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Updated: Jul 13, 2021

One of the greatest things about what we do is the opportunity we have to discover all the different and unique spots in the Houston real estate market. And that is exactly what happened when we took on Margot’s home renovation. Nestled in the Heights district of Houston, Margot had a charming little bungalow filled with history. However, as time passed, Margot felt she was ready for a new home. So, we brought in our team and got ready to turn the house she called the “Purple Palace” into a house that could sell at maximum price.

Margot’s first house was located in an area of Houston where many older homes’ exteriors were painted different colors. As the only bungalow painted purple, Margot’s house had its own, unique feel. Her “Purple Palace” required very little outside changes as the home presented a charming amount of curb-appeal that would only need to be accentuated by the appropriate pieces of porch-friendly staging furniture.

On the inside of the house, the small interior had slightly more unorganized layout simply due to the way additions had been built in over time. The main (and only) bathroom for the home connected the master bedroom and the guest bedroom, making any house guests need to step through a bedroom to access it. This would be the most important change to make, so as to make sure the layout was never something that could potentially deter a home buyer. To make space for the newest bathroom plans, we decided to take out a small closet and use the space to make a hallway, connecting the two bedrooms together and leading them individually to the home’s bathroom. This change added more space to the bathroom, allowing for the addition of a double sink. The once smaller bathroom was now accessible on its own and permitted ease of use whether one, two, or more people were staying in the house.

Having removed the main master bedroom closet area to make the adjustments in layout, we also wanted to make sure a future buyer would not feel as though there was not enough storage space inside the home. So, we re-installed a closet in the house, just off of the master bedroom. A side room was transformed into an office, filled with natural light, and just on the side, we installed a full sized closet to accommodate for storage needs. To prepare the home for sale, all rooms (aside from the master bedroom) were repainted to color match the light beige color of the dining area. This made the layout of the home flow more freely too, accentuating the feeling that the rooms were all connected in one way.

“This made the layout of the home flow more freely too, accentuating the feeling that the rooms were all connected in one way.”

With new lights and a fresh coat of paint, the only space that still needed work was the kitchen. As this was an older style home, it was equipped with some vintage metal cabinets and open shelving instead of cabinets. To modernize the utility of the kitchen but keep its vintage charm, we repainted the existing under-sink cabinets and added a new countertop. The upper storage shelves were closed off with cabinet doors too and those above the oven were removed to install a vent hood. As a finishing touch, we installed a beautiful tile backsplash to complete the look and tie the color scheme together. We also repurposed a piece of the old countertop to make a drop down table which would serve as a personalized breakfast nook.

Almost every room in Margot’s first house received new lighting fixtures from Kichler lighting. This is something we always mention when planning home renovations for our clients. There are several things that for a small investment, can make a huge difference in the look of a house and one of those things is lighting. The tremendous variety offered by Kichler Lighting gave us the opportunity to mix practical with pretty and give each room a little bit of added shine. We added new ceiling fan lights in the living room and bedrooms but then used other specialty lights in the remaining spaces. The bathroom vanity, kitchen, and office each had something added in, with our personal favorite being the beautiful beaded light fixture that added shine and personality to the office area.

The Victorian home...

With all the improvements in place, the house was ready to sell and we were ready to start work on Margot’s new home: A Victorian style home with more space but in need of some updates and personalization!

In Margot’s new home, we started by examining the flooring situation. The current floors were mismatched throughout the house so we decided to install something consistent throughout the home. Upon removing some flooring, we thought we had hit the jackpot in discovering the home’s original hardwood floors underneath. However, upon further investigation, it was evident the floors were not complete throughout the house. As a result, we decided to move forward with the same look of hardwood floors, but take a more lasting option, in the form of vinyl flooring. This would not only bring back the charm of the old hardwood floors, it would also offer a durable option for both human feet and puppy paws that would be traveling throughout the house.

Having finalized the flooring situation, we began work in each of the rooms in the house. On the first floor, there was a formal dining room, a kitchen, a breakfast area, a living room, and a great stairway that led upstairs. Recently renovated, the kitchen needed no improvements from our team so we moved on to the next spaces. In both dining areas, we added new light fixtures and some personalized decor to make the space feel more like home. Margot’s mother gifted some decorative plates for this space, which Mary added to the walls as decor. In the breakfast area, a different set of decorative plates were added, this time, wooden plates, which Mary personalized with engraved family recipes. With some new light fixtures and a few pieces of furniture, these spaces were complete and we moved on to the living room.

The living room centerpiece was a fireplace covered in tile and topped with a large, white mantle. In order to update the look and make the space more practical, we added a full wall of built-in shelving and cabinets and replaced the white mantle with a custom wooden mantle. The wooden mantle, made by The Reclaimed Wood Shop in Houston, took reclaimed wood and made a beautiful, hollowed-out mantle that tied the whole space together. The stained wood, paired with the flooring and the new charcoal color surrounding the fireplace, brought a feeling of warmth and coziness in the room and contrasted with the white built-ins to really complete the farmhouse look of the interior. With the main living spaces complete, we turned towards the stairwell, making plans to maximize the use of the under-stair space.

“With the main living spaces complete, we turned towards the stairwell, making plans to maximize the use of the under-stair space.”

Originally closed off, we opened up the space under the stairs in two areas. Following the line of the stairway, we used the larger opening to create a personalized bar space, complete with a mini fridge and glass storage. Further down the stairway, we added another opening so that a spacial member of Margot’s family would have a space of his own. Margot’s dog, Wrigley, had always been a big part of her life and we wanted to make sure he would have his own space within this new home. With the right sized opening and a few decorative pieces, the smaller side of the under-stair area quickly became a dog house for Wrigley, with open access to the rest of the house.

As the under-stair storage space was maximized, we then began work on the actual staircase. With some modernized stair railings and new iron balusters, we added wooden stair treads to continue the warmth of natural materials in the house. As this was completed, we headed upstairs to our final transformations: the master bedroom, attached bathroom, and the office.

With the flooring continuing upstairs, our main project in the office came in the interior design. With Margot working from home, Mary decided she could use a beautiful background for all those video calls. With some faux greenery and custom wooden frames, a natural-looking triptych was put in place, bringing light and all the pretty into this beautiful work space. From here, we only had a few changes to make across the hall!

In Margot’s bedroom, the original lighting was done with a pair of ceiling fans. In order to balance the look, Mary replaced one ceiling fan with a vintage light fixture, creating a little reading or relaxation area within the bedroom. A barn door was added to separate the master bath from the rest of the room and several pieces of personalized decor were added to make the space even more special.

Of the whole house, the master bathroom was the only space that needed a complete overhaul. With an awkward layout and some dated pieces, we decided to completely change the look. The toilet, which was originally placed right next to the tub, was put in a separate corner, with a closed door. Then, a beautiful stand-alone tub was added on one end of the bathroom, placed in front of a newly tiled wall which truly stood out as a statement piece in the room. The stand-up shower was then also retiled and closed off with a glass shower door. Mary was even able to bring in a touch of wood on the bathroom cabinets, continuing the farmhouse feel from the rest of the house.

With every room transformation complete, we had one final adjustment to make. The original front door of the house was surrounded by some clear sidelights at the entry of the home. Margot expressed concern about keeping these so we decided to find another option which would update and make the front entry feel more secure. With a new set of matching, taller doors, the sidelights were removed and this newly renovated home gained greater curb appeal. The doors were painted to complement the new metal roof and soon enough, we were ready to hand the keys back to Margot. This beautiful Victorian-style home was complete and ready for a family to move in!

“The doors were painted to complement the new metal roof and soon enough, we were ready to hand the keys back to Margot.”

Looking for more details?

To see this project take place from start to finish, check out Episode 4 of HGTV’s Two Steps Home. Here, you will see the process from start to finish, with every detail captured on film. If you would like to see some more lighting fixtures like those pictured in Margot’s beautifully renovated house, make sure to check out Kichler Lighting to see all the lighting options they have available. And to learn more or get your own reclaimed wood mantle like the one seen in Morgot’s new home, check out The Reclaimed Wood Shop in Houston! If you have any additional questions or you would be interested in speaking with us about your own renovation or design projects, please contact us and a member of our team will reach out to you directly!

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