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Restored

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I watched the latest episode of the mid-century 1955 ranch style house.  I thought the yellow paint on the outside was a nicer color than the grey, green? color they used.  Why do they always want to paint the outside of a house an ugly gray color?  

The 'atrium' looked a lot better than I thought it would too.  

Edited by Finagler

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How can they restore, renovate that amount of projects with all those contractors (electricians, plumbers) custom cabinets, gorgeous kitchens!! interior decorators, outdoor landscaping, all the demolition, supplies, etc etc etc for $50,000 or even $90,000 depending? I am in the process of renovating 2 bathrooms and a bunch of other projects on this ol shack of mine, a 170 year old house whose previous owners have not been kind to. And if I could get his crew over here and do ALL they work they do for that amount of money I would be ecstatic! I was given an estimate of $12,000 for replacing walls, ceilings, floor in one 12X8 bathroom. That is without the price of the fixtures, finishes, tiles and plumbing! So how do they do it? 

Wish they would tell us the price of the house, what the owners do for a living and break down the cost of each project done. 

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Glad to see this topic open up - I recently found this show and really enjoy it!

The 1955 mid-century house seemed like it wasn't exactly a quality house to start with. The paneling was really thin, no wood floors, just plywood - I'm not sure that one was worth restoring! Plus this might be the only episode where I felt like the homeowners weren't really interested truly restoring anyway - they just wanted their wood floors, and their new kitchen, dammit.   

One of the things I do enjoy about this show is being educated about hallmarks of various building styles. As I drive into work now, I find myself looking for leaded or stained glass windows, gingerbread details, etc. I especially enjoy it when Brett restores fireplaces - for some reason, I love it when they find original tile!

I always wonder about these renovation budgets. I'm with you, msrachelj - we've done a couple of renovations on our home and to do what we wanted to do, well, the costs just escalate, and the idea that you can basically do an entire home remodel plus some landscaping for the budgets that are given just blows my mind. There has to be some behind-the-scenes help on the cost, though I do appreciate that on this show they admit when they've gone over budget.

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I haven't seen obvious product placement by businesses like Home Depot, flooring places, etc., but there must be some discounts given because there is no way some of these restorations could be done on the budgets stated.  I have a 1957 mid century ranch, and over the past 14 years I could have built it from scratch (new in 1957) from what I have spent on fixes and remodels to it.  Actually, I really could have because I found the original property transfer on it from the builder to the first owner and it cost $27,000 in 1957.   All of the houses featured have not been my style, but I have really enjoyed learning about each one and have been generally pleased with the outcome.  I did not like the installation of bench seating area in what had been the dining room in one house.  I'm not a fan of banquette seating.  

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Good to see that the show has a forum now, hope this isn't the kiss of ratings death...

Yeah, the budgets are either only materials or are after the show's producers have kicked in money, because they are way too low. I think one of the last R&R had a tile "bar" backsplash (from http://www.missiontilewest.com/ , an extremely upscale tile place) that was something like $35 a sf. Granted, it was backsplash which isn't as bad as countertop or bathroom walls, but my little eye says that was something like 35 sf or over $1,000 in just tile for a backsplash.

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On 4/8/2017 at 5:53 AM, laredhead said:

  I did not like the installation of bench seating area in what had been the dining room in one house.  I'm not a fan of banquette seating.  

I agree.  While it can look really cute in some homes, I don't think it's very practical.  I hate having to slide-in/slide out, etc.  Give me a chair please.

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Brett's knowledge of vintage homes and his passion for restoration is such a breath of fresh air from all the flipping stuff out there.  I watch the other flip shows just because I have a obsession with all housing but it all starts to look the same.  And sometimes, it's cringeworthy to watch a great old kitchen, bathroom, etc ripped apart just so they can put in the usual white shaker cabs, granite/quartz & gray paint.  I don't dislike those materials, they've just been so over-done.  (lookin' at you, Christina El Moussa)

I get that some homes are in a state that is unlivable and change has to happen but Brett sees the beauty that was once there.  He treats the homes respectfully and enhances them.  I'm all for second chances.  

At first, I thought Brett was a bit odd but he's grown on me and I really enjoy watching him; he seems like a terrific guy.  Love this show. I'm even happy to watch reruns.  

I wish there was a show about the historical homes areas of Riverside/Redlands.  I live in San Diego; I may just have to drive up there!

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I love that the owners are into the history of the homes. The guy who was heartbroken about replacing plaster with drywall was after my own heart. Nothing bums me out more than seeing someone nailing drywall over lath. I don't know why, since plaster really is a pain if you are trying to hang things, but it feels sturdy and homey to me. 

Edited by azshadowwalker
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I love all things house and decorating. Brett does amazing work, but vocal mannerisms drive me nuts!

He sounds like a cross between a surfer dude and a valley girl.

Another pet peeve is when the client has a modest bungalow, so he takes them to see some million dollar mansion to show them the details that their own house has.

One last thing! He goes on and on about preserving original details, and recreating them if they are lost, but he always uses granite or marble in the kitchens, which the more modest house would never have had. Formica or tile.

Oh well, I'll keep watching!

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With regard to his usage of granite or marble in the kitchens, I think he said in one episode that he would use modern materials, but keep the style and general feel of the eras in which the houses were built.  He's not going for a total restoration and I don't mind that as long as he doesn't take away all of the character of the house.  He could use soapstone which is a vintage material and is beautiful.  

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His goal is to restore the house as much as possible while still making it function and a bit more to the homeowner's taste. He's tried to talk a few people into keeping tile (I think it was the show with the root beer brown tile) and when that didn't work, he went for a (very expensive) sort of period correct, if not actually old, tile. I don't think any of the houses he has done have been on the historical register for the areas or he'd be facing a committee to approve the changes.

 

Marble would actually be correct for the period, but not correct for the smaller "humbler" cottages that he has been working on.

 

I'd be kinda pushing back on some of the muddy earth colors he picks for exteriors - yes, it's historically accurate, but it's not always flattering.

Edited by WildPlum · Reason: typo
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I'm really enjoying this show. One of the best shows to come along in a while, IMO.  I've gotten used to Brett's verbal quirks and enjoy watching him.

The 1928 Spanish house (the 2-story with the stenciling on the beams) is a gorgeous house.  I had total house-envy as soon as I saw it.  Love the way the front landscaping and living room came together.  The kitchen? I liked it but not as much as I thought I would.  I did think the stenciling over the sink area was a great touch.  And the niche for the range turned out beautifully.  Love that tile. If budget weren't an issue, I would've gone with a real showpiece range - maybe a Viking or la cornue in an awesome brick red or a great blue.  The rest of the kitchen just seemed to lack something - maybe more splashes of color? More tiles? Still, it is a lovely kitchen and a BIG improvement.  The former, flowered design, padded walls, etc, was just sad.

I like all the Craftsman & Victorian homes Bret restores, as well.  I've always thought I need to own about 5 different homes in completely architectures. I'd live a few months out of every year in each one!  

Yes, it's a sickness, I mean, obsession.  :)

Edited by Pegasaurus
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HGTV had him on as a "judge" on the most recent episode of Brother v Brother, so he's still apparently considered saleable by the network. I know they were scouting potential properties in Yucaipa. Haven't found anything that says the show was renewed - but the hideous "Flip or Flop Vegas" just got another season, so they really need to bring Brett back as he is a much better host with a much better show.

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On 10/06/2017 at 0:23 AM, WildPlum said:

HGTV had him on as a "judge" on the most recent episode of Brother v Brother

And that was so totally awkward. Brett looked totally out of his element, it was a little painful to watch.

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The production company was looking for more projects, so they are going forward as if there is a new season, but the network (HGTV  ed: the show was on DIY, owned by Scripps Network, which also owns HGTV - and Food Network, Cooking Channel, Travel Channel) hasn't announced the show is renewed, so it is still in limbo.

 

There, typing that ought to make them announce today or tomorrow that they've renewed the show, so that I am wrong.

Edited by WildPlum

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This comment is about a show called "Vintage Flip" on HGTV.  Have watched 2 episodes so far and the premise is similar to Restored as the title might suggest.  Did not see a forum for it, but thought I would mention it here since Restored is a similar show.

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laredhead, there is a "House Flipping Show" topic where you can discuss "Vintage Flip" if it doesn't have its own forum :

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Apparently Season 2 is a go, 13 episodes, Brett's got pics up on his Instagram account. No idea when the air dates are, but I don't think they started filming until June, so 2018 seems like a good bet.

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Just caught the first show in Season 2 - gorgeous 1906 Arts and Crafts home. It came out beautifully. I have to say, Brett really has an amazing attention to detail. I was very pleased to see several Motawi Tileworks tiles on the wall in the kitchen and another in one of the hallways. That's beautiful tile, made here in my home town.  The fireplaces were just stunning. This was one of the prettiest houses he's worked on, IMO. Very gracious living space, and not as dark on the inside as Arts and Crafts homes can sometimes look.  I do enjoy this show - I'm glad it's back!

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Just saw a rerun of the Arts and Crafts - loved that they put walls back in! I was disappointed they didn't address the upstairs. also there was a covered driveway to one side of the house. From the aerial shots it looked like there was another house behind the original, possibly with the pool in between. Would love to have seen the whole property.

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OMG that Mission Revival Mansion was so beautiful. I'm amazed that so many of the original woodwork was retained through the years. Good on the previous owners. The current owners seemed like lovely people and I'm glad they were all for restoring as original as possible. The end result was glorious. I'm not fan of the linoleum though, but I can understand how great it must have felt for Brett to find an original flooring in such amazing condition, and ripping it off would have been a pity.
I would have loved to see the room that was on the second floor under the roof. From the outside it looked like one grand room with so many windows.

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I loved the murals on the dining room wall.  I also loved that they restored that beautiful gas range.  I wanted to purchase one of those a couple of years ago, but there are no companies here in Louisiana that restore vintage appliances.  The range would have had to be shipped out of state and then returned that way to the tune of big $$.  They are lucky to live where there are companies that do that type of work.   The house was gorgeous.  I'm always curious how people end up with these wonderful places.  The owner was from somewhere in the south if I remember correctly.  Back stories can be interesting. 

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1923 Mediterranean Revival - what a beauty! Loved every room they restored.  I was tearing up right along with the homeowner, especially when they got to the butlers pantry and the kitchen.  The tile work and stenciling are just gorgeous.

Brett is amazing!  "Holy Cow"!

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I got briefly worried when they toured the comp piece with an old range a gazillion feet away from counter space and he said dont you want a stand alone range with a hood? Luckily he meant a seamless range tied into countertops. I thought they could have done more with functionality in the butler's pantry because at the end of the day you are not only going to clean fine crystal there. The way they conncected it to the kitchen was beautiful as was the clearly new updated fridge/freezer that looked period.

I hate pink but the master bath turned out beautiful.

They could buy a number of pieces  for the dining room and it still would seem spacious which is why a waste to give so much space away in the butlers pantry but the sink and mirror were glorious.

Edited by biakbiak
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Watched the restoration of the French Normandy or Normandy French house last night.  Now that was a very small house with only about 750 sf of space.  I loved the finished product except for the wallpaper pattern in the breakfast nook.  I like the idea of wallpaper and it would have been period appropriate, but I would have chose a different pattern.  Loved the refurbished gas range and the linoleum flooring with the inlaid patterns.  Finding someone to do that type of work is almost impossible in many areas of the country.  He is lucky to have craftsmen available who refurbish old appliances, and can recreate older features in houses.  The fireplace was lovely, but I wonder if they vented that space heater to the outside.  I grew up in houses with that type of gas space heater, and it wasn't a problem as far as fumes because the houses were so drafty, but in today's houses which are more airtight, I think venting is required for their use.  Anyone else have a info on that?  Also, while the cedar shake roof might be authentic, I think of fire and insurance costs associated with it.          

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ITA @laredhead but also, are the couple seriously going to live in something with a 1949-size bedroom closet (read: holds about four outfits total) and a bedroom with no room for a dresser once the king size bed is in? 

I’m betting they Airbnb that puppy. 

Also, the only other re-do show I watch, Home Town, recently installed an AGA antique-look dual fuel white enamel stove which apparently sells for around $7,500, so Brett’s restorer’s price of $6,000 wasn’t far off new. Had to love the salt & pepper set that came with the old one, though!!!!

Edited by BckpckFullaNinjas · Reason: 1949. Who knows what closets will be like in 2949?!?!?
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BckpckFullaNinjas, I went to an estate sale a couple of years ago and fell in love with a 1960's Crown range that had been top of the line when new, but it needed work.  No one in Louisiana does this type of restoration, and the nearest places I could find were Texas and Georgia.  I would have had to manage to ship the stove to them and pay for shipping, plus restoration.  I probably could have bought a new AGA for what it would have cost me.  It probably went on the scrap heap.

I agree about the Airbnb possibility.  I notice they did not show any closets or make the usual comments about it not having enough closet space.  I've never watched Home Town.  I'll have to check it out - thanks for the tip.

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8 hours ago, BckpckFullaNinjas said:

I’m betting they Airbnb that puppy.

Well, it isn't up on AirBnB, Homeaway or VRBO. Yet. (Although using Zillow I can see the couple paid $374,000 for the house last year)

My son sort of lives in the general area (Rancho Cucamonga) and when I was last down there I went to some of Brett's supply houses. I have a friend who lives in Pasadena (which is about 65 miles away - an hour when there is no traffic, 3 days the rest of the time) so I went out to Pasadena Architectural Salvage. Let us just say that Brett gets some amazing deals, although he rarely mentions prices for things like original Batchelder tiles.

 I am looking for some tile like the celadon green used in the bathroom for my own bathremodel (although probably a little more blue-green than just pale green).  On the Gnome house, since they had to replace the tub, wouldn't it have been easier to flip the side of the bath the shower was one and open up the "closet" the bath sits in more, rather than just cut a small window? Huh. Agree the the breakfast room wallpaper was too much, something less dark and less busy would have been good. William and Morris did some great stuff, but that wallpaper was never meant for a tiny room, it was probably supposed to be used above a high chair rail or plate rail. Some of the W&M papers that feature vines or branches might have gone a bit better - I think I would have liked a french door to the garden, too.

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French Normandy - agree about the wallpaper in the breakfast nook; too dark and busy.  It overwhelmed the space.  Also, the wood door that opened to the vestibule. They installed a solid wood door instead of a charming wrought iron ,  Two solid wood doors looked weird

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I am not normally a banquet person but I think one would have worked well in that setting and you could have fit more than two people and then the wallpapwr wouldn't seem so overwhelming in the space. I also would have reconfigured the laundry area to give them more storage. I wonder if the plan was to use the bedroom we didn't see in the reveal as a closet/storage room.

When the hedges grow that will be a lovely front garden. 

Edited by biakbiak

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Seriously he can build in an awkward and half useless cabinet for an awkward long forgotten pass-through but not put up a tv even though they had one. 

If i lived in that house i would make the front room the dining space and the dining room the living area with a flat screen above the fireplace. 

I really liked the built in wall table! It was flawless. 

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On 2/15/2018 at 10:35 PM, biakbiak said:

Seriously he can build in an awkward and half useless cabinet for an awkward long forgotten pass-through but not put up a tv even though they had one. 

If i lived in that house i would make the front room the dining space and the dining room the living area with a flat screen above the fireplace. 

I really liked the built in wall table! It was flawless. 

I noticed that, too.  They had a flat screen between the two living room side windows in the before.  As would most people.  Then in the reveal, no TV but a vintage radio.  The radio was beautiful and I understand why they did it for the reveal but I'm sure the flat screen, on a low table this time, replaced the radio as soon as the camera crew departed.  Agree with the idea of switching the living & dining rooms.  

The kitchen with the drop-down table:  when the table was in use, could you still access that bedroom? The fridge used to be in the way of the bedroom door but now, so is the table?  Too bad there wasn't a way to relocate the bedroom door.

All that said, I love this show!  I like that the work is being done for the actual homeowners and not to flip.  Tired of the flip shows - they're all the same.  (Except for Desert Flippers. I like the hosts.  Seem like a nice family.  I just hope they don't turn out to be another Tarek & Christina).

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4 hours ago, Pegasaurus said:

The fridge used to be in the way of the bedroom door but now, so is the table?  Too bad there wasn't a way to relocate the bedroom door.

Tgere was enpugh room to still access the door even if it was down.

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I was impressed that a family of 4 is living in a 1400 sf house with only one bathroom, and no open floor plan (sarcasm here).  Bungalow houses always surprise me by the amount of light inside because from the outside they always look like the interior would be dark.  Without adding square footage, there wasn't much that could be done to that kitchen.  From the floor plan that was shown, that house had very little closet space, and some of it was removed to make room for the refrigerator recess.  Maybe those owners don't have many clothes, but there seemed to be a serious lack of closets in that house.  I was puzzled by the utility room's final configuration with what looked like a small broom closet in a nook.  From what I could see, after rerunning the footage a few times, they could have made a nice walk in area that would have given them more storage.  

This is another show where it would be interesting to revisit some of these restorations a year or so later to see if the owners still like the result or what they would change.   

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Did anyone else cringe in the Victorian episode when Brett destroyed that beautiful $15,000 sideboard to make a bar? I love most of what he does, but that just bothered me too much. 

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I think the couple is going to regret not spending the 2800-3000 to open back up the front parlor but it appears they had a fairly tight budget because its one of the only times they haven't replaced the washer and dryer. I do wish they would show the rooms even if they aren't going to tuch them just to get a better feel for the house.

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On 1/22/2018 at 4:26 PM, chessiegal said:

Just saw a rerun of the Arts and Crafts - loved that they put walls back in! I was disappointed they didn't address the upstairs. also there was a covered driveway to one side of the house. From the aerial shots it looked like there was another house behind the original, possibly with the pool in between. Would love to have seen the whole property.

I grew up in a craftsman, and my parents were silly to go with the "market" in the early 2000s by ripping down walls. I hope someone someday restores it. Unfortunately, most of the beautiful plaster is permanently gone. It breaks my heart to see what they did to it. It's someone else's problem now, though, since the expensive changes led them to lose the house to foreclosure. I wish Brett was in Arizona.  I would take him to my childhood home and ask him to bug the new owner to let him fix it. The new season makes me appreciate him all the more. 

Now, if he would just lose the over-the-top boyish excitement. It's my only complaint about the show. 

Edited by azshadowwalker
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just saw the one with the modest craftsman, which looked to have asbestos shingles on the front. the wife's family had lived in the house for most of it's live. i'm assuming she inherited it and was nice to see they had "only" a $50,00 budget. but. once again. a new kitchen, exterior painting , new windows, etc etc. there is no way in hell this is done for that amount of money. i want a damn list at the end saying how much each renovation cost . and labor. no friggin way. lets get real show.

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I was surprised that they put such a large threshold on the walk in shower they added on the first floor. It was clearly added so the elderly mpther didn't have to walk up the stairs if she was having mobility issues but even in the dry shower she appeared to have difficulty stepping over it. I assumed they were going to make it flush and given how it was setup it appears they could have done that.

Edited by biakbiak

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Yeah - this was nicely done but, I wanted to be more "wow'd!" than I was.  They did an excellent job re-configuring the spaces.  I think the son was near tears, which was sweet.

One thing I noticed were the rails along side the front steps leading to the porch. They looked cheap and my guess is they weren't original to the house.  I thought for sure they would be replacing them with period-looking wood rails.  But they just painted them black.  

That was one strange-looking piano.  I would have loved to have heard it played.

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Yes, either the scenario for the elderly mother was not exactly as it was presented (perhaps she isn't going to actually live there full time but since the house had been hers they wanted to give her input) or Brett serious missed with that bathroom - not very friendly for the mobility-limited and really needed more handholds, particularly at the entrance to the shower (interior and exterior). She had enough trouble walking in while the area was dry and she was wearing shoes. And granted the marble floor tiles were small hexes with a lot of grout, but marble is slick when it is wet. Sure, putting in the hand-hold rails doesn't leave you with a sexy space, but it sure beats a fall. Brett put thought into the bench and the hand-wand shower, but a fall is something you want to avoid at all costs in the elderly.

Instead of finding vintage corbels (which I thought were oversized for the space), I though they should have duplicated the ones on the porch, which were a pretty unique shape for that time.

Also some of those doorways could have been a little wider in case she ever needs a wheelchair.

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The look on Brett's face when they said they wanted to gut the kitchen was priceless. I really did not like the new kitchen layout, its one of his first misses for me and I wonder what he would have done if he didnt have to partially open up the kitchen. I also don't think it's what the homeowners really wanted so it missed on all levels.

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