The “Curb Appeal Xtreme” team is at it again, with a stunning exterior makeover, but this time, on a serious deadline.
In the Season 1 episode “Just in Time for Baby,” designer John Gidding, horticulturist Jamie Durie, and carpenter Rachel Taylor help clients Brian and (very pregnant) Camey with a kid-friendly exterior upgrade. With an overgrown front yard and a pile of rubble in the backyard, the trio will need to work hard to finish this Lockeland Springs, TN, home before the baby arrives.
The team has $60,000 to update the home, redo the landscaping, and build a beautiful privacy wall that makes this backyard feel like a retreat. Find out what feature the team thinks every family home needs.
An oculus adds unique curb appeal
To give this house a bright, welcoming look, the team updates the exterior with a coat of clean white paint. Still, it seems this place needs more than just a new color. Luckily, Gidding has some creative ideas for adding charm to the front of the home.
“I want to add a circular cutout, also known as an oculus, to the front gable,” Gidding says. “And then, use shingles to make it feel lighter overall and to bring a sense of that traditional facade back to the home.”
In the end, the oculus and the shingles look great, and they prove that there’s a lot homeowners can do to give the front of their home character. Paint, landscaping, and new furniture are always good bets, but so are less expected updates.
Pay attention to the ceiling color
This home has a good-sized portico, which needs a revamp. Adding stylish furnishings already makes a big difference, but the team decides to stain the wood on the ceiling. When the team shows the finished feature to the homeowners, Gidding explains the new color choice.
“You had this gorgeous ceiling already up here, so I figured if I was going to stain the ceiling, I didn’t want the shake to be the same color,” he says. “I love it when you change material, you change color as well, and every single material you see will have its own different color and shade.”
Sure enough, the ceiling stands out from the new shingles, which stand out next to the white exterior paint. The colors highlight each feature, showing off each asset.
Hide your air conditioner
The team adds a ton of beautiful features to this home, but it knows that sometimes, making a yard look better requires hiding unsightly features, too.
When the team spots a large air-conditioning unit outside the home, Durie says they can work their magic to hide it. Luckily, it sits lower than the house itself.
“The fact that this is sitting on lower ground and the rest of the place is sitting on higher ground, we can just sort of make this disappear into the topography and continue on into the garden,” Durie says.
They add a wall behind the new outdoor kitchen and plant some shrubbery in front of the unit, effectively making the eyesore invisible.
Make a privacy wall into a feature wall
Unfortunately, Camey and Brian’s backyard has very little privacy. When the couple built the back deck, they didn’t realize how high it would be, and it’s easily visible from the neighbors’ yards. While the deck makes for a nice place to sit, Camey and Brian feel like they’re on display.
So Durie plans to give the yard a beautiful privacy fence made with a custom chrysanthemum flower design.
“We have 20 feet to cover, and we could just build a large wooden fence, but that would be boring,” Durie says.
The floral-inspired panels are cut from 1-inch insulation foam, and once glued to the new privacy walls, they look beautiful.
To finish this look, Durie puts the same chrysanthemum design on a $1,000 Carrara marble slab that is installed behind the fireplace. This marble section proves that a privacy wall can be an elegant feature.
Save space for green
During the renovation, Durie and Taylor realize they’ve made a mistake.
While they want to give this yard lots of new deck space, they learn the team added decking in a spot that Durie thought they were saving for turf.
“The whole idea is their child can come down and play on a lawn,” Durie says.
Luckily, they’re able to fix the error and remove the decking. Instead, they add some grass and even build a swing set for Camey and Brian’s new baby, who has just arrived by the reveal. Now these homeowners can truly relax, knowing that their home is ready for their growing family.