BEFORE & (SOMETHING CLOSE TO) AFTER: A HOME TURNED FASHIONABLE OFFICE
I’m writing this while relaxing on a day bed in Kilifi, facing the ocean, watching friends play and drink in the pool. Why am I telling you this? I’m telling you so that you know how committed I am to keeping promises. I could be in the pool right now, but I’m here. With you. By choice. So you know you’re special to me.
I’ve been posting little sneak peeks of my latest project baby on Instagram, and I’ve been wanting to share this space with you for so long. I wanted to wait until the space was complete so that I could show the full transformation, but I’m really trying to learn to appreciate the process and be comfortable sharing things that are not “perfect” or “ready”; to appreciate progress. Plus it’s talking a little longer than planned and if I don’t share something, some of you might come for me – going my the comments in my DMs.
When my client, Catherine (also known as Fashionable Stepmum) reached out to me and told me she wanted to convert an old apartment into an office, my first instinct (after I completely freaked out and did a half naked happy dance in the bathroom) was to say no. I have a demanding full time job, a toddler and a rather active social life, and I just didn’t know whether I could handle it. Plus interior styling is not something I’ve studied or practiced for a long time – I just really like pretty spaces.
But then I remembered something I read sometime back: “Say yes, then figure out how to do it.” So I said yes, and it’s been two months of figuring it out. I’ve been sleeping late, juggling a 9-to-whenever-the-day-is-done job, trying to spend time with My Lover, our Gong and friends, more hours than I can count on phone talking to suppliers and fundis, balancing budgets, Googling things I don’t understand and praying I don’t screw things up.
She wanted something as classy as her. A comfortable working space that spoke to her personality and taste: simple, clean, a little glam. I’m known for my love for dark walls, heavy woods and modern-industrial-farmhouse-inspired style, so this was definitely going to be very different from my own space – and much more challenging for me.
Here’s what the space looked like before.
Now this old ground floor apartment is almost ready to be an office. Almost, and here’s what we’ve done so far, inspired by a colour palette of warm greys, white and gold tones. The paint colour used throughout is Plascon in Silver 38 (silk vinyl), with a simple brilliant white glossy paint on the doors and door frames.
There are still a number of things pending: I haven’t finished accessorising the shelves, hanging up some art, putting up signage and decorating the kitchen. This is what it looks like now.
We’re also about to start on the outdoor space, which currently looks like this.
I honestly didn’t think I could pull this off, but it looks like I’m not doing too badly, and I’m really proud of working with a number of small businesses and getting things made locally. Plus working with Catherine (and Queen, who has been my trusted assistant) has been a dream. I hope this is the beginning of many more projects!
Let me know what you think, drop something in the comments, and be kind 🙂