Quantcast

Interiorssneak peeks

A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable

by Garrett Fleming

A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge

One day in 2011, while searching Craigslist for rental properties in Minneapolis, MN, graphic designer Claire Moyle and animator Jeffrey Grutter came across a rather odd listing. The landlord of an early-1900s-era bungalow was offering free rent to any family willing to renovate it. Intrigued, the couple immediately set up a showing and prepared themselves for an encounter with what could have been a disastrous home and/or a rather interesting owner. Instead, Claire and Jeffrey found themselves touring a house full of untapped potential accompanied by a landlord who was both friendly and humble. All they truly wanted was someone to help them make the property a winner.

I think you’ll agree after taking a peek that Claire and Jeffrey have done just that. During their time renting, they’ve had floors stained, combined neutral-colored accessories to create an environment that’s perfect for unwinding, and painted nearly all the walls. The new paint jobs are amplified even further thanks to Jeffrey’s artwork. He went to school for painting, and his ability to create simple yet evocative pieces is truly admirable.

While renting, these two revitalized the space beyond recognition, but they gave it a second (even more dramatic) boost after purchasing the home in 2012. Since then they’ve replaced the kitchen, landscaped the entire property, nearly finished the basement and painted the exterior a brooding navy that has surely made them the envy of every neighbor. Overall, it’s a space you’re not going to want to miss. Scroll down to check it out, and enjoy! —Garrett

Photography by Hannah Voermans

Image above: The Craigslist listing for this home caught Claire and Jeffrey’s eye because of the odd proposal that accompanied it: the landlord was offering free rent to anyone willing to renovate the space. Intrigued by the offer, the couple took a tour. Sure enough, there was a lot of work to be done. Baby blue walls, filth-soaked floors and a totally-unusable kitchen are just a few of the challenges they were met with.

Editor’s Note: To assist our readers on sourcing requests, we’ve rounded up similar style pieces in our new Home Style Preview below. Click on the product image for the details and shopping info! You can also bookmark the quick look version in our Shopping section here.


 

 

 

 


 

A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
1/14
The bungalow's navy exterior not only allows for plants to pop, but helps give the otherwise run-of-the-mill architecture some style.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
2/14
The front porch comes alive every summer. Friends laugh together over glasses of wine, and annuals picked from the farmers market dot each of its corners.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
3/14
A peek at the living room from the front entry.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
4/14
Jeffrey has a degree in painting from Minneapolis College of Art and Design. He created these inky pieces while studying there, and upon finding the set in storage, Claire wasted no time displaying them.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
5/14
"We both output a ton of creative effort on the daily in our careers, so we strive to create a simple, relaxed space that just functions as we need it to without a lot of upkeep or effort. We keep it chill [with] colors and textures for that reason," Claire explains.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
6/14
Soft complementary hues such as molasses and cream are used throughout the open-concept home to help each room seamlessly flow into one another. Even the artwork -- including this piece by Jeffrey -- embodies the color scheme.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
7/14
Claire and Jeffrey are tea enthusiasts. Luckily, their quaint dining room is perfectly sunny and ideal for enjoying a cup.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
8/14
A rich hue helps the fireplace anchor the combination living/dining room.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
9/14
A year after buying the place, the couple tackled a full kitchen remodel. The largest feat was moving the basement staircase. The switch-up lets in more light, helps the space's overall flow and makes the kitchen much more functional.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
10/14
This space may be entirely new, but Claire and Jeffrey didn't go all in on fancy decorations or tools. They instead saved money by purchasing a basic range, opting for a simpler fridge and pouring the concrete countertops themselves.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
11/14
Every wall of Jeffrey and Claire's bedroom was originally painted the color of the ceiling. In order to free themselves up to tackle other line items on their to-do list, they opted to skip painting over the ceiling and instead used it as inspiration for the bedroom's color palette and vibe. Unsurprisingly, the fabulous artwork is another Jeffrey original.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
12/14
His and hers IKEA Malm tables sit on either side of the bed.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
13/14
Jeffrey often works from and plays video games in the guest bedroom. The couple took the picture that dominates the wall above the daybed on a canoeing trip in northern Minnesota.
A Midwestern Home Goes from Unlivable to Enviable, Design*Sponge
14/14

“What we love most about our home are the good vibes.” — Claire Moyle and Jeffrey Grutter

Source List

Exterior

Paint – Hirshfield’s “Midnight Magic”

 

Porch

Paint – Behr “Irish Mist”

Sofa, butterfly chair – vintage

Coffee table – IKEA

Rattan chair – Pier 1 Imports

Wire lantern, silk bird pillow – West Elm

Star lanterns – World Market

African textile – eBay

Mudcloth pillows – Francois Et Moi

 

Living Room

Paint – Behr “Irish Mist”

Fireplace – Benjamin Moore “Black Beauty”

Rug – West Elm

Sofa – Room & Board

Coffee table – CB2

Black floor lamp – IKEA

Brass table lamp – vintage

Coral lamps – Pier 1 Imports

Credenza – vintage painted in Behr “Silver Drop”

 Art –  Jeffrey Grutter

 

Dining Room

Table – IKEA

Chairs – West Elm

Lighting – Moooi

 

Kitchen

Paint – Behr “Irish Mist”

Cabinets – IKEA

Countertops – DIY

Floating custom shelf – Tandem Made

Ceiling pendants – IKEA

Sink – IKEA

Delta faucet – DST

Nude artwork – David Bonagurio

Type portraits – blkkhand

 

Owners’ Bedroom

Teak bed – CB2

Table lamps – Target

Bedside tables, lamp – vintage

Chests – IKEA

Wool throw – Geysir

Art – Jeffrey Grutter

 

Office/Guest Bedroom

Indonesian day bed – World Market

Moroccan throw – Etsy

Photograph – Claire Moyle, printed by Parabo Press

Suggested For You

Comments

Leave a Reply

Design*Sponge reserves the right to restrict comments that do not contribute constructively to the conversation at hand, contain profanity, personal attacks, hate speech or seek to promote a personal or unrelated business. Our goal is to create a safe space where everyone (commenters, subjects of posts and moderators) feels comfortable to speak. Please treat others the way you would like to be treated and be willing to take responsibility for the impact your words may have on others. Disagreement, differences of opinion and heated discussion are welcome, but comments that do not seek to have a mature and constructive dialogue will not be published. We moderate all comments with great care and do not delete any lightly. Please note that our team (writers, moderators and guests) deserve the same right to speak and respond as you do, and your comments may be responded to or disagreed with. These guidelines help us maintain a safe space and work toward our goal of connecting with and learning from each other.