As I sit here writing this, not even two full weeks have gone by since the article appeared in print. It feels like months have passed. Even as they were sending up photographers on different days and Penelope Green herself to our late-summer job in Canaan, NY, I never would have believed that The New York Times would give us a section cover, a full spread inside, and even a tiny little photo of our faces on the front front page. Not until we had a copy in our hands. What a feeling!
It took a few months longer than we were hoping, but our Philly Airbnb apartment is now live!
We fell in love with the high ceilings, the old floors and moldings, and the private roof deck instantly. The rest looked like a fancy grandmother’s pied-à-terre. We thought it would take a few weeks–a month, tops–to whip the place into shape and get it up on Airbnb with plenty of time to spare before the summer travel season and DNC kicked off. Instead, the listing went live on July 25th, the first day of the DNC.
What took so long? To start, we had almost no time to be in Philly. But we also ended up tearing out a couple closets, panelling that back wall, spiffing up the roof deck with huge planters and plenty of plants, and having a new wall AC installed. We also refinished the original wood floors and uncovered original hex tile in the bathroom, which all needed to be grinded down to remove a thick layer of who-knows-what that had accumulated over the past century. Once we’d done all that, it seemed a shame not to go all the way and give it our usual treatment of leaving no surface untouched. Five months later, we’re done!
Book a stay right here.
Check us out today on Front + Main, the West Elm blog! It’s such an honor to be featured. A million thanks to Max, who’s the absolute best person to work with and best person in general.
You may not have realized, but you’re also getting yourself a little sneak peek into the job we’re currently working on! This is a small loft bedroom just above the kitchen, with its own staircase. When we started, it was painted white and medium gray with small old rafters and rafter ties exposed and unpainted (nice in theory but disjointed in reality); there were some low built-in cabinets along the wall to the left of where the bed is now, but the doors all stuck; the bed was flipped 180 degrees, with its head against the banister and its foot facing the beadboard-clad chimney with nothing on either side.
We took that strange layout and did some subtle tweaking so the room would look and function way better.
On either side of the chimney, we added matching built-ins to provide some extra storage and the sense of an extended headboard, since anything wider than a twin bed would have been wider than the chimney. Then we flipped the bed around, lowered it a few inches, made those cabinet doors work without sticking, and sprayed everything but the floor a nice super-light gray. Tara added the finishing touches courtesy of West Elm and made it look gorgeous. Now if we can just get a tree up there, we won’t want to leave till after Christmas!
If you’re reading our tiny little blog, then you probably already read Grace Bonney’s big famous blog Design Sponge. So you’ll already have seen her announcement last Friday that we’ll soon have our own monthly column over there! Well, officially we will, but unofficially Tara will, since she’s the way better writer, researcher, stylist, sourcer. Sourcerer? Not a bad title.
We’re so honored that Grace thought to ask us first, and so so excited to get started. If you have some burning design questions about your space that you want answered by us, gratis, then head on over and submit your space!
Well hello there, one remaining blog reader! It’s been months and months since our last blog post, and we’re all alone now. We know it’s all our fault. We’ve had so many chances over the years to start blogging more, taking more “during” photos, keeping people posted on what we’re up to. We’ve wanted to do all those things. But truth be told, after grinding out a long exhausting day of manual labor, all you really want to do is take a shower and have someone spoon feed you while you binge watch something. Anything at all, really.
But enough is enough. WE HAVE A BRAND NEW WEBSITE! And it’ll be way easier for us to update, since we had someone who knows what they’re doing rebuild it for us.
We really do want to start updating things way more regularly. That means more quick blog posts. More process photos during our full-home renovations. More bite-sized DIY projects like Ardex countertops, wood walls, easy bed frames, etc. And maybe even some real estate suggestions, only because we can’t buy every single house in upstate NY, or apparently even a single one because we’re way too picky and afraid that we’ll buy one and then the next day see one that’s way better.
HGTV told us we were “too cool for middle America” and “not Guy Fieri enough” (a direct quote and a liberally paraphrased quote, respectively) but we still want to take people along with us on our journey, as we do everything from demolishing walls and building something better to sourcing mugs and flatware and arranging flowers just so.
So stay tuned!