(Photos from 1912bungalow.com)
Today I want to pay homage to an awesome blog, which has been an inspiration to me as we’ve started to tackle our home renovation. This blog gave me courage that Manny and I actually could tackle the project that is/was our home.
1912 Bungalow is no longer an actively maintained site, but it’s still live and remains a treasure-trove of information regarding what it means to buy a really rundown house and live in it over a long restoration process. If you’re looking to buy a Craftsman or are interested in learning to DIY, this is a site you should know about. The owners, Heather Ferguson and David Chiu, are wonderfully honest about the challenges of their historic Los Angeles bungalow and the amount of time, energy, money, and tears it took to bring it back from the brink.
Reading Heather’s journal of their efforts also makes me feel less like a weirdo for spending so much time obsessing over details in our house. I’m teased by my family for the “100 hours” I must have put into researching and selecting interior paint colors, for instance (their words — not mine, even if it may be at least sort of a little bit true). She also did a much better job than me at taking “before” pictures to help drive home the extent of the work they had to do… For my part, I think I was too traumatized by my first few weeks in the house to have wanted to take pictures of the hole-y walls and cracked plaster ceilings. Now that we’ve made progress in so many parts of the house, it would be great to have those images, though.
Because of the severity of their house’s neglect when they bought it back in 2002, it took them ten years to get it to a fully renovated state (though, as Heather points out in some of her later posts, old houses are never really ‘done’ when it comes to renovation). They also did everything, so far as I can tell, very much by the book(s) — no ripping out damaged plaster to put in drywall for them, even if Manny and I had to resign ourselves to this recently.
Check out 1912bungalow.com for great info on renovating old houses and for more pictures of their *lovely* home!