“Property Brothers” stars Drew and Jonathan Scott work with a lot of famous people on their show “Celebrity IOU,” but few are harder to please than Gwyneth Paltrow.
This actress and founder of the lifestyle brand Goop has strong opinions about design, so the Scott brothers face quite a challenge when, in the latest episode, Paltrow asks them to make over the home of her assistant, Kevin. (Rather confusingly, the episode is titled “Gwyneth Paltrow’s Forever Home.”) She explains that Kevin has finally saved up enough to buy his forever home, a chic condo in West Hollywood, CA. But after mold remediation, this home needs some serious TLC before move-in day.
Drew and Jonathan have just four weeks to create a Paltrow-approved makeover. Here’s how they pull it off—plus one area Paltrow feels could stand for improvement.
Plaster gives a fireplace a modern look
With a chimney going all the way to the tall ceiling, Drew and Jonathan can’t help but admire Kevin’s fireplace when they first see the condo. Paltrow says Kevin loves that his new home has a fireplace, but knows the feature could use some work.
So the brothers give the fireplace a face-lift by covering it with clean, white plaster.
“We’re using an eco-friendly, thin-coat plaster and doing a Roman clay finish,” Drew says. “This is going to give the fireplace a smooth, matte-like finish.”
Paltrow even helps Drew apply the plaster. This change, though subtle, helps update the entire living room.
“We’ve given it a more modern aesthetic that goes all the way up to the ceiling,” says Drew.
Round furniture helps provide flow in small rooms
Kevin’s condo feels big because of the beautiful high ceilings, but the living room doesn’t have a lot of square footage. The brothers know that picking the right furniture will be a big part of this makeover.
“We want to make sure that this place feels spacious, that the flow is good,” Jonathan says. “And that means every inch, when it comes to furniture, is going to have to be thoughtfully worked out.”
So while the brothers originally envision a more traditional rectangular dining table, they decide on a petite round one, just big enough to seat four. The shape allows for more space to move around in the living room, proving that a round dining table is perfect for tight quarters.
“We need walking space around the table, we need room for the hearth,” Drew explains. “Everything is a puzzle. It’s like Tetris-ing this house.”
Arches add old-world style
During design talks, Paltrow says Kevin would love lots of clean whites and a Mediterranean design style. So the Scott brothers use lots of light furnishings and soft textures. To top it off, they turn two rectangular doorways into archways.
“In a further effort to bring out that Mediterranean motif that Gwyneth insists Kevin will love, we’ve decided to add a matching pair of elegant arches,” Jonathan says. “One leading into the expanded kitchen and the other over the dry bar.”
The arches give this living room a touch of old-world charm and certainly add to the Mediterranean aesthetic.
A black stair rail helps accent an otherwise white house
The brothers are used to going bold when it comes to color, but Paltrow really wants to stick to a clean, white aesthetic in Kevin’s new home.
“To add color or not to add color is always the question,” Jonathan says. “In this situation, Kevin wants that clean, white aesthetic.”
Still, the brothers know that they’ll need to add some dimension to the space, so they add pops of black, including a new stair railing.
The new railing is modern and a bit industrial, providing a good contrast to the soft Mediterranean look in the living room.
This lovely railing proves that a home design doesn’t necessarily need a lot of color—but it does need a bit of dimension.
Go simple but bold when it comes to bathroom tile
Paltrow is involved in just about every step of this renovation, from demo to design to finishing touches. However, when Jonathan goes to lay down the new black and gray bathroom tile they picked, she’s not pleased.
“To me, the gray and the black really looked muddy and sort of sad,” Paltrow says.
Jonathan offers to try gray and white tiles instead, but in the end, they decide to switch it out with a completely different design: large black hexagon tiles. The new tile is simpler, since it’s just one color, but it’s still a bold look when paired with the black walls.
Paltrow loves this new tile, acknowledging that sometimes it’s more chic to go simple on a bathroom floor.
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