Taking the Dive into Lakefront Property: the Adventure of the Itsy Bitsy Cottage

Date
Jul, 08, 2015

Dreaming of A Lake House

Have you ever dreamed of owning lakefront property? As an artist and designer I have been blessed with wonderful friends and clients with drop dead gorgeous cottages, cabins and lake houses. Last year I had the privilege of painting murals in a clients second home located on the banks of Canandaigua Lake in Bristol NY. A spacious and unreal plot of land that draws you in the mile long road with rolling hills of wine vineyards on both sides. I spent two entire weeks painting every square inch of this summer home. During lunchtime I relaxed out on a patio overlooking one of the Finger Lakes most picturesque lakes. As soon as I arrived my blood pressure dropped and I realized that I needed a lake house of my own!

the before of a run down red cottage on Honeoye Lake NY.

Taking The Dive

That night I reached out to my realtor mother and had her search the multiple listings for lakefront property and cabins. There wasn’t much in our price range! A fixer upper was inevitable. We set off on a Sunday drive in search for a quaint little place with a waterfront view. We came across a few that were beyond repair and another that was less than ten feet from its neighbor. Several that had water view but none on the water.

Hot Real Estate Tips

My mother received a call from a realtor friend that a fixer upper was just reduced but still slightly over our price range. We drove to the Times Union community on Honeoye Lake and fell in love with it’s charm and sweetness.  This red fixer upper was reminiscent of the gingerbread homes of Vineyard Haven on Martha’s Vineyard. Small cozy cottages on lots with waterfronts, a park, playground and beach. The 744 square foot cottage was lakefront and brick red with a screened in front porch. My father would later tell us that in his native Sweden that vacation homes were always painted red.

Good Bones

The house needed a surmountable amount of work but had great bones. Crooked bones but great bones.  I knew with my art and design background I could turn this run down sleeper into a beauty! We affectionately call her “Itsy Bitsy” and welcome to the beginning of her makeover.

Chloe’s bedroom

A full reveal will be in the next few weeks but here’s how we found her and one of the finished roomsa colorful girls room in a lakehouse cottage with painted boat oars hung on the wall as decor

This small 9′ by 9′ room just fits a day bed with trundle and dresser. We wanted to give Chloe an grown up but still whimsical nautical room. The walls were painted in Sherwin Williams Crushed Ice. A very light blueish gray color. The windows were dressed with navy and white striped panels from HomeGoods. For more color a bright yellow matelasse bedspread and a mix and match approach to accent and throw pillows.  We spray painted an thrift store night stand lime green and found the cutest wooden oars from HomeGoods. The bottom two were found as is and the top one we added a painted whale.  A trundle bed pulls out and is an additional sleeping spot for girlfriends or cousin Charlotte. More images and details of this little room and our new lakefront property can be found by searching LAKE LIVING in the sidebar search box.

More Lake Living Renovations

There are several blog posts on our favorite Summer House. Most recently we added a shed turned dream bunkhouse out back for all our guests. It has been our most favorite addition to date to our beloved lakefront property. 

Welcome to Itsy Bisty!

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Amie Freling

"Life's too short for white walls .." Amie Freling-Brown, a Rochester, NY-based designer and artist who transforms ho-hum spaces into works of art. Her creative designs can be found in many fine homes, restaurants and businesses. Her work has been featured in national magazines, on HGTV and has been sold through retailers nationwide from True Value Hardware to Nordstroms. She proudly offers such professional services as design, staging, color consultations and fine art.

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