The Boathouse Project

We are in Summer’s home stretch, and the Iowa heat and humidity have certainly been oppressive at times! That, combined with a tornado, made this outdoor client project particularly challenging, so we were really excited to finish it last week. Here are some of the pictures and details of “The Boathouse”.

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The details:

-14ft by 26 ft building

-364 sq feet

-10ft 2x4 walls with active dormer

-200 amp electrical service

-8/12 pitch roof with asphalt shingles

We have had several comments that this building looks like it could be a tiny home, and plumbing aside it really could be! The poured concrete walls and polished floors make this building bug and critter free…not just your typical back yard shed! Here’s a peek inside at all the lofted space.

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The 10 foot walls provide a lot of extra space for storage racks or shelving in the future. And the 9 ft tall garage door helps with backing in a large boat full of lake accessories. For the below picture, keep in mind that Adam is 6ft 4in tall!

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We have a couple more outdoor client projects lined up for the late Summer/early Fall, however they are not as labor intensive as this was. It’s always exciting to see a project come together, and this one was no exception! For now, we are on to the next as we need to squeeze out every last day of Summer that we can…( Maybe someday I could have something similar to this boathouse as my very own she shed! A girl can dream! haha).

Unitl next time friends!

Rachael & Adam

Collaboration with Glyn-Mawr Winery

Today is the day! I can finally reveal my latest project, and I am so very excited!

Recently, I had a local business reach out and request some of my personalized book sets for their winery and tasting room that has a small merchandise area stocked with items from nearby artisans. Prior to this meeting I had never been to Glyn-Mawr Winery or their tasting room/storefront ‘the local’, but I quickly fell in love with their farmhouse and country style decor (and might have picked up something for my laundry room remodel). I snapped a few quick photos, and you will see what I’m talking about!

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Here are a couple examples of the book sets I made for their shop…

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The entire town has a 4th of July antique festival, full of vendors and food trucks and the like, and if you are local to eastern Iowa it’s definitely worth the drive. Weather permitting, I will be there myself tomorrow, so feel free to stop by and say hello!

Thank you for stopping by the blog today, and have a safe 4th of July!

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Our Re-Purposed Pantry Door

Hi there! I hope today finds you enjoying sunny Spring weather! Today I am sharing a little behind the scenes info on our pantry door that received so many questions on Instagram the other evening. Here is the photo I posted in case you missed it.

This pantry door is from an old carriage house that we had to tear down due to irreparable wind damage. The structure was two stories tall, with an attic/loft above the area that held the horses and equipment. Here is a photo I found of the carriage house that I took right before we took it down.

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The wind damage is not visible from this angle, but this building had such a lean to it that it was no longer safe. I did venture inside for a quick photo of the ceiling, which served as the flooring for the loft area and appeared to have already been re-purposed.

Here is the photo :

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We tore down the entire structure and have reused the materials to make all sorts of things. For example, these 2x4 beams (shown horizontal in photo) are what we use to make our custom farm tables and gas pipe shelving units. Now there’s some history to talk about at the dinner table!

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This next photo isn’t the best quality, but it’s an action shot of Adam cleaning out the second story of the structure before demolition could begin. Side note: this door that you see is often featured on my front porch!

Unfortunately, I do not have a photo of our pantry door before it was removed, but it served as the door between the first and second floor, as a ‘hatch’ of sorts at the top of the stairs. The metal ring on the front of the door was used to pull it open from the second story. I lifted the ring on the next photo so you could see what I am talking about. The hinges are also original hardware.

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We attached the door, using the original hinges, to the custom frame we had built with unaltered barn wood we had previously obtained from a different structure. I really enjoy the barn wood door frame in it’s original state, showing nail holes and chipped paint of both red and white.

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Well, there you have it! I hope this post answered your questions and provided a bit of history along the way. As always, thanks for stopping by the blog today and I look forward to interacting with you again soon!

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Vintage Inspired Book Sets

Hello! It’s below zero today in Iowa, and I am not planning on leaving my house for any reason, (except Starbucks of course) so I am using this day to catch up on DIY projects, book orders, and various other items I have lined up for you guys!

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I recently started making vintage inspired book sets as cute personalized gifts for family members and friends. Well, it turns out there was a bit of a demand for these, so I recently created an Etsy shop to streamline that process. However, if you are local feel free to contact me via email/phone/etc to avoid shipping costs!

I believe these are so popular in part because of how neutral they are, fitting in to virtually any home’s existing decor, which could be especially beneficial as a house warming or wedding gift. Here are a few examples:

Aren’t they cute?? I love how each set tells a different ‘story’.

Well, I had better get back to my to-do list while I have the chance. Stay warm out there!

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The Epic Barn Beam Bed Frame!

Hi all! We are in the home stretch leading up to Christmas and many of you are probably already on break for the holidays (this season seemed like it flew by faster than previous years). I have one final post for you before we transition into full Christmas mode at my house, which will consist of a few days computer-free to enjoy this time with family. So if you are sitting in an airport waiting to travel to your holiday gathering, or maybe need a 5 minute ‘break’ from all things Christmas, I have just the post for you!


Recently, we finished up a client project that turned out to be the biggest piece of furniture we have ever created, thus the title of this post. This bed frame required long hours of prep, assembly, take down, haul to its final location, and reassembly, but as you will see it was well worth it and turned out stunning!

The materials for this project included authentic reclaimed barn beams and these were SOLID 8x8 beams, which made them very heavy.

Prior to use, the beams had to be cut, sanded and assembled at our shop to ensure they all fit together properly and weren’t warped by the last 100 years of extreme temperatures of Midwest weather. a simple frame was assembled to keep the beams up off the floor in the client’s room.

Next, each beam was secured in place. To eliminate some of the weight of this piece, an alternate framing technique was used to comply with floor joist specifications and it was completely covered by the mattress and otherwise not visible once assembled.

Here the frame is being finished up and mattress added.

To show you just how big this bed frame is, the mattress pictured is king size!

Pictured below are some up close photos of the wood details on the headboard and beams, each of which are unique. There is just something about the look of authentic barn wood that cannot be recreated with other materials.

The finished project photos!

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This bed frame turned out truly stunning!

I absolutely love how it all came together. A sincere thank you to the client who chose us to make this item for her!

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The Friendship Fireplace Project!

Hey all, one week until Christmas Eve! Are you ready? (It’s OK, I’m not either!) I’m not too stressed about it either, there’s plenty of time left for that! All of that aside, I am excited to share with you a client project we recently finished up called ‘The Friendship Fireplace’. The street address for this home contains the word ‘Friendship’, thus that is how the project name was developed. We do a number of fireplace/mantel projects and have to keep them straight with unique titles!

The fireplace is often the focal point of the living room as well as the backdrop for family photos, and this homeowner wanted a total remodel of this space to bring it out of the 1970’s. To do that, we first had to start with a clean slate!

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Aside from the fireplace itself, there was not any part of the original design that was worth keeping…it all had to go.

And as you can see we made a huge mess, but it was worth it!

 

Progress photos after some new framing, insulation, and cement wall board.

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We needed to redefine this space, and the easiest way to accomplish that was to add a new texture or wall surface. The homeowner chose rough sawn weathered shiplap, which is pictured below. It’s a gorgeous light grey, and really makes this space ‘pop’!

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These barn beam mantels are always my personal favorite. Every single one is unique, bringing a different century-old story into each home. This one was mounted with simple gas pipe wall plates and fittings.

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And here’s a full length view, complete with fresh tile at the base of the new wall. This family will have a fresh new space to take all of their family photos and the mantel will surely be a talking point with guests for years to come!

We really appreciate the homeowner choosing our business to complete her fireplace remodel!

The fireplace insert remains in original condition, as the homeowner has plans to resurface that herself

The fireplace insert remains in original condition, as the homeowner has plans to resurface that herself

And some bonus mantel pictures, because I can’t help myself!

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The 'Great Outdoors' Project

Winter has arrived in full force here in the Midwest, and that means all outdoor projects have to be wrapped up. If Iowa wasn’t such an extreme weather state maybe we could work outside into December, but once the air hoses and tools start to freeze/not function properly, we call it quits for the (outdoor) season.

We did get to finish up one last project for the year, one which completes a series of outdoor renovations at a particular client’s home. This home is situated next to a golf course and has stunning views of the surrounding landscape, however the grading of the back yard and limited outdoor space made enjoying this little slice of heaven challenging.

The projects at this location included a new and expanded deck, new retaining wall and extensive dirt work/grading, as well as a complete overhaul of an existing screened in area to make it weather proof and fully functional addition to their home. All of these renovations were completed by adam and aps construction.


The Raised Deck

Original Deck Photos

As you can see, this deck was functional but small, and showed wear from the elements over the years. In the last picture, you can see the screened in area in its ‘before’ state as well.

New deck photos

This project was completed with cedar boards and aluminum spindles, check out that view!


Retaining Wall and Yard Grading

This part of the project was very important, as it produced level yard space that could then be used for additional structures, fire pit, you name it! Here are a few before/after shots.

As you can see, not much of this part of the yard was usable due to the terrain, but that is no longer a problem!


Screened in porch overhaul

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The final leg of this outdoor project was to update the existing screened in porch/patio area underneath the raised deck. this room was not being used to its full potential, since it was at the mercy of the harsh Iowa weather.

New and improved four seasons room

With new framing, insulation, windows, doors, and stacked stone vinyl siding, this room is now ready for the elements and can be used to enjoy the golf course views and Iowa sunsets year round.

The completion of this project brings our time outside for 2018 to a close, but that doesn’t mean our schedule slows down. we simply transition to more wood working projects, furniture making, and various other items that can be completed indoors. And of course, snow removal, because this is iowa after all!