My daughter Michelle and her fiance Jordan received the keys last Wednesday to the new condo Michelle bought last year.

The condo is a new build, so Michelle and Jordan were fortunate to be able to pick most of their finishes, and I was very privilaged to be asked to consult on their choices. The condo is 606 sq. ft. which is a very modest size by North American standards. They suspect that the time spent in their first shared home together will be somewhat short lived as they will likely upsize within the next 2-3 years. Therefore, I encouraged them to choose finishes that would appeal not only to their sense of style, but to a broader range of buyers. Because they are on a TIGHT budget, upgrading all the standard finishes was out of the question. 
They spent most of their upgrade funds on kitchen finishes because it is the most visible space in the condo. They wanted a modern look in the kitchen, so upgraded to solid maple shaker cabinets in a dark cherry stain. The granite counters were standard, but the glass backsplash tiles were an upgrade as were the stainless steel appliances.
The counter is quite neutral, but has enough colour variations to complement the dark cabinets and the medium stained hardwood maple floors, also an upgrade, shown below in the adjoining living/dining room.
To save money, they did not upgrade the finishes in the bathroom.  Instead they chose the standard cabinet doors, but stained to match the kitchen. They also chose a granite-look laminate counter and porcelain floor and matching shower tiles, with a complementary boarder tile. The bathroom will be pizzazzed with colour, and accessories. 
The condo was painted with the builders white paint.  This past weekend, however, the entire space received a new personality in the way of colour with help from Jordan and his Grandfather. Next weekend, Michelle and Jordan move to their new home. Of course they want a leather sectional, original artwork, a new area rug, new lamps, and a wall unit…. they want NEW and perfect everything, but have come to realize that their wish list is simply not realistic or practical for new homeowners who are also planning a wedding. Over the following weeks, I will post how these two 25 yr. old, first time homeowners are going to transform their condo into their home using colour, repurposed furniture and their own construction and decorating talents…with a little help from me. 

To celebrate this huge milestone….we decided to have a champagne toast to their new abode

All photos for this post taken by Maureen Coates



  1. Great looking condo with a very decent-sized kitchen! Congrats to the new home owners, how exciting. It's always a good idea to have a designer's input on which finishes to upgrade on and which ones not to bother with :)*Tania @

  2. Congrats to your daughter and fiance on this exciting move! Love all your choices on how to get the most bang – especially love the glass tiles choices! 😉 Very fortunate homeowners(!) to enjoy your fabulous insight and advice, Maureen! Looking forward to seeing the condo when it's all decorated! Cheers! Pam, OR DESIGN glassworks@

  3. Just found you and you have a lovely blog. how exciting to get your first new might not be big but i love the kitchen, cabinets are gorgeous..the dark is sooo rich. Wish them much luck and happiness! Great post…please visit me at my new blog about the building of our new home and my passion for decor and design (we have that in common)Have a great day…

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