You all know I’ve been busy renovating for what seems like forever. In reality though, it’s only been a work in progress since about January. So yes that means I’ve been spending the last six months coping with drywall, contractors and general chaos – and I have the paint in my hair to prove it! So I’m very happy to finally present some “finished”* images for you.
* not really finished, because we all know a designer’s work is never done.
Front Hall | Flickr.
When we moved in there were two sliding mirrored doors here with gold trim (and not gold in a good way). We ripped them out, ordered custom overheight doors and had the whole thing framed and drywalled in.
Entry | Flickr.
My front hall is too narrow for a table, so for a landing strip we use these handy pieces from Umbra. The art is a thrift store scarf in an Ikea frame.
Hallway art | Flickr.
This is a great shot of my DIY Polaroid art
(also in an Ikea frame), along with a funky robot emblazoned piece we got at Chatuchak Market in Bangkok last year. The artist’s name is Jitti Jumnianwai
and I recommend seeking him out if you happen to be there! The white frames tie everything together, and look great against the pale grey walls (Benjamin Moore Collingwood Grey).
bathroom | Flickr.
We did minimal work in the bathroom. I would have loved to rip out the cabinets, the mottled brown countertop and the weird floral tile in the shower but those things were just not in the cards. They were just too new to justify replacement. So we switched out a functional-but-ugly medicine cabinet and vanity light with pieces that are much more attractive. We also painted the walls and ceiling the same grey as elsewhere in the space (Collingwood Grey). I also wouldn’t normally hang a great painting like this in the bathroom, but we are staging for resale so this one is living here temporarily. It’s a wedding gift, by amazing local artist Tanya Slingsby
Bedroom/studio | Flickr.
The lower level bedroom is used as Rich’s music studio, and in all honestly it has mostly been used as our “junk room” since we moved in (poor Rich!). Every homeless odd and sod was housed in here so it gives me a great deal of pleasure to see it all cleaned up. The art is a piece we bought from a (now defunct) restaurant/gallery and is a favourite of mine. (It’s by Jeff Sawatzky
.) I would love to put a rug in here too, but since we don’t know where we’re going to next I’m holding off.
Studio wall | Flickr.
This Ikea shelf is one I cannot seem to get rid of. We have almost given it away a dozen times but I always end up finding a new spot for it. Here it’s joined by some guitars, an alley-way found chair, my amber glass collection and a funky lamp that we also bought at Chatuchak Market.
Guitar close up | Flickr.
This guitar is just so cool – love the detail (neither of us play!).
bottles | Flickr.
All of my amber glass collection is thrifted. Some are actually vintage but most are from 18 Karat
Kitchen | Flickr.
The kitchen is like the bathroom in that it was too new to justify ripping out. I agonized over changing it all – I looked into cabinet refacing, new, Ikea, everything – but in the end, the cabinets, countertops and backsplash all stayed. But we did replace all the white appliances with stainless steel – which I am honestly surprised the previous owners didn’t do. It made a huge difference. I still don’t love it but it’s heaps better than it used to be, and miles beyond some kitchens I’ve lived with.
Dining Room | Flickr.
This was the first place in the house we tackled, and also the only room in the house that we have painted twice. We got rid of an old country-style light fixture right away and replaced it with this white cloud-like piece. But we first painted the back wall a dark blue-grey. It was almost navy and I totally loved it. But it didn’t go with the new pale grey we chose for everything else. It’s now painted with Benjamin Moore’s Rockport Grey (the same colour as all of our new closet doors).
Spiral stairs – finished | Flickr.
The stairs were a real labour of love for me. The originals were oak and the railing was painted dark brown. I actually ended up painting the railing twice to get it right. The first time I used Rustoleum’s Aluminum paint in Gloss, which ended up being almost Tin Man-shiny. Not so great. But then I found Rustoleum’s paint that is made with real Stainless Steel (it’s meant for appliances). And it’s a million billion times better than the almuminum look. The treads were all removed, sanded down and painted (three coats!). That alone took the better part of two weeks. But it looks so much better in the end that it was all worth it.
Living room and stairs | Flickr.
The new glass railing! This held us up because the installers messed up the ordering – twice! Won’t be using them next time, even though in the end it looks great. The whole space is basically a study in neutrals, but it’s much too fun to be boring.
Living room again | Flickr.
My living room has had the same basic look and configuration for a while now. We didn’t do anything more in here than paint the walls (the very very tall walls might I add). But we borrowed this gorgeous, huge purple painting from a friend for staging purposes. And I love it – I will be sad to give it back.
Expedit sofa table | Flickr.
I am trying to rid myself of Ikea and not doing such a great job of it. I am a sucker for Expedit. They are just such functional pieces. This one sits behind my sofa, and holds books and odds and ends. On top are two dramatic chain mail candleholders – Pier One by the way of Value Village.
Master bedroom | Flickr.
The bedroom that we created upstairs is by far the best change in the whole place. There wasn’t anything up here before – just carpeting and ugly oak railing. We added a few walls, closets, lights, paint – everything. And now it’s a real functional space. I also made that window covering for the skylight because it gets much too bright up there at 5 am these days.
bed | Flickr.
I’ve also recovered my white bench with a woods print fabric from…..Ikea. In fact, all the pillows and the orange throw are from Ikea. The duvet cover is from Nood and the bedframe is EQ3.
Upstairs office | Flickr.
How glorious is this? It’s my office/crafting center. And yes, it’s more Ikea. The art displayed on the picture rails is all by my dear friend (who moved to Melbourne) the incredibly talented Shelley
. All those boxes contain all my sewing/jewelry making/knitting/everything supplies, as well as my modest design library.
closet | Flickr.
You’ve seen my Pax unit before
(and I did get my glossy white doors after all) and it’s great. But you haven’t seen the very best part of all….
Shoe closet | Flickr.
The shoe closet! OMG it’s insane
. If you can convince your husband to build one of these for you, you totally should get on that.
bags | Flickr.
Even my thrifted bags have homes! It’s amazing! And I will enjoy every minute of it while it lasts (ie. until we sell and move on to the next). Is this a good time to remind you that I had no closet for the better part of two years? So this moment has been a long time coming.
If you want to see more photos, my Flickr gallery has some pretty gruesome before shots (including of what the upstairs used to look like!) along with lots of pictures of the process, including me and my cats. Hope you’ve enjoyed!
If you are looking to give your space a dose of style- whether you are splashing out or on a budget – drop me a line. Check out my Hire Me! page for more details.