A Remodeled Charleston House Goes from Dilapidated to Delightful

updated Jul 17, 2020

A Remodeled Charleston House Goes from Dilapidated to Delightful

updated Jul 17, 2020
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Name: Catherine and Adam Olejarczyk, along with their 10-year-old lab Leo
Location: Charleston, South Carolina
Size: 1996 square feet
Years lived in: This October will be 2 years owned!

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Adam and Catherine Olejarczyk moved into their downtown Charleston home almost two years ago after a complete renovation that took eight months. The classic four-square house was originally built in 1935 and needed a more efficient and open layout, and lots of love. Adam works for a marketing agency. Catherine is a paralegal, however she also has a design background. Because of her experience, they decided to tackle the project of bringing their dream home to life, and are so glad they did. 

After opening up the first floor, adding a powder room, master suite, and completely moving the kitchen, the four-bedroom, two and a half-bathroom home now works perfectly for their family. To preserve some original character from the home, they were able to restore the beautiful oak and pine floors, curved staircase, and the two original brick fireplaces.

Each room should have that special piece, and Catherine especially loves to incorporate vintage textiles, beautiful art (by as many local artists as possible), brass pieces, and other furnishings that bring soul into the space.

Credit: Minette Hand Photography

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Eclectic—always and forever.

Inspiration: When designing this house, we just really wanted a space where everyone would feel happy and welcome, and never want to leave. Charleston is such a welcoming city, and has inspiration at every turn, so this is how we wanted our home to feel. 

Favorite Element: Catherine: Can I say it’s the entire kitchen? This room was such a labor of love for me. I had searched for close to a year for the perfect dark green/blue/black/gray color for the kitchen cabinets and realized it just didn’t exist. So I made my own! Also the natural light in this home is unreal. Our house faces north and because we have over 30 windows, it gets beautiful light all day long. Last, I have to gush about our brass coffee table. I found it at a vintage store in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, paid $100 cash for it, and found out later that it was a vintage Sarreid chest from the 1970s. I am never parting with it!

Adam: The front porch. It stays very shaded, which is nice for our Charleston climate, and is so relaxing and quiet. Cat and I love reading and having coffee there in the mornings.

Biggest Challenge: We love them (especially being original to the home), but because of the placement of the double fireplaces in the living and dining rooms, the furniture layout was a bit challenging. For the same reason, our living room is a bit smaller than we expected. But, everyone always just hangs out in our kitchen during parties, so it all works out! 

What Friends Say:  “Our house would look like this, if we didn’t have kids!”

Biggest Embarrassment: Dog hair! 

Proudest DIY: It’s not a DIY but our proudest home piece is the oak secretary in the entryway. This piece is the most special to us because it belonged to Catherine’s grandmother. It is almost 100 years old and she used it every day as her writing desk. It’s the first thing we see when we leave the house and the first thing we see when we come home and that makes us smile. 

Biggest Indulgence: The floral wallpaper in the powder bath. Catherine had been obsessing over this Ellie Cashman wallpaper for years!

Best Advice: There are no rules. Design your home to make you happy the second you walk in the front door. Also, Etsy has the best vintage rugs.

Dream Sources: Anything on Chairish or 1st Dibs.



  • Sherwin-Williams ⁠— Extra White (upper kitchen cabinets & kitchen/laundry walls)
  • Poplar green ⁠— (custom color that Catherine created) (lower kitchen cabinets)   
  •  Benjamin Moore ⁠— Moonshine (walls of entire house)
  • Duron ⁠— High Battery (front door)
  • Benjamin Moore ⁠— Whale Gray (drop zone)
  • Sherwin-Williams ⁠— Dark Night (office)
  • Ellie Cashman Dark Floral Wallpaper ⁠— Powder room 




  • Chandelier — Etsy
  • Wood mango dining table — Nadeau
  • Louis Ghost chairs — Wayfair
  • Blue Sideboard — Vintage from Etsy (paint color is Farrow & Ball Stiffkey Blue, painted by Adam & Catherine)
  • Blue ceramic vase — Hausful
  • White table lamp — Wayfair
  • Mid century plant stand — Etsy
  • Record player — Crosley
  • Large abstract art — Dan Hobday
  • Waves art — Clare Elsaesser
  • Last One In art — Lisa Golightly
  • Felicia art — Carrie Beth Waghorn
  • Indigo fabric art — Vintage
  • Black and white face art print — Sally King Benedict
  • Curacao art — Minted
  • Waikiki No 4 art — Max Wanger
  • Brass candlesticks — Vintage
  • Nude figure study art — Done by Catherine’s coworker Ranee Saunders
  • Brass bar cart — Vintage (their 1st vintage score!)
  • Wedding bouquet commissioned art — Lulie Wallace
  • Tweed durrie rug — West Elm




  • Brass round mirror — Target
  • Brass sconce light — Bellacor
  • Pink crystal bud vase — Vintage


  • Linen gray upholstered bed — Hayneedle
  • White campaign side tables – Wayfair (no longer available)
  • White table lamps — Target
  • Juju hat — Etsy
  • Brass & white jewelry catch all — Vintage
  • Black and white mudcloth bench — Vintage and reupholstered
  • Grey sham pillows — Parachute 
  • Tassel navy sham pillows — PB Teen
  • Indigo lumbar pillow — Etsy
  • Hampton Park oversized art — Lulie Wallace






  • Henning side chairs — Target
  • Outdoor woven pouf — Target (no longer available)
  • Striped outdoor pillow — EtsyMiscellaneous pots and planters – Home Goods, Target, Hyams Garden Center

Thanks Catherine and Adam!

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