The attic tends to be a pretty underutilized space, but not so for these creative bloggers, who brought bold, functional designs to their previously underappreciated attics.
While having extra room for storage is always a good thing, there is so much opportunity in attic spaces—especially for those who have an eye for turning blank walls into something fabulous. Scroll through these impressive attic “before” and “after” transformations and you might just find yourself feeling inspired to help your own attic reach soaring new heights.
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Before: Brick and Brown
With a new baby on the way, Molly Mogren Katt of the lifestyle blog Hey Eleanor! was in need of some extra space in her 120-year-old duplex, which she already shared with her husband, their toddler, a cat, and their bed-hogging pup. The solution: turn the previously bare attic into a cozy and spacious primary bedroom where family (and dog) could relax.
About This Term: Primary Bedroom
Many real estate associations, including the National Association of Home Builders, have classified the term "Master Bedroom" as discriminatory. "Primary Bedroom" is the name now widely used among the real estate community and better reflects the purpose of the room.
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After: Primary Bedroom Oasis
One of the first steps in this attic transformation was to take out the back windows, move them to the front of the house, and replace them with some French doors to lead out onto the new deck the Katts had built off of the primary suite. The bedroom itself makes use of its previous attic identity with exposed beams and rustic wood floors, which are complemented by a king-sized bed (to fit the aforementioned dog) and a Craigslist-thrifted green velvet chair that provides a pop of color in the corner of the room.
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Before: Gloomy and Dark
Catherine and Bryan Williamson of Beginning in the Middle had their work cut out for them with the attic level of their 1900's home. The space required a complete re-working of the footprint, plus the addition of another bathroom so it could function more fully as a primary suite.
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After: Farmhouse Chic
If you’re like us, you probably didn’t see this gorgeous bathroom as a possibility when you looked at the “before” picture. But Catherine and Bryan achieved this—and a whole lot more—in their attic, which they reconfigured to create two mini wings with their own bathrooms. They made up for the expense of construction by cutting costs in other ways, including a few Craigslist finds in this room (including that elegant vanity).Continue to 5 of 16 below.
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Before: Extra Storage
Tamsyn Morgans, who runs the blog The Villa on Mount Pleasant, didn’t use her original attic for much beyond tossing stuff into storage that she didn’t have room for elsewhere in the house.
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After: Relaxing Retreat
The focal point of Tamsyn’s redesigned attic space is the cheery Chelsea wallpaper from Sanderson, which anchors the room with a vintage vibe. Tamsyn had the brick wall covered in plasterboard and then applied the wallpaper herself; she then finished up the space with tasteful details—plus a couple of plush chairs for curling up with her kids, a cup of tea, or a glass of wine. The new space is fun, feminine, and functional, serving as somewhere you’d want to hang (and not just fling a few boxes).
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Before: Empty Space
Claire Staszak’s attic space—which serves as the top level of her Chicago bungalow—left a lot to be desired when it came to utility and design. Claire, the founder of Centered By Design, had big goals for the space though, including turning this blank canvas into a stunner of a primary bedroom.
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After: Mesmerizing Primary
Check out this amazing new attic space, which Claire and her husband managed to brighten up in a myriad of ways to fit a more modern aesthetic. The space, which had previously been used to house the furry residents of a cat rescue, saw a complete overhaul with the addition of new paint and exposed beams, both of which add depth and dimension for a more open feel.Continue to 9 of 16 below.
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After: Clean and Cozy
Behold another awe-inspiring attic-to-primary bedroom makeover. Lindsay needed all of the room she could get in her 900 square foot house, though it took her four years of living there to finally put this space to use. Features include built-in cabinets to make the best of limited wall space (due in no small part to that deeply slanted ceiling), plush carpeting, and lots of Wayfair décor. Her pup, Sage, looks to be thoroughly enjoying the upgrade.
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Kelly Rae Roberts of the Kelly Rae Roberts blog didn’t have much appreciation for the original look of her attic, which included wood floors that had been painted orange (!) and thin plywood walls that let in every bit of heat or cold from the outside.
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After: Function Forward
We love to see a space reach its full potential, and Kelly Rae seems to have achieved just that by taking a totally inefficient space and bringing it up to date in terms of both function and fashion. One of the first things to go were those orange wood floors, followed by the inclusion of new walls and some skylights to bring in additional brightness and block out outside temps. Some built-in cabinets, a coat of paint, and an extra bathroom were all added to the space as well to make it a place that truly fits in with the rest of Kelly Rae’s home.Continue to 13 of 16 below.
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Before: Funky, But Not So Fresh
Laura Adams of Aesthetic Interiors was happy to help her parents redecorate their summer house in Maine, a project that included bringing this magenta-forward attic up to speed.
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After: Bedroom Beauty
Fortunately, this attic space already had all the bones in place—it just needed a new look. Laura achieved that by painting the ceiling and walls to add some visual height and then maximizing the limited amount of square footage with a day bed and a trundle so that the space could serve as a guestroom for visiting couples. Her inspiration was a cozy cottage look, and we think she accomplished both the appearance and the ambiance she was after with her classic but contemporary overhaul.
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Before: Storage Spot
This “before” picture was taken after Carissa Brown of the Bless This Nest blog cleared out all of the storage that usually inhabited her attic space—a task that took her quite a while, considering it was her go-to place for everything in her home that had nowhere else to go.
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After: Peaceful Nursery
It was worth giving up her storage spot for her new addition to have his own room, says Carissa, who hired a contractor to add in a window and finish the space before turning to decorating. She brought in a farmhouse feel with galvanized barn lights and pipe shelving, the latter of which allowed her to save big money as an alternative to built-ins. The end result of all that hard work: a comfy private space for her baby and some necessary relief for her older kids, who weren’t keen to share a room with a newborn.