Home Centre Makeover 3: Hope for the Family
Home Centre turned 15 this year, and as part of our birthday celebrations we gave away complete room makeovers worth AED 10,000 each to 15 lucky winners. In this series, we share five before-and-after experiences.
The recession hit hard the very month Kate and Karl Stockenstrom moved into the new Dubai home they'd saved for decades to buy. Their long-time dream faced a severe reality check: Karl found himself working very long hours just to make ends meet, and Kate, a full-time mother of two young children, had little left over after their rising apartment service fees and nursery fees were paid. Tired of raising her family in an uninviting flat furnished with bland second-hand furniture and worn-out hand-me-downs, Kate reached out to Home Centre for a splash of hope.
We wanted to give the Stockenstroms a practical, modern family space they could lounge, dine, entertain guests and relax in while the children played safely. Kate's love of blues, beiges and creams and Karl's Scandinavian roots inspired our makeover.
The previous tenant was a smoker, so the bulky fabric sofa that was left behind was not only impractical for the family's needs, but smelled of stale smoke, too. All the furniture was mismatched, and although the room was light and airy with a beautiful view, it was a sun trap in the high summer months.
The Home Centre team began the transformation by painting opposite walls a Scandinavian-inspired Tiffany blue. Coffee and brown-coloured drapes were added to shade the sun and complement the new blue walls. We repositioned existing furniture more strategically, and replaced the old sofa with a new kid-friendly, wipe-clean, L-shaped sofa with matching cushions. A faux-leather storage box was added for easy stowing of the children's toys, and a new dining set completed the picture. We decorated the walls with Kate's favourite family and wedding photographs for a personal touch.
Kate and her family were overcome with emotion when they saw the new space. "This is amazing!" she exclaimed. "Every little spot has something new!" Karl, too, was thrilled with having a space that reflected their essence, one he would enjoy coming home to after a long day. "I didn't believe a room could change like this," he grinned. The kids have a safe, cool place to play, and Kate hasn't stopped inviting guests home since the makeover, including her family who visited from the U.K. How's that for a happy ending?
After this: A mother's wish for her four children