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oh joy builds a house: the living room!

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Living Room / via Oh Joy!

I'm back with another house update! I'm excited to show you at peek at what we're working on for our living room. It's been so fun collaborating with Cleo and her team at Project M+ on our interiors. Together, we've created some really beautiful rooms that I can't wait watch come to life!

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Living Room / via Oh Joy! // Peacock at Sunset Living Room

Our living room mixes rich and bright tones with wood, white, black, and brass. I'm calling the current inspiration..."A peacock at Sunset" with the bluish green velvet couch and accents of color in coral, mustard, and pale pink. It's meant to be cozy, yet chic.

1. Perigold desk chair, 2. Interior Define Charley Sleeper Sectional in Malachite velvet with Lulu and Georgia Sunset Pillows, 3. Modshop credenza, 4. Clare Classic paint, 5. side table from Lulu & Georgia, 6. Justina Blakeney chair, 7. Sarah Sherman Samuel for Lulu & Georgia rug, 8. Lulu & Georgia side table, 9. Mohawk wood floors in Beachwood Oak.

We have a few fun details that are coming to life that I can share progress with you on...

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Living Room / via Oh Joy!

A Light Well! One side of the house is filled with large windows. And the other side is built into the hill where we can't have any windows. So our architects at Project M+ created light wells built into a couple areas of the house (like the living room). The light wells allow light to come in from the top down in a similar way that a skylight brings light in. It's a really beautiful detail that I've never seen before! We'll likely put a big, beautiful plant in this one.

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Living Room / via Oh Joy!

Wood ceiling! To make this room feel extra cozy, it's been paneled with a wood ceiling that's a shade lighter than the floor. This was the first area of the house to get wood paneling (before the floors) so I love to look up at it already. This is the only room with this extra ceiling detail!

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Living Room / via Oh Joy!

Help me pick fabric for the chairs! For the side chairs in the living room, I love these swivel chairs by my friend, Justina Blakeney. We're looking at two of these chairs but would change out the current white fabric upholstery with another fabric that will fit with the current palette yet also make the chairs more durable with kids. Here are a few of my favorite options, which do YOU like best?!

A. and B. Annie Coop Textiles fabric, C. Drop It Modern Line fabric, D. Drop It Modern Kitten fabric, E. Drop It Modern Azteca fabric, F. Drop it Modern Femme fabric.

And, check out my post over at Architectural Digest's Clever for my tips on things to consider when designing a chic living room that's also kid-friendly!

{Photos by Lily Glass. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture by Project M+, Interiors in collaboration with Cleo Murnane at Project M+. All other layouts by Joy Cho. My dress is Mara Hoffman (past season), sweater is Misha and Puff, boots are Red Wing Heritage.} 

what (finally) owning a home means to me...

what (finally) owning a home means to me / oh joy!

The home is my most favorite place to be. I'm the person who throws on my PJ's as soon as I get home, and jumps into my bed to relax as soon as my kids go to bed. Some of my all-time favorite memories are being at home having dinner with my family catching up on our day and having friends over and talking about anything and everything while our kids play. Today, in partnership with Unison, I'm reminiscing about our long journey towards home ownership and what it means to me to be finally (almost) a home owner...

The other day, on Facebook, a friend who is a real estate agent asked this question of her fellow Facebook friends...

"How old were you when you bought your first home?"

The answers surprised me. "22! 26! 32!" exclaimed the group.

I was floored. There are people who can buy a house in their 20's?! 30's sounded better to me, but I just turned 40 this year and have not yet lived in a home that I own. Sure, I prioritized the earlier years of my adulthood differently. I started a business at age 26 with no savings and have always put most of the money I earned back into my business to help grow my team. I have also always lived in large cities that are very expensive to buy in. From New York to Philly to San Diego to Los Angeles, I never made it easy on myself to try and save up for a home in a city with reasonable real estate prices. It wasn't until we were outbid multiple times on our attempt to finally buy a house in Los Angeles 5 years ago, that we decided on the very long and crazy process of building a house instead...because, as crazy as it sounds, that's actually cheaper to do in LA than to buy an existing one!

what (finally) owning a home means to me / oh joy!

Now that we are just a couple months away from finally having our very first (and forever) house to call our own, the emotions here are real. We'll be saying goodbye to our only other home in Los Angeles that we have been renting for 9 years since first moving to LA. In the summer of 2010, we found it on a whim. We got this place before we had kids with no intention of staying as long as we have. But the rent was cheap (for our neighborhood), and it allowed us to save and save and save for a house. But as every year passed, I longed simply for a backyard for my kids to play in, a kitchen and outdoor area where I could have friends hang out, drop by, or stay for dinner. Regardless of what this home lacked in space or amenities, it's the place both of our babies have called home since the beginning of their lives, and it will always have a special place in our hearts.

what (finally) owning a home means to me / oh joy!

Every week for almost two years, I have been walking through this new home we are building that will soon be ours. While it's been the most financially stressful experience of my life, I see this home as such an amazing representation of our patience and our hard work over the last decade to finally get to this place.

Owning a home always comes back to connection for me—connecting with my family, having my kids have a place to play together and connect as sisters, and inviting friends, family, and co-workers over and being able to connect with them. And, I can't wait for all the memories this new, forever home will bring for us.

Now's your chance to share what owning a home means for you! In partnership with Unison, you can enter the #UnisonDreamHomeContest for your chance to win $25K towards buying a home or to remodel your existing home. Find out more on their website right here!

{Color Photos by Lily Glass, black and white photo by Katherine Rose. Written by Joy Cho.}

oh joy builds a house: a construction update + both good and bad things that have happened...

Oh Joy! Builds A House: A Construction Update + Both Good and Bad Things That Have Happened... / via Oh Joy!

It's been a few months since I've given you an update on what's happening inside the construction of our house! We now have walls, doors, and windows! Plus, finishes (like tile and floors) are starting to go in! Here's a mini walk-through video for you...

This (almost) 5 year process has been an emotional roller coaster to say the least, so I wanted to share some of the awesome (but also not-so-awesome) things that have happened recently...

Oh Joy! Builds A House: A Construction Update + Both Good and Bad Things That Have Happened... / via Oh Joy!

Not-so-awesome things:

Break-ins. We were given a heads up when we started this project that break-ins are unfortunately very common on construction sites. I was in complete denial because I just believe that most people are good people. But we've unfortunately had a handful of break-ins over the course of this project with the most recent being not too long ago. People mostly steal tools and sell them to pawn shops. Even though it's not a house that we yet live in and so many people are currently working there everyday, it still feels completely violating.

Money Stress. I have never been so stressed about money in my whole life. Everyone tells me that home ownership changes the game, and they weren't kidding. Being a renter thus far in my adult life has sheltered me from this feeling of knowing the stress of owning property that is yours...plus, all the responsibilities that come with it.

I Cry a lot. I'm already a very emotional person, and I cry probably once a week lately. It's a lot of things to manage on top of my regular job, running a business, and trying to have some sort of life. There are some days I just want to give up and undo all of it. I truly do try to remind myself that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, and my husband has been so amazing is reminding me of that!

Oh Joy! Builds A House: A Construction Update + Both Good and Bad Things That Have Happened... / via Oh Joy!

Awesome things:

It's starting to look like a real house! Once the walls went up, it all started feeling much more real. It was no longer just this pile of dirt that we looked at for years! We are now able to walk through and actually see how the space is coming together, where things will go, and where my family will be living.

Having control over where we live and what we do to/for our house. No more broken faucets due to faulty old plumbing or having to wait for a landlord to fix something that always breaks! I've rented for so long that I gotten used to having to make do with old parts that constantly break. To know that we can fix something or change something on our own feels very freeing.

Seeing all of our hard work pay off. This project has been nothing short of time-consuming and stressful. But when I have a moment to take a deep breath and really take it in, it's pretty incredible when I let myself appreciate how hard my husband and I have worked to save and save (and will continue to save) over the course of our adult lives for this forever home for our family.

{Photos by Lily Glass and Morgan Pansing. Video by Jenner Brown. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture by Project M+, Interiors in collaboration with Cleo Murnane at Project M+. All other layouts by Joy Cho. My pink dress is Kate Spade, boots are Red Wing Heritage. Written by Joy Cho.} 

oh joy builds a house: our kitchen!

oh joy builds a house: our kitchen!

Ah, the kitchen! To me, the kitchen is often the center of a home. It's where you cook meals. It's where friends and family gather when they are over to snack on tiny bite-sized snacks and chat about life. It's the place where my children will have meals, learn to bake cookies from scratch, and where my husband and I will prepare meals for our family. Here's a peek at some of the plans for our kitchen...

oh joy builds a house: our kitchen!

Our current apartment rental (where we have lived for 9 years) has brown wood cabinets, black countertops, and rust-colored tile. I don't own it and have therefore left it exactly as it is. It has served us well over the years, and we have made the best of a smaller kitchen and limited countertop space. But, it's dark and not inviting at all.

So, for our new home, I wanted the kitchen to be light and bright and feel open and inviting. The new kitchen isn't huge, but we will have space for a small island which I am very excited about to be able to have a surface to prep and also to have a few counter stools where we can also have meals. The white cabinets that will fill most of the kitchen are accented with texture from the countertop, backsplash tile, and accent wallpaper. Smaller doses of brass and wood will warm up the bright and light space.

Shown: 1. Clare paint in Timeless, 2. Tabarka Basel 1 cement/brass tile for a small backsplash area, 3. Concrete Collaborative terrazzo tile on floor, 4. Makelike wallpaper for an accent wall, 5. Caesarstone Calacatta Nuvo 5131 for countertop, 6. Fyrn stools, 7. Schaub appliance pulls.

oh joy builds a house: our kitchen!

Here's a peek at the floor! It has brass accents in the flooring (with schulter strips). This was a way to bring in the look of something custom without the price tag of a completely custom poured floor or brass detail. It still needs to have grout put in between the tiles, but it's all happening!

oh joy builds a house: our kitchen!


Shown: Reform Degree cabinets, Tabarka Basel 1 cement and brass tile for a small backsplash area.

I love the mix of texture and shine with the combo of cement and brass and wanted the tile to be a way to bring in a bit of pattern since the cabinets will be all solid white. Here are some tile studies we played with for a small area of backsplash. Some feel heavier while some feel lighter. Which one do you like best?

I can't wait to show you more as we go!

{First photo by Morgan Pansing, all others by Lily Glass. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture by Project M+, Interiors and renderings in collaboration with Cleo Murnane at Project M+. All other layouts by Joy Cho. My dress is past season Gorman, boots are Red Wing Heritage. Written by Joy Cho.} 

oh joy builds a house: the kids' rooms!

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Kids' Room / via Oh Joy!

Ahhhh...drywall is in! And, it's time to show you a peek at one of my favorite rooms...the kids' rooms! My girls currently share a room in the apartment we live in. In our new house, they will each have their own smaller room. But they love sharing so much that we've decided to have them share for a little while longer and let them split up later when they're ready. So, for now, one room will be their shared bedroom, and one will be their play/craft room. Here's a peek...

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Kids' Room / via Oh Joy! // Graphic Wonderland a Kids' Room

Mixing in some items from their current room (see the evolution here) with some newer pieces, the two rooms mix neutrals like white, wood, and brass with pops of color as I've always loved from their current room. These two smaller rooms are connected by their shared bathroom.

1. Eleanor Bowmer wallpaper, 2. Bunk Beds by Oeuf, 3. Cedar and Moss Fjord Light, 4. Tamar Mogendorff Shell Pillows and Aelfie Lion Pillow, 5. Schoolhouse mini ledges, 6. Aurora Petal Wallpaper by Calico, 7. Speckle wallpaper by Studio Cope, 8. Craft table by Nico & Yeye and Chairs by Nico & Yeye, 9. Reform closet doors, 10. Oh Joy! for Lorena Canals washable rug, 11. Oeuf bookshelf (from their current room), 12. Mohawk wood floors in Beachwood Oak.

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Kids' Room / via Oh Joy!

Here are some things to consider when designing kids' rooms:

1. Design for longevityIf you're in a home that you hope to stay in for a while, bring in pieces that can evolve with your kids as they grow. For example, while we're getting a bunk bed for now, I chose a bunk bed design that can easily separate and be used individually. In the play/craft room, we have two smaller tables that will be pushed together to create one long table. But those tables can later separate to bring one into each room to also use as a desk for homework.

2. Custom elements. With something like bunk beds, you're missing out on floor space for the top bunk to have a traditional night stand. So, think of ways you can customize that area for maximum function. We're adding a small lighting source up top near the upper bunk and adding a place to hold books and other night time items with a brass floating shelf.

3. Let your kids give input. My kids are generally okay with things I pick out for their rooms, but they still love being involved and getting to have a say. For example, I showed them wallpapers and paint colors to see what they liked. There was a flamingo wallpaper I was initially thinking about for their room until my oldest daughter said, "Mommy, I really like it. But I wouldn't want it to be in the room I sleep in because I feel like the flamingoes would be staring at me all the time." Noted! And I saw that as a very relevant point and switched wallpapers!

If you have little ones, how have you seen your kids' rooms evolve and change over the years? Anything you wish you did differently?

Check out my post at over at Architectural Digest's Clever to see some of my initial inspirations for the rooms.

{Photos by Lily Glass. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture by Project M+, Interiors in collaboration with Cleo Murnane at Project M+. All other layouts by Joy Cho.} 

oh joy builds a house: the (garden glam) dining room!

Oh Joy! Builds A House / Garden Glam Dining Room

I'm back with a house update! Gah...this will eventually be the dining room at my house! The dining room is such a special place to me as so many memories of the best conversations happen in the dining room...my little family's daily ritual of Favorite, Least Favorite, Tomorrow...as well as deep conversations with friends involving both lots of laugher (and sometimes tears). It's the place we bond over our favorite meals, catch up on the day, and chat long into the night after our kids have gone to bed...

Oh Joy! Builds A House / Garden Glam Dining Room

Since the dining room is a space that's meant to be filled with friends and family and tons of great conversation, I love the idea of a statement wall in the dining room. Why not have the wall be a conversation piece, too? I'm a huge fan of the work of SheShe, a female duo based in Minneapolis known for hand-painted murals and wallpaper. I don't know exactly (yet) what we're doing for this wall, but one of their past murals definitely feels right in line of the look I'm going for! And, because the wall will have a few different colors, we kept the rest of the furniture neutral with brass, cognac leather, white, and shades of grey!

1. Mural by SheShe, 2. Pendant lamp from Lamps Plus, 3. Dining table from Wayfair (coming soon!), 4. Mohawk wood floors in Beachwood Oak, 5. Dining chairs from Wayfair, 6. rug from Wayfair, 7. Emtek knob for cabinets,

While we'll use this room for entertaining with friends, we also need it for daily meals with our kids. I don't want anything to feel too precious and need it to be durable as well.

Oh Joy! Builds A House / Garden Glam Dining Room

Here are a few things I kept in mind when designing a chic dining room to use (with kids):

Wipeable surfaces. As much as I love textured wood tables and upholstered chairs, this is the one of the areas in my house that there are no restrictions on food or drink. So, we chose a table where the surface was smooth and easily wipeable and chairs that could also be wiped down. While I love velvety upholstered chairs, they didn't make as much sense in this room.

Size of dining table. We have a 6-person dining table in our current apartment, and it's fine for an average night. But it gets tight when we have friends over or when we host Thanksgiving dinner. I would have loved a 10-person table here, but the room isn't quite big enough so we compromised with an 8-person table which I'm VERY excited about.

To rug or not to rug? I'm always conflicted about rugs in a dining room. Rugs help to define a space, yet it feels odd to have something under a dining table that is harder to clean than the wood floor underneath. We have not finalized a rug here yet and curious to know what you guys think about rugs in dining rooms?

Stay tuned for more updates here and on Instagram...we are a few months away from being done so updates will keep coming as we get closer and closer!

{Photos by Lily Glass. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture by Project M+, Interiors in collaboration with Cleo Murnane at Project M+. All other layouts by Joy Cho. My dress is Mara Hoffman (past season), sweater is Misha and Puff, boots are Red Wing Heritage.} 

day trip: concrete collaborative

Day Trip: Concrete Collaborative / via Oh Joy!

A couple weeks ago, I took a little road trip down to San Marcos to visit the Concrete Collaborative showroom and factory! They make gorgeous, sustainable, and super unique concrete products, like my current favorite TERRAZZO. We're working with them for our house, so I also got to see some of the actual slabs that will be in our home while there. It was so cool to see how terrazzo gets made!


Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Laundry Room!

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Laundry Room! / via Oh Joy!

I'm back with interior updates for my house! I don't think I've ever been this excited to design a laundry room because...I've never had a laundry room before. In the last three places I have lived in my adult life, either: the laundry wasn't even in the building (Brooklyn living), laundry was shoved into a bathroom (small studio in Philly), or it's in a shared space with our duplex neighbor (our current place). So, to have a place to wash, dry, and fold...it's a dream!

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Laundry Room! // Tutti Fruit Laundry Room / via Oh Joy!

All of the interiors for my house are being designed in collaboration with Cleo Murnane, the Creative Director at Project M+. It's so great to get the input and eye of an interiors/architect team because they bring a certain perspective to the process while I bring all my ideas for injecting fun into it. For this room, I wanted to go tile-heavy and use something statement and super fun. Since it's a small room, it felt like a great place to be able to make statement and make it feel really special. This cement tile by Juju was the focal point of this room so everything else was selected to complement it. This space provided an opportunity to bring in colorful cabinets...because if you're going to use THAT tile, you can't just go with solid white cabinets!

1. Juju Fruit Salad tile, 2. Clare paint in Seize the Gray, 3. Custom color Reform in dark green or blush 4. Emtek brass satin door knob, 5. Mohawk wood floors in Beachwood Oak, 6. Juju Fruit Salad tile, 7. Emtek hexagon knob in satin brass.

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Laundry Room! // Cabinet Color Study 1 / via Oh Joy!

COLOR STUDY 1 (GREEN): This version pulls the dark green from the tile and gives the tile a pop that feels chic and sophisticated.

Cabinets by Reform (custom color), Caesarstone countertops in Calacutta Nuvo, Tiles by Juju, Washer and dryer by Whirlpool, Hardware by Emtek, Brass faucet by Newport Brass, Sink by Kohler, Art print by JimJam.

Oh Joy! Builds a House: The Laundry Room! // Cabinet Color Study 2 / via Oh Joy!

COLOR STUDY 2 (BLUSH): This version pulls the blush pink from the tile and offers a lighter palette in which the tile blends in a bit more into this feminine and colorful space!

Cabinets by Reform (custom color), Caesarstone countertops in Calacutta Nuvo, Tiles by Juju, Washer and dryer by Whirlpool, Hardware by Emtek, Brass faucet by Newport Brass, Sink by Kohler, Art print by JimJam.

Which color cabinets should we go with? And, check out my post over at Architectural Digest's Clever for my tips on things to consider when designing a laundry room.

{Photos by Lily Glass. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture and renderings by Project M+, all other layouts by Joy Cho.} 

when a knob isn't just a knob...

When A Knob Isn't Just A Knob... // Simple Style Solution: Hardware / via Oh Joy!

As I've been working on finalizing design for the interiors of our house, it's the little details that I find to be surprisingly fun! Who would have known how many knobs, pulls, and handles exist but also this process has made me think about the functionality of all the pieces at the same time. Hardware is like icing on top of the cake! It's a detail that often gets overlooked but makes an easy way to add style to a new space or even change up an existing space especially in bathrooms and kitchens where storage is a huge priority. Today, we've partnered with Schaub and Company to show you some of my favorite pieces that will be going into our home and how you can use them in your spaces, too...

When A Knob Isn't Just A Knob... // Small Knobs + Pulls / via Oh Joy!

Small Knobs — For smaller cabinets, lighter drawers, and those that get used less often (like a dining room storage area), small knobs add function and not-too-much bulk. They are often round in nature and feel like adding stud earrings to an outfit. They're a bit more understated, smaller, and can go with lots of things. I'm going all brass with our hardware and love both the full brass options as well as those that have glass mixed in!

Small Pulls — For smaller cabinets and those that get used more often (like the top drawers of a bathroom or kitchen), you want to have the grip to be able open a cabinet that may have heavier items inside (like utensils). In these cases, small pulls work well because there is something with a bit more size to grasp onto. My favorites here are a mix of solid brass and these gorgeous brass and lucite options. 

1. Atherton Cup Pull, 2. Stargaze Cylinder Knob, 3. Haniburton Knob , 4. City Lights Knob, 5. Stargaze Round Knob, 6. Lumiere Brass T-Knob, 7. Lumiere Rose Gold T-Knob, 8. Haniburton Finger Pull, 9. City Lights Cylinder Knob.

When A Knob Isn't Just A Knob... // Medium + Large Hardware / via Oh Joy!

Medium Handles — A medium sized handle (anywhere from 4-8" wide) works great for kitchen and bathroom drawers and cabinets. You want to use these on cabinet and millwork doors that get very regular usage and need sturdy handles. If you're using handles to freshen up a space by swapping out your older ones, think about how you like to open drawers and do you want your whole hand to fit into the handle or just be able to pull with your fingers? That will help determine the size as well as how it visually looks with the size of your drawer or cabinet.

Appliance Handles — If you're able to panel your fridge or dishwasher, a special appliance handle adds a custom aspect to your kitchen that helps it feels special and unique to you. We're using these brass and lucite handles for ours, and it adds a detail that makes it feel so unique but doesn't cost a ton.

10. Lumiere Pull, 11. Haniburton 4" cc Pull, 12. Haniburton 6" cc Pull, 13. Brass Lumiere Appliance Pull, 14. Rose Gold Lumiere Appliance Pull.

Do you see what I mean when I say a knob isn't just a knob? ;P

P.S. One thing to keep in mind if you're updating hardware that you currently have is to measure the center to center spacing between the screw holes! This helps ensure that you find something of the same size or at least something to cover the holes that currently exist on your future from the old hardware. For example, when replacing knobs with pulls, make sure you find something that covers the center hole on the drawers from the previous knobs.This way you don't have to patch any unnecessary holes!

{Photos by Lily Glass, styling by Joy Cho.}

Oh Joy! Builds a House: A Construction Update + The Things That Have Changed Along the Way...

Oh Joy! Builds a House: A Construction Update + The Things That Have Changed Along the Way...

I know I'm smiling in this photo, but the last several months have been partially the most fulfilling part of this house build process...and also partially the hardest so far. I often have a hard time letting myself publicly express my stress because I am so very grateful to be in this process of building a house. But, to be honest, it's WAYYYYY harder than I had anticipated, and I've shed many tears over the last several months. Here's a look at some of the things that have changed part way through...

Here's a little video update of how it currently looks inside! Then, see below for a breakdown of what's happening and what's changing...

Oh Joy! Builds a House: A Construction Update + The Things That Have Changed Along the Way...

Since my last Construction Update, we've finished framing, there's a roof on the house, and we now have walls! Here I am standing in our kitchen. We've finalized the kitchen design (which I'll share soon in coming months). We didn't have any major changes in this space. BUT we've had lots of random and unforeseen incidences like: rain delays (this year happens to be the 7th rainiest year in the history of Los Angeles! Of course!), thousands of pounds of materials arriving from a vendor to the wrong address, and large deliveries of supplies being left on the street only for someone in the construction crew to find randomly find them sitting on the street!

Oh Joy! Builds a House: A Construction Update + The Things That Have Changed Along the Way...

Last minute lighting. When the framing is up and the rooms start to look like rooms, it's easier to walk into a space and get a feel for it in real life vs. a flat drawing we've been viewing from above. We've made lots of small changes here and there during this part of the process. For example, our kids will have bunk beds when we first move in until they are ready to split up into their own rooms. Therefore, it made sense to wire lighting for each of the bunk beds (especially the higher one) since it's hard to get lighting up there otherwise. So, we mapped out already exactly where the beds will go and also where we'll add a small light by each of their beds.

Oh Joy! Builds a House: A Construction Update + The Things That Have Changed Along the Way...

Additional Skylight in the Hall. Because the house is built into a hill, all of the windows are on the front side of the house with no windows on the back side. Therefore, our architects designed light wells into a couple of the spaces to bring light in from above. We also decided to add a couple additional skylights into the hallway to bring more light into the backside of the house (seen here on the right side of the photo). This is the hallway on the 2nd floor of the house!

Oh Joy! Builds a House: A Construction Update + The Things That Have Changed Along the Way...

Additional Skylight in Our Closet. Our Master Closet may end up being my favorite room in the house. Having always lived in big cities (New York, then Philly, then Los Angeles), I have never had a regular-sized closet. So when planning our Master Bedroom, rather than having a giant bedroom, we opted for a smaller bedroom but a large closet. There had to be some give and take (since there is only so much square footage in the house), and I'm so happy to finally have a closet that is wider than 3 feet! We added in skylights in here part way through to give it some natural light as well.

Oh Joy! Builds a House: A Construction Update + The Things That Have Changed Along the Way...

No master bathtub. I'm peeking out from our master bathroom window above. About a month ago, we decided to completely change the layout of our bathroom. After it was framed and we saw how the layout was executing in real life, the bathtub was taking up so much of the space. And while a tub sounds like an awesome Calgon moment, we rarely take baths. We decided to remove the tub altogether and make a bigger shower. We basically had to rework the whole space around that and made the vanity and sink area wider, moved the toilet, and moved the shower, too! It's a pretty drastic change from the original design, but we really felt the changes were more practical for the way we live and our priorities for that room. Luckily, we made the change before it was too late, so the costs to adjust those few things were minimal.

Oh Joy! Builds a House: A Construction Update + The Things That Have Changed Along the Way...

No pool! I'm overlooking our yard right here. We had previously planned to put in a pool. But, as the process went along and more and more unexpected costs or increases in material costs went up, our budget for a pool eventually became $0.00. I had envisioned summers with our kids' friends over hanging poolside, but the reality is, we just could not justify the cost of it so we decided to (literally) pull the plug on a pool. The plus side is that our yard will now be a good size (for Los Angeles, anyway) without the pool, and I won't have to stress about small kids and pools (and the liability of it) which fed into all my worry-wort fears.

Oh Joy! Builds a House: A Construction Update + The Things That Have Changed Along the Way...

Increase costs! Yup, this is the biggest one and the one that has given me the most stress in this process. SO, many things have come up that have resulted in an increase in costs. Some things they involved small changes we decided to make based on our needs and functionality, but often it involved increase in materials costs or a change in code that we needed to meet.

My architects told me that after this process, I'll know so much that I'll be super equipped with all the knowledge to build our NEXT house! And, my response...."OH NO! There won't be any more houses...I'm staying here forever :P" As overwhelming as this process can be, I keep looking to the light at the end of the tunnel...a finished house for my family to live in forever!

If you have any questions for me about any of this, please let me know!

{Photos by Lily Glass, video by Jenner Brown. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture by Project M+}