Indiana House Befores & Afters

You’ve heard me mention our pending move date more than a few times, now.  We’re in the thick of getting our house ready to be packed up and loaded onto a semi bound for California.  This will be our third big move across several state lines, not counting the temporary one we made overseas.  Coincidentally, these multi-state moves seem to happen every seven years.  It’s our very own version of the “seven year itch.”  Who knows where we’ll be headed seven years from now?

I recently found pictures we took of our Indiana house when we were shopping for homes.  It’s been fun for me to take a look back at how much the rooms in the house changed in the seven years since we bought the house.   We made a lot of great memories in this house, no matter what color the walls were.

Front Room Before:

The former homeowners’ style veered towards country/shabby chic.  Lots of chippy paint, antiques, knick-knacks, and grapevine.  Note the sage green walls.  Also note that the only electric lighting in that large room comes from two spotlights over the mantel and the Christmas lights in the grapevine.

Front Room After:

While the carpet and fireplace stayed the same, we toned down the paint considerably, going with a very light neutral, Behr’s Antique White.  Further adding to the brighter atmosphere is the addition of more than 10 electric lights, most recessed.

Kitchen Before:

See my happy face up there?  I’m excited about all the counter space, the island, the bar….little do I know that the three measly lights in this space are going to make evening meal preparations feel positively medieval.

Kitchen After:

Changes in this room were few, with the exception of the lighting–more than 10 additional lights were added.  We also installed a new subway/mosaic tile backsplash, and over time switched out appliances so that they would all be white.

Kitchen Dining Area Before:

Kitchen Dining Area After:

Using half as much furniture and painting over the Gacky Sage walls with Behr’s Antique White made this dining space feel larger.

Formal Dining Before:

What you see before you are three–count them, 3–shades of orange rag painted together onto the wall.  The effect, in person, was much less subtle than what you see here.  There was also a lot of furniture packed into that small room.

Formal Dining After:

We never actually used this room as a formal dining room while we lived in the house.  We kept our piano in here, and it was our music room.  In the end, though, we staged it as a dining room.  New wall color was more of our personal favorite:  Behr Antique White.

Office Before:

Eggplant walls.  Vintage golf wallpaper border.  Need I say more?

Office After:

Along with repainting in a warm caramel color (custom mix of Behr oops paint) and installing cabinetry, we added french doors to the doorway of this room (not pictured).

Upstairs Before:

More Gacky Sage.  It really must have been a color the former homeowners loved.

Upstairs After:

Once again, a coat or four of Antique White brightened up the hallway considerably, along with two additional lights.  Carpet was upgraded from the worn out builder’s beige to a thick, tan plush throughout the upstairs rooms.

Master Bedroom Before:

If the lack of nighttime lighting and heavily covered windows hadn’t tipped us off before, this was the room that proved the former owners were vampires.  That strange muddy color on the walls looked even worse in person, and the vaulted ceiling just served to make the room even more cave like.  The bathroom was just as dark and depressing.

Master Bathroom Before:

Master Bedroom After:

Walls were painted in Behr’s Oatmeal, and additional lighting was added to both rooms.

Master Bathroom After:

Girls Room Before:

Girls Room After:

One of the few rooms that wasn’t touched with a paintbrush or wallpaper stripper.  Seven years ago our girls lobbied for the pink walls to stay pink, and four years after that the parents were too lazy to try to paint over it themselves.

Boy Room Before:

Obviously, this wasn’t a room for a boy.  It was, however, the one room where I thought the former homeowners’ shutter obsession really worked.

Boy Room After:

Guest/Sewing Room Before:

Of all the rooms in the house, this one won the prize for most hideous paint choice.  It transformed throughout the day into four different colors of khaki, each one more hideously puke-like than the rest.

Guest/Sewing Room After:

The same room after a can of Behr’s Soft Cream.

Basement Stairs Before:

We think this crime scene may be where the former owners practiced their rag painting technique before attacking the formal dining room.

Basement Stairs After:

{woops!  I forgot to snap a picture of this.  Approximately three coats of primer and two coats of Antique White lightened up this crazy space considerably!}

Basement Kitchen Before:

Basement Kitchen After:

The only changes here:  less alcohol and the addition of a microwave and mini fridge for stashing snacks.

Basement Before:

Note that there are three lights in this 50×15  foot space.

Basement After:

No less than 36 lights were added to the basement, which changed the atmosphere considerably.  When we first moved in, it was dim and depressing.  After the addition of all the lights, it is now bright enough to perform surgery down there.  (Not that we’ve tried.)  It also received a fresh coat of Antique White.

Backyard Before:

Backyard After:

See all the leaves?  Along with the playscape, we added two 25 foot trees to the landscape.

Our Indiana home has been purchased by another family, and I’m sure they are itching to get in and make changes.  I can just hear it now, “What is it with this creamy white color?  They painted it everywhere!”


  1. This is so fun! I loved that you added so many lights! I hate not having proper lighting! It would of course be fun to see what the next home owners do to it. We’ll miss you guys!

  2. I grew up in Indianapolis, but now live in Southern Indiana, just over the Ohio River from Louisville. What a big move you’ll be making from IN to CA!

    • Hollie, that’s so fun that we have that connection! We visit Louisville several times a year. Going out to CA will be a big move, but since I grew up out West, it’s a little bit like going home. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Love the befores and afters (especially the afters!) Just wondering if you know the paint color name for the boys room. I’m trying to find a good tan color for my boys ‘room and it looks so nice!

    • Thanks, Julie! That color is semi-custom. We originally tried a tan color that was just too yellow, and decided we hated it after painting a wall or two. We took the can of paint back to Home Depot, where they added some pigments to change it to match a Ralph Lauren color called “Crabapple”. It looked great in our son’s light-filled room. We used the same color in our office, and thought it looked really good there paired with the creamy white cabinetry.


  1. [...] you know, we’re in the process of moving from central Indiana to northern California.  Our Indiana home is the second residential property we’ve put on the market, and it is the second house [...]

  2. [...] During the month of May, I’m offering a series of posts about how we’ve been able to sell two different homes in two different markets in 15 days or less.  You can read the introduction HERE and learn about how we prepare waaaay in advance to sell HERE.  And, if you’d like, you can see pictures of our current home as it looked when we purchased it contrasted with how it looks now HERE. [...]

  3. [...] tuned for some real-life staging tips…and in the meantime, feel free to look HERE for before and after pictures of my Indiana [...]

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