Amstelveen

This is the place I would like to live
The building dates from 1921 and has long been used as a school until, in 1975, it became a place with workshops. When Viviën came to have a look here at an open house day, it had already been a favorite on Funda for many years. 'Not to buy, but just to look at. Until I came here myself, then I knew immediately I wanted to live here.' After a lengthy purchase process - the building is a monument and therefore protected - and then a major renovation, in 2014 the family could move in.

Black walls and rich fabrics
Viviën supervised the renovation herself. She made the drawings and picked out the materials. 'It was so much fun to do. I did have a fine team of people around me, though.' During the renovation, the impressive beamed ceilings appeared. In contrast to the sleek walls and floors, they provide atmosphere. 'You might think that it cannot be cozy here because they were such large classrooms, but I think we made it happen. The black walls and floors give the living room a warm, cozy appearance. I also adore rich, heavy fabrics such as velvet.'

Decorating houses is her job and hobby. Viviën finds beautiful and interesting furniture and accessories in thrift shops and on Marktplaats (the Dutch Ebay). 'It is difficult to describe my style in one word. I want something that is timeless. I start from a beautiful object or heirloom. It must be big, otherwise it will not stand out in a big space.' Viviën finds inspiration online. 'I start with an idea and I visualize it by wandering around on Pinterest.'


"The counters in the kitchen come from an old carpentry shop." 
 
The favorite place in the house is the spacious and bright kitchen. In the summer, even too bright. Viviën: 'During diner in the evening, the sunshine is a nuisance, and window decoration really is a godsend for this.' Roller blinds are very suitable for the high narrow windows of the building.

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