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The Before

This house had popped up on Zillow in late April 2016 as ‘Coming Soon’. It looked interesting enough and I gave it the name ‘Awkward Space House’. Now let’s forget that name RIGHT AWAY, okay? As time went on, it wasn’t listed until just a bit over a week before we flew out for our house hunting trip! Coincidence or God’s gracious plan? I’d say it’s the second one.

When we stepped over the threshold for the first time we both felt like this could be a possibility. It had some land, the old main house was super bright and beautiful and we liked the idea of having the guest quarters away from our private rooms. Long story short, we ended up falling in love with it and bought our first house!

We have so many plans and dreams for this place! It’s going to be such a beauty once we’re done with our projects list. To give you a good idea of what we’re dealing with, let’s take a peek at the before photos I took after we closed.

The Outside  //  The house consists of three parts – the old main house (far right), the ell or breezeway (middle) and the barn (far left). This is typical to New England colonials and we wouldn’t have it any other way!

House of Menig - New England Colonial Before

House of Menig - New England Colonial Before

The Living Room  //  This is the room I pretty much fell in love with at first sight. I like how bright and airy it feels and can’t wait to throw in our comfy couch and this IKEA chair! A perfect spot to curl up under a warm blanket, sip some Glühwein and read a book while snow is turning the world white…

Adrian wants to reposition the pellet stove as it takes up a ton of room in this small space. I’m just grateful that we’ll have at least one room that will be nice and toasty in the winter.

House of Menig - New England Colonial BeforeHouse of Menig - New England Colonial BeforeHouse of Menig - New England Colonial Before

My Office  //  The second room downstairs in the main house will be my office. It’s plenty big with large windows on three sides and a small closet. We’re thinking of putting in a wall-to-wall window seat underneath the large window in the picture below.


The Staircase & Front Entry  //  This is one of Adrian’s winter projects. The plastery staircase and upstairs landing/hallway area. It’s currently clad in an exotic wallpaper and definitely needs a revamp. We’re envisioning some gorgeous picture frame mouldings to give it back some old world charm (and much needed elegance)


The Master Bedroom  //  Upstairs is our bedroom. It’s not an en-suite, but the bathroom is right across the hall. Easy peasy! The closet you see below – it’s going to be torn out. It’s the only wall without windows, which makes it the perfect spot for the bed. To house our minimal wardrobe we’re going to create a built-in PAX closet system from IKEA. I love how versatile these guys are, with drawers and shelves and all!


The Master Bath  //  It’s small, but it works. We’re thinking of renovating this space sometimes down the road. It’s not high on our list and in the meantime, I’m thinking of adding some plank walls in the little toilet area and some pretty hooks for our towels.


The Crafts Room  //  The second upstairs bedroom is tiny. Adrian suggested it could be the perfect craft/sewing/painting room for me 🙂 Isn’t he the sweetest!?

rahelmenigphotography_0821rahelmenigphotography_0822House of Menig - New England Colonial Before

The Kitchen  //  Now we enter the breezeway of the house. This space gave me some stomach aches in the beginning. Although it has plenty of windows, it’s pretty dark. On the positive side, it has vaulted ceilings and exposed beams!! Seriously, we didn’t even dare to dream this big! We’d like to completely gut and re-do the kitchen. We’re thinking a modern white kitchen, possibly with high gloss cabinet doors and lushious honed marble countertops. This will most likely be a Spring project.

(Please excuse the mess, I was running around the house taking these photos just minutes before we had to leave for the airport…)


The Dining Space  //  This is how the house got the nickname “Awkward Space House”, because it features this really long breezeway. By taking away the tile flooring and giving the barn entry some HOOMPF, we hope to make this a really pretty open dining space with a floating credenza and possibly a faux fireplace mantle. For me, this is probably the hardest space to design. It’s large and awkward and needs to be very functional at the same time. I have a hunch though, that once we move our furniture in it will all come together naturally.

rahelmenigphotography_0827House of Menig - New England Colonial BeforeHouse of Menig - New England Colonial Before

The Barn Entrance & Mudroom Area  //  Lots of cool plans are in the works for the barn entrance & mudroom area! We’re talking plank walls, a custom bench and an easy-to-take-care-of tile floor!


Adrian’s Office & Music Space  //  This is Adrian’s office. He loves the exposed beams and the large window that overlooks our large backyard. We will be adding new flooring throughout and keep it nice and masculine.


The Guest Quarters  //  We’re really excited for our guest quarters with separate entrance! This will make it so comfy and cozy for our AirBnB guests! This green carpet is what my dreams are made of!! WRONG!!! It will be ripped out asap and replace with some cool plywood floors! This entire space houses two bedrooms and a large bath. For now we’ll turn the larger bedroom into the guest room and keep the smaller one for storage. Down the road I would love to put bunk beds in it though! Just imagine the fun when families come for a visit 🙂






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