agiesbrecht


Type:
Home owner 
Location
Nebraska, United States 
About me:
Christian geek, armchair theologian, lover of tea 
My favorite style:
Craftsman 
My next house project:
2 bedroom 1960s townhouse, in need of some pizazz, plus cat-friendly details. 
agiesbrecht commented on an ideabook

8 Reasons to Jump Off the DIY Bandwagon

You heard right. Stop beating yourself up for not making stuff yourself, and start seeing the bright side of buying from others Full Story
     Comment   on Monday
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agiesbrecht
For me, the DIY fad has been a bit of a relief, because right now I don't have the money to go out and buy what I want. Everyone will assume that the little paper pinwheels decorating my living room are there 'cause they're trendy, not because they're cheap and easy to make!

I'm a DIYer by nature. I like to have a couple projects going at any given time, without deadlines, so I can work on them when I feel like it. It's fun and relaxing. Some things I make because I have a specific idea for my decor. Either it would take tons of searching to find what I want, or it doesn't really exist and I'd have to pay an arm and a leg to have it custom-made. Since I'm artistic and I know my way around a toolbox, it's easier just to make my own.

But that's *me*. Other people don't feel that way, and that's fine. And I wish I *could* buy some of the stuff I've had to make, because it *is* a lot of work! It's more fun to do things because you want to, than because you have to.
on Monday at 7:38am     
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sunnie2day
LOL! TSHome, I was single for about 12 years after a 20 year marriage ended and I swore to my friends who tried to set me up that I was looking for a certified plumber-electrician. I remarried in early 2011 - my new husband is a retired historic building conservationist who firmly believes DIY is best done by...

A professional, lol!
Yesterday at 3:05pm     
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pgarrido22
Great for loft
17 hours ago   
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agiesbrecht commented on an ideabook

Designing Home: Jews and Midcentury Modernism

A new exhibition explores how Jewish architects and designers in postwar America reimagined our homes and everything in them Full Story
     Comment   on Monday
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agiesbrecht
@beec123 Regarding Raymond Hazekamp, try asking these folks: http://www.chicagobauhausbeyond.org/mission.htm
on Monday at 7:20am   
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aldus70ag
Practically everyone mentioned in this article are of German Jewish heritage,so no wonder American Mid Century Modernism,to a large degree feels like an extension of German Bauhaus art school. But for the sake an argument ,there were many other ethnicities that played very important role in American Mid Century Modernism.
on Tuesday at 4:49am   
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sherrytem
Thanks for an informative article. Especially the ubiquitous Honeywell thermostat. The Eichler's in Marin are becoming newly appreciated.
on Tuesday at 8:57am   
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agiesbrecht likes 3 comments on an ideabook

Why You Might Want to Build a House of Straw

Straw bales are cheap, easy to find and DIY-friendly. Get the basics on building with this renewable, ecofriendly material Full Story
     Comment   on Monday
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dvild
Where does the electrical wiring go if the plaster is applied right to the bales? Is conduit, by itself, safe enough to not burn the place down?
April 10, 2014 at 1:12pm     
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ssin14
@dvild: In our design the straw bales are not load bearing and is based on a post and beam structure. The wiring will be put into the columns and the ceiling, it can also be run in conduit. There are no fire-risk issues that I'm aware of. But, I'm not an expert on building codes....
April 10, 2014 at 1:16pm     
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PRO
Mariana Pickering (Emu Architects)
@Janet - it's actually the same risk for mic as in a wooden house. It comes down to how it's sealed. A straw house built to code is plastered and sealed completely, with DRY dry dry straw on the inside. Any small insects that were inside the straw would die because of lack of air. A mouse who somehow made it inside during the construction process without anyone noticing, set up a nest, had babies, and then got sealed inside... would also die. Sadness. A mouse on the outside after construction is complete would have to gnaw through a few centimeters of plaster or half an inch of OSB, which he would not be inclined to do unless there were already a crack. So seal it well, leave no cracks... not creature friendly! :) Good question, thanks.

@lynnag - yes, humid locations are not a problem. Eaves of the house need to be designed to protect the walls from rain, as with any location. Any humidity produced inside the house would need to be evacuated with mechanical ventilation, again, as with any house... If you would like more info on that, check my ideabook about mechanical ventilation:



@lindseykn - yep! dry dry dry! super important

as for aesthetics..
to each his own! I tried to pick examples that show that it can be used with a modern look as well as the hobbit version. :)
on Sunday at 7:26am     
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agiesbrecht commented on an ideabook

If You Have Room for Only One Summer Crop ...

Get an edible that’s long on flavor even if you’re short on space, with a long-time gardener’s favorite picks Full Story
     Comment   April 6, 2014
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agiesbrecht
Tomatoes, strawberries, & corn: mainstays of my dad's garden when I was growing up! Homegrown corn on the cob is miles better than anything you can buy in a store, though you may have to go some lengths to prevent raccoons from eating it all. Most of these in the list can be grown in a planter, which is another plus.

Another crop to consider is bell peppers. They can be added to a lot of things or eaten fresh.
April 6, 2014 at 4:54pm   
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PRO
Erika Bierman Photography
Love growing tomatoes!
last Friday at 3:51am     
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agiesbrecht commented on an ideabook
     Comment   April 6, 2014
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agiesbrecht
The only one of my indoor plants I haven't killed yet is an aloe. Those things are resilient. Granted, the schefflera, the geranium, and the strawberries all died in one go from cold snap - they were outside so they could get decent sun. (And it took me way too long to figure out that scheffleras must be pruned if you want them bushy, so it was this tall, leggy, unattractive thing.) I'm happy with silk flowers, and am putting together quite a stash.

I am at this moment using a desk that I wish I hadn't bought! It's a beautiful desk: wood veneer with an inlaid pattern, all in craftsman style. But it's too tall. Most desks are too tall. I'm not short for a woman - I'm 5'5" - but if I want to have my feet on the floor and my keyboard at a comfortable height, the desktop should be no more than 27 inches off the ground. The keyboard tray is about that height, but I hate keyboard trays! At the time, I figured I'd just live with it. But then, after buying the desk, I found out that IKEA makes an adjustable desk - GALANT - for a reasonable price. One of these GALANT desks now holds my work computer (I work from home), and I love it to bits. But my home computer is stuck on this beautiful, impractical wooden desk.

I haven't decided yet whether I will butcher the wooden desk to bring it to an acceptable height, or sell it at a loss and buy a second GALANT desk.
April 6, 2014 at 4:46pm     
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greenrivergirl
You could put in a chair or plate rail and just paint below that for a little change-up :-)
on Monday at 9:57am   
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raquelaclark
I suck at curtains. For years I lived with this pointry triangle valance on a patio window in my living room. They were expensive so I forced myself to live with them. I even built and painted a large wood cornice thing once. Complete nightmare. I have literally purchased and gave away dozens of sets of curtains and drapes over the course of 3 homes. Now, I currently live in a beach house facing the water with nothing but blinds in the necessary places. Not a single strip of fabric hung from a rod anywhere and I am free!
18 hours ago     
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agiesbrecht commented on an ideabook

You Said It: ‘What Will You Grow?’ and More Houzz Quotables

Design advice, inspiration and observations that struck a chord this week Full Story
     Comment   March 23, 2014
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agiesbrecht
Anytime someone uses "resale value" as a reason to do or not do something, I want to punch something. It seems to me that we are all too eager to lock ourselves into old ways of doing things SOLELY because we're afraid of what happens if we don't. I mean, don't get me wrong: I love traditional things, I love old styles, and I'm just as impatient about "do it because it's new" attitudes. But "resale value" is a stupid reason.

First, I'd be willing to bet that no house has ever sat too long on the market or been marked down heavily SOLELY because of it didn't tick all the "resale value" boxes. Chances are, if there's something non-conforming about your house that you really love, there's someone else out there who loves it too.

Second: it's your house. You should love your house. Why obsess about whether your house is going to sell someday? You're not selling it now, are you? It hasn't been that long since everybody thought that you HAD to have a formal dining room, or that your house HAD to be humongous. Tastes change, customs change, the market changes. None of us can control that. Remodel your house for you, so that you enjoy your time there.
March 23, 2014 at 2:46pm     
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gaildalmat
I recently bought a manufactured double-wide. The master bath has a garden tub and a small shower. Next time I get a $ windfall, I'm moving the laundry from the service porch to where the tub is now. Then, maybe I'll make the shower bigger, using some of the space now used by the vanity. The service porch can be adapted for storage with some additional cabinets.
March 23, 2014 at 3:10pm     
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Becky Harris
agiesbrecht, the whole "resale value" thing drives me absolutely up the wall too!
March 24, 2014 at 9:49am   
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agiesbrecht commented on an ideabook

Bathroom Workbook: 12 Things to Consider for Your Remodel

Maybe a tub doesn’t float your boat, but having no threshold is a no-brainer. These points to ponder will help you plan Full Story
     Comment   March 23, 2014
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agiesbrecht
I'd like to point out that things like grab bars and zero-threshold showers are useful to a lot of non-elderly people. If you're injured or otherwise physically disabled, you learn really quickly how hard it can be to maneuver around a typical bathroom.

I don't take baths, but I like having a tub for other reasons. Sometimes I need a big sturdy basin for soaking or washing things.

For those considering putting the toilet in a separate room: how about a pocket door? They're more expensive than regular doors, but they're perfect for small spaces.

That bathroom with the book-nook: do I spy a dual-flush toilet? I'd love to get one of those!
March 23, 2014 at 2:22pm     
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royalpayne
Yes, by all means, safety bars. And if not now, at least the blocking for them to be added later. In my 'Your new house' portfolio I plan to pass on, I have visually recorded every improvement we have done. Down to the studs pictures of blocking, electrical runs, plumbing, HVAC ducting, floor joist directions, types of underlayments under the hardwood and tile upgrades, insulation R factors and brands..... In short, every thing I wish had been passed on to me. Oh, and owners manuals of all appliances currently in the house. With their date of purchase and all warranty paperwork.
last Friday at 12:27pm   
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jensdesigntime
love your art!
17 hours ago   
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