You never know where you're going to find design inspiration. I recently saw the Meryl Streep flick, It's Complicated. Director Nancy Meyers is known for her gorgeous sets - often referred to as real estate porn. Streep's character cooks in a beautiful kitchen, but it was the interior shaker style doors that caught my attention. After the movie I got on the net and found the same doors for $99 at Rona - all they needed were a few coats of white paint. We purchased five of them and after a few hours of painting on the weekend I'm only 2/5 of the way done. Now I'm noticing the doors everywhere, from Rachel and Joey's apartment on Friends to pictures of my parents' newly built home in Nova Scotia.
You also never know how your relationship is going to hold up with the stress involved in renovating - the endless decision making, financial constraints and incessant layers of dust coating everything you own. Josh and I have held up pretty well as we usually have similar tastes, but others aren't so lucky. The latest chapter in House Lust describes the battles some couples have over money and expectations regarding how much of it should be spent. The author even interviews (once) married couples who divorced during or just after a renovation was finished - they all say the stress of renovation was a factor in the break up.
As Josh is still a few chapters ahead, he's already read up on the reno-related marital strife. He thinks it's been relatively smooth sailing for us because he knows when to get my opinion and when to forge ahead confidently without touching base. As he often makes trips to home improvement stores midweek when I'm at work (and the stores are less busy) he can't call every time there are 10 styles of toilets to choose from. Last week he was looking for handles for the new doors and was shocked to see the prices ranged from $60-$100 per handle. He was about to dial my number and ask if I had a style preference when he saw a bin of handles on sale for $20 each. He put down the phone and grabbed five of the discount handles. He was definitely better off not calling me. The handles look great, but I can imagine over the phone I would have questioned what was wrong with them and why they were in the bargain bin.