These homeowners turned a temporary project into a forever home.
When Jami and Shannon Wade purchased this 1922 house, their plan was to flip it and sell it. “This house was abandoned for four years,” says Jami. “There was ivy growing up the walls, and the back part of the house was falling off.”
After months of work, which Shannon did with only two employees and himself, there was no turning back. Jami remembers thinking: “I have to live in this house. We just overdid it.”
Through wall-to-wall carpeting, no mantel, a tiny kitchen, and everything else that was nearly falling apart, the Wades saw incredible potential.
Not only did Shannon restore the home himself; he completely reimagined it. The kitchen used to be a spare bedroom, and the original kitchen is now the laundry room. While most of the doors are original, they have been completely refinished (a process that took two months to complete). “We kept the current duct work, but we put a new air conditioner on,” says Shannon. “The furnace was still good, so we kept it, but we replaced all the electrical.”
When you walk in the Wade home now, you may mistake it as brand new. From the windows to the floors to the crown molding, nearly everything has been replaced. Most of the doorways on the main level were replaced with archways to create a lighter, more open space.
This was a major driving force during the renovation — making every room lighter and brighter. This is most evident in the kitchen. Shannon put in the long window over the sink, and he also vaulted the ceiling and added a skylight. “We did everything we could to get as much light in this house as possible,” says Jami.
Every room is full of personal touches. Most, if not all, the colors, patterns, and furniture have a connection for the Wades. The island in the kitchen was built on a deconstructed antique desk Jami found in the basement of Capitol City Cinema. Green, used throughout the house, is Jami’s favorite color, and the Wades mixed much of the paint themselves to ensure they got their signature candy-apple green. Jami collected plaid items for years in order to match a 1960s Pendleton blanket she bought at a flea market.
The Wades have an obvious penchant for collecting, and they use their collections for their home’s décor. “I was a U.S. history teacher for 17 years, so I have tons of globes and maps,” says Jami. “I’ve been collecting the cardboard ‘trophies’ since 2004 from a place called Cardboard Safari.”
Several items in the home came from the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, including an old school clock (part of another Jami collection) in the upstairs office. They also have a collection of shipping barrels with interesting labels. “I’m into the labels,” says Jami. “Plus, they’re awesome storage.”
The window and knobs in the kitchen were items that Shannon has kept in his warehouse for years, unsure if they would ever come in handy. The hutch in the kitchen hallway was purchased nine years ago from JC Mattress Factory, but the Wades never used it before moving into their current home.
Even the exterior has been completely redone, from the roof to the color of the brick to the pouring of concrete. “We did ‘Cadillac finishes’ on everything,” says Jami. The home’s original brick was the same color as the original Jefferson City Public Schools’ performing arts center (now the Etta and Joseph Miller Performing Arts Center), and the Wades loved the redesign of that building so much that they decided to follow suit. “We went to Miller with paint swatches and talked to [architect] Cary Gampher to match the new color for our brick,” says Jami.
That “Cadillac finish” extends to the outdoor décor. Iron fixtures in the front lawn were created by the same artist who made the iron trees at Forest Theater in Columbia, Michael Marcum. These particular fixtures won first place at the Boone County National Bank Art Show in 1998. “I had to have them,” Jami says. She only had to wait six years to get them.
Everything about this home shows off the Wades’ unique and stylish tastes — each part of the renovation, restoration, and redecoration came from the minds and hands of both Shannon and Jami. So, if you commit to going down the path of house flipping, make sure to design something not to your own taste.
Construction Real Property Improvement
Shannon Wade, Owner
Mid City Lumber
Habitat for Humanity
Jared Wade Hardwood Floors