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Our plans for the garage were a bit of a roller coaster. Initially, we thought we’d hang some hooks, get our bicycles off the floor and call it a day. But then we remembered, ha, this is us!, and considering we seemingly love to add an element of extra work to most things (busted), we thought, but how can we make it a space we really, really enjoy?

From there, our plans escalated – a new concrete pad! painting all the plywood! brighter lights and an automatic door! – but after realizing our roof needed repair, we had to reel it back in. All said and done (the concrete pad became a ‘someday’ wish), we think we hit a happy balance for these two DIYers. It’s so, so much better, and I’m pretty sure I even called it cute! when we called it complete. I don’t have the heart to show the true before photos in this post (they were just too terrible), but this’ll do to show you how things stood with a good cleaning before really diving in. Here’s where we sort-of started:


After addressing that leaky roof, we added a pegboard wall and painted everything a clean grayish white, Zen Pebble by Valspar. There were a handful of smaller to-dos from there – installing a side door, painting exterior trim and cabinets, waterproofing with caulk and hanging curtains(!) – and then we took to Ace Hardware to knock out our punch list. A fun Friday night for the Vargos is a trip to the hardware store (you think I’m kidding?), and wanting to finish the garage once and for all, we spent a good hour loading up on all the things we’d need to complete the job!


We loaded our cart with everything from heavy duty hangers to paper towel holders to storage bins. Every last item we needed was checked off our shopping list, that is, minus a handful of pegboard hooks and cubbies that were passed down to us by a friendly reader (Margot, you’re awesome!).

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Our DIY island, above, has been living in the garage as extra work space since we began our kitchen renovation, and we added a 2×12 board to stash our miter saw and any future tools. Below, I could not resist this little dinosaur spotted in the checkout line at Ace! I’m guessing that no one is really surprised by that? Dinos 4-ever.

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When we bought our home two summers ago, a friend of Scott’s gave us a few knick knacks from his father’s garage. One of those items is this nifty blue odds-n-ends organizer, which came in surprisingly handy on a few occasions already! Most of the bins are labeled with masking tape and thick marker, although some of the empties hold a surprise or two.


To the right of the main workbench, we had tidied up our bikes, remaining bins and lawn tools, but it was still a constant fight to pull out anything we needed:


Now, look at all that glorious floor space! There’s a hook for everything, and for the first time in ever, our bikes are being stored on actual racks! After settling on all the placement, we joked that it felt like our own tiny storefront. I’d like that weed whacker, please and thank you.

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We took a day earlier this summer to create wood storage, seen below to the left of the workbench. Game changer! This was before we painted, but after a big clean-up:


Ooh, cleanliness. Those two bins beneath the wood piles are full of smaller scraps, and just as we did in our indoor workshop, we stashed our extra long ladder high out of the way:

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A bonus to having exposed framework in the garage? You can stash odds and ends between the studs! We used bungee cords and eye hooks in a few places to tuck things away and keep things nice and neat.

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Our Garage To-Do List is all crossed off except for garage door repair/replacement (and sadly, the garage floor will have to wait). But we are working on it, having already collected a couple of quotes. Soon enough, we should be able to open and close that door with the touch of a button, and, you know, park a car in here!

Just as Ace Hardware helped us whip this outdoor room into shape, they want to do the same for one of you, and so together with the Ace crew, we’ll be giving away a $100 Ace Hardware gift card to one lucky reader!  The giveaway runs through Thursday, September 3rd at 5pm CST; simply enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. The winner will be announced within this post by Thursday evening. Good luck and happy entering!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


We’re excited to be collaborating with Ace Hardware as a part of their Ace Blogger Panel. Ace has provided us with compensation and the materials necessary to complete this project (hey, thanks, Ace!), and all opinions are our own.

  • Lisa Brown - August 31, 2015 - 6:50 AM

    All kinds of things on my mind today; hope your day, and week, is fantastic :)ReplyCancel

  • Ashley@Biggerthanthethreeofus - August 31, 2015 - 7:09 AM

    Wow, totally inspiring. I really love the bungee cord ideas and that little organizer with screws. You have me putting our garage on the to-do list.

    On my mind today: Another cup of coffee. It’s early!ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie - August 31, 2015 - 7:59 AM

    What a beautiful garage. I am working slowing to organize and create a small shed that will hopefully hold all my lovely tools and supplies!ReplyCancel

  • Laura - August 31, 2015 - 8:01 AM

    Why are before and afters so satisfying?! I love seeing the grey/white garage – it looks beautiful! :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 8:51 AM

      And I couldn’t even bring myself to share the BEFORE befores! These are the ‘clean’ befores. Ha!ReplyCancel

  • Meghan - August 31, 2015 - 8:05 AM

    it looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Jessie Aucoin - August 31, 2015 - 8:11 AM

    Thanks for the giveaway!!ReplyCancel

  • Nate - August 31, 2015 - 8:21 AM

    In to win! Love all the work yall have done!ReplyCancel

  • Justynn @ Creative Life Antics - August 31, 2015 - 8:30 AM

    I’m weirdly excited over all these garage storage ideas you guys are posting. We close on our first house with a full garage in less than two weeks and I’m so EXCITED about all the organizing and storage and workshop builds coming up!

    Thanks for the ideas again!!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 8:51 AM

      Oh, awesome! Congrats to you! So exciting!ReplyCancel

  • Harper - August 31, 2015 - 8:31 AM

    Is the concrete pad in worse shape than it looks? Seems okay in pictures but I know they can be deceiving!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 8:50 AM

      It’s pretty rough in some areas, and not so bad in others. The worst parts of the pad are mostly at the garage entrance (where the car enters), although there are some crumbling chunks along the edges… it will likely need to be repaired/replaced at some point, but it’s not an emergency, thank goodness!ReplyCancel

  • Jenn C - August 31, 2015 - 8:41 AM

    I love the pegboard and the use of bungee cords!ReplyCancel

  • Amy c - August 31, 2015 - 8:50 AM

    Looks great. We need to something similar to our garage workshop, especially the pegboard.ReplyCancel

  • Laura Ck - August 31, 2015 - 8:54 AM

    This looks amazing!ReplyCancel

  • Mary - August 31, 2015 - 8:56 AM

    Anything on my mind? The only thing on my mind today is how I wish I would go into labor! I have 2 weeks until my due date but I wish the baby would come now!ReplyCancel

  • Anna Kristina - August 31, 2015 - 8:56 AM

    This looks amazing! I absolutely love your color choices (pinned it as soon as you first posted the paint job), and it is fun to see it all finished!!ReplyCancel

  • karen - August 31, 2015 - 8:58 AM

    I would love to have an organized garage/work bench. Would love to try the “Magic Art of Tidying” trick with my tools. I am sure I have so many screwdrivers stashed in the garage, basement, drawers, etc.!ReplyCancel

  • Elissa - August 31, 2015 - 9:06 AM

    I love how the sawhorses fit so neatly into the studs of the garage – makes my heart happy! We are constantly battling a need for storage of tools and this makes everything looks so neat and tidy. Do you guys feel it’s pretty easy for you to keep everything this organized, or will it all disintegrate into chaos over time?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 9:54 AM

      Our hope is that it stays this way! As we hung and stashed everything, we did so with the intention that it would be EASIER to keep it clean. A place for everything and everything in its place.ReplyCancel

  • Nicole - August 31, 2015 - 9:11 AM

    Seeing fabulous garage before and afters is always so motivating! Maybe, just maybe, we’ll get our bums in gear and whip our garage into shape next weekend!ReplyCancel

  • Christy G. - August 31, 2015 - 9:15 AM

    I love the white. So clean and fresh!!ReplyCancel

  • christine - August 31, 2015 - 9:28 AM

    I’m afraid to step foot in our shed, so this is seriously impressive!ReplyCancel

  • Rhonda G - August 31, 2015 - 9:34 AM

    This looks sooo great! My garage is such a mess. I am ashamed of it.ReplyCancel

  • Esha - August 31, 2015 - 9:45 AM

    it looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Elaine - August 31, 2015 - 9:48 AM

    All of your organization and painting add to the excitement of closing in a few short weeks!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 9:54 AM

      Hooray! Congrats to you!!ReplyCancel

  • Kari - August 31, 2015 - 9:52 AM

    Everything you do inspires me – but the garage stuff? Above and beyond! I am completely in awe of your garage organization magic.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 9:55 AM

      Let’s just say we were REALLY motivated. After 2 winters of complete chaos and shivering at the thought of working in the garage, we knew it had to change!ReplyCancel

  • Patti - August 31, 2015 - 9:53 AM

    Your garage looks great! Congrats on the hard work paying off.ReplyCancel

  • Alex - August 31, 2015 - 9:57 AM

    omg, i would just sit and stare at the beauty of your hard work!!ReplyCancel

  • Rebecca G. - August 31, 2015 - 9:58 AM

    Building a new house means constant trips to the hardware store for us!ReplyCancel

  • Trilby C. - August 31, 2015 - 10:00 AM

    Right now, I’m a bit jealous of your exposed studs in the garage. We did a HUGE garage cleaning job yesterday here, and I struggle with places to hang (hide?) things in our completely drywalled garage. Though I do have a few ideas of how to get the yard tools (weed whacker, hedge trimmer, etc) off the floor now, thanks to your pictures!!ReplyCancel

  • Emily - August 31, 2015 - 10:02 AM

    Our garage is definitely a work in progress! We hung some of our stuff (our bikes have been hanging since the apartment days) and now we just need to organize the rest of it. Slow and steady seems to be our renovation pace.ReplyCancel

  • Haley W - August 31, 2015 - 10:05 AM

    Inspired by this!ReplyCancel

  • Leslie - August 31, 2015 - 10:05 AM

    Motivated to conquer our detached garage! Thank you for all of the inspiration!ReplyCancel

  • Molly W - August 31, 2015 - 10:10 AM

    Looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Karen - August 31, 2015 - 10:16 AM

    I love how the garage has come along. It is so bright. Great job.ReplyCancel

  • Missy G. - August 31, 2015 - 10:25 AM

    Looks so clean and organized! I thinking I should send this post to the hubby to light a fire under his tush to do the same!ReplyCancel

  • Kelly Lee - August 31, 2015 - 10:38 AM

    Looks soo neat and organized! I need to do the same for my garage!ReplyCancel

  • Nathan - August 31, 2015 - 10:55 AM

    Organizing our garage as been on the list for some time, but haven’t wanted to spend the money or time doing it, since few people see it. Now, I think we need to get on it!ReplyCancel

  • Carley M - August 31, 2015 - 10:55 AM

    That is one nifty garage! Love it :)ReplyCancel

  • Staci - August 31, 2015 - 10:56 AM

    OMG, serious garage envy over here!! Might have to do some work on our tiny carport storage space… Don’t you miss condo life? ;-)ReplyCancel

  • Bridget P. - August 31, 2015 - 11:05 AM

    Nice job on the garage!ReplyCancel

  • Missy - August 31, 2015 - 11:07 AM

    Just looking at the few pictures, I can see where your floor has settled in certain spots. Have you gotten a quote for mud jacking the floor? It’s typically a lot cheaper than tearing out and re pouring the whole floor. The garage looks 1000% better than the before! Makes me want to spend the weekend getting my garage cleaned out and organized myself! LOVE the curtain idea.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 11:15 AM

      Thanks for the tip, Missy! We hadn’t looked into that yet.ReplyCancel

  • Megan - August 31, 2015 - 11:09 AM

    The garage looks awesome!!ReplyCancel

  • Breanna Veth - August 31, 2015 - 11:18 AM

    Love the garage it looks fantastic! I was looking for the tutorial on the supplies you used to frame your 100 year-old nails and couldn’t find it.. Do you know where I could find that link?ReplyCancel

  • Sharon Flasche - August 31, 2015 - 11:21 AM

    Our garage is scary! Hope to use some of your organizing tips, Thank you.ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer S - August 31, 2015 - 11:48 AM

    Beautiful garage! What a great inspiration.ReplyCancel

  • Bethany Wellman - August 31, 2015 - 11:51 AM

    You guys did such a fantastic job, you should be so proud! Perfect you added a little dinosaur touch too :)ReplyCancel

  • Suzanne - August 31, 2015 - 11:58 AM

    This is seriously motivating!ReplyCancel

  • Jordan Troublefield - August 31, 2015 - 12:47 PM

    I’m full of garage envy- that ceiling is too cool!!! Love love loveReplyCancel

  • Andrea - August 31, 2015 - 12:56 PM

    I have a seriously tiny storage closet where I’m trying to organize my power tools, lawn tools, seasonal decor, and bike. I think some peg board and a real bike rack would definitely help!ReplyCancel

  • Amy Lynn - August 31, 2015 - 1:06 PM

    I reckon your garage is brighter and more organized than our household, haha. Looks great guys! :)ReplyCancel

  • Anna - August 31, 2015 - 1:07 PM

    Our garage needs some serious organization. Yours looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Josh | The Kentucky Gent - August 31, 2015 - 2:00 PM

    That garage is filling up quite nicely! Especially that peg board wall.

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent

  • Rosie - August 31, 2015 - 2:05 PM

    Ace Hardware is the only hardware store I love going to. The ppl who work there are knowledgeable and helpful and the merchandise is wonderful!ReplyCancel

  • Jenn - August 31, 2015 - 2:23 PM

    We’ve spent quite a few Friday Date Nights wandering the aisles of our local Lowe’s, so I don’t doubt you there!

    The garage looks great :)ReplyCancel

  • kathyg - August 31, 2015 - 2:31 PM

    Love the bungee cord idea!ReplyCancel

  • Ursula Ellis - August 31, 2015 - 2:31 PM

    If mine could have just a quarter of the organization you’ve managed here, I’d be ecstatic. What a great job. And thanks for the chance to enter the give-away.ReplyCancel



When we last left off with our Milo Baughman chair, we were so sure we were going bold. We asked, fuchsia or teal? I found myself waffling along with each comment that came through, agreeing that fuchsia was it when you said so, but also nodding my head when you leaned teal. And for those of that you voted for neutral? We heard that, too. I would think, oh, yes! Neutral. Totally! Scott, we must be nuts, yeah?

Well, surprise! We ultimately nixed both when, on a whim, I ordered a sample swatch of super soft lavender velvet. Lavender! There’s a color I never thought I’d say, but as soon as we were holding the swatch in our hand, we knew it was the one:


The fabric is Wisteria by Robert Allen, and the color is more subtle than the online photo suggests. We needed a total of 8 yards for the upholstery, and we had the job done by our go-to team in the city, Covers Unlimited (the same crew that performed magic on One Tail at a Time’s Garbage Sofa!). All said and done, the cost of the chair, fabric and upholstery is still comparable to that of a new arm chair (moderately priced), but can I get all nerdy and just say, they don’t make them like they used to? You know we can’t resist a good furniture rescue, but it’s so worth it when you find an old chair made of solid wood and heavy springs. Plus, ooh, that sloped arm! So pretty.


This funny little nook of ours has already been through a few transitions, but there is some progress aside from the chair! We’ve picked up a brassy sconce, we have rug samples in hand, and we’re thinking this vintage fabric will find a place in there as well. And just as we thought we’d go bold on Milo’s fabric, we were adamant about leaving the wall color alone. But, um, we’re changing our minds?

Just call us Waffles.

  • Shannon @ Fabulously Vintage - August 27, 2015 - 7:35 AM

    Love, love, LOVE the lavender!! Great choice, as always, guys! :)ReplyCancel

  • lsaspacey - August 27, 2015 - 8:43 AM

    Oh no, don’t change the paint! It’s perfect especially with that chair now.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 9:48 AM

      If we do, it will be similar, maybe with a little more drama. It’s up in the air, but we’re not counting it out just yet! We do love the dark walls with the lavender, so that won’t change.ReplyCancel

  • Trista - August 27, 2015 - 9:03 AM

    I love your house. You balance color and shapes and styles so so well, and it still looks comfy and cozy.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 9:47 AM

      Such a nice thing to say! Thank you, Trista!ReplyCancel

  • Molly - August 27, 2015 - 9:09 AM

    That wall color is PERFECT with the lavender chair (which is amaaaaazing)! I wouldn’t repaint.ReplyCancel

  • Dusa - August 27, 2015 - 9:47 AM

    Add me to the “keep the paint color” contingent!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 9:49 AM

      We think it will be similar! But better! IF we do it.ReplyCancel

  • Erin - August 27, 2015 - 9:50 AM

    While you are thinking of changing the wall color, I was thinking it might be the color I have been looking for for my entry. Could you share what color you used?
    I love the chair, by the way!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 10:01 AM

      Yup! It’s Blue Fir, a Martha Stewart color.ReplyCancel

  • Leah - August 27, 2015 - 10:23 AM

    Love the lavender velvet! But I’m definitely in agreement with changing the nook color. I think it would look stunning with a more blue-based color. Something a little darker and cooler would harmonize well with the chair and the living room rug.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 10:31 AM

      Girl after my own heart.ReplyCancel

    • Katie - August 28, 2015 - 11:03 AM

      Totally agree!ReplyCancel

  • Gloria - August 27, 2015 - 11:05 AM

    THIS IS LITERALLY THE EXACT FABRIC I’VE BEEN LOOKING FOR. Seriously, I keep telling everyone around me I’m trying to find the right lilac velvet for my office chair. That color looks so dark online, it isn’t in my swatch basket. I’ll have to add it. SO glad I saw this.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 11:10 AM

      Gloria, when the swatch came in the mail, I even asked Scott, wait, did we order this one? When I saw it was Wisteria, I was like, WHAT! It’s SO different and more subtle (and beautiful!) in person. The upholstery weight is so thick, and we even took a push pin and scratched it across the surface to see if it snagged easily. It passed the test!ReplyCancel

  • Allison H - August 27, 2015 - 11:20 AM

    I LOVE the lavender coupled with the current wall color but I’m sure if you have something in mind it will be great. That painting seems to add justthe bit of brightness the corner needs.ReplyCancel

  • Steph M. - August 27, 2015 - 11:32 AM

    LOVE the lavender. It’s one of my favorite colors. I agree a more blue-toned dark color would look excellent. I can’t wait to see a light rug in there too! We just ordered rug samples for our home, and I’m so antsy waiting for them!!!

    On another note, is lavender Jack’s color or what?! HAND-SOME! :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 11:38 AM

      UGH, we’re biased, but yes, he is a handsome, handsome noodle.ReplyCancel

  • Caitlin - August 27, 2015 - 11:34 AM

    What is the information on that warehouse sale again? I live in Humboldt Park and want to make sure it’s on my radar.

    Love the chair!


  • Meg D - August 27, 2015 - 11:44 AM

    Yes Yes Yes to repainting. Not that it isn’t lovely right now, but it isn’t quite right for the room I’m about to paint. Hoping that you’ll go a little darker and more blue/gray so that I can see how that looks and maybe copy! Kim — you are very lucky to have a husband who embraces the lilac and pink. There aren’t a lot of them out there!

    And now that I see the lilac with your framed picture, it seems crazy that you weren’t always thinking soft purple.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 12:02 PM

      Sometimes I think Scott might like pink more than me. I’m not complaining!ReplyCancel

  • Josh | The Kentucky Gent - August 27, 2015 - 1:15 PM

    I mean.. this lavender is kind of like a neutral. No? Either way, it looks great!

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 1:23 PM

      Agreed! It sort of strikes the perfect balance of neutral with color. WE LOVE IT SO.ReplyCancel

  • jenn aka the picky girl - August 27, 2015 - 1:36 PM

    Wow. I never would have gone with this, but I’m liking it. And while it does look good with the wall color, I can see something in this family that’s a little more vibrant making the chair stand out even more. Can’t wait to see! I’ve been waiting on this chair forever!

    Next week, I’m actually going to pick up my (outrageously priced) hot pink fabric for my dining chairs. I never would have gone there without your initial post on this chair, so thanks! I am super pumped and ready to get sewing.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2015 - 2:18 PM

      Good for you! I bet it’s going to look stunning.ReplyCancel

  • Trude - August 28, 2015 - 1:00 PM

    Love it, especially with the wall color (although I can see how you’d want to play even more now)! And that first shot with the pup looking so handsome in that gorgeous light = perfection. :)ReplyCancel

  • misie - August 29, 2015 - 10:38 AM

    LOVE. We just bought lavender pillows for our couch – Mick was afraid it would be too girly – but we love them – It has made me rethink the color altogether.ReplyCancel

  • Mary - August 29, 2015 - 2:47 PM

    Speaking of rug samples…please do a post on rug sources. And telling us of a place that provides samples would be fabulous.
    Love the lavender chair. Maybe add a citrine/chartreuse pillow to it?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 10:23 AM

      We’ve been struggling ourselves! We typically look towards vintage rugs on Ebay or Craigslist, but this is an odd spaced shape. We have some ideas for the rug, but it’s a bit outside the norm… we’ll definitely be sharing!ReplyCancel

  • Karen @ year of serendipity - August 29, 2015 - 10:06 PM

    Swoon! Good choice!!ReplyCancel

  • Haley W - August 31, 2015 - 10:03 AM

    Inspired by your garage! Now I must tackle mine…ReplyCancel



This post is in collaboration with Pella Windows & Doors.

I feel as though this update couldn’t possibly come to you with more enthusiasm, so just imagine this: as we tell the story, we’re shouting! We’re grinning non-stop, and we’re jumping up and down. I’m feeling flustered just trying to find words at all (a rarity, for sure), so simply put, we have our kitchen door!

This story – as with all of our stories, it seems! – goes way back to this past winter, when our first door turned into a comedy of errors. When that contractor went M.I.A. (I like to speculate what happened, mostly out of curiosity but also because I was in denial, no doubt), Pella Windows & Doors came to the rescue. Working with the Pella team and their certified contractor, from the very beginning, has felt so easy. Everything from options and colors to measurements and feedback were handed out willingly and freely. They patiently listened when we asked many (many) questions, and they followed up with phone calls, emails and advice when asked. Imagine that! To say it was a breath of fresh air would be the understatement of the year. We’ve been singing their praises, and we’ll continue to do so.

A quick recap: After waffling on the merits of a 5′ vs. a 6′ door, we landed on the 6′ wide Designer Series door in the French style, a 1′ transom window above and between-the-glass shades with Insynctive technology (more on that in a minute). The French style has a thicker wood frame surrounding the glass, lending a more traditional vibe – perfect for the age of our old house. The door arrived last Monday, and the Pella certified team, LaPelusa Home Improvement, began installation the next morning. We never imagined we’d be so happy to see a hole in the side of our home!


My biggest concern when working with a construction team is the presence they have while I’m in the home. We’ve worked with a wide range of contractors since moving in, some we’ve loved, and some we’ve agreed to never call again. Our prior experience with the first GC from our kitchen renovation left us a little anxious, but the LaPelusa team immediately put us at ease. The entire job took three and a half days, and often times, I would forget they were here! They were clean and courteous, masking off their work area in the morning and vacuuming up the debris every afternoon.

I was worried that the work we’d put into the kitchen so far would get grimy from the new construction dust, but those fears were tossed aside when I saw how carefully they masked off their work area:


At the completion of day one, the door was roughed in. By day two, we had electrical run for a new exterior light fixture. Scott and I spent most of the first evening with a drink in hand staring at the back wall. It. Was. Beautiful. There was so much light!

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For the first several days, if I caught a kitchen glimpse from the corner of my eye, I’d think, who left the back door open?, only to remember that our new door was here! For a while, it seemed as though we were running in circles – we’d say, did we imagine the plans for a door all along? – but now that it’s here, well, it feels good. It feels right, like it’s always been there.


We’ve always loved the look of a dark door against lighter siding, and although there was a bit of a debate at first, we chose a black exterior finish. It’s so striking; we couldn’t love it more:


Our exterior light was a bit of a gamble, especially because the plans for our current deck and yard are up in the air. We have a jumble of ideas – big ones, for sure! – but they won’t happen until next summer (hopefully). Although our original intent was to center the fixture above the door, the upper deck placement had other plans. We shifted it to the side, which we’re still very happy with! The raw wood mount and white trim still need paint, which I’m looking to tackle this week:

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Last but not least, our between-the-glass shades are a game changer! We chose white fabric shades in Linen as a part of Pella’s Insynctive Technology. With the touch of a button, the shades rise and fall, and they do so quietly. Because they snap in between two panes of glass, they stay dust (and fuss) free!

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The shades still allow for light to pass through (above), although we prefer to leave them open during the day. (We’d been missing the light!) Jack and CC aren’t quite used to the screen door, and after a few silly instances of trying to run through the screen and failing, Jack will tenderly touch his nose to the screen. It’s a testament to how clear the screen looks!


Our backyard isn’t the most stunning, but we’re thinking long term. The stairs on the back are no longer necessary since we turned our house into a single family home (by tearing those down, we’ll completely eliminate the less-than-attractive transom view), and one day, we’ll have a (nicer) walk out porch. But for the short term, our door is in need of a little paint! We chose a primed white interior so we could relinquish all control on the final color – ha! I’ve got my paintbrush laid out; it’s going to change everything.

With any luck, we’ll have a completed kitchen within the week! I want to laugh like a maniac just typing those words. We’re thisclose, you guys.


This is a sponsored project written by us on behalf of Pella Windows and Doors, and you can learn more about Pella’s Insynctive technology right here.

Pella provided us with a Designer Series sliding patio door with transom, and all text, opinions and storyline drama (what’s a renovation without one?) are our own. Thank you, as always, for supporting those that so graciously support us.

  • Ashley@Biggerthanthethreeofus - August 26, 2015 - 6:47 AM

    Wow, it totally changed the space. Love the transform window above!! Windows/Doors are always drama, aren’t they?! Glad you guys are taking it in stride.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 9:08 AM

      They really are! It changes everythiiiiing.ReplyCancel

  • Mags - August 26, 2015 - 7:16 AM

    It looks great! Forgive me for not remembering all of the door saga! But can you tell us why you chose to go with a slider and not french doors? If it were me, I’d want to be able to open up both to the deck sometimes!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 7:45 AM

      Thanks, Mags! We originally were going to have one door with a sidelight on either side (this was what was ordered back in December, which we found out was done incorrectly by the first GC). After finding out the error we went back to the drawing board and considered sliders mostly for space reasons: we didn’t want to have to fuss with doors being in the way, swinging in or out. I wasn’t on board at first, thinking sliders felt a bit 90s (I couldn’t get that idea out of my head for some reason!), but after looking at photos online, I came around to their practicality and ease. Once we paint them this week, they’ll look even more seamless! The cross breeze between this new door and living room windows has been a game changer!ReplyCancel

  • Jaclyn - August 26, 2015 - 8:12 AM

    I was SOOOO excited when I saw the post title. It is probably a little weird how excited I am for someone else’s home project, but I am so happy for you guys and it looks great!!ReplyCancel

  • Adrienne - August 26, 2015 - 8:36 AM

    Hey, congrats!! If we were staying longer in the house we’re currently in, I’d LOVE to make our back door a big sliding door. Yours is gorgeous! So. Much. Light.ReplyCancel

  • Lyndsey - August 26, 2015 - 8:43 AM

    The big question- where will Jack & CC’s food bowl go?!?! :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 8:53 AM

      This literally made me LOL. It was really something we considered! It would have fit with a 5′ door, but not with a 6′ – sooooo we miiiight have to make them something new that’ll fit in the corner. Ugh, so spoiled!ReplyCancel

      • Lyndsey - August 27, 2015 - 8:55 AM

        How can you not spoil them– so. dang. cute!ReplyCancel

  • Amy Lynn - August 26, 2015 - 8:44 AM

    SOOOO happy for you guys that this has finally come to fruition! I know it’s been a long road. Looks great and it seems that the pups are going to love it! :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 8:54 AM

      Thanks, Amy! Can’t wait for you guys to come over and hang out around the island in a finished kitchen! :)ReplyCancel

  • Rachel - August 26, 2015 - 9:02 AM

    OMG IT LOOKS INCREDIBLE!!! SO worth the wait. I can’t even imagine your excitement! Every time we do something in our house (like, we just got cellular shades in our bedroom after being shade-less for over a month) I can’t stop saying how excited I am about it every 15 minutes… I’d be even more out of control and annoying with such a long-awaited and AWESOME addition like these doors. Love it!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 9:09 AM

      Ha, same here! We’ll say, “hey, remember when our kitchen door was installed?!” and then scream, because we’re dorks.ReplyCancel

  • Trilby C. - August 26, 2015 - 9:17 AM

    I usually never comment, but this post deserves a big CONGRATS!! I know how excited (and then bummed) you guys were for the completion of the door. It looks wonderful – and the LIGHT!!! We just had a Pella storm door (removable glass/screen) installed in our kitchen, and we love, love, love it. It wasn’t cheap, but it was worth every pretty penny!! Congrats again! Can’t wait to see what you guys have in store next.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 9:40 AM

      Thank you for chiming in, Trilby! It really has felt like a roller coaster.ReplyCancel

  • karen - August 26, 2015 - 9:27 AM

    I was so excited to see this post! I have been anxiously waiting for the pictures, and the doors look beautiful. I just completed all my work on a kitchen/dining room renovation. I finished the caulk on the backsplash Monday, finished the last coat of paint on Sunday. It was a 6 month process. The feeling of accomplishment is so amazing! Great job, and thanks for all the inspiration!ReplyCancel

  • Christin - August 26, 2015 - 9:35 AM

    AWESOME! I’m so glad to see you finally have your door! It looks like the doors were meant to be there. It’s amazing the kinds of things you get excited about when you’re an adult. I was so excited when we got our exterior doors replaced and I still love them.ReplyCancel

  • julie - August 26, 2015 - 9:44 AM

    Wow such a huge improvement! You must be absolutely delighted. Living in the city myself I wonder how the locks are on the door. I know you have Jack and CC on watch, but sliders seem like vulnerable entryways — we used to have a broom handle jammed in the track just in case.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 9:48 AM

      Good call, we were concerned about that ourselves and questioned the Pella team on the safety features! There’s a foot lock on the floor, and there’s a heavy duty lock at the top AND at the handle. It’s made so well, we fell really comfortable and safe. We also love that the blinds give us privacy in the evenings!ReplyCancel

  • Fara - August 26, 2015 - 9:49 AM

    That is gorgeous! We have been dreaming of replacing our current contractor sliding door for a false french w/transom. However, it is in the awkward living room, so I think it would be weird having the door swing. This, however, doesn’t have that sliding door look, and I love it!! Our door is about 8 1/2 or 9 feet high (weird), so I don’t think we’d have to do too much demo. Going to Pella now to shop!ReplyCancel

  • Lori - August 26, 2015 - 10:00 AM

    YESSSSS!!!!! At last! It looks amazing! I am desperate to do the same thing in my kitchen. It’s like a cave in here, and the swinging door I currently have really limits what I can do for furniture.

    So happy for you guys!ReplyCancel

  • Jodi - August 26, 2015 - 10:44 AM

    YAY YAY YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It looks SO great!!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 10:53 AM

      We feel the same way!!!!!!!! :DReplyCancel

  • jenn aka the picky girl - August 26, 2015 - 10:47 AM

    This is SUCH great inspiration on rethinking a space. I loved the kitchen before this huge change, but WHOA! Holy moly, this created the most sophisticated space. It looks amazing, and I’m so glad you guys will finally have the kitchen you’ve worked so hard to create.ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie - August 26, 2015 - 10:47 AM

    Gorgeous! What paint colors do you use for your walls and trim?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 10:53 AM

      The walls are Intense White (Ben Moore) and the trim is Ultra Pure White (Behr).ReplyCancel

      • Anna, Sydney - August 26, 2015 - 4:58 PM

        Soooo… Which is whiter, Intense or Ultra Pure…? Hehehe (sorry, not enough sleep)ReplyCancel

        • Kim - August 26, 2015 - 5:03 PM

          Yeah, funny names for sure! Intense White is actually a really soft warm gray. :)ReplyCancel

  • Jenn - August 26, 2015 - 1:37 PM

    Yay!!!! So glad you guys finally got your door! That light coming in is amazing: enjoy enjoy enjoy!ReplyCancel

  • Josh | The Kentucky Gent - August 26, 2015 - 3:05 PM

    SO fancy with those window blinds! I love your decision for the black exterior, it looks great against the rest of the house.

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent

  • Heather - August 26, 2015 - 3:54 PM

    YAY! OMG it feels so good when projects like this – huge, room-changing or intensely frustrating – finally come together.

    Also contractors who are clean are my absolute favorite.

    The door looks stunning! I hope you keep noticing ALL the light for longer than it took to get this door installed :)ReplyCancel

  • Anna, Sydney - August 26, 2015 - 5:00 PM


    It looks awesome. Congratulations! (Is that ok to say for a door?)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 28, 2015 - 9:55 AM

      It’s preferred, actually! :)ReplyCancel

  • Erin - August 26, 2015 - 6:14 PM

    SO happy for you! The door looks great!!ReplyCancel

  • Vanessa - August 27, 2015 - 1:05 AM

    Oh, fantastic!ReplyCancel

  • Trude - August 27, 2015 - 10:16 AM

    Oh wow, looks like it was worth the wait! It’s absolutely gorgeous! And blinds I don’t have to clean, sign me up! :)ReplyCancel

  • Kate - August 28, 2015 - 9:51 AM

    I pulled up your site today and saw the door picture and just broke out into a big grin. :). You got your door!!! And it looks amazing!!! Perhaps you can enjoy the supermoon this weekend by going in and out your back door all night to look at the sky. Bravo on getting this giant “to do” checked off the list.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 28, 2015 - 9:55 AM

      I give that idea a thousand thumbs up!ReplyCancel

  • kb - August 31, 2015 - 12:29 PM

    I want and need these doors!ReplyCancel

  • Jen - August 31, 2015 - 1:33 PM

    Gah! It’s glorious!!ReplyCancel