Home Renovations Revealed

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Finally, renovations are almost complete!

I haven’t blogged in a while because I have been knee-deep in all things renovating. The renovations and refreshes are almost complete. If you are just joining our journey, we are prepping our home to sell and plan on downsizing when we move. We began preparing at the beginning of the year with endless decluttering and purging. The purging went into overdrive mode when we had a roll-off dumpster delivered the end of May.

Home Renovations revealed at SunflowerDesigns. Preparing and renovating our home to put it up for sale is a daunting but doable chore. #sunflowerdesigns

Following our yard sale in June, we set a rule: nothing could come back into the house. If it didn’t sell in the yard sale, it was either donated or went into the roll-off dumpster. 

My mother-in-law has lived with us for several years in an in-law suite in our basement. She has moved to assisted living as part of this process, and she does not have room for all of her things. So, those items were either donated or went into the dumpster.

Outdoor Renovations

Landscaping was handled early on to increase the curb appeal, as well as pressure washing lots of areas. We still have one more deck to pressure wash, as well as some areas around the pool. This image of the front of the home shows all the new shutters that were replaced at the beginning of the project.

The front door and threshold have needed attention for some time, and I couldn’t be more pleased with how they turned out. The sad image of before and the difference of after are nothing short of amazing!

Indoor Renovations

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know we did a living room refresh in February. All the bookshelves were emptied, lots of things purged, and then things were replaced on the bookshelves knowing that we’d be showing the home to potential buyers at some point.

Flooring on the main level of the home was replaced last year. We are so glad we handled that first because it allowed us to enjoy the new flooring while still living here.

Most rooms had already been painted. However, the foyer was still in dire need of renovation. Dark, striped wallpaper and unattractive brown paint on all the beautiful crown molding and wood trim left the foyer feeling like a cave. Every time I walked into the foyer, I thought to myself “The 80s called and wants their wallpaper back.”

Not many things are as unpleasant to me as removing wallpaper, but it simply had to be done. The foyer was not light and bright like the rest of the main floor of the home. So, before starting to remove the wallpaper I researched online to see if there was some method other than what we’ve always done that would make it less painful to do. Enter my new secret method!! I tried a solution of hot water and white vinegar (2 parts water and 1 part vinegar). The hot water softened the wallpaper and backing, and the vinegar worked to dissolve and loosen the wallpaper paste. Everything pulled off like a charm! No sanding or scraping – just pull off big sections of wallpaper. 

Next all the wood trim and spindles on the stairs were painted a high-gloss white enamel. The walls were then painted a creamy off-white that is the same as the two adjacent rooms to the foyer. Everything flows beautifully now.

It was fun finding items either already in our home, or a few things from Hobby Lobby to dress the foyer up. The white wood trim pops now! People who have seen the foyer since it was completed have asked if the light fixture is new. Nope. We replaced the light fixture about three years ago, but it disappeared in all the wallpaper stripes and brown trim. So, it seems like a new fixture. 

Another bonus is how the leaded glass windows in and around the front door now really pop. I left the interior front door it’s natural wood and surrounded it with some items that help pull that color out.

The master bathroom needed just a little bit of help. I’d been wanting a little shelf on one end of the long vanity to hold a few things. Baskets…you KNOW I love baskets! These little baskets look decorative, but they hold several things necessary to grooming and now those things are hidden away! I bought baskets (what else?) to hold toiletries that are used every day, that can now be stowed in the cabinets under the vanity to keep the counter clear. It’s important for potential buyers to be able to envision their things in your space (not your things). I made a floral arrangement to break up the long expanse of the vanity and add some texture.

We are almost ready to put a sign in the yard. After months of preparation, we are so ready to move on to the next phase of our lives! I will continue to share our moving/downsizing journey with you, and lessons learned along the way. I’m honored that you are coming along on this journey with me, and I hope you will tell your friends to follow along too. 


Helping you create a beautiful home is what @Home with Sunflower Designs is all about. Each week we offer suggestions on ways to add beauty and simplicity to your surroundings, so that you and your family can enjoy your home. Until next time… #livecreatively!

Sunflower Designs helps you create a beautiful home one wreath and one space at a time. 

Ann Bryant, Owner & Designer

Follow our blog @Home With Sunflower Designs at www.sunflowerdesigns.biz 

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