Who: Jeff B.
Where: Chicago, IL
Our family loves the feel of the new space. The design is more appropriate to our 1890s-vintage home, though it doesn't try to be a fussy museum. And even with an eat-in kitchen nearby, we actually sit down for dinner at the formal dining table most nights! The new fireplace mantel was built to show off our circa 1935 pond yacht that we salvaged out of someone's trash, adding some instant character. At the other end of the space we hung photos taken by Chicago's legendary preservationist Richard Nickel to celebrate saving our old house.
Who did the work: I did all of the work myself.
Cost: $1,000 to $5,000