, 2013 at 11:54pm     
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Michelle, that is gorgeous, thank you for the idea!
October 31, 2013 at 11:55pm   
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Michelle Ashby
would also maybe try something like this for your fireplace. not sure what your style is, but let us know, then we can post more pics for you... :) Vaulted living room, Las Canoas Remodel Bifold Doors Open
October 31, 2013 at 11:58pm   
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Your house is a bungalow, original arts and crafts style - precursor to todays craftsman. Keep all the wood except the ceiling - paint it out. It is okay to refinish the floors lighter than all the trim - I like the dark wood but closer to dirt / natural wood color will also add more light back into the rooms.

The fireplace tile surround needs to be evaluated - it appears to be lovely, original antique. I would possibly select the darkest burgundy and paint the back of the shelves, and use one of the mid-tone earthy greens for the walls in the dining room. Feel free to replace the wood shelves in the cases with something thick / sturdy / wood finish to match dark trim. Leave the beams stained, paint the ceiling (off-white - a tone that has a little bit of dark wood taupe undertone in it) and walls same but one shade deeper - a dark white. Paint the front door the deep red-brown evoked by the fire tile. These small repetitions of the original batcheldor (looks like) tile will make them the stars they are. Don't, i beg you, don't alter these historic hard to find features - the mullioned windows, the craftsman fireplace . . . buyers will pay more when those are intact.
November 1, 2013 at 9:17am     
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Here are some color ideas for you to test - for the ceiling, sw everyday white or bauhaus buff - the buff is a bit creamier - great for ceilings through the entire house / white for wherever you need white http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/color/find-and-explore-colors/paint-colors-by-family/SW7552-bauhaus-buff/
for the walls in the living room, you might go just a tad deeper for the historic effect (whites weren't so white before titanium hit in the 50's) http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/color/find-and-explore-colors/paint-colors-by-family/SW7531-canvas-tan/
Here's a green that you might use in the dining room sw softened green http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/color/find-and-explore-colors/paint-colors-by-family/SW6177-softened-green/ - hold a swatch up next to the tile to see if I've got the hue right - you have several more mossy greens in there but they will be too yellow on the walls . . . you want something that evokes the fireplace rather than matches it perfectly . . .

These all work and flow beautifully together and green is a neutral that goes with every color scheme.

Then, get rid of that white front door with the lovely wood trim - you may plan on replacing it, but if not, paint it out - look at sw arresting auburn to see how it brings everything together. http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/color/find-and-explore-colors/paint-colors-by-family/SW6034-arresting-auburn/
November 1, 2013 at 11:51am     
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