Midcentury modern style is still all the rage these days, which may explain why the latest episode of HGTV’s âFixer to Fabulousâ has Dave and Jenny Marrs creating a midcentury masterpiece for their clients.
In âAn Old Rancher Gets a Chef-Inspired Face-Lift,â Jenny and Dave help Jessica and Levi Rush update their Rodgers, AR, home, which was built by Jessicaâs grandparents in 1964.
Levi and Jessica want to keep the propertyâs classic charm and preserve Jessica’s family memories, but they also want it to feel more modern.
So, Jenny and Dave use their $130,000 budget to give this house a makeover that will both highlight its vintage feel and bring the space into the 21st century.
Read on to discover Dave and Jenny’s clever upgrades, so you can borrow some of them for your own home, too.
1. Both black and white paint can modernize old brick
Right away, Jenny and Dave notice that this house has a lot of exposed brickâall over the homeâs exterior, as well as on the fireplace in the living room.
While brick can be a design feature, Levi and Jessica want it to look more modern, and traditional brick doesnât fit the vibe theyâre going for.
So, Jenny decides to paint the exterior white, to brighten up the property and make it look more modern.
“We painted this exterior brick a really crisp, bright white, to give it this midcentury feel,â Jenny explains.
For the fireplace, though, Jenny goes for a darker, moodier look, and paints it black.
In the end, both of these painted brick features give off completely different vibes, which work with the midcentury style that Jessica and Levi love. It just goes to show how a fresh coat of paint (no matter the color) can give old brick a fresh look.
2. A fence adds style and privacy to a porch
After painting the exterior, Jenny and Dave take it to the next level, by adding a horizontal slatted wall.
Jenny decides to add this because it will give the front yard some fun, midcentury styleâbut she knows that it will also come with other perks.
âIt also provides privacy,â Jenny says of the fence. âAnd they can enjoy this space, and it could feel like a little enclosed courtyard.â
When the fence is finished, Levi and Jessica are excited to use the sitting area out frontâbasically a fresh take on the front porch.
3. Use the right wood tones in a kitchen
When Jenny and Dave first see Jessica and Leviâs kitchen, theyâre not impressed. The space is tight, and the style is dated, which is a shame, because Levi is a professional chef and deserves a decent kitchen.
Dave and Jenny give this space a complete makeover, opening up a wall, installing steel shelves, and replacing the cabinets. Then they replace the old cabinets with a more modern wood tone.
âThat walnut look is really perfect for midcentury modern style,” Jenny says of the cabinet selection. “Itâll be durable, and the kitchen is going to be the showstopper.â
Jenny proves right when she and Dave reveal the stunning new kitchen. It features a smart blend of materials and an open layout, which Levi loves.
4. Use wood panels to hide a secret door
One thing Jessica and Levi really want out of this renovation is a door that goes from the living room to the garage. As it is, they’re forced to go out and around to the back door to get into the garage, which is not convenient.
However, Jenny and Dave know that adding a door to the living room wall will throw off the balance of the fireplace, making the whole space look uneven.
So, Jenny comes up with a clever idea for hiding Jessica and Levi’s new door inside a midcentury accent wall.
Dave cuts out a spot for a door, then paints the wall black. The team then adds strips of vertical wood across the wall, covering the door and making it almost invisible.
Dave explains that the secret is matching up the pieces of wood so that they look as though they still fit together.
âWe took each board, numbered the boards, so the grainâeverything on each boardâmatched perfectly,â Dave says.
5. A concrete deck is more modern than a wooden one
Jessica and Levi have a lovely back deck, but itâs a little dated. Jessica tells Dave and Jenny that thereâs a concrete slab underneath, and that sheâd rather use that slab to create an outdoor living space.
However, when Dave pulls up the wood deck, he realizes that the concrete slab is damaged. This means theyâll have to pour a new slab, and while this will cost more money, Jenny knows that a new slab will mean more design flexibility.
âBecause we donât have to stay within the current footprint, I can do a really cool concrete design back here,â Jenny says. âWe can do some outdoor seating, and then an outdoor fireplace.â
Jenny designs a beautiful backyard oasis, and when the space is finished, it’s much more spacious and looks great.
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