Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Reveal: $350 Chelsea Apt

Hi All,


Sorry this reveal is a bit delayed. I swear I wasn’t doing it for dramatic effect. My laptop is still on black out mood so this little lady went to her Mom and Dad’s and snagged their laptop.


This project was a bit different than most. First off I was dealing with 3 clients not just one and one of them was my sister.


The girls have already been living in the apt for over a year and finally decided to reach out for help to take it from college dorm to ladies in the city.


Since they are all still relativity new in their careers living in a very expensive city my budget was small, which meant I had to be creative and use many DIY projects to get my look accomplished.


I hope you all enjoy it. I had a great time putting it all together. Granted I’m not going to lie that it wasn't all happy, happy, joy, joy. Sunday while I was at their apt doing the install I almost broke down in tears. Everything was taking longer than expected, we forget key ingredients like nails for the artwork and had to make a mad dash to Home Depot.


Before shot of living area:



After shot of living area:

DSC_0242 (2)


Due to our budget the furniture had to stay. The ottoman got a whole new look with my little touch of animal. This time around I went with leopard!


With the help of my mom I also decided to make the curtains myself to keep costs down.


The fabric was my steal from a designer warehouse sale. Only $5 for all that fabric. The bird print on it was a big hit! Plus it had a little touch of pink in one of the birds that I carried throughout the rest of the room.


The living area is on the small size so we went with a simple gallery wall with a large mirror to keep the wall uncluttered.


Everything on the gallery wall was a thrift store find. The biggest hit had to be the mirror and my vintage scrabble letters that got framed with the girls names and Chelsea, New York.


Originally I was going to get vintage postcards for artwork, but due to time constraints I went a different route and mounted vintage subway maps instead. It was super inexpensive projects! * I will be posting steps later!


DSC_0238The french doors also got a dose of burlap for added texture and cover up the lining of the existing curtains.


Before shot of opposite wall:


I swear the busted chair was just like that. I did not stage it!


After shot:


This has to one of my favorite parts of the room. We added chalkboard paint to the fronts of storage cabinets. This made a huge difference! The girls are excited to start jotting notes down on it plus the black just helps everything pop!


Flanking the cabinets were stools that I found curbside on trash day. The striped fabric added another dose of pattern and extra seating for the small area.


Before shot of stools:


The artwork on the walls along with the mirrors are all thrift store finds!


Since I already had my dose of animal print and stripes I knew I needed to add another favorite of mine and give these girls some pets with some foo dogs!




Before shot of dining area:


My biggest design challenge was the dining area. Dining sets are expensive and craigslist was not my friend this time around. I couldn’t find a thing. All of the dining room chairs were already on the way out so they headed for the trash. The matching table (not pictured above) was still in good shape just not appealing to the eye.


Enter some amazingly chic fabric with another dose of pattern and some Oops paint that was a dream come true and we have a dining area that I am completely jealous of.




Ah I just love the dose of girly glam with my pink table! While it came out looking great it was my biggest problem. The poly top coat didn’t feel like drying. Sunday morning the day of the install it was still tacky. We had to run out and get heaters and put it in a room with a humidifier. A tip we read online to speed up the process. Talk about stress.


The chairs were also hard to find, but I came up with a fab DIY project that took my $6 chairs from blah to stylishly chic! More details on that to follow.


DSC_0252 (2)


The girls needed storage below the TV. The old piece they had completely screamed college! I didn’t have much left in the budget, but lucky for me that IKEA was having a massive Columbus Day sale so my $100 table was on sale for $29.


It was too wide and tall so Jon came to the rescue and cut it size. We painted the top and skirted the bottom to hide all the cables. Voila they now have a server and I was even able to prop it with an original piece of artwork from one of the girls mom and some stylish books as well.


These lovely ladies also have a very long and narrow hallway. I used a little bit of my budget to spruce it up!



Since I was running low on pennies I used a mirror from another project that never got used and decided to fill the wall with some memories.


I have a fun DIY project for the frames as well. I will be posting it later on as well.


I hope you all enjoyed the new look! My clients loved it. I was met with excitement, shock and even tears of happiness.


The space looks larger, more adult and let’s not forget PRETTY!


I will be following with posts on all of my DIY projects so that I can share the wealth.


Remember if you are in the NY tri-state area or would like help via E-decorating I’m your gal. Please email for rates! I love a good challenge!

Check out other before and after's at Metamorphosis Monday

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Blogger Who Is Lynda said...

This looks great!!! I really love the pink table!

October 14, 2009 at 9:54 AM  
Blogger Brooke said...

Love the fabrics! The zig zag fabric on those chairs if just fab, and the throw pillows on the couch are great too. Great job Cam!

October 14, 2009 at 9:54 AM  
Blogger Jenny said...

GREAT job, Camila!!!!!

Such a fun apartment - and for $350?? Genius!!

Looks like lots of good material for, what was it? Decorating Divas?? :) I laughed for a good five minutes when Caitlin told me!


October 14, 2009 at 10:01 AM  
Blogger Scientific Housewife said...

What a wonderful turnaround! It proves you don't always have to do something drastic to make a room look nice. I wish you were in Florida, I have rooms that could use spicing up :)

October 14, 2009 at 10:10 AM  
Blogger Flavia @ Estilo Home said...

Great job! I really like the zig zag fabric on the chairs, and those barstools. I'm always amazed at what New Yorkers find by the trash!

October 14, 2009 at 10:12 AM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

WOW that is amazing! Especially for only $350! Very impressive :)

October 14, 2009 at 10:21 AM  
Blogger Loving life in Southern California! said...

So I've decided that you need your own TV show! I love your DIY projects and your inexpensive and chic solutions! Great job!

October 14, 2009 at 10:28 AM  
Blogger X said...

As one of the clients (and Camila's sister) I'd just like to say how much we LLLOOVVVEEE our new apt! It's so chic and fabulous and it finally feels like home! We had our first guest over last night and she was amazed!!

Camila, you are a genius! Thanks again SO SO SO MUCH! Love you!

October 14, 2009 at 10:45 AM  
Blogger LindsB said...

Camila tha place looks awesome!!! I wish I had a sister like you when I was living with my friends in the city to come and make it pretty!

I'm obsessed with that table and chairs- it is PERFECT for three chic ladies- amazing job!!

October 14, 2009 at 10:50 AM  
Blogger Dallas said...

Love the stools and LOVE the dining set. You should be proud!

October 14, 2009 at 10:57 AM  
Blogger Donna said...

That pink table looks amazing and the zigzag fabric looks like a Rubie Green fabric...so cute!!!

October 14, 2009 at 11:02 AM  
Blogger Daniela said...

Camila it looks amazing!!! I'm so happy I got to see it firsthand because the pictures just don't give the fabulous full effect despite how gorgeous they are.

Now its time for your next sister project? Upper East Side here you come!

October 14, 2009 at 11:03 AM  
Blogger Katie said...

I love it!!! I love the pink and green accents! So girly! :)

October 14, 2009 at 11:06 AM  
Blogger Southern Aspirations said...

oh my goodness, you did a great job! I can't believe just $350. Such resourcefulness. And it IS pretty!

October 14, 2009 at 11:57 AM  
Blogger Delightful Dwelling said...

It looks great! I love the pink table and the fabric on the chairs along with all the other fun touches.

October 14, 2009 at 12:07 PM  
Blogger Averill said...

You've done a great job Camila! I especially love the dining "set" and the striped bar stools. Amazing what some new fabric can do....

October 14, 2009 at 12:15 PM  
Blogger Meg said...

WOW. You are so talented! I absolutely love the chic fabric that you used for the dining room chairs and the oops paint table is to die for.

And while my comment would be way too long if I complimented every thing I loved, I also feel it necessary to give a shout out to your thrift store find mirrors and art. Bravo!

October 14, 2009 at 12:24 PM  
Blogger Victoria said...

I can't imagine trying to decorate such a small space on such a tight budget...Great job!

October 14, 2009 at 12:26 PM  
Blogger Dagny @ Beautiful Living said...

LOVE what you've done on that non existing budget!! I want those foo dogs, where are they from???

And what a coincidence with the vintage enlarged letters, there must be a case of great minds thinking alike!!! :D

October 14, 2009 at 12:26 PM  
Blogger Dobbygirl said...

LOVE the pink table!! Looks great!

October 14, 2009 at 12:45 PM  
Blogger Karen@StrictlySimpleStyle said...

Any chance you'll give us the source of the green and white fabric? Love it!

October 14, 2009 at 1:06 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

It all looks great. I especially love the dining area. The pink is so fun as are the chairs.

October 14, 2009 at 1:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

awesome job, Camila! I cannot wait to see your deets on the DIY projects! I am trying to do a little work on my place on a budget and I must say, hats off to you, cuz it's HARD to find both great and cheap stuff! I am especially wowed by all the work you did with fabric!

October 14, 2009 at 1:19 PM  
Blogger Caitlin said...

I love the colors and patterns in this space.

Is the chevron fabric the paula prass one?

I love the chalkboard cabinets too!

SO darling!

October 14, 2009 at 1:24 PM  
Blogger Abbie said...

I think my favorite part is the dining area... and the fabric on those chairs. LOVE IT!

October 14, 2009 at 1:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow - I love the new dining set! The fabric you used on the chairs is adorable. I think the hallway gallery is my favorite though. Awesome job sticking to a budget and pleasing three young women - not an easy task. I wish my first apartment after college had looked this sharp!

October 14, 2009 at 2:01 PM  
Blogger bluehydrangea said...

Love both sets of chairs!! It all looks fabulous!!

October 14, 2009 at 2:04 PM  
Blogger Claire Watkins, ASID allied said...

Love the chalk board paint cabinets, all the new upholstery and completely heart the foo dogs! Bet all the girls are completely thrilled with the new space!

October 14, 2009 at 2:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brilliant job!!

October 14, 2009 at 2:26 PM  
Blogger Rachel said...

Wow! What a great job!! You took their teeny apartment and really gave it some style! Looks wonderful!
And of course, like everyone else, I love that zig-zag fabric! Can't wait for that DIY.

October 14, 2009 at 2:34 PM  
Blogger Sarah La Rose said...

Camila, your sisters place looks fantastic!! I can't believe you did so much for them on such a small budget. I love reading your blog for the very inspiring budget friendly DIY projects you are so talented at doing. My favourites are the pink dining table and chalkboard cabinets. :)

October 14, 2009 at 2:42 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

I can tell that you put a lot of work into this! The dining chairs are my favorite part.

October 14, 2009 at 2:45 PM  
Blogger Sarah - La Jeune Marie said...

I LOVE it! Fave part... the dining table! SO lovely Cam! You did an amazing job!!!

October 14, 2009 at 2:47 PM  
Blogger Casey said...

My favorite part hands down is the hot pink table!!! LOVE IT! And the chairs. I have some folding chairs that I removed in favor of $6 chairs from the thrift store.. but I didn't think they could look like that! Maybe I'll recover them...

October 14, 2009 at 3:26 PM  
Blogger Fee said...

Ohh Camila, I am shocked that it only cost you that much.

I love the hallway so much.. and them stools, lovely lovely lovely.

So many great ideas.

Fee x

October 14, 2009 at 3:31 PM  
Blogger Ellie Gray said...

This looks fantastic! It's nice to be reminded of the many ways there are to decorate on a budget. I especially love the stools - what a drastic change! Thanks so much for checking out Lady Gray mini mag (ladygrayminimag.blogspot.com)!

October 14, 2009 at 5:01 PM  
Blogger Blueprint Bliss said...

Camila- it looks great (as I knew it would!).

October 14, 2009 at 5:06 PM  
Blogger Mary @ JPM Design said...

I love the chalkboard painted cabinets! Also that pink table is awesome! So cute!

October 14, 2009 at 7:07 PM  
Blogger Collins said...

i love the green foo dogs. it's all lovely!

October 14, 2009 at 7:26 PM  
Blogger Blair said...

Umm..did you know that you are amazing!?! So incredibly impressed. That dining area is just spectacular. Ok, that is alot of superlatives--but all well deserved:)

October 14, 2009 at 8:16 PM  
Blogger Sweet Nothings said...


October 14, 2009 at 8:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love the vintage subway maps, the pink table and the hallway gallery. Great job!

October 14, 2009 at 9:58 PM  
Blogger Laura Casey Interiors said...

looks great! nice work. I remember those days, I was at 72nd & 3rd!

October 14, 2009 at 10:09 PM  
Blogger Paige said...

What a great makeover! Love it!

October 14, 2009 at 10:09 PM  
Blogger Carrie said...

Love the make over that pink table is to die for really and the subway map very cool!

October 14, 2009 at 10:39 PM  
Blogger Jenny said...

I love the pink table! How fun!

October 14, 2009 at 10:47 PM  
Blogger Lauren said...

I cannot believe you did it all for $350!!! AWESOME.

They must be thrilled- go girl!!!

October 14, 2009 at 11:05 PM  
Blogger The DIY Show Off said...

You did a fantastic job making their space feminine and fun! It's AWESOME! I love it!


October 14, 2009 at 11:08 PM  
Blogger Yansy said...

OMG, you did such a fabulous job! I'm super jealous of the dining room, I must say that was my favorite part.

October 14, 2009 at 11:47 PM  
Blogger LizO said...

I absolutely love to see projects that have tight budgets and then end results...this is going in my bookmarks for sure even though the style isn't mine. There are wonderful ideas to be had here!


October 14, 2009 at 11:57 PM  
Blogger Chic Coles (Cole Design) said...

The project turned out great. I really liked the way the narrow hall way, new pink dining table, stripe stools found curb side and the chalkboard paint looked. Great Ideas

October 15, 2009 at 8:28 AM  
Blogger Ms. Bright said...

LURVE that pink table with the lime/white zigzag!! Ow ow!

October 15, 2009 at 9:08 AM  
Blogger Katie Darling said...

Oh so cute! You are fantastic! I can't believe how much better those chairs look, and well the whole room. Good job!!

October 15, 2009 at 9:32 AM  
Blogger Kasha said...

This is my new favorite blog! I love to see what creative people like you can do with an area. I love before and afters, and I especially love what you did with this apartment. It is right up my alley. Thank you for stopping by my humble blog. I am so flattered and will now probably visit you frequently. I wish you all the success in the world.You are super talented.

October 15, 2009 at 12:05 PM  
Blogger MyLittleHappyPlace said...

Looks fantastic! Love all the little touches of our fave fabrics - great job, sista!

October 15, 2009 at 1:34 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

You did such a fabulous job!! That pink table is amazing and those striped chairs....GREAT touch. I bet your sister is so excited!

October 15, 2009 at 2:00 PM  
Blogger Deliciously Organized said...

It looks so wonderful! I LOVE the dining area! The bar stools, the table, it's just so well done. And I can't believe you did it all under $350!

October 15, 2009 at 2:15 PM  
Blogger Rachel H said...

You are SO good at this!! And to think you're budget decorating in NYC. Talk about a challenge! You go girl!

October 16, 2009 at 12:13 AM  
Blogger Restyled Home said...

What a fabulous make-over...and on a modest budget, no less! They must have been very pleased!


October 26, 2009 at 9:00 AM  
Blogger Sarah @ Thrifty Decor Chick said...

Next time we go to NYC, I'm planning on grabbing up a few extra subway maps to do just what you did! Love it!

October 27, 2009 at 8:34 PM  
Blogger Anny said...

I love it! You have a great eye for vintage finds :)

November 9, 2009 at 1:27 AM  
Blogger Autum said...

Wow! Great work and it's amazing that you did it for $350.

January 7, 2010 at 3:12 PM  

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