Casey’s Home Tour 2 Years Later

Two years ago, Finn & I closed on our condo here in Chicago. After months of searching and searching, we finally found a space that checked off all our must-haves.  When we initially walked in, we weren’t in love with all of the colors/finishes/decor…but we looked past those things and saw all of the potential in this space. Good bones, a large layout, and an ideal location.

We’ve now spent the last 2 years getting it just the way we want it. It was really fun to look back at these old MLS photos of our space before we moved in to see all that has changed in such a short amount of time. We didn’t do any major reconstruction, instead a lot of cosmetic updates to make it more our style.

Casey’s Home TourThis Guest Bedroom before and after is just one part our our Chicago Condo Home Tour.

Today I thought it would be fun to celebrate this two-year milestone by comparing what our space looked like then and now. I used the wide lens to try to capture the exact same angle as the “before” photos, so you can get a good sense for all that has changed.

So let’s get to my home tour…

Family RoomCasye's living room in her Chicago condo before the makeover.

Chicago Condo Home Tour: The livingroom after Casey and Finn have been in their condo for two years. What an improvement!Casey's Condo - the livingroom and kitchen before shot. First of all, the furniture in these "before" photos is not our style!
Chicago Condo Home Tour: An "after" shot of our livingroom and kitchen. We love the changes we have made including adding our amazing sectional!Augusta-Before-Family-Room.17 PMThis built in bookshelf is one of my favorite additions we made the livingroom after we moved in. It's made a huge difference!

The biggest project in this space was definitely the built-ins we had a carpenter build and install. I really have no idea what I would have done on that wall if we didn’t add these. Definitely worth the money as they add so much storage and style.

We also added blinds on the large front windows for some extra privacy. It wasn’t the cheapest addition, but it was a must as the blinds keep it cooler in here during the summer months, protect against the sun, and provide that necessary privacy.

Finally, all of the furniture and accessories…from the new couch, to the chair, and art.

Dining Room

augusta-main-living-space.31 PMOur condo has room for a dining room table, which we love. So many condos we looked at didn't have space for one at all!Augusta-Main-room-family-before.35 PMI love how the light comes into our main room, flooding the space with beautiful sunshine!

Calling this space a dining room is a bit of a stretch, as this is just an area with a table. But we looked at so many places in Chicago that didn’t even have room for a dining room table, so we are pretty dang happy to have space for this one!

In here you can really see how we changed the floors from the yellowy color to a nice dark stain. We did that before we even moved in, and it was a game changer!

KitchenAugusta-Kitchen-Dining-Room.00 PMOne of the main changes we made to the kitchen was to add a dark stain to the floor. We love the look, especially the contrast with the light colored walls and marble topped dining room table!Augusta-Kitchen-Island-Before.57 PMChicago Condo Home Tour: We didn't make too many changes to the kitchen, other than updating the floor and wall color. I'd like to change out the dark cabinets someday!
Augusta-Kitchen-Before.41 PMOur Chicago Condo Kitchen has a great kitchen island that adds to our counter space! We love it!

While I haven’t always been in love with the dark countertops and dark cabinets, I didn’t think it was worth it to change them out right away. Instead, I added a white subway tile to brighten things up, swapped out our appliances, installed a new faucet, and changed out the pendant lights. All little switches that made a big difference in the space.

Guest RoomAugusta-Guest-Room-Before.30 PMThe guest bedroom has undergone a lot of changes, including navy paint on the walls! And we added a faux-denza, a gallery wall and wall sconces. Augusta-Guest-Bedroom-Before.27 PMThe board and batten wall addition is one of my favorite changes to the guest room.

Well, I think this room wins the award for “most dramatic.” What a difference! The previous owners used this room as a catchall, but we decided to turn it into a functional guest room. The bold color was a scary decision, but in the end, I’m happy we went for it!

Bridget and I spent a whole weekend putting the wood on the wall behind the bed and painting the entire room “Dutch Licorice”. Then I built the fauxdenza for extra storage, added wall sconces, and hung a gallery wall of some of my favorite pieces.

Guest BathroomThe guest bathroom didn't get a huge makeover, but I did put in a new vanity mirror and new lighting.

The guest bathroom hasn’t received a ton of TLC, but I did make a few changes right when we moved in. A new light fixture, unique mirror, and some accessories have been a nice update to make this space presentable. I’ve hemmed and hawed about really re-doing this bathroom (new tile, new vanity, etc.), but for now, that project is on hold. Maybe someday soon I’ll get to it!

HallwayThe hallway also got the board and batten treatment! You know we love this look around the DIY Playbook. We use these hooks everyday - I'm so glad we added them!


Even hallways deserve attention, and Bridget & I transformed this small area in an afternoon! You know we love board & batten, and adding it right here by our back door has been a lifesaver. The hooks come in handy, and adding some custom woodwork makes this space extra special!

Master BedroomI love our master bedroom. One of the first things we did here was stain the floors a darker color. We also painted the walls of the master bedroom a light gray - when we moved in they were green! That had to go. We also added the DIY blackout curtains - a Saturday morning lifesaver!

My favorite room in the house…our bedroom! Right when we moved in, I was eager to get rid of the green walls and replace them with Benjamin Moore’s “Gray Owl.” DIY blackout curtains, a textured window shade, and a sleek black fan upgraded this space. Then I also transformed the corner into a small office area that has served us well over the past 2 years.

Master Bathroom

The master bath hasn't changed that much, but we did put in new pendant lights above the sinke and add some shelving above the toilet. Somday I'll change that tile!
A few small tweaks took this space to the next level too. I love the shelves over the toilet (lots of storage!) and after lots of back and forth, I finally settled on these new black pendants for over the sink area.

Back Patio

Our small outdoor patio got a major makeover with the addition of new wicker furniture, a rug and coffee table and lots of planters!
It may be small, but we’ve done our best to maximize our triangle-shaped outdoor balcony. I couldn’t be happier with how this space has turned out. I think next year we’ll have to re-stain the deck and I plan to upgrade our patio furniture, but for now, it’s working out really well.

I’ve gotta say it was fun to look back at these photos to see how far this place has come. I love our home and while we won’t be here forever, I’m definitely enjoying the years we are here.


The Year of Casey

Hey there!

I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m a Chicago gal teaching you how to design, DIY, and maintain your home…by yourself! Learn more about me right here.