...because home doesn't happen overnight.

Just popping in to share an Underdog update…and to take a much needed break from packing and moving…

After moving a load of stuff to the apartment this past weekend, we stopped by the Underdog to take a peek at the work going on to once and for all vault the ceilings.

The custom engineered wood ridge beam had been installed to provide structural support for the roof.  I could finally really feel what our open kitchen/living space is going to look like.

Removing a few walls and opening up the original 8′ ceilings makes the entire space look and feel so much bigger.  And we haven’t changed the footprint of the house at all.

It’s a little lodge-esque right now with all the wood showing.  At one point, I was worried that the living room mantel was overpowering the space because it’s so massive, but opening up vertical space above it has helped to tame it don’t you think?

That’s the view looking in from the dining room/mudroom for a different perspective.  While Handy Hubby and I knew that vaulting the ceiling would help to make our new space feel airier, we’re both a little shocked at the overall effect when we stand in the great room.  It’s like a totally different space!

Things are looking up.

images:  Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

57 Comments

04.August.2011

Looks fabulous!

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04.August.2011

looks awesome, Dana!

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04.August.2011

When I saw the second picture, I thought, “Woooow….” Even though I’m just seeing pictures and I’m not actually in the space, I can see what an amazing difference it makes. Looks wonderful!

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04.August.2011

looks great what a difference! what will the finished ceiling be? are you dry walling it or leaving the wood exposed?

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replied on August 12th, 2011

Sharon – Per code requirements, we have to have some insulation up there so we can’t leave the wood exposed. We’ve decided to drywall and paint just because of the expanse of ceiling. Plus, we are looking to install a few skylights into the vaulted ceiling and after a lot of research and number crunching and DIY consideration we’ve decided drywall would be best for us.

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04.August.2011

Wow. That looks awesome!

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04.August.2011

It looks amazing!!!!
What are you going to do with the attic above the bedrooms? How about some skylights and a little lofty play area for the boys? with an appropriate banister and stairs it would totally work!

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04.August.2011

Looks amazing!! I can’t wait to see more!

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04.August.2011

Wow!! I love it!!!

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04.August.2011

It looks wonderful! Love watching all the progress you are making:)

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04.August.2011

Wow!!!! It looks amazing!

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04.August.2011

I am loving following your updates on underdog … its already looking fab! Cant wait to see the finished product :)

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04.August.2011

That is stunning!

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04.August.2011

I’m literally amazed at how much that chances the space! Wow!

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04.August.2011

I’ve been reading for a while, but have never commented. I had to this time, I love this! It changes the whole house! I also love that the mantel is going to help designate the separate areas, but will still allow it to feel open. Totally jealous!

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04.August.2011

Looks incredible!

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04.August.2011

I have been following your story about your decision to sell your home and purchase another. You have really been an inspiration to my husband and I. We are at a point in our lives where we would be happier if we sold our “dream house” and all it’s required upkeep and crazy mortgage for a smaller home we could really make our own. Thank you so much for sharing your story.

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Wow, they are going to look great!!

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Love LOVE it. But then again, I have a thing for Lodgey houses…. :)

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04.August.2011

It looks amazing!!! My house has a very similar layout & this really makes me want to vault ours! Oh how I wish we had the $$ to do it! I cant wait to see what you do with the rest!

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04.August.2011

I’m impressed!! It’s making me feel like I want vaulted ceilings, too :)

Just curious……do you ever post info about how much these projects cost? I would be nice to have an idea of how much we’d be looking at spending if we want to do similar projects. I know it will be different costs for doing it ourselves vs. paying someone else to do it. But any figures you could throw our way would be excellent! Thanks! And keep up the good work!

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replied on August 12th, 2011

Serena – I’ve been posting the cost of each project after completion {i.e. tree trimming, IKEA kitchen bought on sale although not put together yet, renting a trencher, framing up the cinder walls, etc.}. It may not seem like I’m posting too much about cost because we haven’t really completed too much yet! The contractor that is installing the ridge beam is still working at the house and as soon as they are finished, I will post cost details.

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04.August.2011

It looks amazing!!!

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Looks awesome! I can’t wait to see more progress. I’m sure you feel the same way :)

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04.August.2011

Wow! What a difference!!

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04.August.2011

That really is amazing!

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04.August.2011

Wow, I love it!! What a difference. I can’t wait to watch it progress to a finished space.

Side note: I am jealous of your moving with older kids. We are moving this week with our 1 and 2.5 year olds, and it’s not fun. I know moving with kids is never fun period, but mine won’t even let me pack for an hour! lol

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04.August.2011

Wow, it does look like a completely different space! I’m amazed by your vision, it’s something I just don’t have. Love the updates on this project, can’t wait to see more :)

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04.August.2011

It is coming along great!!

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04.August.2011

My jaw just hit the floor. Is that *really* the same cramped Underdog that you’ve been showing us these last few months? Nah, can’t be.

Dana, I look forward to each and every one of your blog posts. Best written, best photo-ed, best quirky-humored blog out there. I’m a big fan.

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04.August.2011

OMG, seriously that just does not look like the same house. It’s turning out to be really amazing and it’s great to see the potential you saw in the house before. I can’t wait to see the final product.

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04.August.2011

and you just created instant attic space. drop some framing in, sub flooring and a shop light or three and you now have more long term storage then you thought!

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04.August.2011

Amazing. Beautiful. Don’t know what else to say. It’s simply remarkable what a vaulted ceiling can do to a space. So stoked to see the changes as the walls start going up :-)

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Wow, Dana! You can really start to visualize now without having to think around the ceiling. Can’t wait to see how the project progresses!

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04.August.2011

Such a fantastic look. I love the volume the ceilings give the space.

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04.August.2011

Wow! Really looks good. We recently vaulted our living room ceiling and took down two walls to open up the space in our kitchen/living room/dining room area. And now my handy husband is putting up drywall and starting to tape and mud.

Side note: I stumbled upon this blog two days ago while looking for images of Ikea Ramsjo black-brown cabinets and went back to read the entire blog history. I couldn’t get enough, keep up the good work

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04.August.2011

It is really amazing what can happen to a neglected, old house in the right hands. You are doing a great job!

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05.August.2011

wow. this is amazing. i cannot believe you are doing this on your own (design wise and work wise).

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05.August.2011

The first thing I thought was – wow could you make a play space/loft over the family room for the boys? What a fun little nook or fort that could be.

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05.August.2011

holy vaulting … it’s fantastic!

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05.August.2011

Can’t wait to see what you have instore for above the fireplace….so much room! Looking great!

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05.August.2011

Its amazing!!! I can’t believe how beautiful the space already is. I am checking daily to see updates!

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05.August.2011

Wow that looks like it made a huge difference! Good idea to do it.

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05.August.2011

holyamazingwow!

i second what serena said… any chance you could share the cost of such a project? super curious to know ballpark figures :)

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06.August.2011

curious – the area above the bedrooms didn’t looked framed for a wall – are you making a bonus attic room up there? i am picturing a cool library ladder on a track (like your bar door) or a spiral stair up to your attic design studio!
So inspired by your new home!

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replied on August 12th, 2011

Bari – As much as I love your idea for the library ladder and/or attic design studio…sadly, the attic will remain an attic where the ceiling isn’t vaulted. We’ll simply use it as storage. Great ideas though!!! If only money would allow…

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06.August.2011

Incredible, I’m so excited for you, it really is like a different house!

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08.August.2011

This looks amazing! Thanks for sharing the step-by-step. It’s inspirational!

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10.August.2011

I just started following you and am so excited to see all that you do!!
I also have a blog:)

feathersonfirst.blogspot.com

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11.August.2011

Aaaamazing! I can’t wait to see more – I have been checking back a ridiculous number of times a day – I’m living vicariously through you guys and your daring makeover!

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17.January.2014

Dana, your house really looks amazing! My husband and I also own a ranch and we are actually also raising our ceilings over the living-dinning-kitchen area (approximately 25’x25′). The architect is currently designing it (need it for the permits) and we are doing a center beam similar to yours. I was wondering if you could tell me the dimensions of your center beam. My architect is considering using four 1-3/4″x18″ deep LVL beams ganged together. We are just trying to get a feel on how they would look and how it was attached to the rafters. Thanks!

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replied on January 17th, 2014

I’m going to have to dig around for the dimensions. I will let you know!

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Wes
replied on August 4th, 2016

I would love to know the size of your LVL, HH. My wife and I have been inspired by ya’lls idea, and are likely pulling the trigger with a framer this week. He is recommending 3 – 24″ LVLs. Seems like serious overkill to me, so would love to know what ya’ll went with. The span is 22′ and the width of the house is 24′. Thanks!

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18.February.2014

[…] room to the mudroom (sounds strange, works beautifully for us) to make better use of the space. We vaulted the ceiling, added skylights and replaced the original dining room window with french […]

03.June.2014

This is great! My fiance and I just bought a mid-60s ranch and this is the first thing I want to do to it! Thanks for the great pics and info.

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