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November 20, 2012 / Linda Hartong


Bill and I are very cautious people. So much so, that it takes 15 years to decide it is prudent to remodel our Carmel cottage.

If you have followed along with the blog, you remember that when we bought our cottage in 1997, many people were tearing down existing homes to build new, larger homes.

OUR CARMEL FIXER-UPPER « Once upon a time..Tales from Carmel by the Sea

OUR CARMEL FIXER-UPPER…..continued « Once upon a time..Tales from Carmel by the Sea

Early this year, we jump into a remodel with Abbey Baker Design Build.

TO REMODEL OR NOT TO REMODEL……THAT IS THE QUESTION « Once upon a time..Tales from Carmel by the Sea

Walls come down, 

ceilings go up

and we add 35 sq. ft. to the kitchen!!!  Pretty bold move.

We combine the kitchen, eating area, and living room into one space and create a whole new feeling. I love it.

We most often enter through the back door which gives us a splendid view of our washer and dryer and a glimpse into the living room.

The wall comes out and I love my new view.

We work on the old kitchen and cute it up.

But the lack of a larger dining space continues to frustrate me. Abbey suggests adding 35 sq. ft. to the north side of the kitchen.

Now the ceiling is raised, the windows lowered ( so I can see my garden)

In go cabinets ,

Counter tops

A stove hood and tile 

And presto-  a new look.

I keep the corner sink which I love.

The former back door, now makes a pretty front door.

The front entry, 

Rarely used,

Is rethought,

And then rethought again. We remove the door to the coat closet and create a home office. 

We find a great bookcase for $150.00 at the Cannery Row Antique Mall and the back wall of the living area is complete.

The master bedroom does not change much. 

New paint ( the color is still a matter of debate),

And new bedding.

The master bath gets a great new look. The old shower enclosure

Which we worked with

Becomes a pretty new shower.

We again remove some storage to rearrange the room .

Heated floors and a new window make this room much  cozier.

The closet in the guest room

becomes the new home 

for the washer and dryer.

A light comes on when I open the louvered doors and I can fold laundry on the bed.

The guest room

Has been an office

A bedroom

And now becomes an even prettier bedroom.

The guest bath is so tiny, I have to stand in the tub to take photos. 

A new vanity,

Tiled walls,

Lighting , medicine cabinet, and towels really spruce it up.  

We add insulation, new wiring, new plumbing, instant hot water and heated bathroom floors.

What a difference.

AND the cottage finally gets a name.

I am delighted when the installer puts the name on the garage door.

It is official. BEACH MUSIC is the name of our cottage.

And we love all 935 sq. ft.

A house is made of walls and beams; a home is built with love and dreams.


Leave a Comment
  1. Karen Ellis / Nov 20 2012 10:30 pm

    I LOVE this house redo!!!!

  2. Lori Balbach / Nov 20 2012 10:38 pm

    Love it & your blog !

  3. Alexis / Nov 20 2012 10:41 pm

    Well Done . You have maintained the Carmel character that is rapidly disappering in the form of ugly oversize yuppie McMansions. Your taste is exquiste and as my Mom would say, A proper Carmel Cottage in the English tradition is reborn!!

  4. Michelle R / Nov 20 2012 11:37 pm

    I love your remodel, so open and warm. Fantastic utilization of space. A very cozy place, you should be very proud of this gem!

  5. KATHYSUE / Nov 21 2012 12:21 am

    Linda what a fun post to see it all take place. You made so many smart choices!! I love all of them. Raising the ceiling really made a huge difference. The new kitchen is wonderful. Great Job! I can only imagine how excited and happy you are with all of it!
    xo Kathysue

  6. bev conrad / Nov 21 2012 1:09 am

    How wonderful you made it, Bravo!! And thanks for your great blog!!! BC

  7. Lorrie451 / Nov 21 2012 1:15 am

    How perfect! Our home is 868 sq ft and we are collectors so we have learned during our 33 years to use our space wisely. Lorrie

    Sent from my iPhone

  8. Judy / Nov 21 2012 1:35 am

    Love the remodel!

  9. Annie Westlake / Nov 21 2012 1:35 am

    We passed by ” Beach Music” while in Carmel last week. How beautiful it is, and how generous you are to share it with us. I also toured the six million dollar Comstock on the Point…and I think I prefer your cottage…much sweeter and cozier. I also got my Carmel “bells” so my cottage is sure to follow.

  10. Kim Smith / Nov 21 2012 1:57 am

    It’s just perfect!

  11. Kathy :) / Nov 21 2012 2:58 am

    It must be MUSIC to your ears…..I love what you did, it’s a beauty !!!

    Love the shades of green you used, would you share the colors please !!!?

    All the best,
    Kathy 🙂

  12. Linda Floyd / Nov 21 2012 3:47 am

    Hi Linda…congratulations on your makeover…it’s so welcoming! A real construction “facelift”… the original bones are there, but everything seems to be updated, a little brighter and even more lovely than before! And, I love the name! Beach Music….perfectly tuned for a Carmel Cottage!

    Linda Floyd
    Biddlestone Cottage

  13. Maura / Nov 21 2012 4:06 am

    .Absolutely GORGEOUS! Your first renovation did wonders but what you have accomplished now is incredible…it’s a sweet little ‘showcase’! Thank you for sharing your renovation with us…I really enjoyed seeing what you have done. ENJOY!!!! Maura (Lilac Lane Cottage)

  14. Sonia / Nov 21 2012 5:19 am

    Wow! Great remodel! Your home looks so much bigger than the square footage! Great work and I love the name! LOVE your new kitchen!

  15. Nita@ModVintageLife / Nov 21 2012 7:50 am

    Wow! You really redid everything. It is so pretty. Your new kitchen is adorable. I love the name you gave the cottage. Very nice.

  16. Janet Magina / Nov 21 2012 4:43 pm

    Love it Linda, great choices. Happy Thanksgiving to you and Bill 🙂

  17. Inspired and pretty / Nov 21 2012 6:31 pm

    What a fantastic remodeling ! Wow ! I really love your kitchen and living room, it’s so much better this way. The stove hood is fantastic, it’s a great addition. Your after photo of your living room and kitchen could be in a magazine, it’s beautiful ! I also love what you did with the front entry, and the washer and dryer in the closet is just perfect. You must be so happy that it’s finally finished, you can now relax and enjoy your beautiful home. Beach music is such a lovely name for your house, I love houses with names !

  18. Sue / Nov 21 2012 6:35 pm

    Beach Music is wonderful. I am enchanted with every bit of your remodel. I have the saying A house is made of walls and beams, a home a built with love and dreams, on my blog too. I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving.

  19. Victoria PageOtrich / Nov 21 2012 7:59 pm


  20. Svea (@Sveaann) / Nov 21 2012 8:29 pm

    How pretty! I love the opened up living room and kitchen especially. Beach Music is the name of a novel by one of my favorite authors, Pat Conroy. Nice name! And thank you so much for the wonderful blog & sharing all your lovely photos of Carmel, what a treat!

  21. Gretta Faun / Nov 22 2012 11:22 am

    Thank you for sharing your home with us:0). It looks warm and inviting. The pillow with the word “Nest” on it drew my attention. I wanted to hug it and cozy up with it in front of the fire place.

  22. Carol / Nov 25 2012 1:19 am

    Absolutely adorable. Thank you for posting your remodeling project. I truly enjoyed every picture. Your remodeled home looks so inviting.

  23. Jo-Ann Fantino Ruffolo / Nov 28 2012 1:06 am

    Hi Linda,

    Your wee cottage is perfect; raising the room added a wonderful dimension . . . cleaver remodeling. the colors are warm and welcoming . . . a great place to nest . . . Comstock is smiling!

    Let me know when you will be in town . . . our Bicyclette breakfast awaits.


  24. Patricia Teller / Dec 19 2012 5:04 pm

    This post was so much fun to read and view. I know it was a lot of work and inconvenience, but your obvious delight with the result makes it all worthwhile.

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