Before and After: How HGTV Magazine Transformed a Couple's First House

For this couple, signing the papers was the easy part—decorating the house, not so much. HGTV Magazine to the rescue!

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August 13, 2019

Photo By: Kevin J. Miyazaki

Photo By: Kevin J. Miyazaki

Photo By: Alison Gootee

Photo By: Kevin J. Miyazaki

Photo By: Alison Gootee

Photo By: Kevin J. Miyazaki

Photo By: Alison Gootee

Photo By: Kevin J. Miyazaki

Photo By: Alison Gootee

Photo By: Kevin J. Miyazaki

Photo By: Alison Gootee

Photo By: Kevin J. Miyazaki

Photo By: Alison Gootee

Photo By: Kevin J. Miyazaki

Photo By: Kevin J. Miyazaki

They Bought Their First House! Now What?

The most exciting part of going from renting an apartment to owning a house: all the space! The most overwhelming part: all the space! That’s what Katie and Patrick Roetker discovered when they settled into their 1,510-square-foot house in Madison, WI, in the spring of 2018. “We loved how sunny and open it was, but once we moved our stuff in, it was like, OK, where’s the rest? ” says Katie. Although parents on both sides chipped in old furniture to help fill the rooms, says Patrick, “it felt like a jumble, and we didn’t know where to begin with redecorating, so we just left it.”

The Makeover

Cut to a year later, when HGTV Magazine solved their hodgepodge problem with a makeover that brought in furnishings, paint and wallpaper in colors and patterns that harmonize like a dream. “We never would have been brave enough to mix these things on our own,” says Katie. “Our home now has a look and a personality. It finally feels like it belongs to us, instead of just someplace we’re staying.”

Read on to see the makeover up close!

Living Room: Before

Colors and textures were missing from this bland living room before HGTV Magazine stepped in.

Living Room: After

Now a terra-cotta-color wall (Coral Rock by Benjamin Moore) brings in warmth year-round. “The tone shifts over the course of the day, like a sunset,” says Katie. The oversize art from Four Hands Art Studio makes it even more glorious. For seating, the dated brown sectional that dominated the space got replaced with a chic blue wool-blend sofa by American Leather, a curvy armchair by Taylor King and two leather slingback chairs from Wisteria. Friends at the couple’s giant potluck dinners spill into here, so the large coffee table by Jonathan Charles Fine Furniture comes in handy. The rug is by Jaipur Living.

Living Room: Before

“Our fireplace was painted white when we moved in, and we figured that was the only option,” says Katie.

Living Room: After

Redoing the fireplace, hearth to mantel, in the same terra-cotta shade as the accent wall opposite it pulls the room together. Cranking up the cozy: custom-size natural woven window shades by Graber and creamy white paint (Swiss Coffee by Benjamin Moore) on the other walls.

Dining Room: Before

With tons of light and a pretty archway on one side, the dining room had potential, but a lonely, unexciting dining set brought it down.

Dining Room: After

Chevron wallpaper by Schumacher and abstract prints from Four Hands Art Studio give the room major presence, as do a teak table with a slatted base from Wisteria and molded plastic chairs from Industry West. Gold touches, including a chandelier from Lamps Plus and a bar cart from Pier 1, take it to next-level glam.

Kitchen: Before

“We’d liked that the kitchen was in good shape, but it was bland,” says Katie.

Kitchen: After

All the oak cabinets needed for pep was a facelift, in the form of vivid green paint and brass hardware. Small-scale subway tile for the backsplash made the space seem bigger and brighter; ditto for the hip cement floor tile from Granada Tile. The pattern plays off the delicate print of the Thibaut-fabric Roman shade.

Kitchen: Before

Before the makeover, dated accessories were holding this kitchen back.

Kitchen: After

Surprise: The old countertops stayed! “The painted cabinets make them look brand-new,” says Katie. A GE Café range with brushed-bronze accents gives the existing white appliances a style boost.

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Bedroom: Before

This bedroom was in need of some color.

Bedroom: After

Here comes the sun: Buttery paint, a gallery of graphic prints and a Roman shade in a leafy fabric bring cheer to the space. Other upgrades include a gray wood bed from Target, new nightstands, sconces from Rejuvenation and a sleek ceiling fan from Hunter. “Katie and I never thought to rearrange stuff, we just copied what the sellers had,” says Patrick. “This layout makes our room feel twice as big.”

Bedroom: After

The space across from the bed was the ideal spot for a work zone, outfitted with a desk from Target that’s as fancy as it is functional, thanks to X-shaped designs on the sides. Parked in front is one fab office chair, from Bend Goods. “We share the desk, but it’s so cute that I’m tempted to steal it as a vanity,” says Katie.

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