This and That.

I’m currently staying with my parents as all our floors get refinished before our big kitchen install starts in a couple days! It’s moving pretty darn fast! While here we went to check on the progress of the beach house my parent’s are building (designed by my Dad and his firm).  It’s pretty exciting stuff.

A rendering nailed up in the frame.

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It’s amazing how fast framing happens!

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Looking into the vaulted living room- will have a great stone fireplace between those windows!

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Views to the water and shipyard down the hill.

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We went to one of the local lobster places for lunch (yes, there’s multiple lobster places).  While I don’t like lobster (I know, try to contain your horror- I don’t eat sushi either) it’s a cute place to have some chowder as well!

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Ford’s is kinda famous for their buoys.


And they go back a ways…. don;t you love the wall color? It reminds me a lot of Farrow & Ball’s Arsenic.


Love this little painting from a local gallery- too bad it’s sold, would have been a great housewarming gift!


The town they are building in is a little boating village on the CT shore…. it’s very quaint and cute (P.S. that lighthouse is now a private residence. Oh yeah.)


I mean, look at the little local store/diner.  How Americana is that?

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While back at my house it looks like THIS.  The Wellbuilt crew is working round the clock to get us back in there!!!


But our floors are coming out lovely.  I was pretty stressed out about the stain colors.  We tried a few and I wasn’t loving any of them. I wanted them to be dark but not TOO dark, brown but not red. But not grey either.  I actually didn’t sleep one night because I was fretting so about this decision (I know, you don’t want my problems…)  So I researched a bit online and found out that many people, including the DIY expert Jenny from LGN suggested a mix of 50% Minwax Jacobean and 50% Ebony.  I had tested both those on their own and didn’t like them but together- I think we have a winner!



REALITY!!!!! (Now we just need three coats of poly and we’re golden!)


How was your long weekend?


  1. That’s what I used on my new floors….and love it.
    hint hint…I’d be happy to help with a little house warming gift….

  2. I always opt for chowder versus lobster when we’re on the North Shore too! When we lived in the Bahamas I ate lobster all the time because it was so slow moving making it the only sea creature I was talented enough to spear. I always felt a little guilty that the freezer full of lobster was wasted on me because I was only eating it because it was so freely available…

  3. I’ve been following your blog from Philadelphia for years now. This has to be one of my favorite posts. I grew up in that town! Love it! Keep posting pics of the renovation please! I’d love to see how it’s coming along.

  4. Your parents beach house is beyond fantastic, the lot, town, design, pure New England coastal charm. I wish I could afford your fathers firm (really, just him), to redesign my home, he is very talented! Your parents driveway material is how I found your blog. I was doing some research on crushed stone/gravel driveways and you had blogged about a new material he had used for his drivway. And then, you blogged about his new website-his work is beyond great, just my style-anyway-love, love, love your color choice for your floors-we have dark stain on ours and it really makes the house feel very stately, almost formal in a way. And our family and decorating is so not formal, but the house is. Looking forward to more kitchen posts.

  5. I love the mix of Jacobean and Ebony. What kind of wood floors do you have? We have oak and I would LOVE to have them refinished with this mix. Are you going with a satin, or semi-gloss on the poly?

  6. Ohhh my gosh, Noank!! My mom and dad in law grew up there, and went to that Carson’s store as kids. So great to see this. They still live close by. :) love going to visit.

    Ps if you are looking for art, check out my M-I-L’s site…..all inspired by local Mystic/Noank landmarks.

  7. The floor color looks amazing! Great tip on the 50/50 mix. We are refinishing our hardwoods this summer and I want to go darker on the stain – but my husband and his mother feel that this will make our small ranch (1200 sq ft) look smaller. I would love to hear what you think. I am a born worrier like you, so what would be just normal anxiety over stain choice is compounded by the fact that my husband installed these hardwoods himself from his family’s old farmhouse which he had removed before the farm was sold (and eventually demolished). Since we will be doing the labor ourselves and the floors have sentimental value to us, I want to make sure that I get this right. I have never loved the look of ‘yellowy/orange’ oak. To say that I will lose sleep over this choice is an understatement! From one perfectionist to another, I would love to hear your opinion. The following link tells the story of the floors where you can see the current color in our home.

  8. Being a VW Beetle owner myself I love the VW Beetle Convertable parked in the side drive in the rendering!

  9. What an adorable town! I live in a master planned town with feigned cuteness. It’s kind of like living in Disney World sometimes, lol. I love the floors! I’m getting ready to stain my stairs and I never thought about mixing stains. Good to know!

  10. We had the same problem with picking out our stain. We wanted dark but not as dark as our last place (showed too much dust). By the end, we were on such a tight deadline that even though I wasn’t crazy about the colour that came out(too light and yellow-ish) we had to suck it up and move in the next day. Since our entire house is hardwoods except for the laundry room and bathrooms redoing it would be a total nightmare! Maybe in 5 years…

  11. I want to move to that beach town!! Everything looks right out of a magazine or movie….so peaceful looking and slow paced. Oh I can dream huh? Your floor stain looks gorgeous! I had that same pic of those stairs with the 50/50 mix saved for sometime now. Good to know that mix works!! One day I might need it. :)

  12. This town looks A-Maz-ing! I adore the quaint New England charm. I was in Cape Cod/Nantucket last summer and it is my dream to move to coast someday. Love it! Hope you continue to share updates on the beach house. Your floors look perfect. So excited for you!

  13. I love Groton. It is one of the few remaining unspoiled coastal towns. My uncle owns a home not far from that lighthouse.

  14. Wow! Love the colors of those floors…I’m pinning this to remember in a couple years when my son is past the “age of destruction.”

  15. Love seeing how the renovation is coming along! I also have been going through the same process of house hunting, finally buying, redoing and decorating…so it’s been fun seeing the evolution of your project too! I’ve been doing a series on my progress (“Designing The New Digs”)on my blog, Luxe Report. Check it out! Keep the updates coming! Love it!
    Luxe Report

  16. Your parents home is amazing! The best part about that is the memories you will all be building with your family for years to come, I so wish I could have an amazing summer home on the water in Maine to pass down to my kids someday! Love your floor choice – can’t wait to see your kitchen!!

  17. I love that color! It’s perfection!!!
    I wanted dark floors and I went with Dark Walnut because I thought Ebony was too black and not warm enough but I don’t love the Dark Walnut. It’s just not as dark as I wanted. I wish I had read this pose before I stained! I’m happy for you though – they’re beautiful.

    I saw your Ikea ad in O today – you look great!!

  18. hi erin–once again i can relate to your post. i had the same self-doubt with our wood floors. they are the same stain as yours and i love them with no regrets! the only down-side, as you well know or will know, is that they show all dust and,………. the look is worth the upkeep!

  19. My parents live in the same area! They gut renovated a waterfront home there and just finished it last year. Definitely a great place to visit to get away from the city :)(I also live in Newton…)

  20. Hi Erin – you have some great taste and so happy you are sharing all the details of your Reno with us – we are just about to start ours here in Sydney, Australia so I am following you with keen interest as to your choices – imitation is the sincerest form of flattery after all! Like you I am struggling making decisions! I love the floor colour – deep & warm without being too dark. Can’t wait to see the kitchen!!!!

  21. Okay, that really is the perfect stain color — I am convinced! It’s seriously beautiful. Crisp, moody, and elegant. I am in LOVE! :-) Your parents’ beach house is coming along beautifully. I love that they chose to build in a small town. What a nice, relaxing escape it will be!

  22. Take a look at the Cecily Brown(featured artist in Vogue this month) prints on 20 x 200. Affordable(and collectable) and in the green you love. I am also accenting my grey LR in the same green:) LOVE!!

  23. Great blog! Sorry to change the subject, but, since Nashville is a big up and coming city, I’m looking for a great Nashville sushi restaurant or Japanese restaurant. Have you heard of any good ones? There’s a new one called Nomzilla Sushi Et Cetera, but I’ve only seen a few reviews. Here’s the address of this new Nashville Sushi Restaurant , 1201 Villa Place, Suite 101 Nashville, TN 37212 – (615) 268-1424. Thoughts? Thanks!

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