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building a garage

In Renovations

Garage Build, Painting our exterior doors

I’m back from lovely Mexico! More on that later. For now here’s an update on our garage…

We got our doors and I proceeded to paint with my paint sprayer, in this paint that Aubrey picked up – recommended to him for exterior doors. 

I spent a TON of time prepping and then got to work spraying. 

Looking good right? 

No. Not looking good. When I went to peel off the painters tape, the paint started pulling off in sheets!

This is when started cursing. And texting angry things to Aubrey about how I hated the door. 

I sanded and peeled the door and right before leaving for Mexico I primed it prepping for a second paint attempt. But this time NOT black. When I stared at the doors, in all their peeling glory – black was too harsh of a colour to go with. So it’s back to the drawing board. 

Im not sure why the doors peeled. The paint was paint + primer in one – which is never my favourite but I thought I’d give it a go. Fingers crossed the next attempt works out better.

In Renovations

Garage Build – Designing from scratch

I haven’t written much about the design process behind our garage so I thought I’d take a post to babble on about it and share my “ah-ha” moments that helped me along the way. Having never designed something from scratch I’ve fretted about design decisions for this build through each phase. Mid way through I realized that I had to separate details of what I loved vs. liked, looks of buildings I thought were fabulous – and ones I knew were appropriate (and affordable) for us. Once I compiled ideas (and, in the end, choices I was sure of) I would communicate them to Aubrey (sketches / sending him Pins) and he would then work with the engineer on drawing. It’s like a puzzle – trying to find inspiration of builds that would look good in our space, yet tweaked here and there as no two properties are the same. Here was my process, which isn’t much different than a process for interiors.  

Search for images of inspiration – without really looking for inspiration.  Weird, I know. But here’s the thing – don’t focus on the specifics of a picture, but if you like it – save it. Eventually as you’ve collected images of inspiration, you’ll start to see a pattern of things that you like.

I started to realize that my vision for our garage was very Hamptons or, Nantucket. Who knows if those are proper design terms, likely not, but still – it was a keyword that helped me in my search.  By adding “Nantucket” into the search, opened a world of inspiration images not otherwise coming up in my searches. Perhaps your look is modern, country, classic, the terms don’t have to be “proper” but find a term that summarizes your style. In the end the common denominators in my photos were the combinations of shingles, board and batten exteriors and gray siding. Three major pieces to the puzzle that were decided having searched pinterest for hours upon hours liking photos. 

So knowing those three things I liked helped – 1. The siding (Board and Batten) 2. Cedar shake shingles incorporated into the peak of the roof and 3. A gray exterior paint. Then it was time to communicate that to our builders. Turns out the shingles are an additional cost, but I think – well worth it. We’ve asked them to be left untouched so they weather as we’d like. Then the build of the garage, in board and batten (vs. traditional siding) is once again an additional cost once again (the story of my life) but I think it will look more classic and, true to the beachy look I’d like. An expense that I think is well worth it and hard to fake, change later down the line. So, that was an additional expense we went with. (It wasn’t astronomical – I think $400 extra) But then 3. the gray paint we had to narrow down, and that is what we did this weekend:

[MY DECISIONS FROM LEFT TO RIGHT] Board and Batten / Shingles at the top of the peak / Gray Exterior 

The board and batten and shingles are in the hands of the builders but the paint colour is in my hands. So this weekend I set out to pick a colour. And stressed over it for days. 

At first I liked Collingwood (OC-28) But then it seemed light and I gravitated towards Revere Pewter. 

Aubrey, annoyed at how long this is taking.

In the end I chose Revere Pewter. I did a search on Pinterest to see how exteriors looked with it, and I’m feeling optimistic.  It seems to have some warmth to it – which I was looking for, vs. a stark, cold gray. It also seems to be a rather popular colour for interiors – so I’m hoping it works well outside as well!


Anyhow, just some sharing of the process! The guys plan on building this week – so I’ll be back with updates. 

xo Linds

In Renovations

Garage Build Day 3 + 4

We have some more progress on the garage!  

Late last week the guys came back and installed some wire sand rebar into the form for the concrete pad. I’m not too sure what it’s for – the lovely part about hiring someone else to do it, is you trust the process. We called our city inspector to come and sign off on this stage, and all was approved. Which brought us to “Day 4” which happened today …  


It’s quite exciting. I debated putting my hand print (and Oscar’s) somewhere discrete but I didn’t want to ruin it. So I left it be. I may have been stalking our garden to make sure no one else was tempted to profess their everlasting love to their partner with initials in the concrete. At the time of writing this post in bed at 11pm, the concrete was still safe. Huzzah! Nothing too exciting I guess but progress is exciting! 

In Renovations

Garage Build Day 1 & 2

The first day of the garage build was officially Monday! YAY! Aubrey spent the day taking down our fence, to make room for the concrete pad and, new build. Later on that day we headed to Lowes as they were having a 15% off door sale, to look at patio doors for our garden side of the enclosed garage. 

For the doors we are going with double glass doors, that will open out into the garden, which means we get more working space in the actual garage. In addition, it will look lovely from our house – when we look outback. 

I inquired about hiring someone to come in and do our doors (like a window / door company) but it was ridiculously expensive. Aubrey has installed a door before, so we knew that they start off reasonably priced when you buy them at a Home Depot, Lowes or Rona so not always is it necessary to go with a door company. A Home Depot / Lowes or Rona will offer you the service of someone to install, but 1. we’ll have our guys on the site putting up the build and if it doesn’t arrived in time (as in, they are done and we’re still waiting for the doors) we have option No. 2 which is Aubrey will be able to install them. 

Ideally the doors would have been ordered black, but once we start customizing doors we go from a standard order (white) to custom (black), which gets all craaaazy with pricing. We’re not afraid of some DIY (painting!!) and such, so we’re ordering the most basic set of glass doors and working our magic on them. Which will save us over $1500. I kid you not. I was concerned about painting a white door, black – as I’ve heard that there is warping concerns when you paint an exterior finish that is white, to black. But we’ve been assured it is fine, and I’ve seen specialty paints on the market that address this particular issue. At this point in the game, after having done so many renovations – it’s not worth that major upgrade in cost to get doors pre-painted or, in a specialty colour. (Plus I have a paint sprayer, which I look for oppertunities to use ALL THE TIME)


The PODS is for our neighbours, who are doing a home reno. 

The PODS is for our neighbours, who are doing a home reno. 

The guys came and built a form for the concrete pad and, moved our existing shed slightly which meant Aubrey had to empty the entire contents of our shed, so that it was light enough to move. Which also means our dining room is filled with stuff, because I’m not about to leave anything worth saving, out in a garden for someone to take. So for the time being, our home is a shed. 

Aubrey thinking about something.

Aubrey thinking about something.

Next step is that they have to come back and dig some more in the middle, and then we call the city inspector to sign off on this stage and we can then pour concrete!