• Katey Korzenietz

Before & after: modern 2 bed apartment

As with many projects, especially those done on a very tight budget and those managed by the client themselves, the time between Home Restyler receiving a brief to completion of the project can be quite long. So it is with much pleasure that I can share with you today some photos of a project I worked on in spring 2011.

I met my client at a local event one evening where I was exhibiting my business. She had recently bought a spacious, high-ceilinged apartment within a pretty area of Torquay and wanted to give it a total overhaul. The apartment was in serious need of make-over but with limited funds, she was unsure how to approach the restyle.

Initially she was concerned that employing the service of an interior stylist would be expensive and that she would be left with a recommended list of things to buy, which would be out of her price bracket. Little did she know that I believe that reliable home styling and interior design advice should be affordable and available to everyone! Once I had explained that my costs really are very reasonable and that I would be able to help her create a stylish new look for her living area without breaking the bank she was very excited and invited me to see the apartment.

The project: redecoration & restyle of the open plan living area in a 2 bed apartment

The brief: to provide inspirational ideas, advice & a mood board to provide the client with a specific style direction, plus selection of flooring & wallpaper as well as recommendations for transforming the fireplace. The client wanted a modern, monochrome look, which had to be achieved on a very tight budget.

This project is a fantastic example of how a major restyle can be achieved on a budget. My client took my advice and

  1. bought Quickstep laminate flooring

  2. hung a modern, bold floral wallpaper from Laura Ashley (bought during the sale)

  3. painted three walls in a pale light reflecting grey colour

  4. accessorised the room simply with co-ordinating soft furnishings from the likes of Dunelm Mill and The Range

  5. purchased black glass furniture in the sale at Next and positioned a patterned rug centrally to the floor under a new coffee table, which breaks up the wide open floor space

  1. moved the hob unit on the central island, back towards to kitchen area, which opened up the living room space

  2. painted the kitchen walls white (formerly magnolia) to tie in with the whites used in the living space

To successfully transform her fireplace I gave my client the advice below and suggested which paint she should use, however she decided to employ the services of a decorating specialist to do this job as it was quite fiddly. The result is brilliant and she is so pleased that she didn’t junk the fireplace but repainted it instead. I think it has come up beautifully and makes a great feature within the room.

Fireplace restyle:

  1. sand wood thoroughly, vacuum clean all carved areas & wipe clean

  2. prime wood 2 or 3 times with a bonding primer

  3. apply masking tape to protect surrounding areas

  4. use the best brush you can afford, ideally a sash paint brush as these are good for detailed painting, paint the fireplace with an eggshell paint (this has a low sheen, is durable and is easy to wipe clean). Refer to the paint tin instructions to find out how many coats are required.

(These fireplace painting notes were supplied as guidance only)

My client wanted to be able to entertain friends and invite them over to dinner, but without a separate dining room was worried about dining furniture taking up too much of the living room space. So, I suggested that she should buy space saving dining furniture to minimise floor space taken up by a dining table and chairs. but which allows the option to entertain friends without having to eat on the sofa. This set bought from Next in the sale is ideal, not only is it the perfect style but it is compact enough to fit into the corner of the room and suits the needs of my client perfectly.

My client already had a great modular sofa, which we made sure was an integral part of the room restyle. Based on my mood board and recommendations, she acessorised the room simply with co-ordinating soft furnishings from the likes of Dunelm Mill and The Range. She bought inexpensive decorative items that give a stylish finish to the room, giving it a look of sophistication without breaking the bank. She also replaced the hideous, cheap wall lights with modern, glass and polished chrome fittings, which are a perfect fit for the overall scheme.

The huge windows have been framed with stunning floor length curtains made by Inspired Curtains using an inexpensive black fabric for the majority of the curtain, elegantly bordered along the top with a more expensive gorgeous silver embossed leaf trail fabric.

TIP– if you fall in love with a stunning fabric, which is way beyond your budget for curtains, why not just use a small amount of it, incorporating it into the overall design of your window treatment. You could insert panels into the overall length, add a border along the top or bottom or just use it within a tie-back. Mixed in with splashes of the same fabric used cleverly in cushions you can create the look you want without spending a fortune. Hooray!

The feedback my client has had from friends and family has been so positive and she is delighted with the outcome of this project. She said that she would never have thought to pay someone for interiors advice, as she assumed it would be too expensive. However by spending a small amount for my suggestions and advice, she felt a lot more confident making design and purchase choices. I really think she has done a great job at transforming the space without spending much at all.

So what do you think? Do you like what she has done?


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