Before and After: a Bright and Airy Makeover

April Kennedy April Kennedy
Venduta a Prima Vista
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The home makeover we will explore today is not a hugely expensive construction project, but an example of how stylishly a simple home can be created with great furnishings. It comes to us courtesy of Italian interior designers Venduta A Prima Vista and the end result is sure to inspire many home renovators.

The apartment is a light, traditional home with ornate 1950s tiles and a few rather dated window dressings. The beauty of this home is not reliant on fabulous views or unique features, but the simple strength of clever furnishings and a discerning use of colour accents.

So before we tell too much, come with us to explore a series of before and after photos…

Before: a drab and dated entrance

The entrance was utterly lacking in life. The pale walls and polished stone floor was all perfectly usable, but the apartment lacked any natural features or warmth. In the past, this style of Italian apartment was often furnished with heavy, wooden furniture. While wood finishes certainly have their appeal, this kind of furnishing would have weighed down the apartment and highlighted the more conservative aspects of the existing 1950s style. But, at the same time, there is a lot of natural light flooding into each room, so there is plenty of potential here.

After: a bright and welcoming entrance

The bright and welcoming entrance now has a young, vibrant style. The decorators have completely veered away from heavy traditional furniture and chosen lightweight pieces that allow light and air to flow through the space unimpeded. Note how the sofa and the small table don't sit flush with the ground. The wall colour has been lightened up and this works well against the contrasting wooden door frames. The few items of furniture and decorations we have here also add a little organic, soft look to the space.

Before: cold and lifeless living room

The living room was cold and utterly lifeless, but this is largely to be expected in an unfurnished room. The room is in good condition, but there are no green views or obvious advantages to the space aside from the abundant natural light. It is a square living room and these can tend to feel a little cavernous at times.

After: stylishly spacious living room

Clever furnishings don't really draw attention to themselves so much as infuse the space with a general sense of abundance. Here again, we have the light-framed style of tables and furnishings that don't sit flush with the ground. They give the living room that light, vibrance that it really needed. The rectangular white carpet creates a very light focus to the sofa area and really helps add a sense of depth to the space. The bright splashes of accent colour in the blue armchair and throw work in the same fashion.

Before: an unappealing kitchen

There was a time when kitchens were isolated parts of the house where women toiled away in solitude. These kitchens were not places for entertaining and they were not to be seen by outsiders. Accordingly they were designed with one purpose in mind—and that was function, not fun!

As we can see here, the walls are dominated by drab tiles and the sharp contrast of the dark, wooden window frame.

After: a kitchen full of lively vibrance

In this kitchen, the frilly white curtain has been removed and the entire wooden window frame has been covered with a sheer white curtain. This works together with a fresh coat of white paint and the white table to add a real sense of brightness to the room.

A contemporary powder blue canvas, creative pottery and a lovely little tree add a lot of warm homeliness to the space. Finally, it can be tempting to do away with the history of a dated apartment, but here, the blue chairs add a little retro-style appeal.

Before: a dull and dated bathroom

The incredibly dated bathroom had a heavy, ruffled curtain similar to the one in the kitchen. This offered privacy but obviously blocked a lot of light. It also added a lot of visual weight to the room. At the same time, there was no sense of sumptuous indulgence in the room.

After: a bright, clean bathroom

It's incredible how friendly and warm this bathroom looks now. None of the permanent fixtures have been touched, but the look is completely fresh and new. This just goes to show how important it is to employ a good home stager or decorator. The makeover here works because they have completely lightened up the space by removing the fussy curtain, added a pot plant and some light, stylish accessories and towels.

Inspired by this home decoration triumph? Then you'll love Styling up a Small Kitchen—it's packed full of essential tips!

What do you think of this amazing makeover? Which room works best? We'd love to hear your thoughts!

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