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A Swedish City Apartment in a Converted Car Workshop

Do you live in a city? With 56% leading urban lives the chances are high! We all know that high density populations mean rent / house prices can be high, and in many cities new dwellings are carved out from old businesses. Warehouses, factories, bars and even a welding plant have been repurposed into houses, flats and maisonettes - and the history of the building adds an entirely new dimension to the interior. 

In Vasastan, Stockholm an old car workshop has been transformed into a beautiful street level apartment. Great big doors that open out onto the street and polished concrete floors unlock the secret to its past life while a white wood floor, beautiful kitchen and floor to ceiling shelving provide clues for its new life as a contemporary home.  Step this way for the tour! 

When the double doors are closed the frosted glass means only a small amount of light flows through to the living room, something that large mirrors help to counter. 

Contrast in the form of dark blue cabinets add interest to the space. 

Warm wood shelving and concrete floors add an interesting contemporary touch to the space. 

Floor to ceiling wardrobes in the bedroom provide plenty of storage and help to create a clean and contemporary look. I love how grey has been used on the cabinet doors and back door, breaking up the white. 


Glossary; vardagsrum - living room, kök - kitchen, sovrum - bedroom, bad rum - bathroom. 

What a really cool urban home! I love the way it's been decorated. 

I wonder how practical having doors open out to the street like this would be in most cities around the world? In Stockholm it could definitely work on a warm summer's day like today, in fact I can already hear the music floating out from the transparent speaker and the buzz of the city life outside. 

Do you think this would work in your city? 


Photography and floor plan courtesy of Historsika Hem

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A Rundown Schoolhouse Becomes a Swedish Family Home

I absolutely love it when someone takes the time and energy to painstakingly restore a historical house! Even better when they share the step-by-step process online, right? Photographer Lovisa 'Furubo' Andersson and her partner Daniel bought a former schoolhouse in Ölvingstorp, near Kalmar in South East Sweden a few years ago and have been renovating it by hand ever since. Today, the former classroom serves as a spacious and light-filled kitchen and other rooms (such as the gym hall!) have become beautiful living spaces. Here is a selection of truly inspiring before and after pictures of the exterior and kitchen as well as snapshots from some of the other rooms! 

Exterior Before 

Exterior after

The main school house and outhouse had been painted in linseed oil paint 100 years ago, and Lovisa and Daniel felt it deserved the same treatment today! Naturally, there was a lot of other work included in the exterior renovation too. The result is so fresh, yet still in keeping with the original look and feel of the property. 

Kitchen before 

Kitchen after 

Often it's only when you see the before pictures that you can fully understand the sheer amount of work that has gone into a project! Beautiful wood panelling has been installed throughout the house to bring back a romantic old school feel (see my guide to choosing wood panelling here). 

Kitchen units before 

Kitchen units after
Lovisa and Daniel upcycled old materials wherever possible. In the kitchen old wardrobe doors were installed and then painted with linseed oil paint. 

The oven is from Bertazzoni and most of the furniture is secondhand. 

Lovisa made the coffee table by hand. The Viscontea lamp is by Flos. 

I absolutely love this wall lamp - Lovisa bought it from Strömshaga. The rug is from Mio.

A Kyoto lamp from Mio hangs from the ceiling in the bedroom. 

Wood panelling has also been installed in all the bedrooms and hallway, giving the entire home a cohesive look. 

So inspiring!

If you've ever thought about buying a former schoolhouse, perhaps this is just the nudge you needed! 

You can also take a peek at other converted schoolhouses: 

Lovisa and Daniel continue to renovate their house room by room - follow the progress and feel inspired over at @lovisafurubo

By the way, thank you for your patience last week - my family and I had a really lovely time in Åre, Sweden. It was very snowy - a little on the cold side (my toes are still defrosting!), and so relaxing! back in the less snowy south now and all ready to go! Thank you so much for stopping by!


Photography @lovisafurubo, share with kind permission.

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A Vintage-Inspired Home in a Converted Church

Kicking off the week in style - rustic style, with Cheryl's perfectly imperfect home in a converted church the scenic rim of Queensland Australia. Cheryl is a stylist and prop sourcer as well as the owner of Albert and Grace store selling 'a curated collection of worn, weathered and imperfect wares'.  

Evidence of Cheryl's work can be seen throughout her home, which is filled with vintage and antique pieces from dressers and tables to lighting and nick nacks. The architect, is of course, also incredible. Think sky high ceilings, arched windows and exposed beams. Be still, beating heart. 

Is it the weekend yet, I need to go flea market hunting pronto! 

Such a beautiful home, in every way: the blend of furniture and accessories with all their time-honoured imperfections, the architecture of the former church, the surroundings. Everything! 

Has Cheryl's home inspired you too? 

See more snapshots from Cheryls' converted church here, and visit the Albert and Grace online store

Here are few more pictures from lovely Australian homes with a vintage touch: 

Love converted buildings? Take a look in this archive for homes in everything from former warehouses, shops, barns, schools, vicarages and even a fire station! If this one pops up first, just scroll on past. 



Photography courtesy of Cheryl / Albert and Grace

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An Old School Becomes a Light and Airy Family Home

I seem to have gone down a rabbit hole of Dutch homes lately. It all started with cabin Anna on Thursday, and then yesterday I shared Michiel's harmonious home. And today - I couldn't resist sharing this converted schoolhouse in Rotterdam!  When Aquine, Robbin, Nora and Nood first acquired the property it needed a major amount of work. But their extensive efforts have paid off and today the family enjoy an incredible, light-filled home with sky high ceilings, floor to ceiling windows, open-plan living spaces and a beautiful inner-city garden. Here are a few before and after pics: 


The former school needed a massive amount of work in order to convert it into a liveable space. As well as structural work, a mezzanine floor was added to create space for a living room. 

In the open plan kitchen, the wooden ceiling has been left exposed to add warmth - a perfect way to balance the coolness of the concrete floor. A pink accent wall also helps to add softness and break up the monochrome theme.

I love this vibrant bouquet - it instantly lifts the spirits and adds a wonderful splash of colour!  

Bikes are as big a part of life in Holland as they are in Scandinavia. This one is so elegant it can be stored in the sitting room area and actually adds to the space (mine wouldn't look quite as aesthetic as this!). 

The bathroom in the bedroom is bound to get tongues wagging in the comment section. I've always thought they're pretty cool as they have a luxury hotel-like feel. I'm not sure everyone agrees though! 

The bed is from IKEA (I was freelancing there when it was first launched and I loved to see how IKEA interior designers styled it: the rail can be used for clothes, hanging plants or nice fabric! The mirror is also IKEA. 

Garden before

The former school playground was extremely barren and need to be re-worked from scratch to transform it into a garden and outdoor social area. 


'Pardon the weeds, we're feeding the bees'. I love to see wildflower gardens - it's something I wrote about in my Lagom book. They provide a wonderful home for insects and look pretty too, I'd choose this over a lawn (if I had a garden big enough!). 

A patio area serves as a place to cook, gather and play come summer. 

In all, a lovely property - and knowing that it used to be a school makes it even more special. 

Is there anything that stood out to you? 

See more pictures (including the children's rooms) over at @oldschool.newschool

Would you like to see a few other conversions? Check out these amazing archives: 

Do you have a favourite? 

Puss or kram! 


Photography courtesy of @oldschool.newschool - shared with kind permission

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