An Upscale-Downsizing Story

 

INTRO

My initial contact with Mrs. D. was to help in the preparation and staging of her previous home.  Health needs were such that she could no longer navigate the stairs with ease.  

When her previous home sold quickly, finding a new place with a master bedroom and laundry on the main floor became an urgent priority. At this stage in one’s life journey, change  can be overwhelming. Struggling to visualize what a place can be is common and such was the case for Mrs. D. At the prompting of the realtor, she called again, asking me to have a look at this ‘potential purchase’.

 

THE VISION (and my Mantra)

Within minutes of walking into the space, I could visualize the possibilities.  The open and bright floorplan, the ample kitchen and eating area, the storage and the green space off the dining and living rooms held so much potential. 

As we began to entertain the possibilities, Mrs. D. grew more and more convinced that the home could not only meet her needs for comfort and ease but also give her a beautiful place to enjoy.

We wanted to accomplish a lot! The list of priorities was established as we worked within the proposed budget.  With Mrs. D’s input, we were able to agree on what would be addressed as the renovation and décor plan began.

My contractor on this job was the best there is…my husband, Jon.  Together we have a wonderful team of professionals who assisted in accomplishing the transformation of Mrs. D’s home in one month’s time.

 

THE TRANSFORMATION

First, the removal of old carpeting, window coverings, etc; then we set to work on minor renovation.

Replacing the curved arches at the entry was critical to adding the crown molding the client requested throughout the main floor.

There was concern about ‘sure footing’ so we opted for wall to wall carpeting on the main level, rather than custom area rugs.  Existing tile in the entry, kitchen and ensuite bath was replaced with a beautiful walnut colored vinyl planking. 

All windows received new coverings; the living room and dining room outfitted with wonderful poly/linen drapery and the balance with 2” white, faux-wood blinds. 

LET THERE BE LIGHT . . .

We addressed the needs for ambient lighting, accent lighting as well as task lighting in order to create lifestyle and comfort. The addition of pot lights in the bedroom transformed what was a dark, somewhat oppressive room into one brimming with light. 

Concealed strip lighting in the closets insures everything is easily seen and accessed.

 

New strip-lighting under the kitchen upper cabinets illuminated the countertops. LED ceiling-mounted lights made the kitchen bright and beautiful.

New pot lights, flanking the fireplace, highlight the glass shelving and cabinets we installed, adding another level of sheen and glimmer.A lovely drum-fixture over the dining room table, a classic pendant in the stairwell, as well as a new ceiling mount fixture at the entry all served to add beauty and light. 

 

. . . and COLOUR!

The bright aqua walls were painted a lovely soft warm neutral, with the exception of the Master Bedroom and Ensuite Bath, where we applied a very soft and serene blue/green.  It worked beautifully with Mrs. D’s. existing duvet and shams, and maintained the feel of “sand and sea” throughout the entire floor plan. I also opted to paint the feature wall in the Living Room a beautiful, rich blue/green.

 

THE KITCHEN MAKEOVER

Perhaps the greatest transformation took place in the kitchen.  Funds did not permit totally new installation, so we opted to have the existing oak cabinets professionally sprayed.  Old exposed hinges were replaced with concealed European ones. New cabinet pulls completed the transformation.

The subway tile backsplash is fresh and bright; always a very cost effective choice.  Grout selection tones softly with the new quartz countertops. A new stainless refrigerator, new sink and faucet compliment and complete the overall effect. Wow!

 

THE ENSUITE - SWEET!

To create cohesion and flow, bathroom cabinets were treated in the same way as the kitchen cabinets.  New laminate countertops that mirrored the look of the quartz completed the  visual harmony; a more cost-effective option than quartz, maximizing impact yet staying on budget.

 

A sliding glass enclosure  added to the shower, made it more secure and safe.  New mirror was extended to the crown, adding a sense of space and grandeur.  New lighting and glimmer in the accents make it a lovely bathroom, which not only serves as the ensuite but also as a guest bathroom.

 

THE 'EDIT'

Key to helping a downsizing client is making critical decisions around the scale of furnishings with new floor plans. Such was the case with Mrs. D.  Her existing sofa and loveseat were too large - neither realistic or functional in her new home.

A lovely new ivory textured loveseat was placed opposite the fireplace, with a very handsome sofa table behind it to create a feeling of strength. A floor plug installed strategically to accommodate the table lamp safely, adds functional serenity.

Under the sofa table sits a tufted ottoman, which can be brought out for family gatherings and placed in front of the fireplace to provide additional seating.

Flanking either side of the fireplace are two of Mrs. D’s favorite chairs, reupholstered in a gorgeous deep blue/green velvet.  Not only is the scale of the chairs ideal, but they are pieces that have been enjoyed for many years. With Upscale upholstery , they continue to be enjoyed and appreciated.

* * * * *

Mrs. D. needed a small desk/office center in the kitchen/eating area.  We were able to find something that not only fits the space perfectly but also serves her needs. The finished product is lovely. With the addition of some blue/green accessories and re-framed artwork, it is a place that surrounds her with some familiar and fresh accents.

 

 

THE OUTDOOR ROOM

Stepping through the living room sliding glass doors, one is on a small covered patio deck which we outfitted with comfortable furnishings.  It has created an outdoor space which she can enjoy as well as use for entertaining family and friends.

 

THE REWARD

To say that this was a satisfying and rewarding project would be an understatement.  Mrs. D. was an absolute delight to work with. She made our job a true JOY.  Her words convey what we aspired to do:

"Thank you for your attention to detail, making this home liveable, functional and safe . . . as well as beautiful." - Mrs. D.