Problem Spaces Episode #1 Recap: “Extreme Angles”


Do you have that one awkward room or corner in your house? You want to enjoy your cozy home, but the space is too small, too narrow, or has some extreme angles that have you shutting the door rather than leaving it open whenever guests come around. Yeah, that room’s a problem space. It’s a space that’s so challenging to decorate that you accept it instead of figuring it out.   

But in this episode of “Problem Spaces,” which is now one of the recently added home renovation shows on HBO Max, I faced that problem head-on. I tackled weird angles in architecture, an awkward bedroom layout, and a space that felt too tight for the burst of energy it should be giving. And I have to say, it gave me all the feels helping two families turn their house into a cozy home. Read on to see what we did! 

Finding the Right Angles: Meet the MacRaes 

My first project in this episode was helping the MacRaes, a sweet family with three boys and one baby girl on the way, tackle their primary bedroom. This room had all sorts of funky angles in architecture that were keeping it from being the serene retreat they wanted. 

As a fellow mama who’s been through the exhaustion of pregnancy, I know that rest and relaxation during and after pregnancy is NEEDED. 

The MacRaes moved into their home in 2017 and fell in love with it for its charm. Each room was unique. And while they were fine making the rest of the house feel like a home, their awkward bedroom layout never felt quite right.    

There were angles everywhere, texture on the walls that felt like a 90s throwback, and their bedroom window (although a beautiful alcove) was positioned in a spot that caught the morning glare before they were ready to roll out of bed. There were quite a few problems.  

To take on the angles problem, Kim, aka Mrs. MacRae, tried painting the main wall a different color. But as I shared with her, a different wall color only accentuates the angle MORE. 

The Solution 

It wasn’t in the budget to change the walls completely, but luckily we didn’t have to. My first objective was to reduce the effects of the angles. To do that, I installed a floor-to-ceiling vertical shiplap to draw the eye up and give the illusion of straight walls and a beautiful, streamlined texture.  

Next, I painted all the ceilings and trim the same color to further reduce the effect of the angles.  

My final big project with the MacRaes was tackling the sunlight problem. While I love a window that gets good light, I also know that, as parents, the MacRaes needed every minute of sleep! We ordered custom drapery with a floral pattern to dim the effects of the morning light coming through the window while still keeping its original beauty. A clean, simple look that made a world of difference.  

After completing the projects, I finished pulling the room together by adding simple decor touches that complemented the new shiplap texture and spoke to the style choices and preferences of the MacRaes. This included some artwork (handmade by yours truly!), some lighting fixtures, and even updating some of their existing furniture with a fresh coat of paint and new hardware.  

We turned this problem space into one of their favorite rooms in their cozy home in no time. 

Entertaining Contrast: Meet the Stinsons 


It wasn’t just angles plaguing me in this episode of Problem Spaces TV show. When I met the Stinsons, a beautiful couple recently married, I also took on the problem of a tiny space. 

The Stinsons had an awkward room between their hallway and kitchen that felt like a crossover between a sitting area and a walk-in closet. And while they currently had an heirloom cabinet and couch placed there, they needed it to serve them in bigger ways. As a couple that loves having parties, they often found their guests spilling over into this room, but it wasn’t exactly keeping the party going. They wanted to make it work as a lounge and entertainment space.  

I was certainly up for the challenge, but there were some other obstacles I had to tackle first. For starters, the walls were black, making the room seem even smaller than it was. They had a ceiling fan that was too big for the space, and the one window they had to bring in natural light wasn’t getting the love it was due. Time to get to work! 

The Solution 

The biggest problem with the room was that it was tiny and needed to open up more. And just like with the MacRaes, we didn’t have to break the bank (or the walls) to make that happen.  

The black walls were the first to go. The idea of contrast was amazing, we just needed to take it down a little bit. So after painting on a thick coat of white paint, I put up a pretty wallpaper. This helped the room stand out from the rest of the spaces around it and turned it into its own little unique spot. By choosing a light and airy color with small details on it, it also made the room feel bigger.   

Side note: People often get scared of putting up wallpaper, but it’s really not that hard! Check out my tutorial here.  

After putting up the wallpaper, my next goal was to add some casing around the only window in the room. This came out beautifully, and you’ll see in the episode that framing out the window really draws your eye to the only natural source of light in the room! 

Final touches in the room included removing the oversized fan and replacing it with a pretty light fixture that helped the space feel more modern and installing custom hidden storage. This doubles as artwork and can be pulled down and used as a tabletop/storage for glasses – ready for the next time the Stinsons entertain! 

  We tossed their existing couch, kept the old heirloom cabinet (because it was so gorgeous!), and complemented it by mixing in some new furniture to add interest to the space. I seriously can’t wait to hear about all the good times the Stinsons will have in this space! 

Turning a Problem Room Into Your Cozy Home Retreat 

When you’re creating a cozy home, every space counts. And while I know it can be easy to ignore those problem spaces with extreme angles or small square footage, I hope this episode proves there’s always a solution!  

Whether it’s some vertical shiplap, custom drapery, light and airy wallpaper, or even some window casing, there’s always a way to turn a problem space into your favorite space.  

For more inspiration on tackling your problem space, watch my show “Problem Spaces,” one of the new TV shows on HBO Max! And to learn more about me, check out my website or follow me on Instagram

This post contains affiliate links to products that I used or recommend. If you purchase something through an affiliate link, I may receive a small percentage of the sale at no extra cost to you. I really appreciate your support!
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Let's be friends!

Subscribe to my newsletter to stay up to date on new blog posts and all of the exciting things to come!

By subscribing, you confirm that you have read and are agreeing to our terms of use regarding the storage of the data submitted through this form.

You May Also Like