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  • This Couple Spent Around P800K To Transform An Old Apartment Into A Bright And Cozy Home

    They planned to work on a kitchen for their cakeshop but ended up renovating an entire home.
    by Cielo Anne Calzado .
This Couple Spent Around P800K To Transform An Old Apartment Into A Bright And Cozy Home
PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
  • With many families choosing to invest in a new property, it might come as a surprise that Sweetsell Aquino, a baker and mom of one, chose to renovate an old apartment instead. Since the mom runs a bakery — Sweet Sell, which offers Instagram-worthy cakes and cupcakes — she has always dreamed of a beautiful and functional kitchen.

    Sweetsell with her partner, John Paul, and their 2-year-old son.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros

    In a post on Home Buddies, Sweetsell shares that she did initially want a kitchen, but ended up with a whole house in the process. “Yung kusina na gawaan lang sana ng cake ang plano mo, pero bahay 'yung binigay sa'yo. After almost 1 year and 6 months na gawaan, utay-utay lang natapos din," the mom writes in her post.

    Their refreshed “munting tahanan” as she likes to call it, is easy on the eyes, inviting, and perfect for a small family. 

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    The apartment looked outdated before the renovation. With the help of an architect, they were able to revamp the exterior, making sure it complements the interiors.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros

    Choosing renovation over buying a new home

    Team Puti and Team Kahoy will like this for sure! From the main door, a spacious living area welcomes guests into the home. To go with the theme, the walls are painted white and most of the furniture are in neutrals.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
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    “Meron po kaming maliit na apartment na hindi na nagagamit. Since sayang po, nag-decide nalang kami na gawing bahay at ipa-renovate,” Sweetsell explains in an interview with SmartParenting.com.ph.

    “The home is located in Paracale, Camarines Norte, Bicol. I live here with my partner, John Paul, and our two-year-old son,” Sweetsell adds.

    The kitchen is the heart of the home. Since they own a cakeshop/bakery, it’s a must to have a spacious and functional cooking area where baked goodies are whipped up.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
    Before-and-after of the kitchen: A space dedicated for the oven is a must in this home, of course!
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
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    The old apartment, which measures around 68.4sqm, looks outdated and cramped prior to the renovation. To turn it into a spacious home that reflects the pegs Sweetsell found on Pinterest, it went under a major overhaul.

    “We spent around Php750K-800K all-in. Nag-loan po ang partner ko para may magamit kami sa materials and construction tapos ginamit din namin ‘yung ipon namin,” says Sweetsell.

    One of the things Sweetsell loves about the renovated home is its overall vibe — cozy and clean.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
    The dining area features a chic Scandinavian-inspired aesthetic with the use of the wood and white combination that’s a hit these days.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
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    Aside from hiring workers, the couple also tapped an architect to work on the exterior of the house. “If may budget po, hire professionals para ma-maximize ang space and safety. Make sure na mababantayan ng maayos ang paggawa at humanap ng marunong kasi baka mas marami po maging problem dahil renovation,” she advises.

    The bedroom used to have striking blue-green walls. With this new color palette, it looks more relaxing and ideal for sleeping.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
    One and a half years is a long time to work on a renovation but the results are worth it for the family. They had to stop the renovation every once in a while, especially when their budget can no longer handle the expenses.

    “Paunti-unti po [ang gawa] kapag may naiipon tuloy ang construction, pag naubos na, stop muna para makaipon ulit hanggang natapos na. Nung nakalipat na kami, interiors naman ang inunti-unti namin,” relates Sweetsell.

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    Before-and-after of the bathroom: What a transformation! Don’t you agree?
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
    The bathroom is one of the prettiest areas in the home, with its captivating cement floor tiles.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
    The toilet and shower area is separated from the sink with French doors that level up the overall vibe of the bathroom.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Sweetsell A. Dineros
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    One and a half years is a long time to work on a renovation but the results are worth it for the family. They had to stop the renovation every once in a while, especially when their budget can no longer handle the expenses.

    “Paunti-unti po [ang gawa] kapag may naiipon tuloy ang construction, pag naubos na, stop muna para makaipon ulit hanggang natapos na. Nung nakalipat na kami, interiors naman ang inunti-unti namin,” relates Sweetsell.

    Despite a few challenges which are inevitable during major renovations and demolishing some parts of the home that don’t go with the new plan, Sweetsell is happy with what they were able to accomplish.

    Slowly but surely, their home sweet home came to life, and it was definitely worth the wait and the hard work. As she shared in her post online, Sweetsell loves coming home to their space.

    “Sarap lang sa pakiramdam after 5-16 hours ng trabaho mo, pag uuwi mo makikita mo yung pinaghirapan niyo,” she muses.

    Want to share your home makeover and get featured? Email us at smartparentingsubmissions@gmail.com and tell us about your project. For more home improvement and renovation ideas, click here.

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