I just came back from a trip to Austin, Texas where my clients there have recently completed the remodeling of their dream house.
When I first visited Melody and David two years ago, they were the enthusiastic new owners of a not-too-old and rather comfortable country property that they were ready to turn into a goat dairy farm. After brainstorming with Feng Shui and design for two intensive days with them, I came back to L.A. and patiently waited for an up-date on the status of the remodel. The plan was to do a cosmetic renovation so they could move in “pronto.” Then life took another turn.
Time went by with no news from Austin. Then, out of the blue, an invitation arrived to come visit for a housewarming party in honor of the new house and the people who had contributed to its creation. My curiosity was sky-high.
I knew that Melody and David were not new to refurbishing houses, but when I arrived on site I was definitely knocked off my feet. Taking my Feng Shui recommendations on relocating the rooms, choosing the color scheme, and arranging the primary furniture orientations, the couple had managed to turn the house completely around. And in honor of David’s passion for the Victorian era, Melody researched the “Queen Anne style” inside out and decided to recreate the style and charm of the era over the preexisting layout. Then she set out to get the house on its way.
But first the building was completely stripped down to the studs to resolve some mold and infestation problems. Then, during the reassembling with all the new materials, the house was fitted with a geothermal heating and cooling system, a water purification system, and a state of the art tech system. (Just because it was going to look Victorian didn’t mean it had to follow the Victorian lifestyle too, right?)
After taking care of the “bones,” it was time to design the interior. Research on Victorian-style manufacturing and collectables led to the acquisition of antiques, faithful replicas (some from the original manufacturers), and the hiring of skilled, passionate craftsmen.
Over 70 people (lead by an Irishman craftsman specializing in the Victorian period) worked in creating the current house from the complex tile patterns, to the uneven glasses, to the gingerbread decorations. The house came together layer by layer with the care and love one would expect of the artisans of old. And yet, the house had all the modern conveniences— large-sized rooms, a master bedroom suite with large walk-in closets, ample water supply and appliances– literally the best of both worlds. An authentic example of a house well loved.
And what happened to the Feng Shui? Well…
In the process of stripping the walls down to the posts, the energy of the house, which was originally built in the late ‘80s, was inadvertently changed to the current time (2009-2011). Luckily, with the exception of a couple of details, most of the redesign done during the original planning still works (do not try this at home!).
In fact, the energy probably shifted in the early stages of the renovation when the walls had been opened. So I’ll dare say that whatever came to pass afterward was probably the effect of the new, energized energy (which happens to be extremely positive and attracts an abundance of creative ideas and people).
And about now, you ask? For the moment, the owners are enjoying the nice and comfortable new house after the success of their first housewarming party.
For the future? There have been plans to continue in the field of Victorian home construction, perhaps of a different size, for potential commercial sale. (No more goat dairy farm, I guess.) And of course those plans will be Feng Shui-ed as well, so they can all turn out as splendidly as this one did.
Some more photos of the finished house: