A Colorful House Filled With DIY Projects and Kid-Friendly Decor

Practicality comes in the form of crafty projects and breathing new life to old pieces

Original Article: Cecile Jusi-Baltasar Photography: Dairy Darilag Pictorial Direction: Dagny Madamba and Paula de Guzman

For this family of five who has a habit of moving around in the last thirteen years, one is left wondering what made them stay for good. The deciding factor, according to the woman of the house, is no less than natural light. The moment she walked inside the structure and noticed the light that permeates the space, that “This is it” feeling came over her—specifically, that they will stay in this home for good.

Apart from the abundance of light, the split-level home is also filled to the brim with DIY projects, kid-friendly art, and decorations and pieces sourced from various places. The homeowner, in particular, employed some practical tricks—from printed photos framed with store-bought frames, down to nifty ways to modify existing pieces.

Take a look at this quirky house that this family can call their home for a very long time.

Read the original article ("Happy House") in the July 2016 issue of Real Living Magazine. Download your digital copy of Real Living on the Real Living App. Log on to for more details.

Living Area

In the living area, the huge windows allow for ambient light to come through. Ample seating options and an abundance of patterns—as seen in the fabrics—breathe life into this space.

Storage Detail

This red cabinet filled with plates, cups, and linens reminds the owner of her childhood memories. “I like it when things are beautiful,” she says. “To have a colorful life sitting around the table with your loved ones—that makes me happy,” she adds.

Decor Detail

The home explodes with so much color. Take for instance this spot—one wall has several frames of photos and works of art. These shelves also serve as storage provisions for the kids’ toys and shoes.

Dining Area

The homeowner sourced four of their nine-year-old dining chairs from IKEA’s “defective pile.” By coincidence, she managed to score two more chairs of the same style in Makati.

DIY detail

Even the man of the house has a knack for DIY projects. Case in point is this useful hook panel that clears the clutter for one of the house’s heavy-traffic areas.

Storage Detail

The kids will never run out of materials to read, as evidenced by this white IKEA bookshelf filled to the brim with children’s books. Other items are stored in baskets, reducing the cluttered look.

A few steps from the shelf is the well-equipped kitchen with an island that can double as a breakfast nook.

Master Bedroom

Fewer decorations find its way in the master bedroom, but the ones that are in place arguably stay true to the quirky yet refreshing feel of the house, such as the geometric mirrors, the floral fabrics, the plant on one corner, and the flora growing on the headboard, among others.

Decor Detail

A family photo hangs above the washi-tape wall mural depicting skyscrapers.

RL Tip: You can create different shapes and patterns using washi tape. Feel free to experiment and be creative. Find washi tapes at Hey Kessy, Level 2, Phase 2, Urban Turf, U.P. Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City.

Master Bedroom

The homeowner’s workstation features a desk and a secondhand couch. To breathe new life into her couch, she bought new cushions from Mandaue Foam and fitted them with extra fabric she had in the house—just by folding the fabric under each cushion!

Decor Detail

Mint green plus signs meet items in neutrals on this wall. Right at the center is a scratch map of the Philippines that the owner of the house received as a gift. Together with her kids, they can scratch off all the places they’ve been to as a family.

Decor Detail

This home exhibits how to make random decorations work. Get an idea from the placement of the small mirrors and a pair of figurines atop a woven basket.

Kids' Bedroom

The kids’ bedroom is spacious enough for the boys. Aside from the green bunk bed, there is also an area where the youngsters can play.

Kids' Bedroom

The carabao head from The Flying Dutchman looks child-friendly with its all-green paint.

Play Area

The family had issues with the flooring when they moved in—so much so that the boys had slipped on several occasions. To counter further accidents, the slippery floors were covered in rugs.

Nursery Room

Unlike the other areas of the house, the nursery room leans more on neutrals.

Nursery Room

This nursery is as practical as the other spots in the house. In fact, the woven basket pictured is the only item that the homeowner bought for the space.

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