Fixer Upper: Blending Styles in an 1880's Farm House

Chip and Joanna help a couple who have lived for years in Pakistan transform a vintage farmhouse outside Waco that they purchased sight unseen. In a novel melding of design styles, the update integrates both Scandinavian and Moroccan influences.

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo A

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo A

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Verbatim Photo Agency

Long Distance Winners

"This is a first for the Gaines family," said Chip. "We have a client flying in, on the day of this reveal, from Pakistan." Chip and Joanna restored this vintage farm house, in the countryside just outside Waco, for a couple who had been living abroad for 17 years.

Before

This roomy farm house was built in the 1880s and came with four bedrooms, three baths and 3000 square feet. It featured a wraparound front porch with columns and vintage front door with leaded glass. The front stairs and porch, however, suffered from wood rot, and the front-door placement was off-center.

After

The exterior gets a fresh coat of white paint, new landscaping and skirt made using antique brick. The stairs and porch are repaired, new windows added and the front door is now properly centered. 

Meet the Homeowners

Charles and Brooke Ramsey had been living and working in Pakistan, having been in south Asia for 17 years. Both are Baylor grads and were eager to get back to Waco and lead a settle life with their family. "It's just a really exciting time for us," said Brooke. "We feel like our kids are getting older, and our parents are getting older, and it's time to head back and rediscover our roots."

Their total budget was $355,000 so, after purchasing the farmhouse for $155,000, were left with a renovation budget of around $200,000. In terms of design preferences, the Ramseys wanted to retain the natural farmhouse feel, but also hoped to incorporate touches of two distinct styles they were both partial to — Moroccan and Scandinavian.


Living Room, Before

The main living room, just inside the front entrance, had high ceilings and hardwood floors. Modifications here would be mostly cosmetic, including removal of the popcorn ceiling, fresh paint and refinishing the wood floors.

Living Room, After

Old drywall was removed to reveal the original shiplap, which Joanna painted fresh white. 

Living Room, Before

Living Room, After

The living room decor is kept clean and basic, drawing on Scandinavian design, but Joanna provided a softening counterbalance by incorporating a variety of textures and patterns — like the linen upholstered sofa, leather chairs and ornately patterned Persian rug.

Living Room, After

The distinctive chandelier with geometric design becomes a statement piece in the room.

Living Room, Detail

The custom bookshelves are of plain and simple design, in the clean Scandinavian style, and offer plenty of space for the homeowners to display books as well as mementos from their travels and life in foreign locales.

Living Room, Detail

Dining Room, Before

This dining area, just off the kitchen, includes a two-sided fireplace shared between this room and the adjacent space. The fireplace was no longer functional and had some structural issues.

Dining Room, After

Chip and Joanna removed walls to open the dining room onto the adjacent room, which would become a combination family room and guest room.  Chip installed a vintage arched transom above the newly enlarged opening from the center hallway

Dining Room, Detail

Double stacked cabinets with clean, straight lines, floating wooden shelves and a coffee bar nook highlight the dining area and are in keeping with the simple Scandinavian motif.

Dining Room, Before

Dining Room and Family Room, After

The fireplace between the dining room and newly remodeled family room was rebuilt using antique brick, some of which were removed from demo in the master bedroom.

Family Room, Before

This room, originally a bedroom, would be remodeled to become the new family room. 

Family Room and Dining Room, After

The former bedroom now opens onto the dining area and kitchen. Though the fireplace and chimney were rebuilt, they serve strictly as a design feature. Structural issues prevented them from becoming functional. The blue tile hearth on the family-room side was retained.

Family Room, Before

Family Room, After

Moroccan influence is in evidence in this space, with its Persian rug, geometric wall hanging and woven urn basket.

Center Hallway, Before

Center Hallway, After

The hallway, which opens onto the kitchen and dining area, is accessorized with an antique wood bench and framed botanical prints.

Kitchen, Before

Checkerboard laminate floor, old cabinets and wallpaper border made for a dated kitchen.

Kitchen, After

The kitchen is transformed with fresh white paint, streamlined wooden cabinetry, custom vent hood and a more suitably sized kitchen island.

Kitchen, Before

Kitchen, After

Additional kitchen highlights include a farmhouse sink, new stainless appliances and subway tile backsplash.

Kitchen, After

Bracket-mounted floating shelves help keep a clean visual while a patterned tile insert, with hand-painted tiles, provides a distinctive accent that becomes an artistic focal point.

Kitchen, After

Laundry Room, Before

Laundry Room, After

The remodeled laundry room features ample storage, a wood surface for folding and geometric tile backsplash.

Laundry Room, Detail

Home Office, Before

Home Office, After

The newly remodeled office features a generous work surface that's ideal for the Ramsey kids to work on school work or projects. The old built-ins were removed and replaced with open shelving in a natural finish.

Home Office, Detail

The teal-green wall paint ties in with the paint used on the home's front door.

Home Office, Detail

Master Bedroom, Before

The master bedroom was essentially a blank slate, with the exception of the fireplace that had been (inexplicably) encased in drywall.

Master Bedroom, After

The bedroom decor suggests the Moroccan motif that Joanna incorporated, with the newly revived fireplace featuring hand-painted tile surround, low-hanging lantern style pendants and the low-profile bed frame.

Master Bedroom, Before

Master Bedroom, After

Master Bedroom, After

The peacock wall mural is an original charcoal sketch that was specially commissioned by Joanna and created by her friend and local artist, Rebecca. "It turned out just as I imagined it would," said Joanna. "It adds a fun, whimsical touch to what is a pretty minimalistic room."

Master Bedroom, Detail

Master Bedroom, Detail

Master Bath, Before

The master bath was not overly large, but of adequate size. It was simply old and in need of updating. The homeowners opted to maintain the room's original footprint to avoid the additional expense of expanding.

Master Bath, After

The remodeled bathroom has a large walk-in shower with glass enclosure and tile surround.

Master Bath, After

Master Bath, After

Master Bath, After

A single vanity with marble top and simple lines provides plenty of storage countertop space. Black hex tile helps ground the space.

Master Bath, Detail

A custom designed mirror incorporates simple pendant sconces with vintage style bulbs.

Behind the Scenes, The Reveal

Brooke and Charles Ramsey prepare to get their first glimpse of their newly renovated farmhouse.

Behind the Scenes, The Reveal

After

Details

The front door is now centered, giving the home a more balanced and symmetric profile. Relocating the door required reworking some structural elements including pipes and conduit that were encased inside the wall.

Details

The front door's stained leaded glass and original hardware was retained.

Details

The massive wraparound porch, now newly restored, is one of the home's standout features. And no porch of this magnitude would be complete without a porch swing.

And ... Scene!

Finis

If you enjoyed this Fixer Upper, we'll bet you'll also like this one: "A Country Home Fully Reimagined".

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