The Brellis House


Our House

We bought our house in February 2010. After going inside over 100 houses, we finally decided on this cape cod. It was a foreclosure built in the 1950s and had been vacant for a few years.  Here are some pictures of the before and the current condition of the rooms. We’ll update this page as we make more progress with renovating and remodeling the entire house and yard.

Living Room

When we first moved in, every room had very stained carpet and dirty walls. This was the first room we finished (except refinishing the floors). Not sure why it took priority over the kitchen, but we just wanted a room that we could have painted and the carpet ripped up. It only took a few days- then we moved on.


Old kitchen sink, counter and cabinets

Old kitchen sink, counter and cabinets

Old kitchen floor and cabinets

The kitchen wasn’t so bad. We wanted to get a new floor and needed to replace the wall behind the sink (you could see outside underneath the window). This was next in our room remodel. We hired a contractor to re-drywall and an electrician to install recessed lights and remove the dishwater and oven hood wiring. We swapped out the top cabinets for shelves and reused the top cabinets to make an island. We made concrete countertops which have been greatly neglected since, but we love their patina.

Here are some photos of how it is now.

kitchenopen shelves kitchenopen shelves kitchenkitchen kitchen

We’ve still got some things we’d like to do.

-window curtain
-paint/replace kickboards under cabinets
-make a pull-out trash/recycling compartment
-make a small shelf to the right of the fridge for cereal and bags
– finish up some trim around the island and cabinets

Dining Room

Removing old carpet from the dining room

Reinstalling insulation in ceilings

Re-dry walling the dining room ceiling

The worst part of the dining room and the ‘green room’ was the ceiling. It was popcorn ceiling that had large cracks in it and need to be scrapped down and mostly replaced.

“Green Room”

Wall paper in closet of the 'green room'

Almost every closet, and the stairwell into the basement, had this wallpaper. It took  a few weeks of scrapping on and off with all sorts of methods to eventually get it all down. This room is Dan’s office but also our music room and the room we spend the most amount of time in. Here is one current photo of this room that we took after finishing the pocketwatch shadowboxes.

living room artwork

Our current list for this room:

-replace the sliding glass door
-either make closet into a desk for Susanna or put the doors back on it and make it a functional closet


Original bathroom floor and cabinets

The bathroom was a long, long nightmare. The toilet was sinking in, the shower leaked into the basement through the tile and there was mold in every corner. The key moment came when the toilet tank cracked randomly and flooded the room. We completely gutted it, reworked the shower plumbing,  bought a new toilet, pedestal sink, and tile. The best part is we’re finally finished and did it all ourselves, with help from family and friends.


Old basement floor, ceiling and walls

Demolition of moldy ceiling tiles and walls in old basement

The basement was and kind of still is a disaster. We had to deal with mold and water issues, but now we’ve got a basement that’s dry and open for ideas.


Old upstairs

This is our bedroom; we have plans for it, but we are focusing on the main floor first.

Front Yard

Front yard and house after purchase

We are having fun with the whole ‘yard’ concept, having never owned a yard. Slowly, we’re turning a turf grass front yard into a garden full of flowers and vegetables.