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Updating And Preserving A Mid Century Modern Apartment

By Artur Ciesielski | Home

After 55 years this kitchen needed an update. The original kitchen lasted that long. It’s pretty amazing and I’m pretty sure the kitchens put in now will not last that long in good shape. None the less it make sense to do it, so this small two bedroom mid-century modern apartment got a small make over. The goal was to keep the vintage vibe and modernize it with a small budget.

The photos below represent the results.

A new kitchen was the main purpose of the remodel. The kitchen is from IKEA. Compared to the old one there is less storage room, but the drawers, pull out shelves and fixed shelves all add more utility and any space is more usable.  Well, and it’s new.

Mid Century Modern Apartment Remodel

You may notice no kick-boards. The way I like to do things is do the floor all the way to the wall with baseboards and all, then the kitchen cabinets go in and on legs with access to the space below. I’ve seen too many spaces under the cabinets and they are rarely pretty, gathering years of dirt and grime and making the space a prime candidate for bugs and other critters.  This way it can easily be kept clean.

Mid Century Modern Apartment Remodel

Mid Century Modern Apartment Remodel

Mid Century Modern Apartment Remodel

I like the kitchen, but I would do some things differently next time. The bathroom, however, turned out more to my liking. It feels luxurious, clean, warm and spacious despite not costing much. Note again the sink cabinet does not sit on the floor, making spills – which are more likely in the bathroom – easy to take care of.

The tile, which is amazingly well done and soid just got new grout, which really brought it back to life.

Mid Century Modern Apartment Remodel

Mid Century Modern Apartment Remodel

The brick wall is a highlight for this space. It’s, really, amazing that after about 60 years no one has painter over it.  The adobe brick adds so much character and warmth to the space and it’s one of the features that is always like by tenants.

I’m very pleased with the results, especially on the reasonable budget assigned for this space. Since this is an investment property, I’ll note that the payback period from increased rent on this space is 18 months.

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(3) comments

MCMLove 7 years ago

Great post! I love midcentury modern design. One great source for midecentury modern chairs and other furniture replicas is midcenturymodernapt

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Joe 5 years ago

I inherited a 1973 condo that looks almost exactly like this right down to the vertical blinds and parquet floors. It even has good Danish modern pieces in it. I had renovators in to price an update. Then I had a zen moment: Let the condo be what it is. I’m not about to go into camp-retro mode. But I am going to respect the architecture and style.

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    Artur Ciesielski 5 years ago

    Joe,

    Sounds like late modernism. This one is from the 50’s originally. Retro is good when it’s high quality and taken care of.

    Reply
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