Episode 18 - The Americana House April 10, 2018 Well folks, this is our last Fixer Upper recap! What a journey this has been and what a way to end it. Mike and Holli were so fun to work with, and we loved getting to restore this adorable home in one of Waco’s historic neighborhoods. Holli is from Texas, so they decided to finally make the move from Washington to Waco to be closer to her family. Mike is the lead singer in the band MxPx, so at the top of their wishlist was a studio for him to practice his music. They also wanted an open kitchen, plenty of room for their kids to be kids, and a library wall for Holli. DESIGN ELEMENTS The inspiration materials I used to interpret the style of the space The Herreras knew what they wanted from the beginning—an old house that had a mix of modern, industrial, and farm. The home itself was a classic Americana-style cottage, so we really drew it out with details like the bold crown moulding throughout the house, restoring the original shiplap in the living room, and a beautiful fireplace accent wall. LIVING ROOM Objective | Create a cozy room for the entire family to spend time together Holli loved the texture and dimension that comes with shiplap, so when we found beautifully intact original shiplap in the living room, we accentuated it by painting it a classic white and polishing it off with a thicker moulding around the windows and door frames. We had to work around a couple of patch jobs, but at the end of the day, it all came together. The hardwoods in this home are original, longleaf pine floors that give this space an old, established feel. We were so thankful our carpenter, Clint, had some salvaged additions we could use to patch up a few of the bad areas so that we could save the entire floor. The number 9 is really meaningful for the family in lots of different fun ways, so we decided to add this metal number on the wall to really make this feel like home. They loved it! Having a library wall was at the top of Holli’s wishlist, and I’d never turn down an opportunity to include one in a home. To me, a wall of books instantly makes a space feel cozier and for this home especially, it played into their eclectic style perfectly. This beautiful mantel is original to the house, and we refinished it and moved it to be a part of the library wall. The family wanted to include a TV in their living room to make it functional for them, but we were afraid it would have looked really out of place on the library wall. The solution was actually the two beautiful mirrors above the mantel. They open up on a piano hinge to easily hide the TV when it’s not in use. DINING + KITCHEN Objective | Open up the layout to create a better flow between rooms We reworked the layout of this home quite a bit to give it a few more natural transition areas. To separate the dining room and living room we installed sidelights and a transom so that the space flowed well from room to room and stayed feeling open. This kitchen started out pretty small and closed off, so we opened everything up and infused their style throughout. The main objective here was to make the space feel bright and open while bringing in details that complemented the original character of the room, like the original shiplap ceiling, the built-in hutch, and wood floors. This hutch was original to the home, and since the family loved it as much as I did, I knew we had to save it. Restoring it brought it back to life and made it the perfect place to store entertaining and serving pieces. KID’S ROOM Objective | Create a whimsical room that their daughter can grow into for years to come This room is sweet, whimsical and perfectly fit for a princess. We had our friend and local artist, Emily Barton, paint the ombre wall and make an incredible macrame wall hanging that incorporated all of Sailor’s favorite colors—I love how both projects turned out. Sailor loves rainbows, and this was the perfect way to incorporate the same shades in a way that she’ll love for years to come. MASTER SUITE Objective | Create a relaxing oasis for Holli and Mike The master suite was already open and bright, so I kept the design pretty simple and clean with some fun, modern elements like the chrome ceiling fan, industrial side tables and a colorful rug. For the master bathroom we kept the details clean and crisp. The vanity has a little bit of a midcentury modern feel to it, and then we brought in the industrial details with the concrete countertops, vanity mirrors, and hardware. MUSIC STUDIO Objective | Section off a workable studio for Mike to practice his music and get work done This is the most interesting “office” I think we’ve ever designed! Mike needed space to do his creative work—interviewing guests for podcasts, displaying his vintage camera collection, and providing good acoustics for recording music. This space had to be multifunctional, and it had to be soundproof. We cut out these cedar blocks in varying lengths and installed them on the wall in a way that not only soaked up sound to make the space soundproof, but also made for an interesting focal wall. EXTERIOR Objective | Clean up the existing character to give the home updated curb appeal It only took a couple of simple additions to really give this home a lot of curb appeal. We painted the exterior a dark grayish blue, added in the white railings by the porch to tie in some dramatic contrast, updated the skirt with an antique brick, and painted the front door a bold mustard color. The nostalgia of a white picket fence makes this home feel all the more quaint and cozy. As always, welcome home, Herrera family! It was an honor restoring this beautiful, old home for you and we had so much fun doing it. We are truly thankful for these past 5 years, and we hope that each and every one of you who have followed along with us on this journey will have the guts to take on your own Fixer Upper. This has truly been the time of our lives. Read my update from last week to see what’s next for us as we move into this new season of life. Fixer Upper may be over, but there’s still so much to come! Interview With Homeowner Q: What was something that surprised you about the design process? A: I knew how talented the Magnolia team was, and I knew without a doubt that we would love whatever Jo came up with for us, but I was totally surprised that they took so much care in each and every decision made for our home, and how they kept our family in mind in each of those decisions. They took the time to ask us questions about our style preferences and even went as far as to look through my inspiration board to sort of "get into my head" when it comes to design elements that I love. When we walked into our new home, I looked around and saw so many pieces that were just us. That surprised me—the fact that it was so important to them that our home be customized exactly to fit our family. Q: What was the deciding factor that attracted you to choosing this home over the other two options? A: There was no contest, really. When I walked through the door of this house, I just had a feeling. The feel of a house, its character, its personality, is so important to me, and this particular house had so much character. The house was built in 1910 so it's over 100 years old, and I think it's so romantic to think of all of the life that's been lived there, between those walls. I loved the idea of giving this old house a brand new life. Q: What is your favorite room in the house, and why? A: My favorite room in the house is the living room. It's been my dream all of my adult life to have a library, and Chip and Joanna made that dream come true in our living room. The room itself is so cozy and comfortable and that's exactly what I wanted, a cozy place for my family to just live, relax, and play. I can see Mike playing his guitar there with the kids running around and me sitting with a cup of coffee surrounded by all my books. It's my dream house! Q: What is your favorite feature in the house, and why? A: My favorite feature in our home is the library wall in the living room. It's my dream! Our ceilings are 10 feet high and those library walls go all the way up. I love books—reading them, looking at them, even smelling them...they just make a room feel good, you know? I seriously could not have imagined it turning out any more beautiful than it did. Q: How did your home balance design and functionality? A: I wanted a beautiful home that I wouldn't be afraid of my two little kids ruining. It probably sounds terrible, but kids can create some pretty big messes in record time! The last thing I wanted was to have this house that looks like a showroom but that my family wouldn't be able to live comfortably in. Comfort is so important to us, and Joanna was able to create the perfect balance of design and functionality. The house is incredibly beautiful, so much care taken in each design element, but it's also a totally livable space. There's an open, airy feeling as soon as you walk through the front door. You flow from one room to the next and there are so many comfortable places to be, whether it's lounging in the living room with the library wall, or sitting in one of the seating areas in the kitchen, swinging in my daughter’s swing chair, or hanging out in the studio living area. Q: Why did you apply to Fixer Upper? A: Mike and I have always talked about moving to Texas. I'm from Texas and moved to Mike's hometown in Washington when we got married. We've lived together in Washington for 16 years and now that we have two babies, it's become more important to me than ever to be closer to my family in Texas. Logistically, it's hard to find a house, remodel it, and do all the work that that entails from across the country, so one night I was watching Fixer Upper and it occurred to me to grab my laptop and look into what it would take to be on the show. I knew that Waco was central to my family in Texas so I filled out the application I found online, and the rest is history! Q: How did you decide on the design of the house? What inspired the choice? A: Our style is eclectic. We love the industrial farmhouse look, we love rustic, we're also into mid-century modern...a little bit country, a little bit rock ‘n roll? Joanna kept all of that in mind when she started designing our home and she nailed it. I love the contrast of the dark cabinets and shelves against the bright white shiplap walls and the raw wood ceilings. She managed to weave all of our styles seamlessly throughout the house.