It’s been a while since I’ve shown you our cabin in detail. About five years actually. I thought about it often, but never took the time to take the photos. Now that the cabin is for sale, this will surely be the last tour, and what better time since I can take advantage of the professional photos that were recently taken?
Let me share with you how we came to be owners of our cozy log cabin by the lake.
We were busy business owners for many years and found it difficult to get away for extended vacations. The next best thing was to find a place within a three hour drive of our then home in Westchester County, NY, so we looked at the Poconos, upstate NY and finally found our way to the Berkshire area. Our criteria was to be preferably on a lake, but if not, within walking distance.
We quickly found out lakefront was not within our budget, at least not in a community we wanted to be in. Then our realtor recommended the community we are in now. It’s a little out of the way, but still within driving distance to many of the activities the Berkshires has to offer. The lake is one of the few in the area that is pristine, and doesn’t allow motorized boating or jet skis, making it a relaxing, quiet place to be. While we are not lakefront, we are less than a two minute walk, which is the next best thing. There is also a clubhouse, tennis and pickleball courts, as well as hiking trails both within the community and nearby.
I’m going to take you step by step and try to give you the proper orientations along the way and talk about some of the many projects we’ve completed, so let’s begin with the front of the house.
You see the grey gravel at the left bottom corner? That’s part of a parking space where one of our cars is almost always parked. From there, you would descend the steps and either walk along the gravel path toward the covered porch on the left side or cross over to the driveway on the right and enter through the screen door to the enclosed porch.
This next photo was taken about two weeks after the first one. Notice the rhododendron on the left in full bloom, and how much more filled in everything is.
We don’t have a garage, so the gravel driveway is the other spot where we park and typically enter the home from. Remember the cement leaves from last year? And it’s difficult to see but I moved the fairy garden to a different location this year. It’s located in the rock garden on the far right which we completed last year.
The screened in porch is one of my favorite spots and where you’ll often find me with my morning cup of coffee listening to the early morning sounds of birds chirping, or reading a book as sunset approaches.
Since they are exposed to the elements, I made the curtains out of shower liners that I sewed some fabric to for needed length and color, and the trunk was picked up at Brimfield a few years ago, and is where I store gardening gloves and shoes, a few tools and fertilizer so I can grab n’ go.
I don’t have a recent or professional photo of our bistro table, but just about where the photographer was standing when she took the above photo, is this little table for two. It’s here you’ll find us eating dinner, protected from bugs on any night the weather permits.
Another spot I don’t have any professional pics of, but I grabbed this one that was taken a long time ago with a point and shoot. The seating on the right is now at home in our fire pit and this area just has two rockers now, making it a bit more open. We don’t use this porch much at all, so moving the log seating was a good thing.
Now let’s step inside. Entering the cabin from the screened porch, this is what you see. A small dining area to your immediate right, kitchen and hallway straight ahead, and small living room to your left, divided from the dining area by a staircase leading to the basement.
The long piece of art at the top of the photo is nothing more than an inexpensive print we adhered to foam board with spray adhesive.
The front and sides of the island used to be boring flat paneling, but we installed airstone™ a few years ago and love how it came out. Super easy and pretty inexpensive to do. We had some leftover so I installed it at the end of the cabinets on the right also.
We also removed a few wood panels from the uppers and replaced them with glass. Another project that wasn’t that difficult but did a lot to break up the endless wood. You can see how we did it here.
You may remember when we painted the wood white not too long ago. Best thing we ever did, as everyone agrees it makes the cabin look bigger and brighter.
When we purchased the house, there was a cabinet where the plate rack is and it just felt weird. Like it was hanging in the middle of nowhere and looked out of place. I had this rack custom made by an Etsy dealer and I love it!
The photos on the shelf above the sliding doors were taken by me two years ago while in Vermont during the Fall. If you haven’t seen that post and you enjoy beautiful foliage, I recommend you take a peak.
I made the drapes a few years ago and sewed the chair cushions recently with the same fabric, and purchased the rug online. Together, they gave this area some much needed brightening up. I had considered painting the table a creamy white for a long time, but opted to just refinish it instead and rely on fabric to perk things up.
Standing behind the island below, you get a view of the living room as well as the door (the green one) that leads to the open porch. To the left of that door is the only bath that existed when we bought the house. It never ceases to amaze me that four people lived here and would have to walk through public places after taking a shower to get to their bedroom.
The piano bar was a ‘make lemonade out of lemons’ scenario. The previous owners were supposed to remove it but never did, and we couldn’t find anyone willing to take it, even as a donation. Turned out to be a blessing because it’s a pretty cool piece. You can see the transformation here.
The large leaf print above the fireplace is pretty much the exact same installation as the other one. An advantage of this diy, aside from it being inexpensive, is the end result is super light and easy to install.
The coffee table started out as a slab of wood I picked up for $5 at a tag sale. We added aluminum piping for legs and called it a day.
Not surprisingly, these recliners are our favorite spots for watching tv, and is where you can find us most nights. Our current obsessions are The Americans, Bloodline, and of course, House of Cards, although the later is not quite as good as it used to be. Do you agree?
The paintings on the right were done by me as a practical measure (there are three but one is not shown). Originally the house ended there and that was a window, but the previous owners added on however they didn’t close it up. Consequently, the window looks into the master bath. Kinda weird, huh?
After we painted the kitchen wall in white, we decided to take it another step further and do the hallway. The door on the left leads to our bedroom and the one on the right is where the boys sleep when they’re here.
The master bedroom isn’t large, but it’s cozy and meets our needs. There’s room enough for a king bed, two roomy nightstands and a rocking chair in the corner on the right. There’s a walk in closet large enough for me, and Fisherman uses the closet in the boys’ room across the hall. When we were here part time, we shared the walk in, but when I needed to bring all my clothes here it was far more practical to have separate closets.
The ‘tree’ was the first project I shared on my blog but I lost all the photos through a mishap so I deleted it completely. It was fun to do and fairly simple, using just twig wreaths, wire and copper foil.
This master bathroom was nothing more than an empty space with exposed studs. We added the cork flooring and knotty pine tongue and groove wood planks ourselves, and splurged on a custom vanity as well as the tub. The turquoise cabinet was another project I completed using milk paint, and stores a surprising amount of toiletries. Along with the trunk on the porch, I picked the cabinet up at Brimfield (if you’re ever in the area, you MUST go) and gave it a nice makeover which you can see here. I like this cabinet so much it will be one of the very few pieces to make the trip to NC with us.
We added the tongue and groove paneling to the walls and ceiling, and I sewed the stagecoach valances. Fisherman made the shelving which houses, among other things, a few gingerbread houses protected by plexiglass Mikey and I made when he was in his single digits. These houses are about 10 years old now and still intact, thanks to the wonders of hot glue :).
This plaid dresser was one of those ‘not so easy but worth it’ projects. The method I used can be adapted for almost any flat surface including walls and if you’re a plaid lover like me, give it a try on something small to get your feet wet.
Notice the loft? Naturally, it’s Mikey and Maddox’s favorite spot in the house!
Just one more room to show you on the first level and that’s the aforementioned bathroom. The ’tiles’ are stick ons I got from Etsy and while I’m not fond of the pattern, they added much needed color to the space.
Let’s head downstairs now. This spot is where Fisherman typically watches sports, and in the back is my craft/sewing space. To the left is another bedroom which houses my computer and is where I am right now typing this. The two stained glass panels on the right were made by me many years ago in our former house in NY and for quite some time they were stored in the attic. Since we decorated this space in a western theme we felt this would be the perfect space for them. They won’t make the move with us and that makes me a little sad because they were a TON of work, but no more western decor in my future, and that’s fine with me.
The dry bar area under the stairs was installed by us. We bought the cheapest cabinets we could find, painted them and added some cool cowboy hat pulls.
Now don’t freak out. That’s not a real deer! His name is Buck, and he sings different western songs and tells corny jokes all while moving his neck and head. Creepy? Yes. Funny? Depends on your sense of humor, but we think so 😉
The leather chair on the right is where I blog. This is a nice size room and where most people stay (besides the boys) when they visit. It’s private and has its own little bath with an itsy bitsy shower big enough for a pygmy, but it’s good enough.
We added faux suede to the soffits and cove moulding, and I gave the walls a denim finish using Ralph Lauren paint. The window treatments are simply ‘vintage look’ napkins that I sewed together which are hung on a tension rod.
My desk is made out of two hollow core doors glued together and placed on top of three cabinets from IKEA. The chairs were an unbelievable bargain from Brad’s Deals…both for $70 including shipping!
The downstairs bath was another completely gutted space and was absolutely the most challenging space to complete. Low ceilings and ductwork made things super difficult to work with, but we did the best we could and while it’s not perfect, it has served its purpose.
See? I told you the shower was small!
I’ve been spending more time in front of my sewing machine than the computer lately, making lots of boxed pouches and cosmetic bags. You see the cabinets? You can tell they’re super cheap, just plywood actually. They’re the exact same cabinets used for the dry bar. See what paint can do?
Remember when the blog was called ‘Househoneys’?
Let’s go back outside now. Here’s a view of the fire pit from the second level deck out back.
And here’s a view of the back of the house from the fire pit. You will notice the back is vinyl sided, but don’t blame us! The previous owners did that when they added on.
Since we don’t have a garage, we desperately needed some storage when we moved here full time so we added some space under the deck and it’s come in super handy!
We had the deck built four years ago and chose Trex. Believe it or not when we first viewed the house there was nothing outside the second story door. Not exactly to code :/.
That just about wraps things up my friends. Thanks for sticking with me, and if you have a few more minutes, you may want to see some of the ‘before’s’.
If you’d like to see what the craft room looked like, go here.
If you’d like to see what our living room looked like when I was in full blown ‘rustic’ mode, go here.
If you’d like to see some before/afters, mostly of the basement, go here.
The photos are small and poor quality for the most part, but I still can’t believe we did all that!
In other news…
Putting this post together really made me take stock of how much we have accomplished. When we first saw the cabin, there were exposed ceilings in the basement, uneven cement flooring, horrible paint colors in the bedrooms, a big piece of countertop missing in the kitchen, and no deck or even a landing of any kind out the back door (8′ off the ground). But that didn’t deter us. Nowadays, buyers are turned off by something as minor as a dripping faucet. Why is it that so many people not only can’t see potential, but have no desire to do ANY work on ANYTHING!? Drives me bonkers. Oh, and I forgot to mention we had to replace the roof almost immediately, we painted the outside logs and porches, landscaped and fixed some electrical issues. I’m tired just thinking about it all.
Time for a nap…
Except where indicated, all photos courtesy of Andrea York Photography
If you or anyone you know is interested in our cabin, contact our agent, Diane Massey. She lives in our community too so knows the area well and has tons of experience and can answer any questions you may have.