It took two years to find a home surrounded by enough big, old trees that Corbin Thomas could forget she was in the city. Once the Atlanta, GA native and her husband, Corley, recognized the potential of this 1930s residence flooded with natural light, they couldn’t stop daydreaming about the older house they knew they could make their own — through lots of hard work. The newlyweds got married and bought the place within a dizzying span of two weeks. After celebrating both milestone events, the pair rolled up their sleeves and set out to address their acquisition’s major issues, like nonworking radiators in every room, cracked paint on the walls, an outdoor washer and dryer, and only one bathroom. Despite these concerns, the home had good bones and was situated in a great neighborhood.
Remodeling the 1,700-square-foot house has become a favorite weekend hobby of the couple as they tackle new techniques they’ve never done before. Corbin has a passion for interior design and hands-on projects (nearly anything that needs paint or power tools!) and is the author of a home improvement and interior design blog called Blue Door Living (inspired by the front door color, said to represent stability, peace, and keeping bad energy out), where she shares her impressions of first-time homeownership. After six months, the interiors are still a work in progress. So far, they’ve removed radiators, installed a faux wood floor, tiled a screened-in porch, and are working on more. And they’ve had a blast doing it all.
Corbin likes lots of different decorating styles, so she didn’t want to pick just one. Her goal was to create a space that could be versatile, elegant, but comfortable, and most importantly — livable. Interior walls made of solid brick have made hanging curtains and pictures tough, but they do provide pleasant acoustics. Despite the home’s age, a copy of the original blueprints remain, which Corbin and Corley plan to frame and incorporate into the decidedly contemporary design scheme — but one fit for an historic home. —Annie