This Old Farmhouse -Pt. 21- The evolution of a room.

Renovation projects ideally help a home to evolve, although in our experience they occasionally cause a home to devolve, as in the case of many of the “builder grade” projects we come across, in our own lives as well as projects at KitchenLab and Design in a Bag–hopefully we can help people to get their homes back on the evolutionary path; we hope that This Old Farmhouse helps people to envision what is possible in the same way that we are constantly inspired by great magazines like House Beautiful (we love their Kitchen and Bath of the month) and blogs like Charles and Hudson, to name only a couple.

This Old Farmhouse was in a stage of devolution when we found it, faded orange shag carpets and dark panel walls could have put us off, but a bit of madness is part of the makeup of a DIY’er–and a short memory is also very useful. We are having so much fun working back through time on this retrospective, it can almost make us forget the current sorrows in our next project “This Old Burned Coach House” (please feel free to suggest a better name), which is wallowing in City of Chicago B.S at the moment, I challenge anyone to make sense of the machinations of this cities’ building department, it truly is impossible. The cities reputation as being difficult is well deserved. We sincerely hope that our new project takes off in the next month or so–we have waited for two months for an appointment in the City of Chicago’s building department, it seems it could be longer, we’ll let you know. Happily, today we are going to look back at the evolution of a room in This Old Farmhouse, one which had many incarnations during the project: as a temporary kitchen, a storeroom, a workout room (spinning on my bike indoors during the winter months), and of course as a living room, constantly in transition. Have a look through the photo gallery, it really is revealing in the evolution of this house. Please notice how the decor of the room constantly evolved during the project, which goes with the territory of living with a designer, lots of redecorating, even during construction.

Living room when we first arrived.

Lose the carpet, pull out approximately a gazillion nails from the particle board...and the legs you see sticking out are from the future dining room table.

Another step in the right direction--floors sanded and sealed--R added window treatments and end tables and lamps, which made a huge difference while construction continued, slowly. Walls have been painted--progress, slowly.

Add the Eames chair and let sleeping dogs lie...note the windows are in the process of being replaced .

Windows mostly replaced, adding a second window added a ton of light and brought in a view of the barn. Our prize 60's couches have replaced the slip covered transitional couches.

Evolution complete, at least as complete as anything in our lives ever is. The view today.

Another view of the finished room...

3 responses to “This Old Farmhouse -Pt. 21- The evolution of a room.”

  1. Rie says:

    I just wanted to tell you how much I love your home!! I read the article today on and fell in love with everything about your house. So happy to have found the images and now your blog.