Tuesday, March 13, 2012

making of a makeover...

I've lived in small spaces my whole life. My current NYC studio apartment is under 400sf and my L.A. bungalow is appox 1,200sf (on a good day) and I LOVE it. For me, the goal is never to have more space, just better use of it.

When I approached Silverline's bedroom makeover (appox. 110sf) the key was to give her all the function she desired, like storage, more lighting & additional seating, beyond just the bed. Also, she wanted the room to feel like it had great personality while still being a soothing place to relax. All in less than 3days.


1) Painting is key. This is all that happened on day1 in the room. Furniture was being assembled, outside of the bedroom, for install on day 2. Silverline loves the color purple but wasn't sure what hue, where and how much. I decided to do 2 walls (window and bed walls) in a darker hue (Benjamin Moore #1428 Wood Violet) and the remaining walls a lighter hue (Benjamin Moore #2070-50 Enchanted) both in an eggshell finish. Light will bounce off of it just enough, without being too shiny. 

2) Go Tall. Dark Chocolate Velvet Drapes hung almost to the ceiling. The dark choc. brown was a slight contrast to the dark wall, but not enough to draw attention to the shortness of the wall. By keeping the wall almost monochromatic, it lengthened visually. 

3) Low profile furnishings. Our bed was the foundation of the room. I could have gone really high with the headboard to create some drama and also give the illusion of a large space, but I knew that we also needed to bring in some other key elements like a chair, bedside tables, and a media console that also acted as storage. Contrasting scale could start to make the room feel a bit off kilter. It was too small a space to play with that. By keeping the bed low, I was able to bring in other furniture pieces that followed that scale and created a sense of harmony.

4) Repeat your foundation. Our brown leather bed set the tone and I followed that brown with other earth-tones in the rug, bedding, and accessories.

5) Layering initial colors. The purple was a no brainer. She loves it! After putting it on the walls I repeated different hues in flowers, bedding and artwork. Silverline also loves orange and didn't think of mixing her two favorite colors. The key to making that work is picking color that share the same amount of hue (or saturation). Since I went with a dark, almost eggplant purple on the walls along with a lighter/softer lavender, I chose a really dark/burnt orange as well as pale (almost yellow) one. Then--layered those as well in artwork, bedding and flowers.

6) Add light and reflect it. The bedside table lamps create the perfect light balance and then in the corner, behind the door there is a stand with a lamp on there as well. The light gets evenly dispersed throughout the room. I used the same wattage bulbs in all the lamps. Also, adding candlelight throughout the room helped to spread the soft light. The mirror with mirrored frame, along with the shiny silver hardware on the bedside tables help to reflect light and create a more sparkly/spacious room.

7) Go up! Art work or architectural details are all appox. on the same line. They mirror each other on terms of height of where they are hung. This way, in small room your eye isn't bouncing all over the place, it's feel that the room is unified, cohesive and larger.

Later this month I'll share with you the complete video reveal and one of the things that Silverline say is, "The room looks larger, but it has so much more stuff. How?" How, indeed. Many thanks to the incredible Overstock team that helped make this happen, along with the Atlanta based Atkins Home Enterprises for the wonderful paint job! Great work all around.

Go forth and makeover. -angelo

make it happen:


NatalieB. said...

I hope your day combines all things beautiful and wonderful. Happy Birthday!

PS. any chance you'll post pics of your studio? Would love to see what life in less than 400ft works.

angelo said...

Thank You Natalie! I will post pics at some point. Stay tuned...

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