Taking an unwanted vacant house and turning it into an inviting and happy home is one of my favorite things to do. But occasionally, I am asked to transform an ugly duckling place that even I have a hard time envisioning as a swan. An awkward layout, dark rooms, old wall to wall carpet, plain vanilla walls and popcorn ceilings can be challenging when there is nothing in the budget for renovations. But, I refuse to be defeated by a dated condo. "Sure! We can make it fabulous!" I hear a voice saying in confident clipped tones. Wait, did I just say that? Great. Now I've done it. Out on the limb again.
Yesterday, we faced the challenge of transforming a dark, dated, tired condo into a place that a buyer will want. In one day. On a budget. Here is the story of the Ugly Duckling Condo:
Welcome home. Err, maybe not. This is the entry and that's Angie, taking notes, as we plot our plan of attack.
The living room is dark, as the only source of natural light is from the adjacent screened in porch. Walls and carpeting are vanilla. Plain vanilla. Yawn. But, the ceilings are high. Happy colors are needed here. Sunny yellows and clear blues to chase away the drab.
The screened porch is a plus in this situation. Here in the south, a screened porch truly is an outdoor living room because we can use them most of the year. This is a decent size for a small condo. We will make it inviting with a loveseat, an outdoor rug, some accessories, maybe even a lamp.
Again, high ceilings are a plus and there is nice natural light from the large window. The cheap blinds and stained carpet must be addressed here and I am just praying that my furniture and accessories are enough to make this a lovely master bedroom.
This is the dining area. Small, dark and the mirror on the wall is a good idea but the size is very very wrong.
Not that bad. White tile, chrome fixtures. Okay, we can work with this.
So, we set to work pulling things from our inventory of furniture and accessories to transfer this ugly duckling. The movers arrived at 8am and with Angie at the helm of the move, the furniture was in place by 10:30am and it was ready for accessorizing.
A few hours later and a few more trips to the warehouse, our little ugly duckling has become the swan it was meant to be.
This is how I hope our story will end. The realtor posts the photos of the transformed condo on MLS on Saturday. A buyer walks in and falls in love. And the condo swan lives happily forever. The end.