Welcome to House One

It’s launch day here at House One—a new brand from This Old House sharing DIY home projects for beginners and the inspiration that drives us to create. I’m Jenn, your host, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to have you here. This project has been a long time in the making, and sharing it with you today is one part terrifying, two parts thrilling, and a handful of a reality check that dreams really do come true.

Probably like many of you, I grew up watching This Old House on television. My dad was a carpenter who taught woodworking classes, and my mom was an English teacher. Along with my sister, we all worked together as a family on the homes where we lived in Michigan. Through this lifelong apprenticeship, my love for woodworking (and writing about woodworking) turned into a dream job at This Old House magazine in New York. I was a total fish out of water, but I worked my way up as a writer on columns like Weekend Remodel, and even appeared in the magazine a few times here and here.

When I met my husband and we moved away from New York City to buy our first home and start a family, I missed my work so much that I started a blog, Build Basic, where I offered plans for the furniture I built for our new home. The move from New York City to working from home was a big adjustment, so I started reaching out to other bloggers and even attending some blogging conferences. It was at these conferences that I discovered the most amazing community of talented woodworkers, makers and designers sharing their knowledge with each other and growing in their skills through the creation of projects and collaboration with each other.

Years later, the opportunity to collaborate with This Old House came by way of a humble conversation at a coffee shop. This Old House CEO, Eric Thorkilsen and I traded stories about the history of This Old House, and our passion for the amazing brand that, after nearly 40 years, is still  leading the home improvement industry. I left the meeting more inspired than ever before, and jotted the name House One on a notepad before I even made it home.

To me, the name House One represents the beginning we all inevitably face when we first become homeowners and renters, and dive in the deep end of caring for and personalizing the places we live. Sure, we all arrive with varying skill sets, but the fear of the unknown and the excitement to make it our own is universal.

My dream for House One is that it can offer helpful information and beautiful inspiration that helps us, like the blogging community, grow together and learn from one another. We’ve created channels like Home Fixes and Upgrades that, with the help of host Aaron Massey of Mr. Fix It DIY will cover topics like cleaning a dishwasher and replacing an outdated light fixture, Project and Tool Tutorials, which I’ll host, that will cover easy furniture builds and tool knowhow that can be used as a primer or refresher, and Design Files that features the beautiful inspiration with actionable advice about how to make it work in your home from host Kirsten Grove of Simply Grove. Lastly, we’ve created a hub called DIY Directory where we can all share our work and favorite projects from around the web, because Pinterest can be an overwhelming place when you need coffee table building plans and don’t know who to trust.

And of course, this blog—my corner to chat with you about all the fun behind-the-scenes stuff and talk with you all as just me, a passionate maker pinching herself with excitement over this amazing opportunity, and feeling honored to be a part of it all.

So, WELCOME, and thank you for being here! I hope you like our guides and DIY home projects for beginners, and that you’ll say hi on Instagram and Facebook and tell me a little about you too!


Jenn Largesse
By Jenn Largesse
Jenn Largesse is the editor and creator of House One. As the daughter of a carpenter and an english teacher, she has been honing her love for woodworking and writing her entire life. After nearly a decade as a writer and producer for This Old House, she bought her first home in rural New England and launched her blog, Build Basic.

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