House Tours

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Bold and beautiful kitchen in blue Author: Janis Nicolay

House Tours

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Love It or List It Vancouver co-host and designer Jillian Harris helps a young family see the bright side of their 104-year-old abode in a colourful makeover.


Travis and Talia Clarke moved into their century-old North Vancouver home about a year and a half ago with the best of intentions. Eschewing the cookie-cutter look of newer houses, they loved the character of this 2,650-square-foot space with its natural light, high ceilings and pretty backyard. They saw beyond the bizarre combination of cedar panelling, faux brick and plaster from a bad ’70s renovation and were keen to restore the property’s charm.

But then reality set in. “There were a lot of issues with the house due to its age, and we were overwhelmed,” says Travis. Adding to the pressure, the couple was expecting their second child. (They now share the house with Wyatt, 2, and seven-month-old Marlowe, plus their English bulldog, Abby.) This presented a dilemma: Talia wanted to throw in the towel and move, and Travis wanted to persevere and stay. It’s a situation right out of, well, a certain well-known TV show.

The couple – Travis is a technical services specialist and Talia is a nurse – ended up calling W Network’s Love It or List It Vancouver. Designer and co-host of the show Jillian Harris was happy to take on the challenge and transform the house into a home where Talia would want to live. “Our primary focus was making the space functional,” says Jillian. But aesthetics were equally important. “With her new baby, I wanted Talia to be able to walk down the stairs every day and think: ‘Okay, I’m home.’ Not in some dark, dingy, outdated old house.”
 

Photo Gallery

prev next 1 of 12

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Before: An outdated kitchen

The outdated kitchen, with its heavy dark wooden cabinetry, pea green laminate countertops and broken appliances (“The stove had only two working burners,” says homeowner Travis Clarke), needed to be gutted and updated.

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

After: Bold and beautiful kitchen

Shaker-style cabinetry, quartz countertops, counter-to-ceiling herringbone marble tiles and stainless steel appliances all helped to shape this kitchen into the bold and beautiful space it is now. The white island provides a casual place to dine, separates the kitchen from the family room and balances all the blue.

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

A designer's touch

With the homeowners’ blessing to add colour to the house, designer Jillian Harris chose a striking cobalt blue for the kitchen cabinetry.

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Pretty pendant lights

The kitchen’s polished-nickel and glass pendant lights keep the vibe soft and airy.

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Before: Small living space

A small space with no colour or family-friendly vibe wasn't ideal for Travis, Talia and their family, so Jillian got to work.

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

After: A stylish open-concept living room

Wainscotting applied throughout the main floor adds architectural interest and is in keeping with the age of the 104-year-old character home. Its clean lines also complement the Shaker-style cabinetry used in the kitchen. A new gas fireplace insert with a substantial concrete mantel replaced an outdated faux brick one in the living room.

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Cozy seating

Low-slung with clean lines, the living room slipper chair is the perfect silhouette for the quaint space.

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Elegant, but livable

A Moroccan-style coffee table adds an eclectic touch and a bit of warmth to the living room (“We added weathered and distressed-wood elements so the house wouldn’t feel too formal,” says Jillian).

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Jillian's words of reno wisdom

Love It or List It Vancouver co-host and designer Jillian Harris offers a few words of reno wisdom. 1 Best advice "Before you buy a house that needs renovating, get a quote from a contractor so you know what you're getting into. 2 Most worthwhile investment “Taking out a hidden chimney was expensive, but it was worth it because it allowed us to create an open layout.” 3 Best out-of-the-box idea “The homeowners asked for colour, so it was exciting to do something different and give them a blue kitchen.” 4 Favourite budget find “The extra-long salvaged-wood dining room table. It was a steal, and the homeowners love it!” 5 Biggest regret “I wish we could have renovated the bathroom on the main floor, just to say one entire level was done.”

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Creating an open-concept space

Jillian created an open-concept space by taking down a wall between the kitchen and dining room, removing a hidden chimney in the process. The archway adds architectural charm.

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Building a banquette

The bay window called for a banquette, which enhances the home’s flow: “Instead of centring the table in the dining area, we built a banquette and pushed the table to the side so there’s a nice clear passage from the front of the house to the back,” says Jillian.

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home

Adding pattern

“We collected items over the course of the renovation to give the homeowners some really nice decor pieces, and this pottery adds the perfect hit of pattern.”

By: Laura Muir Source: Janis Nicolay Credits: Style at Home
Comments
Share X
House Tours

House tour: Fresh and fun family-friendly home