This is my best before picture. Ignore 90% of this photo that is showing mostly the kitchen. The dining room starts at the orange carpeting and blond paneling which is just around the corner there. This is what it looked like when we bought the house. This room was an addition put on probably in the 70's or 80's. We actually think it was an old porch entry that they lengthened, therefore resulting in a long, narrow structure.
Here it is from the exterior. As you can see, there was a bay window at the end of the room which we referred to as the 'portal'. It's the submarine look that was all the rage in the early 1970's. On better days, we referred to it as the 'nook'. Nook I've learned is a quaint way to describe a very small room that serves of very little use.
Well, if you can believe it, we were actually going to keep this little appendage thinking that putting in a few new windows would make it feel bigger. But as it goes, it was rotten through and through so in the end it had to be torn down. The contractor in the above photo is holding a beam that mimicks where the new roofline will be with the new addition. The width of this room increased significantly.
This is the new structure going up. Minus the added cost, the up side was that we were getting a much larger dining room (translates into a nice size room that is very useful), completely transforming our eating experience.
The expansion also allowed room for large french doors (I'll show in later post) that open out into an outdoor patio/courtyard (which is still being built). We also put in another set of french doors separating the dining room from the kitchen. Although we have them flanked open most of the time, it really gives it a nice separate but connected feel.
This isn't a complete 'after'...more photos to follow. The fir floors are new and stained to match original fir floors which start at the threshold. The table and chairs were my Great Great Grandparent's dining set. The table is 55 x55 and wouldn't have fit in the original structure - so that was an added bonus. When you're going through the expense (especially unexpected expenses) of renovating a house, I've learned that it is important to remind oneself of these 'bonuses.' : )
Here it is with new chandelier. More photos to follow...
PHOTO UPDATES AS OF SEPTEMBER 2010
You can go HERE to read the post that goes with these latest 'after' photos.
Go here to see more of the outdoor dining patio.