One of my favorite topics to discuss on my blog is small space living, sharing design ideas for small home dwellers. I started this design series a two years ago and recently expanded to include home tours. I love seeing how other small home dwellers are making their spaces work; it's so inspiring.
Each month, I'm showcasing a stylish small home and gaining insight from the home dweller how they make on design decisions, and challenges they've faced living small.
Today I'm sharing a colorful Charlotte Brick Bungalow home TaLaya, and her finance Kerrick recently inherited from his grandparents. Over the past year, this family home has been getting a vibrant new look as the family settles in. Follow along Talaya's home journey on Instagram @OurBrickHouseStyle
House Built in 1956
Location: Charlotte, North Carolina
Just Shy of 1500 sq feet
TaLaya shares her home with her fiance Kerrick and their sweet pup Honey and lots of plant babies! I love her plant collection #PlantGoals
PLEASE SHARE SOME DETAILS ABOUT YOUR HOME, DOES YOUR HOME HAVE A NICKNAME?
It was built in 1956 and is just under 1500 square feet. We have three bedrooms and two full bathrooms. When it was originally built it was much smaller, only two bedrooms, one bath, a kitchen, den and formal living room. Then in the early 70's, his grandparents added an additional master bedroom, bathroom, sunroom, dining area and laundry room. It's located in an older community just outside of uptown Charlotte.
We chose to take on this renovation project for a few different reasons. We always knew we wanted to live in a smaller, close-knit community and location was important to us as well. We are central to everything in the city. We also chose this route for financial freedom purposes which will allow us to have fewer expenses and more freedom to do the things we want to do.
And for me, living small has always been the goal. I grew up in Detroit in a house a little bit smaller than ours, and to me, it was always the perfect amount of space. I've never lived in a larger home and have never had the desire to, so 1500 square feet was the perfect size for my fiancé and I (and some babies when we decided to expand our family.)
" Living small has always been the goal " - TaLaya
Our homes nickname is "Our Brick House". It's very practical and to the point! I chose it when we decided to document our renovation journey on Instagram.
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE FEATURES ABOUT YOUR HOME AND WHY DO YOU LOVE IT?
I have so many! One of my favorite features of our home is our large front porch. Our house is one of only a few in the neighborhood that has one. Kerrick's mom told me that when her parents were getting the home built, they gave them a choice between adding the front porch or adding a half bathroom, I'm so glad they chose the porch!
Another thing that I love about our home, which I had never even considered before, is that we have two separate living spaces. We have a family room/den, and we also have a formal living room (which isn't very formal at all!). Both rooms get lots of use, but I just love the fact that both my fiancé and I can be home and if we want to watch separate things on tv or if the other is working on something and needs some quiet time, we have the space for it. There are doors everywhere so even in a home the size of ours; there's still a privacy aspect to it.
Oh and our hardwood floors, I LOVE our floors! It was the biggest expense in our renovation but worth every single penny. Most of the hardwood is original to the home, but we had to get it matched and installed in both the kitchen and the addition that was added decades ago. They did a phenomenal job. We went with a natural tone, and it adds the perfect amount of warmth to our home!
Now, my favorite room in the house is definitely our kitchen. We've spent a lot of time and effort transitioning this space into exactly what we wanted, and it turned out so awesome!
ANY CHALLENGES YOU'VE FACED LIVING IN A SMALL HOME?
Functionality for sure. I'm a very organized person, and I don't like a lot of clutter. So it has been a challenge creating spaces in our home for storage and functionality. For example, our closets are tiny, all of them. So in our bedroom, we had to figure out a way to be able to store more clothing items. Our solution was instead of traditional nightstands, we bought two chests of drawers from IKEA, that served both purposes of nightstand and storage.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT LIVING SMALL?
Less space, less stuff. I think it has made me much more conscious of the things that I decide to purchase. We have to be intentional about everything because everything in our home has its place. I remember when we decided to embark on this small house living journey I said to my fiancé that I am making a golden rule for myself, "I won't buy anything for our home unless I know exactly where it's going", and I've stuck to that rule!
BEST SMALL SPACE LIVING TIP?
Just because a space is smaller doesn't mean it can't have lots of personality. You have to have fun with it and make it your own. Our home is ever-changing. We always have project or two going on. And don’t be afraid to experiment with different styles. I’ve mixed it up in our home. I love moody and minimal style spaces, and I love colorful and bright style spaces, and I think we have a little of both. I don't follow any specific rules, I go with what I love and what feels right, and it's resulted in a cozy, colorful and inviting home that we both love tremendously. We wouldn't trade this experience for anything!
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" We have to be intentional about everything because everything in our home has its place " - TaLaya
A huge thank you to TaLaya and Kerrick for sharing their home with Katrina Blair readers! My personal favorite space in their Brick Bungalow is the kitchen! I love the honey wood floating shelves, cabinet hardware, black cabinets paired with my forever favorite subway tile.
In need of some Small Home design solutions? Check out my blog series Small Home Style dedicated to stylish design ideas for small spaces.
What are your favorite takeaways from this 1950's Brick Bungalow?