The Work Begins at the good Ol’ Chicken Farm

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It took my mother a total of 64 years of life before she could purchase her very first home, and it is everything she has ever wanted it to be. A rural farmhouse atop a hill that makes your ears pop as you ascend. Her neighbors are dairy farms, apple orchards and pumpkin patches which leaves her with endless excitement. Just 3 weeks after completing Chemotherapy and her second round of cancer treatment in the last 15 years, she is totally ready to take on the challenges of renovating a 1700s farmhouse.

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Yesterday we decided it was time to pull down the drop ceiling in what used to be the kitchen, and yes we wondered what could possibly possess a person to put a drop ceiling in an antique home. Well we found out. Midway through my pulling down of the tiles with a crowbar, which I only maimed myself with a little, I found lovely old water damage on the underlying sheetrock. Previous owners had a leak at some point, and while they repaired the cause of the leak they never repaired the underlying damage! They simply put in drop ceiling to conceal it! Talk about a bandaid for a bullet wound!

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This type of lazy repair work is pretty common in older homes, they have had many years of owners ill-equiped to take on the projects that come in general homeownership let alone the responsibilities of owning an antique home. Any renovation lover can tell of the pain it is to walk around antique homes and see the damage inflicted by previous owners, and how it can take a lot of work to backtrack what has been done.

 

We still have our work cut out for us, 3 more rooms with drop ceilings, moving of plumbing and electrical,  plus replacement of exterior clapboards and windows that have been rotted by water from missing gutters. Keep tuned in as we dig into this antique and get it ready for Grandma D to call it home.

5 Ways Joanna Gaines Has Changed the Game

Joanna Gaines and her husband Chip have become household names and genuinely started a whole style revolution! Following their announcement last month that this upcoming season of Fixer-Upper will be the final season, us loyal fans have had to come to terms with the fact our favorite show and favorite couple will no longer be gracing our television screens. In honor of this announcement we thought we would release our top 5 ways that Joanna Gaines has changed the style, renovation and real estate game!

 

5.) Wholly Ambition Batman

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Photo Credit Mike Brake

Let’s just take a step back and realize that this is a woman with four young children, a small farm, husband and a massive multi-national brand all based in Waco, Texas. This is pretty impressive, amazing and downright insane. Now I lived in Texas for nearly 5 years in both the cities of Austin and Dallas, so I have made the trek through Waco on I-35 only a million times, and let me tell you, Waco while possessing a lot of the Texan charm, is nothing like the metropolises to the north and south. My husband and I purchased our first home in a Dallas suburb in 2016 for $208,000, spent a year renovating the small 1-story brick home and a year later sold it for $250,000 after about $20,000 worth of renovations. Pretty impressive, right? Well yes, but we were capitalizing on the ridiculous Texas and specifically Dallas real estate markets. Waco certainly does not have the same real estate values and growth that a huge city like Dallas has, and the fact that the Gaines’ have been able to do so much without having to sell out their Texan roots and move to a bigger city is stunning. People from all over the world literally travel to them in Waco to visit their store, specifically to shop and experience the brand the Gaines’ have established. Who else has that kind of brand loyalty?

 

4.) Artisan Love

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The last couple years have seen a massive push for artisan made goods at all ends of the spectrum, from soap to furniture, and we have the Gaines’ to thank for at least a portion of this. On the show, you can see Joanna frequenting her favorite artisans and vendors. She returns to the same individuals for unique and custom pieces, and gives you a sense of the warm and fuzzies. These are real people who have worked hard to hone their craft and it is refreshing to see them succeed, especially when their goods are so impressive. Now it seems like everyone has some side business or Etsy shop where they distribute their passion projects to the masses.

 

3.) Shiplap

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Okay, so who had even heard of Shiplap before Joanna Gaines? Now I can’t think of single home décor guru that I follow on Instagram that doesn’t at least have one shiplap accent wall. This ode to a time gone by sets hearts a swoon whenever she features it in the show, and now it is a massive trend in old and new homes. It is simple, classic and we all can’t but hope that this one sticks around for a while. Speaking as someone who has grown up in homes that predate the United States of American by a good decade or two, I love to hear people who know a thing or two about older home restoration. Now if only I can get people’s eyes from glazing over when I speak of horsehair plaster and square peg nails.

 

2.) Relationship Goals

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Via Magnolia Market https://magnoliamarket.com/blog/page/2/

I think this is a big one. We love Joanna and Chip, and their whole darn family! Why? Because they are adorable! It is so refreshing to take a break from the Kardashian relationship variety and see a cute couple, obviously in love, who have built a wonderful life and company together. We just don’t see this enough and I think what these two have, have us all saying “relationship goals”!

 

1.) Farmhouse Style

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Boom, here’s the biggen’. Quick do a quick search for home décor on Instagram, what comes up? I will tell you will see a lot of chipping paint, white and rustic accents. Throw in a destressed window and magnolia wreath and you have the starter pack for the farmhouse style! You can thank Joanna for this. People have been so receptive to this trend that regardless of your personal homes style you can see it time and time again. Even here at Refined Relics we embrace this style in our boxes and love to cater to this demographic that Joanna largely created.

 

While I think we can all say we are sad and disappointed that Fixer Upper will be coming to a close following the 5th and final season, we have to give kudos where they are due. We have all followed the Gaines on their journey through the years and watched them explode into a massive brand, one we are all obsessed with. For them to take a step back and focus on their family, we all have to smile and appreciate that this is part of the reason that we love them so much.

 

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