There’s something exciting about garages—those tiny limbo-like appendages that store cars, bikes, tools, and piles of retired crap—something that seems to imply possibility. Indeed, these spaces offer more than just storage options—they are (with a little sprucing up, of course) a refuge, a second living room, a creative launchpad, a band-practice studio. For Stacia and Phil Samartan, the garage at their Long Beach, California home would serve as a formal dining room. With the help of interior designer Susie Ho, the couple’s garage—a space that could have easily been drab and uninspired—was transformed into a stunning showpiece; a space that stands out while fitting in to the space’s architecture and the locale’s aesthetic. Check out all of the photos, plus Susie’s design notes after the jump!
Basic Steps: This project was tricky, in that it involved convincing my husband that painting the space black was not going to make the room feel too dark. I had a mood board of magazine tears taped to the walls for about two months before he was convinced. After that milestone, we ripped up the carpet, had the flooring installed and then painted. We assembled the shelving, applied the wallpaper to the inset ceiling and put up the chandelier. Then came furniture, drapes and finishing touches.
Cost: $5000 (for all custom woodwork throughout the house, including the bookshelf) and $300 (paint, wood, fabric, and floor work in dining room) Basic Steps: The dining room involved patching, caulking, and painting the ceiling and walls. Then we installed the picture rail, added molding and wood to the lower portion of the walls, and caulked and painted them. The paint on the ceiling is Behr Skyline Steel; Behr Silver Hill for the walls. All furniture was thrifted except for kid chairs, which are from Ikea.