A Little Lake House Cottage Is Now Totally Adorable Thanks to Lots of DIYs

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Credit: Naomi Vacaro

Name: Nicole Roe, husband Geoff, four boys
Location: Eagle Lake, Florida
Type of home: Lake House—cottage
Size: 1,800 square feet
Years lived in: 9 years, owned

Credit: Naomi Vacaro

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: My then-boyfriend (and now-husband) Geoff purchased this home in the spring of 2010 right after we graduated college. A six-month renovation turned into an 18-month renovation before we moved in. We were able to DIY 90 percent of the work, thanks to degrees in building construction, Google and YouTube. We did save the refinishing of the original-yet-in-awful shape hardwood floors, tile, and the plaster repair to the professionals. Apparently we like the dirty, risk-of-injury work over the finish work.

Credit: Naomi Vacaro

We tore down walls, built an addition, re-sided the entire exterior, rewired and replumbed… basically we redid every single surface of the home. We lived in the home until last summer when we realized that our family of five was going to be a family of six and we needed more space. We now have the home listed as a vacation rental for other families to enjoy.

Credit: Naomi Vacaro

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Cottage, lake-front, fun, airy, simple.

Credit: Naomi Vacaro

What is your favorite room and why? It would be a tie between the bathroom and the screened-in porch but would lean towards the porch. The combination of finishes and amenities is hard to beat. Thanks to the addition of a fireplace, the room is enjoyable year round for dining, relaxing, and working.

Credit: Naomi Vacaro

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? We were gifted a vintage bed that makes the master bedroom so special and added a pair of lamps to flank it that are surprisingly from IKEA but you would never have guessed.

Credit: Naomi Vacaro

Any advice for creating a home you love? Take your time creating your home but do not take your time to enjoy it. Have friends over often; they don’t care that you don’t have all the art on the wall or even that you don’t have matching chairs. We hosted our first party before we even had kitchen cabinets. We made sure to wait until we had plumbing though!

Credit: Naomi Vacaro

This submission’s responses were edited for length and clarity.