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A Timeless Design Plan for a Hundred Year Old Ann Arbor Colonial

I've got a new project update for you today!

This one comes to you from the lovely city of Ann Arbor, Michigan. The project? A hundred year old colonial for a family of four (plus pup!).

This house is our clients forever (or at least long time!) home, so they want to make it really special. The footprint of the main floor isn't huge, but there's loads of charm, and with some creative space planning, it'll be exactly what they need.

We'll be tackling the entirety of the main floor and adding on a small mudroom off the kitchen in partnership with local builder JDS Renovations. The kitchen will be a total gut, and everything else will be largely cosmetic----paint, flooring, wallpaper, some cool built-ins, and of course, furniture!

Let's dive in...

The Existing Space

Below I've compiled photos of the existing space. The breakdown of the main floor includes what will be a library off of the living room, the living room, a few details in the entry, a powder bath refresh, the dining room, kitchen, and a new mudroom addition.

You can see below that the space already has loads of charm, AND that my clients already have great style, which is always exciting to work with!!

Style Inspiration

These clients' style is super fun and whimsical. We're talking quaint patterned wallpaper, colorful muted cabinets, layers of all kinds of styles, and anything "knobby" with an old feel to it.

I noted lots of warm wood tones, vertical paneling, a glorious mix of metals, and gorgeous textiles throughout their inspiration images.

They loved the look of built-in cabinetry and anything "old world", and shared that the project in our portfolio they most resonated with was our Fitzgerald Condo Remodel, which totally made sense to me based on their inspiration images.

The Kitchen

The existing kitchen isn't particularly tiny, but it's laid out in a very odd way. The range is inside a peninsula that shoots out from the wall, and is right next to a door that currently leads to their basement. Strange? Yes. Dangerous? yes.

The plan is to turn this into a galley kitchen. We're moving the fridge and the range to the wall where the basement door currently lives, and we'll remove the door to the basement entirely (don't worry, there's a new way to get to the basemen!).

We'll center up the sink beneath the window, and add a beautiful tower cabinet on one side to replace some storage we'll be losing in uppers elsewhere.

The new layout of the kitchen is going to feel so much larger and so much more logical. We're actually going to open up the doorway from the dining room to the kitchen to be just three feet of wall on either side, which will make both of these spaces feel larger and more cohesive.

There will be new wood floors throughout the entire main floor, which will help with flow, and the new colors will highlight this space in such a great way.

Below you can see the new layout of the kitchen. We're adding a gorgeous custom range hood, and we'll do both a paneled fridge and dishwasher so that the kitchen feels more custom and cohesive.

Here's a rough mockup of the range wall, which includes the paneled fridge all the way to the right. We'll do a marble-look quartz as the counter and backsplash with a custom quarts shelf to house things like spices, olive oil, etc., and the custom range hood will be flanked by two gorgeous sconces.

On the sink wall, we have a glorious tower cabinet on the righthand side balanced out by an adorable pendant light on the left.

I'm planning for a quirky piece of old art on the wall to the left of the window (I LOVE playing with asymmetrical balance like this...if you did happen to pop over to the Fitzgerald Condo project, you'll see that we played with a lot of asymmetry in this project too).

As for selections, our cabinet colors will be SW Portsmouth (it's wayyyy less dark and way less blue that what is shown in the model), and walls, paneling, and trim will be SW Alabaster.

Our range lights are a quirky play on vintage style sconce, and the pendant light by the sink has a glass cone-style shade with brass tones.

You'll notice in the photos of the existing kitchen that there is a cute little window seat within the bay window. We'll maintain the existing cafe table and chairs here, and add a sweet pendant light above with a scalloped fabric shade.

For our sink, we're doing an apron front (I'm telling you, some people say this style is "out" but I honestly think it can work anywhere/anytime in the right application), a polished nickel vintage style faucet, and classic cafe curtains on the sink window.

Our countertop will be Ironsbridge by Cambria, which has a great balance of warm and cool tones, and really beautiful veining, and our floors are Planer by Duchateau, which mimic the style of the narrower original wood floors of the house. These floors will run throughout the main floor, other than the mudroom and front entry.

The Dining Room

There's one room in every project that takes longer to come together than the rest, and for this project, it was the dining room. I'm not sure I could tell you why, but it was! That said, it ended up being probably my favorite plan out of all the rooms in this project.

We originally threw around the idea of doing some kind of built-in around one of the windows, but once I took measurements, we found that neither of the windows were centered on their walls, which would have made for a wonky looking design.

Instead, we decided to do all stand-alone pieces. Now, the footprint in this room is VERY tight, so the pieces had to be very specific dimensions. I wanted a new, smaller scale side board, and a taller storage piece that would go in the back corner of the space (which is not pictured).

The dining table will be staying and is an antique piece that has been handed down by my client's family.

My clients had already replaced a lot of the lighting in the house, and I liked their selections especially in the dining room, so we wanted to work with those. I also wanted this space to feel very special, as a dining room should, so I opted for a sweet floral wallpaper that would bring some playfulness to this space.

For the windows, I chose a velvety sand-tone fabric for drapes in an inverted box pleat, and subtle matte black hardware. We'll pair this with a roman shade for light control.

The show-stopper piece in this room is the sideboard, which is a bit of a splurge price wise, but brings so much warmth and charm to the space! It's just a tad shorter in length than the last piece, which I think will give the room space to breath and feel more to-scale.

On the back wall, I chose a tall gunmetal display case with barrister style doors to store items like plates, glassware, cloth napkins, and other dining-room type items. This will be a little extension of their kitchen storage since cabinet space is limited in there.

I love that this piece is a nod to classic wooden barrister bookshelves, but has a bit of a modern edge, creating that layered old/new effect we love.

For the head chairs, I chose a dark green velvet chair with a traditional tufted style back, but a modern metal base (again with the layers), and for side chairs, I went with a classic farm-style spindle back chair in a warm teak wood to compliment, but not match, the table.

Lastly, I selected a large floor planter with a gorgeous bright blue pattern to bring a little more color and playfulness to the space.

The Powder Bathroom

The powder bath is going to be so adorable!! It's so small and tucked away, which to me always feels really fun and quaint.

In this room, I envision wood paneling on all the walls AND up the ceiling, all painted my fave SW Evergreen Fog (this is what we did on our builtin hutch, and apparently is the 2022 color of the year!! CALLED IT!), with a sweet little wall-mounted sink in a classic style.

I plan for a new toilet in a more historic style, and bright chrome accessories to play off the green tones. To mix up my metals a bit, I chose an antique brass mirror with a bamboo style frame, and gorgeous flush-mount light fixture to bring a little bling to the space.

We'll run the same wood floors into powder bath, which will help the space not to feel so small and compartmentalized, and will coordinate beautiful with our selections.

Lastly, I've included in the above style board the tile we plan to do in the entry. The hex tile is such a timeless, classic design, and with the matte grey accent, brings a fun little modern pop. We'll do a mid-tone grout color in here to avoid it getting too dirty from mud and snow.

This tile will go great with the existing wallpaper, and wont be so much of a focal point that it takes away from the pizzazz that is the wallpaper.

The Living Room

In the living room, we'll be utilizing their existing charcoal blue sectional that they recently purchased from Interior Define.

In here, we're planning for a fireplace facelift, a new rug, some additional furniture pieces, lighting, and paint. We'll also do new roman shades to replace the existing, somewhat janky, cellular shades.

Layout wise, the sectional will remain in it's current location, and we'll do a similar setup to their current one as far as credenza placement, coffee table, side table, and area rug.

By the front window, we'll create an additional sitting area with two comfortable accent chair and a small drinks table.

Just to the right of the chairs, I've opted for a tallish storage cabinet since there is very little storage in the room, which will be across from a large arched mirror that the couple already owns.

Selections wise, the focal point of the room will be a glorious hand-knotted area rug with deep reds and blues. This will be the perfect bold base to a rather light room (the walls will be SW Alabaster, which is a warm white).

My client had a handful of Jessica Helgerson spaces in her inspiration, and one thing Jessica does a lot is mix more traditional historic spaces with very contemporary furniture.

To bring in that quirky element, I chose a very contemporary velvet arm chair in a dusty rose tone. I love the way they bring some playfulness to what would otherwise be a very moody palette! A small marble drinks table will sit with these chairs.

To replace their ceiling fan, we'll use this large pleated drum shade with brass accents.

For the credenza, I chose a large, warm wood piece with lots of texture. This piece is taller and a tad wider than their existing one and will balance out the large size of the fireplace nicely.

The storage cabinet is a lovely light natural wood and has textured cane doors. The small side table is a custom one, and I decided on a soft black to compliment the fireplace color.

The walls, trim, and fireplace mantel will be SW Alabaster, and for the fireplace brick, I chose a bold verrrry dark blueish black: SW Inkwell. I was very inspired by the above fireplace, which is the home of interior designer Jen Dulac and is very similar in style and scale to my clients' fireplace.

Lastly, for the hearth, we'll go with a beautiful mosaic marble to bring something a little "extra", and use a darker grout, since this is a functioning fireplace, and we don't want the soot to stain it.

The Library

The library is up there with my favorite areas of the house...but really, this whole project has my heart in all the right ways! Currently, this is where their pet guiana pig lives, but for the most part, it is currently empty.

In here, we're planning for a massive built-in unit along the side window wall, with bookshelves and closed storage on either side, and a long window seat with drawer storage below.

I plan to paint all the walls and trim in the room the same color as the built-in unit, which will be...wait for it...EVERGREEN FOG! Ha...which will make this room feel super cozy and warm, and also, very special.

As for the layout, this room will be fairly simple: we'll utilize an existing antique desk that my client purchased, a new desk chair, and we'll make a cozy little reading area with a lounge chair, side table/lamp combo, and ottoman.

My client has a smaller scale antique rug (you can see it in the "before" photos in the living room), which will be the perfect size for this library space, and we'll also do some custom window seat cushions to make that area cozy too.

As for selections, I chose an antique inspired dining chair to pair with the antique desk, and opted for a smaller scale grid gallery to hang above the desk.

For the reading nook, I chose a modern play on a classic wingback chair (again, layering those modern and traditional vibes), and chose a small scale marble pedestal table topped with an adorable small-scale square-shaped marble/brass lamp.

On the builtin's, I planned for two brass toned library lights mounted on the trim of the books shelves, along with some fun unlacquered brass cabinet hardware by rejuvenation (pulls / knobs).

Additionally, I chose another blue and white patterned planter to have another bit of blue in a mostly green space (I LOVE the way blue and green play together. See how these blue chairs and my coffee hutch play so well together here).

Lastly, the round leather ottoman really finished the space for me. I had a few different options I was toying with, but the warmth of the leather tied it all together for me.

Now, there was one image in my clients' style inspo that really stood out to me, and it was this office (below) by Katie Holloman Interior Design.

I meannnn wallpaper on the ceiling, RIGHT!? This seemed like the perfect way to whimsy up the project, especially for a space we're naming the LIBRARY!

I'd been eyeing this one particular pattern (above) from Michigan artist, Carleigh Courey (actually, for my own powder bathroom space), and I realized between the Evergreen Fog walls/cabinets and the gorgeous new floors, this would be the perfect way to "top" off the space (see what I did there??). It will be like reading beneath a trellis of roses...siiiiiiiiigh.

The Mudroom

Last up is the new mudroom addition. If you take a look at the floor plan below, the mudroom is the smaller room just off the back of the kitchen to the left. The little room inside of it will be a pantry for food storage, and beside that will be the new entrance to their basement.

They'll also have a new exterior door that leads to the backyard, and we're planning for some built-in lockers for tidy coat and shoe storage:

Here's a little sketch of the bench unit which will be the same color as the kitchen cabinets (SW Portsmouth), as it is right off the kitchen and visible from the breakfast nook.

We'll have wainscot 3/4 up the walls, with a built in shelf and hooks for coats. Below that, we'll have a bench tall enough to store boots below.

Selections wise, we'll use some gorgeous unlacquered brass coat hooks from Rejuvenation, along with the same tile floor and medium toned grout color that we'll use in the foyer.

For lighting, we have a cute flush mount brass/shade combo.

I'm planning for vertical paneling to go up a portion of the walls in this space (similar to many of the mudrooms in their inspo images above), which will be in the same SW Portsmouth, and the top 3rd of the wall will be in the SW Alabaster color.

The Wrap Up

My clients will be moving forward with the kitchen and mudroom project to start, and then possibly moving on to the rest of the main floor, and I gotta say, I'm particularly excited for this one!

I hit a few creative blocks along the way, but when I eventually got through the tunnel, I was like, DANG, this project is going to be CUTE. I'm so excited for construction to wrap up and for furniture to come in so we can get this projected staged and styled out for our clients. It's going to be so sweet.


Work with Lauren Figueroa Interior Design

LFID is a full-service interior design firm serving West and Southeast Michigan known especially for our Designed in a Day service.

We work with clients from Detroit to Novi to Clarkston, and Grand Rapids to Holland to Traverse City—and anywhere in between! We pride ourselves on creating bespoke, people-centered spaces—because after all, people are what this life is all about!

If you have a project on the horizon, get started by telling us about your vision here, and you can view past projects here. Thanks for stopping by!

evergreen fog paint on an eclectic built in coffee bar and liquor cabinet


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