Emily & Kevin's Bold, Detailed Condo

House Call

Name: Emily & Kevin
Location: Reston, VA

We bought this condo one year ago in March, and minutes after settling and receiving the key, we came in and began gutting the place. We bought it for one reason: it had an exposed brick wall. After a year of searching and five failed contracts on other properties, I had realized I was going to have to buy a place I was prepared to fix up. And I considering I am quite particular, I can't imagine doing it any other way.

The condo had popcorn ceilings when we bought it, but we (my dad) knew that there were concrete slabs underneath the nightmarish popcorn. So, after reading what seemed like several (but clearly not ENOUGH) articles on removing popcorn, my dad, Kevin and I (well, I use the term "I" loosely here) began scraping it off. Three months and a couple hundred dollars worth of paint thinner later, we had a beautiful exposed concrete ceiling. Was it worth it? I think yes, but I guess you'd have to ask them.

My favorite details of the condo are probably the kitchen counter tops (Carrara marble — a headache but so great to look at), the grasscloth wallpaper in the dining room (and the Brooklyn Toile wallpaper in our half bath — not included in the pictures below), and the framing on the floor to ceiling windows that we painted a dark bronze. The idea to fill in the negative space between the upper and lower windows adds so much to the overall look of each room. Before, there was a gross creamy color between the windows, which made them look disjointed and just like, basically, cheap and gross. Oh yeah, oops, and those concrete ceilings!

My favorite room overall is the office. Taking only one picture of it does not do it justice. There are so many small details we wanted to capture. I have had fun playing off the boldness of the black and white striped wall and gold accents.

Thanks Emily & Kevin!

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(Image credits: Emily Everett & Kevin Brown)