Before & After: Deanna's Former Church Rectory

Before & After: Deanna's Former Church Rectory

(Image credit: Lindsay Ribe)
(Image credit: Deanna)

Before — Click through to see The Big Reveal!

(Image credit: Deanna)

After — Scroll down to vote for this entry!

(Image credit: Deanna)
(Image credit: Deanna)

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Philadephia, PA
U.S. Renter
My room makeover::
We feel truly lucky to find such a unique space to call our own. The loft is converted out of an old church rectory, which was apparently built during the time of Lincoln's presidency. Our landlord took care of making the space a blank canvas while keeping a lot of original details - hardwood floors, church safe, and stained glass. It was our job to make it our own, so we decided to start over. The biggest challenge was dividing the studio space. We decided to keep it open with nooks for different uses - a workshop, desk space, living area, and bedroom. We spent months with just our bed and TV in the center of the room. I was tickled to find our couch on Craigslist for only $100. The bigger pieces - the armoire, dresser, and metal display case, were hand-me-downs from my boyfriend's mother and satisfied our need for storage. Once we had those, the room constructed itself. Our personal art collection, plants, antique finds, and a gifted flat-weave rug really tied everything together.
My makeover advice::
Rentals are always going to be challenging to personalize, but never give up on improving. We are constantly on the look out for something to add to our space - more plants (can you ever have enough?), storage projects, wall art. It's even amazing what a little rethinking and rearranging can do. I can say with confidence that our apartment may look totally different in another year.
What I love most about my new space::
It's so rare to find something so neat in a city of row homes and apartments of the same old layout. We found somewhere truly as unique as ourselves, with lots of personality. We feel truly accomplished that we turned it into something of our own. Nothing will ever beat walking in the door to a place and being like "WOW! I live here!" and we really do get that feeling every single time we come home.
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