Photos by Korch Media Co.

A home should be an oasis, not a place that makes you feel, as the homeowners of this before-and-after once said, “discombobulated.” Working in the ICU and for the school district, the Abbotsford-based couple craved something serene and functional to come home to.

But at first, that feeling was tough to articulate. “They didn’t know what they wanted at the beginning, they just knew it wasn’t functioning well,” says interior stylist Courtney Lucas, co-founder of Abbotsford’s Refined Interiors and Co. “It wasn’t one problem, it was a lot of things—a laundry list of things they didn’t like.” For instance, awkward architectural niches designed to fit ‘90s-sized tube televisions, or a kitchen layout that kept the home chef segregated from all the social action during dinner parties. Time to bring in the pros.

BEFORE: Photos from This Abbotsford Renovation

Refined Interiors uses the same starting point for all their clients: a system called the ‘Nine Aesthetics.’ “These are foundational styles,” explains Lucas. “And then we customize from there.”

For this family, the foundational palette a mix of Refined’s California Cool and Organic aesthetics: think open and airy meets warm and cozy. Atop a fresh palette of white oak and crisp white walls, they layered in homey wools and linens for a textured, welcoming, come-in-and-stay-awhile vibe.

Of course, the lovely new look was just part of the plan. “We can make it pretty, but if you can’t live it in after it’s pretty, what was the point?” says Lucas.

AFTER: A California Cool (and Organic Inspired) Design

First was the kitchen. They scrapped the existing peninsula-style layout and brought in an island to turn the kitchen into a central hub. Walls came down to connect the dining room and living area. Concrete-style Caesarstone countertops compliment custom painted millwork (the uppers in Benjamin Moore Dune, the lowers in Taiga. A slatted detail adds some textural fun, and open-shelving (a solution to deal with an ugly-but-unmoveable support post) showcases the family’s favourite décor pieces.

“That open shelving isn’t for everybody, but it creates moments that keep the space from feeling sterile,” say Refined interior designer and co-founder Adria Brotzel, who also worked on the project. “It a bit of visual separation between the rooms, too.”

They made the decision to keep the original flooring, and tied other design details to the warm wood of the floorboards from there. A custom side table corner piece connects two sofas (from Refined Interiors’ own store, Shoppe Refined) and gives the illusion of a sectional; the kitchen table (a longtime piece from the homeowners) is surrounded by Shoppe Refined chairs. The ensuite bathroom (not pictured) featured a bold, teal tile that the family liked, so Lucas and Brotzel took it and ran with it, bringing more green tile from Stone Tile into one of the fireplace designs.

All these little personal touches, taken together, add up to something big. “It’s not like we did anything super crazy drastic,” says Brotzel, “but these small changes have given then so much joy.”

Contractor: 3P Projects
Furniture and décor: Shoppe Refined