Blogger Kristin Jackson gives her home a total DIY refresh to fit the needs of her growing family.
You might not recognize blogger Kristin Jackson’s home. Four years of savvy DIY projects and a game-changer kitchen remodel have given her 1,000-square-foot
Atlanta home a whole new vibe.
When Do It Yourself featured Kristin’s Atlanta-area home in the Spring 2014 issue, the 1,000-squarefoot residence was home to Kristin, husband Rob, and their daughter Chloe, then 2. Today, the twobedroom home has three bedrooms (without adding any square footage), and the family numbers four (with the addition of Rob’s teenage son, Todd).
Eschewing the formal dining room to create a third bedroom is just one of the savvy design changes Kristin, who blogs at Hunted Interior, has made in the past four years. The kitchen has undergone a major remodel. Without moving walls or the sink, a new layout offers more than triple the counter space. And a corner banquette (built by Kristin and Rob) is the family’s new dining area. Outside, a DIY pergola and outdoor carpeting turn the once wide-open deck into an alfresco room.
“Even though our home is over 50 years old, it was lacking character,” Kristin says. “Eleven years of DIY projects have added some history and charm that go with any style.” And it’s a good thing her more-permanent additions are style-neutral. No doubt, Kristin’s interiors—and family—will continue to evolve.
IN A SMALL HOUSE WITH A YOUNG FAMILY, THINGS CAN CHANGE QUICKLY. WHEN THE HOME BELONGS TO INTERIOR DESIGNER KRISTIN JACKSON, THEY CAN ALSO CHANGE DRAMATICALLY.
THEN Kristin Jackson’s living room, opposite inset, has never suffered from a lack of creativity: hand-painted chevrons on IKEA drapery panels and an upholstered ottoman crafted from a curb-side coffee table find. NOW Kristin updated the room’s look with paint—black ceilings and white walls—and molding that she cut and installed herself, above. Mirrors flank a single window on one end of the room to expand the visual space. Above the window, Kristin installed acrylic curtain rods that she attached with brass ballet bar center mounts. “I had a hard time finding curtain rings that would fit around the rods,” she says. ”I ended up using cheapo clear plastic shower curtain rings from Target. But way up there you’d never know, and they look super expensive!” She also carved out a nook in the living room for her home office, opposite bottom.
White walls pave the way for plenty of colorful accessories in Kristin’s living room, such as the navy and midtone blues in the furniture, accessories, and artwork, and the shades of pink in the rug and chair. Metallic, mirror, and glass accents make the tiny room seem larger.
THEN A single run of cabinets offered only 42 inches of counter space, interrupted by the kitchen sink, left. “There was also a giant floor-to-ceiling pantry—where the open shelves are now, below left— that ate up a lot of space,” Kristin says. After nine years in the home, the Jacksons embarked on a kitchen remodel.
NOW “Without adding square footage—simply by rearranging— we were able to nearly quadruple our counter space,” Kristin says. And because they gave up their dining room, Kristin and Rob built banquette seating into one corner of the kitchen, below right, leaving the bottom open to avoid rerouting HVAC ducts and vents. “In the long run, that was best because it would have kick marks all over it. The banquette is command central,” she says.
THEN An open deck offered additional dining space at the back of the house, inset below. Kristin outfitted it with a stenciled rug and a table for six. NOW “We covered our deck in artificial turf after becoming frustrated with refinishing the older wood year after year,” Kristin says. She and Rob also built a 13×23-foot pergola for shade, below, and a round table—a shape that eases traffic flow while still hosting six chairs. “I found a similar table for about six times the price,” she says. “Then found a plan online and built it.”
KRISTIN PAINTED THE HALLWAY A FREE-FORM PATTERN USING LEFTOVER PAINT. “IT WAS DONE
ON A WHIM,” SHE SAYS. “I JUST PAINTED RANDOM BRUSHSTROKES
ON THE WALL.”
NOW Without storage in the bath, Kristin utilized an antique quilt rack in the hall for towels, opposite. The bath’s gorgeous tile is what sold Kristin and Rob on the house in 2006. “Back then, we didn’t know we were capable of DIYING anything. After seeing a lot of really bad homes while house-hunting, I said, ‘Finally! A bathroom I can live with!’” THEN Chloe’s nursery, above right, was girly pink and designed for a 2-year-old. NOW The nursery morphed from pink to black (literally) as 15-year-old Todd’s room, above. The doorless closet became a dresser and desk space for Todd. “The drapery panels were an easy DIY with white drapes, black grosgrain ribbon, and fusible hem tape,” Kristin says. “The exaggerated grid feels modern and masculine.”
THEN Kristin and Rob added molding in almost every room of their home, including the master bedroom, below inset. NOW Kristin calls the fawn-inspired wallcovering in the master, below, unexpected. “The neutral tones mixed with the graphic pattern add a modern touch,” she says. Kristin built the nightstand to fit the tight space, right. “There was a desk I wanted so badly, but it was a foot too big.” Never discouraged, she took matters—and a jigsaw—into her own hands. “I freehand drew half the pattern, then flipped it and copied the pattern for a mirror image,” she says. Now, the piece and the mirror above also serve as her vanity when the home’s one-and-only bathroom is occupied.
THEN The dining room, below inset, had plenty of storage with the door-framing built-ins.
NOW When Todd moved in, the dining room became Chloe’s room, left. “She loves color and pattern,” Kristin says, noting that Chloe’s opinion counted when it came to color choices. “Painting the built-ins green was a bold choice I probably would not have taken on my own.” Eliminating a couple of shelves in the built-ins created space for rods to put Chloe’s hanging clothes on display. “It helps keep me organized because when there is no closet, you can’t just shove things in the closet,” Kristin says. To block the French doors, Kristin joined three IKEA dressers and painted on a dotted pattern to match Chloe’s sheets. On the opposite wall, below right, bifold doors (dressed up with molding by Kristin) hide the washer and dryer. “With Chloe’s move to this room, my schedule changed drastically—no laundry after bedtime,” she says.
MAKE A SPLASHOFF-THE-RACK PORCELAIN TILES FROM A HOME IMPROVEMENTCENTER CREATETHE HERRINGBONE BACKSPLASH. DARK GROUT MAKES THE PATTERNSTAND OUT.
KRISTIN CREATED A BOUTIQUE FEEL FOR TODD’S ROOM SINCE THE CLOSET SERVES AS STUDY SPACE. A GARMENT RACK GIVES AN INDUSTRIAL LOOK, LIKE THAT OF AHIP CLOTHING STORE.
“CHOOSE BEDDING SEPARATELY TO MIX AND MATCH PATTERNS AND CREATE MORE INTEREST THAN A BED-IN-A-BAG. NEVER BUY THE SET.” KRISTIN JACKSON, HOMEOWNER & DESIGNER
FOR RESOURCES SEE PAGE 108. “PINKS ARE HARD TO GET RIGHT. THIS ONE ISN’T TOO SWEET OR TOO FLESHY. I MATCHED IT TO A PAIR OF BALLET TIGHTS.”KRISTIN JACKSON, HOMEOWNER & DESIGNER