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Leave it to Justina Blakeney to make a garage look chic. Typically one of the most overlooked parts of any home, the garage frequently doubles as de facto storage, which can often mean it’s overrun by clutter and boxes, looking anything but stylish. Not so with Blakeney’s space. With custom built-ins and eye-catching tilework, it completely turns the idea of a conventional garage on its head.
Blakeney first shared a glimpse of the transformation on her Instagram, posting a quick snap of the versatile room. “Okay y’all, our vacation home, err I mean, our garage overhaul is pretty much done,” she wrote. “I can nap, practice guitar, do laundry, and have a cocktail in here now, so I think we’re good.”
Part of a larger backyard overhaul, Blakeney documented some of the standout features on her blog. One splurge that the designer says was definitely worth it was the “bar” window: A custom window that opens up into the perfect little bar space and is primed for summer entertaining. Blakeney hinted at a more in-depth blog post detailing the incredible garage space, but we’re feeling more than inspired from this Instagram shot alone. If your garage is in need of a little TLC, here are a few styling ideas to steal from this bohemian retreat.
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Reuse as much as possible
Those beautiful cabinet doors on the wet bar are actually Blakeney’s old garage doors, repurposed. “We loved the patina so much that we didn’t even repaint them,” she says, adding that the original doors remind her of when her daughter was little and used to play in the backyard. “I love to include a little bit of the history [of] a place as an homage to its past, and these cabinet doors make me really happy!” If possible, try an upcycling project of your own—you’ll likely save money, and it’s a great way to add a bit of charm or personality to a new space.
Where possible, go custom
Blakeney was inspired by the white plaster walls of Greece’s Cycladic islands, and the only way to achieve a similar look was through custom-made built-ins. She opted for cement counters and storage, which, coupled with the organic shape of the shelves, closely mimic the vibe of a Santorini villa. Sometimes, a very specific look can only be achieved through bespoke fixtures, and if you plan ahead and budget for one standout feature, a custom piece can be totally doable.
Forget what you know about what a garage “should” look like
With blue hexagon tiles, a floating shelf, and a colorful vintage rug, Blakeney’s garage-slash-bar looks more like an indoor kitchen. There’s no rule that says a garage space has to include utilitarian floor-to-ceiling storage—if you have the extra space and don’t actually need your garage to function as, well, a garage, incorporate cozy elements to make the room feel like an extension of your indoor space. The attention to detail in Blakeney’s space is what makes it really stand out.