before and afterinterior designInteriorssneak peeks

before & after: amy’s louisiana home

by Grace Bonney

this before & after is part makeover, part sneak peek. the lovely amy shutt of day lab was kind enough to share photos of her new home in southern louisianna and i couldn’t resist including the before shots so you could see how far she’s come in her new space. i’ll let amy do the rest of the talking, so i hope you’ll enjoy her home as much as i did. stay tuned for another sneak peek at 1pm (and more tomorrow)! (be sure to click “read more” at the bottom of the post to see full-sized images of amy’s home)

My daughter and I moved into our house in Southeast Louisiana three years ago. It is located on a street with an eighty year old oak allee in a neighborhood established on old farm land in 1923. We just love it here. The house itself was built in 1939 by an English Professor at the state university here. It was later severely remodeled and added onto in the late 1960s. Aside from the lipstick and rouge type of alterations here and there the house had largely remained as it was in the late 1960s until we moved in (this includes flooring and wallpaper). The original family who built and lived in the house until the mid-1970s are still the owners. Before we moved in it had been rented to a couple who remained tenants for twenty years; it was not your typical rental house and had been well maintained over these years.

Because it was a rental I was limited in what I could do in trying to make it feel like as much of our home as possible. I was given permission to paint the walls and to pull up the old bright blue carpet in every room upstairs (it was covering the original wood floors). Just these two changes alone made a huge difference.

As a young single parent I was pretty limited in what furniture I did have and in some ways I was literally starting from scratch with this move. I constantly have to come up with new creative ideas for functional and affordable furnishings, in lieu of dropping several hundred dollars for whatever it is I may need. It has been a fun challenge so far.


CLICK HERE for the rest of Amy’s makeover/sneak peek after the jump (including additional, full-sized images)


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  • Beautiful house and pictures. And Louisiana only has one ‘n’. Our stuff is hard enough to get people to accurately pronounce when spelled correctly. ;)

  • I love the yellow metal bed frame! I’ve been eyeing up a similar one in sea foam green at a vintage shop in Lancaster, PA but it’s a twin and I really have no use for it…

  • great job, amy! you have made a beautiful home for yourself and your daughter. having been in your shoes i know how important it is to start fresh in a happy environment, and you have accomplished just that. congratulations!

  • Love the rug in the living room, where is it from? Such a great job with a rental, I’m very impressed with your resourcefulness.

  • Amy, your home is beautiful! What is the gorgeous yellow fabric in your kitchen???(it would look perfect in mine :)

  • Lovely. Not at all what I envision for Louisiana, but hey, what do I know?

    I particularly like the kitchen redo, and the yellow bedframe. :)

  • I’d love to know the source for that wallpaper! I love the vintage-y look of it. Beautiful home. You’ve done an amazing job.

  • Gorgeous color palette—neutral but fun! I’m loooving the prints over the yellow bed—where are they from?

  • I love that pale green in the kitchen with the bright yellow in the curtains. The gray is gorgeous too. I’d love the names of both paint colors. Beautiful home.

  • I also love that grey that you painted the bedroom walls. Can you tell us what paint you used?

  • I’ve seen a similar rug from the Conran shop–may be the same one!

    I love the bed, too–looks like such a happy place to sleep.

    Grace, I really like to new (?) photo organization at the end of the sneak peaks. Not sure when you made this change, but the format is really appealing and seems to be user-friendly.

    • thanks cala!

      i don’t know why i waited so long to get the pictures off flickr, but i’m glad i finally did :)


  • I’ve been an admirer of Amy’s for a while now – the house looks really clean, bright and beautiful. I love all the neat little touches and the thrifted furniture is enviably gorgeous.

  • I absolutely adore the bedroom. The blue and yellow combo is perfect. And the little pops of yellow makes everything happier.

  • Each room turned out adorable, I love the colorful accents with the fresh white backgrounds. Lovely deer on the shelving, too.

  • shashi- west elm has an identical (if not the same rug) in black/white with red trim, or brown/white with cream trim called the zigzag rug which is probably cheaper than conran shop like mentioned above.

    i love that rug too! i need it in the brown!

    beautiful home! i love that yellow bed as well!

  • I love when landlords “allow” you to make improvements to their investment by ripping up dodgy, old carpets, etc.
    I’ve lived in plenty of wonderful old homes where I did a lot of work to make the house better, then get priced out of it in a couple of years. oh well, it’s still fun to do. This before and after is beautiful!

  • the kitchen is amazing. i love that shade of green. i too am moving in to a beautiful old house, but am renting as well. thanks for all the great ideas on how to make a beautiful house an even more beautiful home…all on a budget.

  • i’m smitten with your walls. any chance you’d divulge the colors for the bedroom and living room? i’m about to paint my new apt rental-friendly colors as well. thx.

  • Oh wow, what an incredibly great job she did… I love everything about this home: the yellow bed, the chairs in the living room… The yellow accents add so much freshness!

  • You know, I have that Dwell bedspread with the birds and it never occurred to put yellow with it. I love it! As much as I am in love with the bedspread, the colors are much more muted than I am accustomed to (I am from Texas, we do color down there and a lot of it). I am inspired!

  • I love, love the pictures above her bed! They are so pretty – and the deer ornaments too! Just gorgeous!

  • I love the wooden dresser and the bird theme that appears in different places. Graceful and lovely.

  • fantastic. i believe it takes much more talent and creativity to make a beautiful home on a budget.
    is the living room rug from w.elm? i’ve been lusting over it for months!

  • love the yellow bed! i’m sure its been with you for years, but just in case…where did you get it?

  • Thank you all for the lovely comments!
    Some answers to some questions I noticed:
    -Shashi and Bethany: Yes, the rug is from West Elm.

    -Jennie: the gray paint throughout my house is Valspar’s Filtered Shade.

    -Jennifer: the kitchen window fabric is Marimekko.

    Julia: Yes, I painted the kitchen cabinets, walls, everything! :)

    Thanks again!
    Amy Shutt

  • edyta szyszlo: the bed is a full sized bed frame from IKEA cica 1990s. It was a gunmetal gray. I painted it the yellow soon after we moved into the house.

    and thanks!
    Amy Shutt

  • I LOOOOOOOVE this remodel job! So clean and airy and cozy and cheerful! AH! I CANNOT WAIT TO HAVE A HOME OF MY OWN!!!! <- me screaming that at the top of my lungs!!! ;^[)

  • Nice job- I enjoy your blog but have a question about the b/w zig-zag rug in your living room. I am looking for versions of this. Can you give me a clue?

  • Congratulations! I especially love the mint green, white and brilliant yellow of the kitchen. You took a dark brown cave and made it an oasis. Painting the walls white leaves a fine pallette for your furnishings that makes everything pop! Fresh! I bet you are really enjoying what you made so beautiful.

  • I love how unique & nature-inspired your home is & it really makes me miss BR! (I went to LSU also). Thanks so much for sharing!

  • Wonderful home! Would you be willing to share where you got that marimekko fabric, or the name of it? I can’t seem to find it online and it’s just what i’ve been looking for. thanks!

  • Kierstin-The Marimekko fabric was a 2007 (I believe) fabric I got on sale at finnstyle.com. I don’t remember the name, you may want to try searching Marimekko on ebay though, I am sure it shows up over there from time to time. :)

  • I do like the bedroom; that yellow bed frame is inspired. Was it enamelled to start with and what sort of paint did you use please?

  • Tatsu: I believe it was a powder-coated steel bed (gray in color). I sanded it down, primed it, 2 to 3 coats of latex paint, then did a couple coats of a protective poly finish.

  • Wow this is absolutely gorgeous!!
    I agree, I would also like to know how the bed frame was painted. I have the same bed and have been considering getting a new bed, but after seeing that it can be painted it would be a much cheaper solution! Can you please share how you did it?

  • I am really inspired by homes like these where the design grows out of someone’s personal style, their collections, their needs and even a limited budget!

  • OMG! Amy, I have that same magazine tear of the cat painting that you have on your bulletin board…that is too funny because I always think its so random (and I don’t even like cats), for some reason I am just drawn to it…

    Your home is beautiful and makes me jealous that my landlord wont let me paint my wood molding and doors…it looks so clean and nice!

  • I saw this a while back on Amy’s own blog I think? I can’t remember exactly, but her place has literally stuck with me – especially her bright yellow bed frame. Good job Amy! Your home is beautiful.

  • Before the makeover the rooms looked lifeless, But it came to life after the makeover. Really like the bed rod color changed to yellow. and the picture frame on the wall. the room loos so amazing. totally different.

    Like the kitchen half window curtain too its hapy atmosphere there now. and the zig-zag black and white rug is stunning.

    Your place rocks :)

  • Alyssa,
    Painting the bed: I sanded it down, primed it, 2 to 3 coats of latex paint, then did a couple coats of a protective poly finish. Easy, just takes a while b/c of the several coats applied….but can be finished in 2 days.


  • This is perfectly beautiful and soothing. And I know what you mean about getting creative due to financial limitations. I’m learning, though, that this is not a bad thing at all.