Before & After: A Hands-On Renovation to Welcome Twins in Tacoma, WA

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One of my favorite Sneak Peeks of 2015 was Lindy and Travis Dodge’s home in Tacoma, WA. Their home is classic, comfortable and uncluttered. As my husband and I are on the search for a craftsman home for sale needing a little love, I think about the amazing house Lindy found with coffered ceilings, thick trim and tons of natural light — and I’m encouraged to hold out for something amazing to show up on the market. The Dodges make the process of restoring a home with good bones doable. Everything is DIY and paid for with sweat equity and a confined budget. “I didn’t even know we were in the market to buy a home, and neither did my husband. But sometimes I like to browse Zillow, find old houses and dream of all the things I could do to them. In the first 5 minutes of one of these browsing sessions, I found it. [The house] was a complete disaster, (animal-peed carpet, fake dropped ceilings, plaster holes, dark dungeony kitchen etc.) but I couldn’t look past the coffered ceilings, staircase and molding,” Lindy says. “This house was made for us. With his skills and my ability to make things look pretty, this was the one.”

Things have changed for Lindy, a maker and designer, and Travis, an engineer and founder of start up Tackoma, since their first Design*Sponge feature. While the work on the main level was done, things upstairs were in a bit of a standstill. “We worked so hard and so fast in the beginning that we got a little burnt out, to be honest. [We became] busy with other things and we needed an opportunity to recoup financially for the second phase of renovations upstairs,” Lindy shares. “In March of last year we found out we were pregnant! And in April we were completely shocked to find that there were two babies in there! That gave us the kick in the pants to get back at it and finish up the upstairs.” The rush of adrenaline helped them finish their goal. “We worked and worked up until the day my water broke. I have some really funny photos of me heavily pregnant with twins, a ventilator mask and a paintbrush (no VOC paint of course). Somehow we pulled it off; it was ready for them to come home to.” When Lindy reached out to us that the upstairs was finished, we jumped at the chance to see before and afters of this transformation.

The house is almost unrecognizable apart from the charming features that originally drew them to this home. “We love a good clean, modern design but sometimes for me that feels too cold,” Lindy shares. “I love to throw in classic and traditional styles with the modern to create the essence of home. I think we’ve finally nailed it. It feels really good to be home, and that’s saying something. Up until this point, (and maybe because the entire upstairs was untouched and needed renovations badly) something didn’t feel quite right. I was able to really design our family living space to suit our needs in those renovations upstairs, and clarify my design style. I’ve finally found my personal aesthetic and what feels right and like home for our family. And now with that done, I started redesigning the downstairs, making small changes like reupholstering the sofa, purchasing a new rug and finding the sweetest Danish dining chairs on Craigslist to complement the newly finished upstairs living space.” Travis and Lindy have given new life to their home with their own hands and sweat and can feel like it is finally done, at least for this life stage. Their hard work has created a space that can handle their growing family for years and years. –Lauren

Photography by Lindy Dodge


Paint colors
White: Benjamin Moore Simply White
Kitchen Cabinets: Farrow and Ball Downpipe
Navy blue: Benjamin Moore, Hale Navy

Rug: antique
Island: antique
Wood bowls and utensils: hand carved by Lindy, collected in travel or found at thrift stores
Hardware: Martha Stewart for Home Depot
Sink: Home Depot
Light: IKEA light kit with a basket from Ross
Roman shade: made by Lindy
Cutting boards: Home Goods and handmade by Lindy from a slab of walnut

Living space
Sofa: reupholstered by Lindy
Club chairs: reupholstered by Lindy
Side table: made by Travis
Coffee table: made by Lindy from a tree milled by Travis and father-in-law
Light: Wayfair
Cushions: made by Lindy for her textile company Thimble and Cloth
Plant: IKEA
Plant pot: IKEA
Striped throw: Pehr Designs
Tufted side bench: Goodwill
Sheepskin: IKEA
Yellow wool throw: Goodwill
Rug: Safeveih rug from Amazon

Dining room
Dining table: Travis built
Light fixture: IKEA
Danish dining chairs: Craigslist
Rug: made by Lindy from smaller IKEA rugs
Cushions: Studio Mcgee and made by Lindy
Tapestry: Lindy’s textile collection Thimble and Cloth
Wood picture frame: Ikea
Buffalo check entry bench: made by Lindy from a Goodwill coffee table

Master Bedroom
Bedframe and headboard: made by Lindy
Linen bedding: made by Lindy
Sheets: target flannel
Side table: made by Travis
Side lamp: Goodwill
Pillows: made by Lindy for textile company Thimble and Cloth
Picture frame: IKEA
Photograph: taken by Lindy in Mexico
Green velvet pillow: Studio Mcgee
Basket bassinet: Plum and Sparrow
Basket stand: jolly jumper Amazon
Rug: antique Persian

Light: IKEA, spray painted black

Wool Rug: RugsUSA from their textures collection
Throw blankets: Pehr Designs
Striped tassel blanket: Lindy’s textile collection Thimble and cloth
Wood mobiles: made by Lindy
Large Dolly: made by Lindy
Pillows: Studio Mcgee
Rocking chair: ALL Modern, Piper Reclining Glider by Davinci
Dresser: All Modern, Perocela 7 drawer dresser by Langley Street
Pom Pom storage bins: Pehr Designs
Book ledges: IKEA
Frame: framebridge
Horse print: Kevin Russ for Society 6
Striped curtains: made by Lindy
Fiddle Tree: Satori Boutique
Plant pot: Home Goods
Pom pom sweater: sweetmeadowsweet on Etsy
Light: Land of Nod
Baby moccasins: Little Pine Outfitters
Wooden toys: made by Lindy
Cribs: IKEA

  1. Allison says:

    It looks so good. It is amazing what fresh paint can do! All of the original details in this home were lost under gross carpet and bad paint. You guys brought it back to life! It looks amazing! Well done. :)

  2. Maggie says:

    Absolutely beautiful. Congratulations on your adorable new arrivals! Where did you get the glider chair in the nursery?

  3. BMija says:

    I can relate….scrambling to finish reno of our Seattle 1890 Victorian farmhouse while pregnant with twins!!! Nice job!

  4. This space looks amazing! Every single room flows nicely and has a sense of calm. There is no better way to welcome your family than with a renovation, it symbolizes a fresh start for a fresh new family. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Amanda says:

    Lovely! I love that they kept the kitchen cabinets and just painted.

  6. Rosie says:

    Lovely home, but the pictures left me wanting more! The twin’s room is lovely. Well done on the whole warm and friendly home. I do have a question – where is Babycat?

  7. Jane says:

    This has to be my favorite house ever. I love every single thing.

  8. Jane says:

    I love everything – my favorite house ever.

  9. PhillyLass says:

    Wow! Bookmarked! Everything about this house is perfect!

  10. Bree says:

    Insanely great, congratulations on the house and family all in one fell swoop! Enjoy every moment, says this exhausted mama of a fab six year old. LOVE your aesthetic and what you’ve done with the house. I will have to check out additional photos online, if they exist. Would love to learn more about your mobile. Best wishes to you all!

  11. Emily says:

    Beautiful! I love how light and bright it is. Also that’s a great shade of blue for the lower kitchen cabinets.

  12. Lindsey says:

    Lindy is my hero! and to top it off raising twins with such grace. I love this home and am even more in awe of it seeing the before pictures. bravo!


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