Light and bright cottage living room remodel…..

Yay! I have days of reveals for you! I am so excited to show you the new light and bright cottage living room renovation at the Oak house! A few people have asked about the background of The Oak House and I thought I would fill you in a little.
We bought the Oak House as a rental and had people living in it for the last 8 years. We’ve had a rental of some sort since we’ve been married (15 years) and to be honest, we just want to simplify our lives and concentrate on our own home. We are ready to part ways and sell it.The Oak House isn’t just a flip. It’s a place we know as well as our own home and have put a lot of love and effort these last four months into making is someplace a new family can love.
When we bought the house it was a plain house with white walls and oak cabinets and carpet.
It had a few changes made along the way that we weren’t super thrilled with, and we were so happy to undo them and make it even better. You can also see how we renovated the bathrooms,kitchen and porch.
Complete living room reveal with before's and afters!!!!
I’ll progress in stages from the before’s to the afters so you can see the whole transformation as it happens!
Hide your eyes at the beginning!
 I think the color is some kind of brown. Oldest calls it poop brown. I am sure that’s not what was on the can, but I can’t say I disagree with her opinion. It just made everything seem so heavy in there. For the sake of sounding like a crazy house-whisperer, I know that’s not what the house wanted to be. It was yearning for lightness.
 We ended up re-drywalling the front door wall because the electricians had to really cut into it to wire the new outdoor porch lights on the porch.
The Oak house project Jennifer rizzo before 3
 There was carpet in the living room when we bought it.Yep. That’s peel and stick. Don’t ask.
The Oak house project Jennifer rizzo before 4
 See how open it is between the two rooms? It seemed really hard to place furniture to me. Open concept is great unless there aren’t enough walls to put furniture on, and the room isn’t big enough to float furniture in. Little houses are always a design challenge.
The first thing we did was add beadboard wallboard and paint! We used Sherwin-Williams Alabaster.
It was like a breath of fresh air.
 Then we added my favorite feature in the entire house!!!The french door room dividers.
The Oak house project Jennifer rizzo before 6
I thought they still let in light,but gave the space a little more definition. And I love how it gives it a very cottage living room feel!
 Then after we painted everything the Mohawk  laminate floors went in!
Don’t  let anyone tell you anything different. Painting an entire house plus trim in 3 months will kick your butt.
Then we were ready to stage and get it ready to sell!!!!
Now the best part!!! I won’t talk during this part! The after!
Welcome to the Oak House’s cottage living room!
I love teh frrench doors used as a room divider!
French door room dividers
The oak house project living room
 vintage trunk used as a coffee table
Great vignette with vintage globe and map on old dresser
Jennifer Rizzo front door painted black
Jennifer rizzo interior grey door
What do you think????!! My brother asked where I got all of the furniture from. It’s from all over!!!Some of it is from my storage unit for the flea market, some you might recognize right out of my house,and a few pieces family was getting rid of.  Never hesitate to send the word out when you need a piece of furniture,because you never know what people have lurking in their homes that they don’t use any more! And I don’t mind that it’s from all over, because it’s not about the stuff you have, it’s how you put it together! I love how much light this room has. It’s so cheerful and bright. And I love when you open the front door it’s black on the outside but when you close it it’s grey.It’s pretty from both sides.
And It smells like new house,which I also love.
I think it feels like a vacation home. It should be on a lake somewhere.
When the kids are in school sometimes I’ll just sit in there. It’s so clean,uncluttered, and…quiet.
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*This was posted Via Jennifer Rizzo. com


  1. This is fantastic. I can see a young couple or single coming in and wanting it right away. LOVE the doors – front & French dividers. Your staging is perfect. I keep wondering about your own home through all of this and the tragedy of your flood…

  2. It looks wonderful – So tranquil and inviting! Enjoy your quiet moments there while you can. I have a feeling it will sell very quickly.
    Pieced Pastimes

  3. Jennifer, love the new look. We are just finishing a living room remodel and I am changing my style a little since we are looking to sell. I am gleaning ideas from your reveal. Maybe I’ll post some pictures too. Can’t wait to see the bathroom.

  4. Oh Jen it is so beautiful. It should sell quickly. Hope you get a bidding war. It is so adorable and now a days who can find a move in ready home. I think you will be saying good bye to that cutie very soon. I did not get to Kane this month 🙁 we had a wedding and a family party so my week end was booked. Hope you did well. Happy Labor Day.

  5. I can’t imagine it’ll be on the market long.. total transformation! It look so light, bright and airy. I know the perfect family will come along and fall in love. Bravo on your hard work. It looks so, so pretty now!

  6. I’m a fan of Lucy’s, she posted this on FB so I had to look. I love it you did such a wonderful job, the staging looks great I’m sure it will help sell the house quickly! Awesome!

  7. Fantastic! The only thing I don’t love is that Lazy Boy. I have a hate on for Lazy Boys… Everything else is gorgeous. You are da bomb!!!!!!!!!

  8. SHEW! That makes me tired just looking but WOW what a transformation. Very, very good job! I love those french doors! Good luck with the sale, fingers crossed for you that it goes well!

  9. What a difference, and I know how much work it was , good job. I love the French doors makes a world of difference defining the two spaces. How nice for who ever buys it, just turn the key and move in. love it

  10. Love the French doors, Jennifer! What character they add! We recently did the same. Tenants we had to evict after a long history of not so great tenants. I posted my moms rental redo (which closes next month!) and our rental we sold last summer.
    Yours looks awesome and will sell quickly! Plus you taught your kids how to work.

  11. OMG what a difference! It’s so beautiful it would be hard for me to part with it after it was all done! My favorite? The french door area. Talk about taking lemons and making lemonaide! Wonderful work! PS My next home will be white inside too. You’ve convinced me!

    Small House / Big Sky Donna / White Oak Studio Designs / SW Michigan
    Hand-Painted Vintage Furniture Transformations
    Facebook: (for portfolio of chalk painted work)

  12. I found your post over on better after and was having scuh a hard time imagining what a french door room divider was. But when I came here and saw it….wow, brilliant! I will definitely be tucking away this idea for the future in case we come across that wide doorway situation in another house. Thank you for sharing, it looks beautufil

  13. Hello,
    I saw you on “Better After” and had to come over and take a look. May I just say I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE EVERYTHING!! The floors, the walls, the french doors, the windows and the furniture is divine! I love how you put it together and made everything “belong”. It does look so peaceful too. I would love to live there. But only if the furnishings come with it. Gorgeous!!!

  14. wow! awesome transformation-LUV IT! I want to do that with an old rugged trunk/chest as well!-how’d you get the legs/etc attached to it? any tips appreciated! (1st time homebuyer with too many projects!!;) thanks!


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