Renovation: Updating While Keeping Vintage Elements

All the world is staging.

Maybe if Shakespeare were trying to sell his house while writing As You Like It, we’d have this famous phrase instead. For Megan Callahan, her world is staging, with recent forays into design and renovation. She’s always had an interest in design and interior decorating, but it wasn’t until a real estate agent mentioned the need for staging their house that she considered turning her interest into something more.

“Then we moved home and I started,” she says. “Anyone I knew who was selling their home, I said, ‘I’m going to stage it for you’ and the houses started selling.”

With homes selling within days of being listed, Megan realized she could transition from helping friends to creating a viable business. In 2015, Trim Design was born.

“Mostly I’ve been doing home staging for real estate agents, but I’m also getting into interior design and renovations,” she says.

This house, built in the early 1960s, is one of those renovation projects. It had the same owner from the time it was built until it was recently sold, and had remained as built.

Some of the original elements were kept, like the still-working doorbell and heaters, but much of the house has been updated and altered.

The pink toilet, tub and tile bathroom was gutted and replaced with updated fixtures in neutral colours.

The kitchen originally had a doorway-width passage to the dining room and a second entrance at the other end of the kitchen. The dining room access was widened to create a more open feel in the kitchen. The second access was blocked off, and the former reading room expanded to create a guest bedroom. The kitchen cabinets were replaced with Home Depot cabinetry.

The main living space was given an update and a non-functioning brick wood-burning fireplace was walled off to create a feature wall to mount the new electric fireplace.

With the property backing onto the ocean, Megan wanted to reflect that seaside element, while also giving it a bit of sophistication through the use of velvet curtains and mixed metals accessories, with a nod to vintage and rustic styles with the dining table and chairs.“I wanted to do a New England oceanfront feel,” she says.

The guest bedroom was given a fun, bright treatment.

The master bedroom uses a more muted, monochromatic colour scheme with textured cushions and blankets.