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WV Design Team: Home redesign is accomplished with patience, trust

By By Chuck and Connie Hamsher
WV Design Team
Photos courtesy of THE PURPLE MOON
What began as a plain and partially finished basement ended as a bright and luxurious living space. By working with contracting and design professionals, the owners of this home have nearly doubled its usable living space, made it more functional while extending a modern, mid-century-inspired decor throughout.
Patience paid off when this gorgeous vintage mid-century cabinet became available. Originally made in the 1950s as a dining-room buffet piece, the walnut cabinet functions perfectly to hold the television and accessories and adds warmth and richness to the room.
Blending this contemporary sofa with a unique, vintage mosaic coffee table and boldly colored pillow and area rug maximizes comfort without compromising the design aesthetic in this new space.
Art by Charleston artist Rob Cleland echoes the retro vibe of the room and brings a rainbow of colors into the palette.
The new downstairs living space will serve many functions and this small dining table and chairs provides the versatility the room needs to be a place to share a cup of coffee with a friend or play games with the younger members of the family.
The other end of the multifunctional room provides a comfortable place to work and read. The vintage desk and chair continue the mid-century modern theme of the space, while the area rug helps define and ground the setting.
This vintage glass-top pedestal table and clear acrylic side chairs provide elegance and openness to the dining area and allow the circa 1950s Heywood Wakefield buffet to shine. Art and accessories bring pops of color into the space.
Trading out a more traditional coffee table for this mid-century coffee table designed by George Nelson — plus the addition of a small tulip side table, bright pillows and accessories to the existing furnishings in the living room — transitioned this room to a more modern feel to tie in with the new updates in the rest of the house.
The bright and modern kitchen was a first step in this home makeover, minimizing the disruptions as work continued on accomplishing the rest of the homeowner’s dreams.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Redecorating and redesigning your home can be a daunting and stressful process. There is a multitude of decisions to make, it is time-consuming and, of course, then there is the budget.

One of our recent clients has spent the past year and half transforming her home to better reflect her current lifestyle, needs and aesthetic. The space transitioned during this time to include a redesigned and modern kitchen, a near doubling of living area through a basement remodel into a modern-day “rumpus room,” and touches throughout the rest of the home to tie it all together.

These are a few of the ways this remodel was made easier, less stressful and affordable for the homeowner and resulted in a home that will be more usable, comfortable and gorgeous for years to come.

Start with broad strokes

There is plenty of time to get entrenched into making the detail decisions involved in redesigning a home. Getting bogged down in those decisions too early in the process can create blind spots and make it very hard to see the forest for the trees.

As our homeowner here discovered, the need to focus on details come later in the process and can be more fun and rewarding once the broad decisions were made.

After first making the big decisions — what was wanted from the home, how it should function and the overall look desired — the redesign established the basic parameters regarding style and utilization of space. These “broad stroke” decisions directed the project as it moved ahead and enabled the owner to prioritize, plan and budget.

It takes time

Once the decision to remodel a home takes hold, there is a tendency to want it all done right away. That is sometimes the correct path. But for those who have to balance life, profession and budget considerations, like this homeowner, taking it slow is the way to go.

Getting the big, messy, expensive and life-interrupting tasks out of the way early was done in this case. Starting with the kitchen remodel, which was going to be the most disruptive and a significant budget consideration, enabled this homeowner to continue through the rest of her home improvements and decorating over the coming months with less impact into the current living space.

Trust the professionals

It’s your home, so all the decisions should be yours — right?

To a certain degree, yes, this is true. But wise homeowners, like this one, know that placing many of these decisions into the hands of professionals will make their life easier, can save money and lead to a better end result.

In this case, the folks at Darin Fisher Designer Kitchens applied their expertise to guide the client to obtain the kitchen of her dreams while keeping that part of the project within budget.

The contractor who performed the basement renovations, M&M Construction, also had suggestions to improve the look and function of the finished space. We at The Purple Moon provided services to furnish and accessorize the new space and tie it in with the existing design.

This client, while having strong ideas and opinions on how the home should look and function, was not just open to suggestions but sought them out. Throughout what was a multiyear process, she trusted the professionals working with her and because of this benefited more from their expertise.

It takes patience

For home remodels like this one, whose owner wanted an expressive and personalized space to live in, patience is often the key. This is especially true when it comes down to furnishing and accessorizing the space.

In this project — where the goal was to obtain a modern, mid-century-inspired aesthetic which blended the owner’s existing pieces with new and vintage furnishings, art and accents — a relaxed time frame was crucial. Finding the “just right” item for the function and look meant looking at a host of options and sources.

This homeowner’s patience paid off as several very unique and hard-to-find vintage pieces became available and now will serve her needs far better, and more elegantly, than the new items she was considering.

While this home remodel was the result of more than a year of work, it was an exciting and fun process for the owner, who now has the home of her dreams. She did it with a minimum of stress and stayed within her budget by taking it slowly and working closely with professionals she trusted and who shared her vision.

Now she can just enjoy it!

Chuck and Connie Hamsher are collectors of 20th Century design and art and owners of The Purple Moon in downtown Charleston, which specializes in mid-century, industrial and contemporary home furnishings, art and accessories. Follow The Purple Moon on Facebook or visit them on the Web at www.thepurplemoon.com. Chuck and Connie can be contacted at 304-345-0123.

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