As far as first impressions go, well...
It definitely MADE an impression. If you have driven around this corner for any length of time over the past decade, you have seen this exterior go from a thriving flower shop to a sad, worn down little house. My "first" impression (after no longer living next door for the past 10 years) was, "it just needs some TLC". I saw a ton of potential, but didn't really have a vision for the exterior right away. Making the interior functional was my highest priority. The exterior could wait. Well, sort of.
Any work I planned to do inside would be useless without addressing the leaky, old roof. After collecting a few bids, I hired my friends at Livingston Roofing to replace it entirely. This was the biggest expense, but to me the most necessary. Having a new metal roof gave me peace of mind to embark on the huge task ahead of me.
After presenting some color options to my landlord, we finally agreed on grey...SW Cityscape, to be exact. If my memory serves correctly, the shop had been white, yellow and dark blue before the current pinkish beige. Since I was little, I dreamed of living in a grey house with white trim. Since we live in a subdivision with HOA restrictions, now was my chance with the shop!
Our dear friend, Barry (who was once a stranger, but also technically the reason we live here in the south) offered to pressure wash the exterior for us. I generally have trouble accepting help, but during this process I am learning to welcome it.
After a thorough cleaning, I began painting as much of the exterior as I could -- basically, as high as I could reach on a 6' ladder. (Heights and I just don't get along.) I am all about doing what I have the ability to do in order to save money. My son (and his then girlfriend) helped a couple times. It just didn't make sense to hire that out.
But, working around Louisiana summer and fall weather is challenging as it rains all the time. (And people think it rains in Seattle, lol!) So, after painting the lower half, I hired a local, professional paint crew who I have worked with before. They knocked it out in no time. It was such a huge relief to have it finished.
Now, choosing the front door paint color was difficult. I don't know why. I considered so many different options, but ultimately it just made sense to go with Rhumba Orange. My business colors are grey, white, navy and orange. I painted a bunch of sample boards different shades of green, blue and finally orange. It was so helpful to see large swatches of color. My favorite color is green, but with so much greenery surrounding the shop, it fell flat. Plus, two of the surrounding houses have green exteriors.
Now, when I approach the corner, what jumps out at me is the front door and address numbers. That's the result I was after. I love it!
Up next in the series:
Shop Transformation: 2.Exterior