Chip and Jo Prove It: Yes, You Can Downsize Without Losing Out On Style
See how Chip and Jo turned a small and dated home into an open space packed with design details.
So you want to cut down your square footage...without sacrificing style? You're not alone. That's why Ben and Stacie Childers, soon-to-be empty nesters from California, signed up for a Chip and Jo renovation. Why Waco? Apart from the obvious reason (A chance for a Chip and Jo makeover!!), their son is also enrolled at nearby Baylor University, meaning he's close enough to drop by anytime. (Read: Do his laundry.)
The Childers were looking to streamline and simplify their life, so they chose this ADORABLE bungalow. So cute, right?
To make a small space feel spacious, Joanna used a light, bright color scheme. Get more of her tips on making a small space feel huge:
Designing for Empty Nesters 01:21
In the kitchen, a big island with a farmhouse sink and plenty of seating is perfect for eating and food prep.
Open shelving against the wall keeps this space feeling open and airy. See more of Joanna's kitchen design tips:
Empty Nest Kitchen 01:17
My favorite part of the house is this adorable bedroom that's full of natural light and, of course, shiplap.
Renovated Bedroom With Exposed Wood Beams
All of the original windows were retained and given new window treatments. The hardwood floors were restored and all of the original shiplap exposed and painted white. Unpainted wood ceiling and exposed wood beams help distinguish the space and provide a warming accent, as seen on HGTV's Fixer Upper.
See how Joanna packed all this style into such a small space:
Downsizing for an Empty Nest 01:50
See more of this small but style-packed house with 58 photos of the makeover.
Soft Hues and a White Canvas
Joanna and new homeowner Stacie are on the same page in their affinity for white. Stacie asked for a color palette that emphasizes rich blues and white. In the living room, going with white walls and white slipcovered furniture provides an opportunity for the subtle accent colors to stand out.
The cozy master bedroom is finished clad in Joanna's favorite material, the home's original wood shiplap, here painted in fresh white and offset with unpainted wood ceiling and exposed beams. As with the selection of white wallpaint, Joanna and homeowner Stacie are in sync in their love of shiplap.
Dining Almost Alfresco
The new dining room is located in what was formerly a screened porch. Large windows wrap around the space and new exterior French doors opening provide an outstanding view onto the backyard. A second set of French doors, seen here leading into the newly remodeled kitchn, are the original doors that openend onto the porch.
Meet the Homeowners
Ben and Stacie Childers are soon-to-be empty nesters with one daughter enrolled at Baylor University and a second likely to be enrolled there soon as well. Moving from California, Stacie and Ben were eager to downsize and simplify, and were hoping to find a home in the Brookview neighborhood close to the Baylor campus. They were looking for at least three bedrooms and two baths in an older style home that had character and original details. Their all-in budget: $175,000.
This house -- dubbed by Chip the "Beanstalk Bungalow" because of the plenitiful seedpods from the catalpa tree in the front yard -- was built in 1919, has five bedrooms, three baths and 2100 square feet. The listing price was $100,000 which would leave approximately $75,000 for renovations before moving in.
Exterior improvements included patching the stucco, all new paint and trim, a new roof, fresh landscaping and a new unpainted wood door in an arched profile. "This house is just simple and sweet but it really makes a statement," said Joanna after the renovation was complete. "The house had the character built into it. It just needed to be exposed."
Living Room, BEFORE
The living room had original pine wood floors as well as a brick fireplace with built-in bookshelves on either side -- a feature common in bungalow and craftsman style homes. Joanna recommended sanding and refinishing the hardwood floors and opening up the cased opening into the adjacent dining room to create a more open feel in the main living space.
Living Room, AFTER
Drywall was removed, exposing all of the original shiplap in the living room. The walls and brick fireplace were painted in white. Joanna made use of the textures of wood and fabric to warm and soften the space, creating a living space that feels uncluttered and restful.
Joanna's kitchen design included plenty of open shelving, further contributing to an open and airy feel in the redefined space. She also sidestepped her often preferred choice of subway tile backsplash in favor of handmade tile in muted blue and white, a favorite color combination of client Stacie Childers.
Master Bedroom, AFTER
All of the original windows were retained and given new window treatments. The hardwood floors were restored and all of the original shiplap exposed and painted white. Unpainted wood ceiling and exposed wood beams help distinguish the space and provide a warming accent.
The original window and built-in cabinets were retained since they are a desirable and authentic feature of the home's period. An antique table converted into a vanity with vessel sink adds a timeless touch. And though white subway tile did not make an appearance in the kitchen, rest assured that it's in full evidence in the remodeled bathroom.
Master Bath, Detail
The original window and built-in cabinets were retained since they are a desirable and authentic feature of the home's period. An antique table converted into a vanity with vessel sink adds a timeless touch. And though white subway tile did not make an appearance in the kitchen, rest assured that it's in full evidence in the remodeled bathroom, as seen on HGTV's Fixer Upper.