Before & After: A DIY Couple Tackle Their 1915 Craftsman in San Diego

Add to
Like
Share
By Michele Koh Morollo
Since 2015, when Ashley and Ross Goldman bought a Craftsman-style bungalow in their hometown of San Diego, California, they've worked diligently to turn it into a warm, stylish, modern home.

At the top of the Goldmans' house hunting wish list was a building with some old-world charm, so they were immediately captivated by this classic, Craftsman-style bungalow built in 1915. 

The front yard before the renovation.

The front yard before the renovation.

They re-landscaped their front yard to include low-water plantings that thrive in the San Diego climate.   

They re-landscaped their front yard to include low-water plantings that thrive in the San Diego climate.   

"The built-ins, plate rails, room dividers, picture rails, leaded glass cabinets, fireplace, big windows, beefy trim, hardwood floors, and classic facade give the house so much character," says Ashley Goldman. "Since we bought it, our goal has been to restore it to its former glory, and refresh it, while adding modern amenities and our own personal style." Simple, modern furnishings don't take attention away from the original details of the home.   

The renovated home office includes DIY storage and a hand-painted, eight-color mural in the likeness of a 1600s etching that Goldman did herself—an endeavor that took over 100 hours.   

The renovated home office includes DIY storage and a hand-painted, eight-color mural in the likeness of a 1600s etching that Goldman did herself—an endeavor that took over 100 hours.   

The bathroom was completely gutted down to the crawlspace and up into the attic. 

The bathroom was completely gutted down to the crawlspace and up into the attic. 

"Since moving in, we've focused on making the house more of a home by adding our own personal style through a redesign, which I started sharing on my blog, The Gold Hive, in April 2017," says Goldman. 

When they first got the keys,  Goldman felt that the house "was smelly, crumbling, and in desperate need of love and care." Here, we see a view of the living room before the renovation.

When they first got the keys, Goldman felt that the house "was smelly, crumbling, and in desperate need of love and care." Here, we see a view of the living room before the renovation.

 "After restoring the interiors, I layered the spaces with art and unique paint colors or decor elements to make it uniquely ours," she says. The living room got new floors, drywall, refinished bookcases, and new furniture.

 "After restoring the interiors, I layered the spaces with art and unique paint colors or decor elements to make it uniquely ours," she says. The living room got new floors, drywall, refinished bookcases, and new furniture.

For the first three months, they focused on making the house habitable by refinishing the floors, retexturing the walls, upgrading the electrical system, renovating the bathroom, refreshing the kitchen, replacing the HVAC, and doing lots of cleaning. Here, we see the office in its "before" state. 

For the first three months, they focused on making the house habitable by refinishing the floors, retexturing the walls, upgrading the electrical system, renovating the bathroom, refreshing the kitchen, replacing the HVAC, and doing lots of cleaning. Here, we see the office in its "before" state. 

The home office was renovated in seven weeks as part of the 2017 One Room Challenge, and was selected as one of two winners.

The home office was renovated in seven weeks as part of the 2017 One Room Challenge, and was selected as one of two winners.

Their home office, which is located at the front of the house, received the most dramatic makeover. The space was reconfigured so the couple can work together from home.  

The kitchen was not a space that seemed to encourage cooking, but the Goldmans weren’t yet ready for a full remodel, so they did a phase one update. 

The kitchen was not a space that seemed to encourage cooking, but the Goldmans weren’t yet ready for a full remodel, so they did a phase one update. 

This phase one update included painting the cabinetry, replacing the hardware, coating the counters in concrete, laying new vinyl flooring, adding new storage and counters, and replacing the lighting.  

This phase one update included painting the cabinetry, replacing the hardware, coating the counters in concrete, laying new vinyl flooring, adding new storage and counters, and replacing the lighting.  

The phase one kitchen upgrades cost the Goldmans less than $1,000, whereas the table in the home office cost them nearly double this price. 

Before the renovation, the master bedroom suffered from termite-damaged floors.

Before the renovation, the master bedroom suffered from termite-damaged floors.

Now coated with Behr's Silver City and boasting new flooring and furniture, the master bedroom is much brighter and airier, but Goldman has big plans in place, including removing the door to the kitchen and adding a door to the backyard.

Now coated with Behr's Silver City and boasting new flooring and furniture, the master bedroom is much brighter and airier, but Goldman has big plans in place, including removing the door to the kitchen and adding a door to the backyard.

"When we focused on big renovation projects where we had to hire folks to do the work, such as installing HVAC or upgrading electrical, figures averaged around $5,000 to $10,000," says Goldman.

The original dining room was painted red, so Goldman toned it down with a creamy white, then added unique artwork to the plate rail. 

The original dining room was painted red, so Goldman toned it down with a creamy white, then added unique artwork to the plate rail. 

Every room received refinished hardwood floors and resurfaced walls. New furniture and refreshed bookcases were added to the living room.   

Every room received refinished hardwood floors and resurfaced walls. New furniture and refreshed bookcases were added to the living room.   

"For the interior decor, I tried to keep costs down for most of our furniture by shopping at popular budget and mid-priced stores, but we did splurge on a few items such as the office table," she adds. 

The second bedroom was turned into a den that doubles up as a guest room.

The second bedroom was turned into a den that doubles up as a guest room.

Goldman transformed the smaller bedroom into a den that can double as a guest room when needed. 

Goldman transformed the smaller bedroom into a den that can double as a guest room when needed. 

She painted the walls a deep green—Salamander by Benjamin Moore—added a blue velvet pull-out couch, new artwork, new furniture, and picture rail molding.   

She painted the walls a deep green—Salamander by Benjamin Moore—added a blue velvet pull-out couch, new artwork, new furniture, and picture rail molding.   

"Unlike the movie The Money Pit or stories of renovations gone bad, we've been really lucky with our remodel, and haven’t encountered any major problems," says Goldman. "The biggest challenge was choosing materials and furniture items that were affordable, but also long-lasting. I've been dragging my feet on the kitchen remodel and bathroom addition project, because I've been afraid to commit to such a permanent change. It's hard to anticipate how we will use the space as our lifestyle changes, and we still want to maintain the integrity of the house, so it's a fine balancing act."

The house has great bones, so while it needed work, no major structural repairs were required. Here, we see the bathroom before the remodel.

The house has great bones, so while it needed work, no major structural repairs were required. Here, we see the bathroom before the remodel.

White subway tiles and dark grout give the new bathroom a crisp, clean look.

White subway tiles and dark grout give the new bathroom a crisp, clean look.

"For the bathroom, we kept the only original elements that remained after the space was remodeled in the 1980s, then added period-style tiles, plumbing, along with new storage, and a custom window," she says. 

"For the bathroom, we kept the only original elements that remained after the space was remodeled in the 1980s, then added period-style tiles, plumbing, along with new storage, and a custom window," she says. 

All furnishings, decor retailers, and prices can be found on the Shop The House page of Goldman’s blog.