Monday, November 19, 2012

Barn Before and After

The Black Barn after paint...

BEFORES: This 60 year old white barn  formerly housed animals,  and then became a hot sauce factory. We turned it into a party barn and today I am getting it ready for Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday. I thought it was a good time to show its evolution from serviceable to sociable!

This is how the barn looked when we bought it. The well in front of it was an eyesore also.

But nothing compared to the backside. Wow. Sanford and Son's junk pile!

 The barn's structure was also deteriorating, as you can see from the broken joists. The roof leaked, and water seeped in from the bottom of the walls.

Oh, and this too. It was full of junk from the previous owner. 


Apparently this is the only picture I have of the side of the barn, with three of our fishermen in front of it. 

First, we painted the barn black and added white trim. Big decision. I hadn't seen any black barns near us, but the color went so well with the house, that I began to research.  I googled it and found lots of beautiful black barns. They became my inspiration. Then I saw one in a Pottery Barn book, all decorated for a fall picnic, and that cinched it for me. Huge improvement. More presence than the original white. 

It looked beautiful in the snow, too. During the winter months, husband fixed the interior. He repaired the joists, plugged the holes, insulated, painted, remodeled the bathroom and made it very cozy.  More about that later. 

The doors looked very barn-ish with the white Xes on them. Another inspiration from the Pottery Barn book.

Then we added covered storage to the hidden side of the barn. It made it much more useful.

And on the house side, we added a deck, and topped it with this spacious screen porch. More about that later.

Someone had dumped this old Coke machine in our forest. Joe dragged it out and we repurposed it. 
Here it is repurposed into a planter. This is before we added flowers or the screen porch on the side of the building. 

This is after we turned the Coke machine into a planter, full of spring tulips.  This is the front of the barn after adding the circle vent and the screen porch.

Spring delight. The round galvanized planter is another piece of junk we found in the forest.

Love. My. Tulips.

This is the back of the barn showing the screen porch, the deck, the antique signs and the barn doors. 

It's a nice entertaining space and has become our party barn. We use it all the time for all kinds of social events. In this view, you can see the house beyond. 

This is on the other side of the doors, with my antique signs and my antique bike. 
That bike was born the same year as me, so I am attached. 

We will eat our Thanksgiving Dinner in the barn on Thursday. We have a lot for which to give thanks. I love that we Americans have a specific day dedicated to honoring the bounty we have received from the hand of God. 
Blessings on you all. 


  1. Simply the best ever. Weather will be good for you? Will be nice here. I also noticed and loved the single sunflowers. I know they were also Shelly's favorite so do double time with me. You are doing wonderful on your new blog and shows much love that you have put into your farm. I feel the wee bit the same only not close to your farm. I still think houses and farms are happy when people come in and make them beautiful and useful once again. Happy Happy Thanksgiving!!! xoxo

  2. You are so creative!!! I love how you transform things into something beautiful! Wish I had that gift. You need to write your own books on decorating. I could definitely use your tips! Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving! Give my love to your beautiful family. Love you! xoxo

  3. Aloha & Happy Thanksgiving week! Missing you & Joe & the ohana. Loved your before & after photos. I love autumn. I miss Fall the most on Maui. haven't seen autumn in 35 yrs! Guess I will have to come visit you next October :) What a wonderland you have created for your family & friends. Someday I hope to be motivated to continue making my home welcoming.
    Maui sunrises have been incredible, fabulous way to begin each day. Love your lake sunrise too . Hugs to everyone and hope to call you sometime after Thanksgiving & catch up.

  4. What a glorious transformation and re-birth that barn has had! I love it. You and Joe are really talented.