Name: Ayanna and family
Location: Woodstock, New York
The basics: Under a year, owned — 2, 600 square feet
Ayanna's home is both timeless and contemporary. Well-chosen vintage pieces of different eras mingle against very of-the-moment paint colors. Also, get ready for some major bathroom envy.
Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: I've lived in Brooklyn since 2008. I'm originally from Westchester, New York. After spending a winter weekend (March 2016) in Tannersville, NY with a group of friends at a beautiful Airbnb, it immediately sparked my interest in the Hudson Valley. With the prices of owning real estate in NYC continuing to rise, I decided to set my eyes on owning in the Hudson Valley. I hired a realtor who recommended Woodstock. I also had intentions of renting the house short term as well, because my business in in NYC so I could not live in the Hudson Valley full time. Anyway, after looking at homes (first online and then in person), I found my Mediterranean home. My sister and partner immediately fell in love with the home. At the time, I had an accepted offer for the property across the street, but the inspection revealed a lot of mechanical and water damage. This house had all of the bones I wanted, along with character.
After closing in October 2016, I started renovations on the house in December 2016, which included removing stucco from most of the walls! Also renovating all three bathrooms and installing bamboo floors where there was carpeting. My budget was tight so I had to be very creative. After some drama with contractors, the house was finally complete by May 2017. Currently, I rent the house out and enjoy it on weekends with friends and family. My partner and our two-and-a-half year-old daughter spend weeks there when we can.
What is your favorite room and why? I have a few favorite rooms. I would say the library is pretty high on the list. I always had a vision for that room. It brings me joy to see it finally completed. Additionally, the living room is such a striking room. It is the first room you see when you enter the house — high ceilings, wood beams, wood parquet floors, archways, sky lights, lots of natural light. I love the green room. Color is the best part of the room for me. I have to also mention the bathrooms because they were literally the most painstaking rooms in the house. I thought out every single detail (exhausting). There's some disappointment when I'm in the fun bathroom because the contractor didn't add all the details I had originally planned for (a silly thing to care about — I can't help it!).
If you could magically change something about your home, what would it be? I would love to renovate the kitchen. With a limited budget, I painted the cabinets and added gold knobs. I painted the old light fixtures as well. If I had the money, I would completely gut renovate the kitchen. I would raise the ceilings in the kitchen, dining room and den. I would remove the wall that separates the dining room and kitchen. New kitchen = happy!
What's the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? The last item I brought was the living room couch, which I found on Wayfair for a great price. My most prized possession is the vintage pink settee I found at Apartment Therapy! Love it...I smile every time I see it.
Ayanna's words of wisdom: Take your time decorating your home. I'm sure you didn't find it in a day and it's a place you will enjoy for years to come. I slowly made decorating decisions and design concepts. I didn't have the money to hire a designer so I become obsessed with interior design blogs and magazines, which helped me piece together the home of my dreams — on a budget!
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