let’s talk doors

Before.

The biggest question that I am aiming to answer here is whether or not you can install a 2”x4″ exterior door in a 2”x6″ wall? Also, what is the price difference?

When we purchased our acreage it was bank-owned. As far as we knew, it had sat vacant for many months before we ended up moving into it. To deter people from entering, the property manager had duct taped signs to both exterior doors. Have you ever tried removing duct tape from painted doors? It can’t be nicely done. Either the paint chips away, or the duct tape stays.

Fast-forward nearly two years, and we finally hired a contractor to replace our doors. What a process it was. Because I had never done this before, I thought that I would explain our process, and how we ended up saving a lot of money. If you are interested in replacing your doors but are worried about the price of doing so, it can be done for cheaper than you think (with a bit of research and determination)!

Originally, I had really wanted wood doors. My mother and step-father installed one at their acreage and it was just gorgeous. So about a year ago, I called around to many manufactures in Saskatoon and asked for quotes. What I was getting back was around $10,000 for two exterior wood doors plus install. These were their cheapest prices.

Because we renovating our entire home on essentially one income, I set a budget for $3000. This would have to include the price of doors and installation. So I scoured online for wood doors. After weeks, I came to the conclusion that if we wanted a wood look we were going to have to settle for woodgrain fibreglass doors.

Next, I went to Home Hardware and Home Depot and obtained quotes in person. Home Depot has a beautiful line by Masonite. I ended up with a quote of $2,219 for Craftsmen-style doors that were on sale. That seemed reasonable to me! I went to Home Hardware just to compare. Two of their doors was going to cost just over $3000. So at the time, I settled on Home Depot.

Then we had a small black window installed next to our side door. At the time, we now had mostly white windows, one white door, one red door, and one black window. All of those colours and different styles were putting my OCD into overdrive. I told Geoff that we had to choose one colour and stick with it. 

Because our style is more Scandinavian-farmhouse-modern, I knew that I wanted to keep with a black and white theme. So totally scrapping the wood door idea, we were now aiming for really modern black doors. Ones that would let in light, but also offer privacy. 

To make a long story short, we found exactly what we had in mind at Lowe’s. Made by JELD-WEN, each door was just over $400, totalling about $850. The only problem was they were 2”x4″ jambs rather than the 2”x6″ jambs that we needed. What’s the difference? Thousands of dollars. Because the 2”x4″ black doors were so common and in stock, they were such a good deal. To order the same or a similar door in a 2”x6″ construction, it would have been considered special order. Hence, the price went up to over $1000 per door. Inevitably, 2”x4″ doors are generally much cheaper than 2”x6″ doors.

Having our hearts set on the 2”x4″ doors by JELD-WEN, I sent our contractor a text and asked him if there was any way that we could purchase those doors. To my surprise, he said that we could! We just needed a door extension kit, which ran for about $75 each. Um, SOLD!! 

We ended up buying the doors, brick mould, and extension kits for less than $1000. So far, so good.

It took our contractor a few months to finally have a few days off in his schedule. Then, it took him a day and a half to install them. His final price for install was $1300. 

After.

I ended up selling our old doors for $300. In total, we spent around $2000 on our front and side door renovation. After all of the unknowing and change of minds, it ended up being way under budget. I am so happy about that, and so happy with the results! If you are wanting to save money, I highly suggest exploring all options, such as a smaller framed door. Also, don’t quit until you are happy with the price. It may take forever and a day, but you don’t need to spend a lot of money on exterior doors if you don’t want to.

We still need a new exterior light, doorbell, to paint the white brick mould black, and are planning a wraparound deck this summer. But for now, our acreage is slowly but surely coming together.

Emory

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acreage renovation: white modern jungle gym

Oh, this jungle gym.

When we moved to the country, there was nothing in our yard except an old, neglected sandbox in the front. We needed something that the children could play on and with. During that first summer, I spoke often of how I wanted a play structure for them. However, because we had just bought a trampoline, I said that we could wait another year until we got one. In the meantime, they could play at the park that was within walking distance.

It was my brother-in-law that told me he often saw free jungle gyms on Kijiji. I asked him if he ever came across one to then send it to me. Over the next few months, he had sent me a few listings. I would message the owners within a few minutes of them posting the ad, but someone always seemed to beat me to it! Finally, one day in early fall, he sent me a listing that I was able to secure. On Geoff’s first day off, they went to the Kijiji-er’s house, dismantled it, brought it home, and set it back up.

Fast-forward to nearly one year later and after putting it off for this long, we decided to fix its problems. The jungle gym was missing structural pieces to make it sturdy. The sandbox was nearly empty. The rope ladder wasn’t getting used and was tripping us every time we went to turn the corner. Most of all, it desperately needed a roof to provide shade on our hot, shadeless property. Above is what it pretty much looked like before.

I happened to stumble an outdoor playset on Instagram one day that was stained white with black accents. I immediately sent Geoff a picture and told him that I was going to try replicating that. The next day I got to work on building a roof.

Admittedly, I had no idea what I was doing! I had never built a roof before, and so I Googled how to do it. Insert eye roll here. I followed the directions from one blog where they basically did what I was trying to do. I used the proper tools (including a saw and rafter square) and it turned out to be not nearly wide enough. Because I was home alone with the children and didn’t want to take them shopping, I was using scrap wood. That meant that I didn’t have enough to fix any mistakes.

Luckily, Geoff came home from work later that day, and was able to fix the roof as best as he could! It ended up being incredibly sturdy, it just didn’t look very professional, thanks to me. Haha.

I bought two cans of white Beauti-Tone acrylic stain which covered the entire structure nicely.

We took down the inconvenient rope ladder and in the process some of the rungs broke and the rope became tangled. We discussed the many ways that we could try to fix it and rehang it somewhere else, but because the kids never even used it, we eventually gave up on the idea.

I ended up painting Wilder’s baby swing white, in order to match the rest of the jungle gym.

Geoff had to secure the slide better to the playset in order to ensure its safety.

I bought a black hammock swing that we could all enjoy and hung it where the rings used to be. Finally, we moved the rings to the end in order to utilize that empty space.

Really, all this makeover cost was two cans of stain, metal roofing, and a new swing. What was once a neglected, hot structure on our property, is now a well-loved, well-played on, shaded spot for all of us.

Emory

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stairway to heaven, or something like that

e5556d9f070dcb71dbfdfbde1c06d0f9(Image via Pinterest)

The day is getting closer for when we’ll be able to move into The Little Barn. I would say in two weeks, to be exact. This also means that the decisions are becoming finer in their details and much more rushed at that. Our contractors are scrambling to finish last minute projects, both little and big, and we are calling them almost on a daily basis asking when it is that we’ll be able to bring our belongings over. The only other time that I’ve felt this nervous during our house building was in the beginning, when we were waiting to hear back from the bank regarding our mortgage. It’s torturous!

Anyway, that’s not the point of this post. What is the point is that we were asked to pick out a railing for our staircase. Actually, I was texted that question. My first response was that I didn’t bloody know. My contractor then told me that I had to pick something. Obviously, but what a vague question. Who thinks about railings? Didn’t they just appear when the staircase was installed? What are the different kinds of materials that can be used? How would I know what would look good and what wouldn’t?

In a desperate attempt, I had asked my husband to pick out a railing. He was about as shocked and overwhelmed as I was, and asked me what look we were going for. 

“I don’t know,” I said. “Just type in rustic staircase.” 

So he did. What we came up with was a reclaimed wood railing.

dd14c481e8c7a8520a2b38efd2c3612b(Image via Pinterest)

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What would you have chosen for your own house?

<3

Emory

in october

Screen Shot 2014-10-28 at 8.30.30 PMNot only is today Halloween, but it also marks the last day in October. Another month has come to an end. I always feel a bit nostalgic on these days. Like something important is concluding. Do you agree? Yet, at the same time, I like these days for the sole purpose of being able to sum up the entire month of blogging.

Screen Shot 2014-10-28 at 7.59.24 PMWhile 30 days may not seem very long ago to most people, to a blogger who publishes 5 posts a week, it feels like a lifetime. No longer do our previous posts seem relevant, as we are typically already planning an entire month in advance.Thus, something that we posted one month ago, in actuality, is really two months ago in our minds. A lot can happen in two months!

That being said, let’s finally discuss what did happen in October.

BeFunky_04.jpgI began the month with the introduction of my store’s website, as well as the grand opening of Potomac Trading Post, Ltd. itself. I also published my Pinterest finds on my store inspiration.

Holly03Next, I described the big changes that I’ve gone through emotionally this summer, as well as dealing with Holly’s health problems and being able to witness the self-effacing beauty in a dog’s own strength and will to survive.

Screen Shot 2014-10-09 at 10.41.45 AMWe celebrated Thanksgiving in Canada. I wrote about what I was thankful for, in addition to showing you my outfit for the delicious holiday.

01.jpgSpeaking of food, my husband was October’s guest blogger and he made the most delicious Butternut Squash Pasta.

J+J 08I was hired to shoot a prairie couple and their dog, seen here and here.

Moon.jpgI also blogged about my discovery of RAW format, not to mention testing it out on the night of the partial solar eclipse. (The former of which has become one of my most liked posts!)

BeFunky_2.jpgIt wouldn’t be a successful month without including at least one home design idea. Here is my reigning kitchen concept. 

Screen Shot 2014-10-14 at 9.58.13 AMThis was probably the most that I’ve ever blogged about The Little Barn as well. I showed you our roofsiding, and appliances in these posts. I also discussed the idea of a dream home and you guys had some really amazing and insightful advice on the topic.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetOn a rare evening out, we were able to see the film Pulp Fiction in theatres. What a great night that was!

IMG_1050 copy06.jpgOf course, Halloween also occurred this month. I began by showing you the cutest pumpkin DIY, not to mention 10 scary film choices, a healthy holiday treat, a makeup tutorial, and finally, our costumes for that night (tonight, in fact).

Screen Shot 2014-10-28 at 7.58.56 PMIt was such a busy and diverse month. Bring on November, baby.

<3

Emory

put the lime in the coconut and drink it all up.

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(Image via Pinterest)

I realize that this may be a strange title for a post, however, when I was thinking about how to cleverly add the word ‘kitchen’ to the title, I could only think of the Harry Nilsson song. You know, from the film Practical Magic when they’re dancing in the kitchen and this is the music that is playing in the background? My mind works in mysterious ways.

While we’re on the topic of kitchens, the one that was featured in that film is pretty much the look that I am trying to attain with ours for The Little Barn. It’s funny how you can completely put something that you like in the back of your mind, and suddenly when you’re writing a post for your blog, it comes rushing back to you with many other childish memories that tie into what you’re discussing. Come to think of it, I don’t ever recall seeing the movie in its entirety. Dammit. Now I have another one to add to my list.

I digress. I need to stop doing that. What this post is really about is Pinterest and it’s unending supply of rustic industrial kitchens. Who needs books and magazines anymore when you have the internet? Wait. I work in a library. Who needs the internet when you have … Ok, so we need it all.

Here are my most influential finds so far:

BeFunky_5.jpg(Image via Pinterest)

BeFunky_4.jpg(Image via Pinterest)

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BeFunky_2.jpg(Image via Pinterest)

BeFunky_6.jpg(Image via Pinterest)

1.jpg(Image via Pinterest)

And just to add a little music to this post, and because Halloween is nearing, here you go!

<3

Emory

  • Welcome, friends! My name is Emory. I am a wife and mother to four (two on earth, one in heaven, and growing another). This is our life on the Canadian prairies.
    email: helloscarlettblog@outlook.com

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