Above: City maps of a few of the places we've visited along the years...Copenhagen, Paris, Athens, Munich, Stockholm.
It's a celebration! We've been in the loft for 5 years now and I can't believe how much this place has changed. Well, I can, because looking at these "before" shots is kind of shocking to me. I clearly forgot about all the work we did around here. And, if we're being honest (I think we're at that point in the relationship now) I'm shocked that as soon as I walked into this place that I was sold instantly. Maybe I knew what it could become with a lot of paint...and I'm so glad that I was willing to overlook so many things...you'll see what what I mean when we get to the photos. So, without further ado, here are the "before" shots of our "Italian Villa Loft" that were taken by my father-in-law during our inspection back in '09.
The Dining Room/Entry, before. Note our awesome realtor pondering the existence of extreme faux finishes (sponge painting, stripes, sponge painting over stripes, an all-over sand wash, and the ultimate winner--faux leather!) while Kevin and I are having a serious conversation on whether or not to hold our next Knights of the Roundtable meeting under that 200lb chandelier. Fun fact: I tried to sell that chandelier for two months. The retail price was over $1400. Shockingly, no one wanted it so it ended up at the Brown Elephant. Adorable Fun Fact: Kevin and I are both wearing boat shoes.
Now. Less clutter, more storage, and without the sponge-painted walls. Our dining room is virtually all CB2--the table, the chairs, and the black light. The three 8 ft cabients are from IKEA and are amazing. Our entryway nook has a small tufted linen and brass bench by Threshold for Target below a framed copy of the HOLSTEE Manifesto. Horns are everywhere in this house, so just get used to it.
The Living Room, before. Definitely not our style, but stil cozy and inviting. I totally miss those 12 ft long metallic silver blinds though, not.
Now. The wood floor is the same and we've added an 8x10 FLOR rug and turned the back wall into a giant stripe gallery. The main color in the room is gray (spoiler alert: every wall in the house is some shade of gray). Gone are the metallic blinds, surround sound speakers, and garish red wall. The furniture is a mix of old and new. The couch is from Room and Board and the sideboard is a vintage piece from Modern Cooperative in Pilsen.
The Bedroom, before. This room still makes me gag a little bit. I mean the leathery faux finish, the wicker, the carpet...
Now. No more carpet or faux leather walls. We've gone minimalist with all of our furniture and replaced the blinds. The bed is from Room and Board and the dresser is from CB2. The stools are from Roost in Andersonville and the brass MCM lamps were a gift. Bedding is from IKEA.
The Bathroom, before. The sinks are in the hallway between both of the bedrooms and the flooring was...carpet. So gross. The toliet and shower are in a separate room.
Now. The first thing we did when we got the keys to this place was gut the bathroom. We were able to do most of the demo ourselves (cue long nights of me sitting on the bathroom floor scraping carpet glue off the concrete) and we were able to buy all of our bathroom pieces locally from Community Home Supply. The bathroom was originally all white, but as soon as the painters left, I put that gray stripe in there. I couldn't help myself.
The Second Bedroom, before. Here it is, the culmination of bad faux finishes. We've got sponge patining and stripes...and some UFO sconces.
Now. We've turned this room into an office because that seemed like the adult thing to do. Plus, we needed a space to store all of our computer equipment and everything that comes along with the letterpress business. We've also got my digital piano in there and our washer/dryer (which is hidden in one of the closets). This room has gone through a lot of phases in the last 5 years, but it finally feels finished now.
The Kitchen, before. Not much has changed in here except for the wall color. I'm not a super huge fan of the backsplash but the idea of changing anything scares me at this point because I imagine I'll start with something small and it will turn into a gut job. The previous owner had just finished re-doing this space before he listed it and he made some smart decisions regarding the layout/appliances. If we were doing it over, I would have gone with a lighter scheme because there isn't a lot of natural light in here.
Now. So similiar but so different. More gray and we added some white stools to the counter. What a difference a coat of paint makes, right? I really do love the kitchen, especially in the fall/winter when I can hide in there and bake and cook. It may not be huge (said in a Donald Trump voice) but it's definitely laid out well (except for that giant concrete support) and very efficient.
The Deck, before. Other than the furniture/flower boxes the deck is pretty much the same. So, I guess it's all different then?
Now. New flower boxes and different styling. We spend a lot of time on the deck in the spring-fall months and being able to have an outdoor space that's all our own is really awesome.
I'm glad I finally put this post together just so I can map the evolution of this place over the last five years. I guess it's true what they say about design, it's never really finished. It's so easy to change up a space with color or accessories. Maybe if I had more time I'd start a third business...just kidding.