One of the things I always forget to do is to take before and after shots of our home whenever we move to a new space. We usually move countries every 3-4 years.
I’m usually too focused on getting the space decorated and organized so that we can feel at home immediately and start enjoying our space. I realize now though that it’s nice to see transformations, to look back and celebrate the hard work that we do to transform our homes into relaxing spaces for our family. I also hope that it inspires you to do the same!
Our home in Berlin was honestly my favorite, but I barely took pictures of it for the blog. I wish I did so I could look back at it. I did posts some pics on my Instagram, which you can find if you check out the hashtag #diplohome. You’ll see various versions of my homes in Jakarta, Berlin and Manila. You’ll need to go back a little but it’s all there. My beloved berlin diplohome.
I hope you enjoy looking through the transformation of our Master’s Bedroom here in Manila from when we started renting it – nothing other than the window treatment – to how it looks now.
I also included TIPS FOR RENTERS so that you know what you can negotiate for. You can negotiate with your landlord for certain things, if you offer to pay for rent 1 year up front.
Creating a relaxing space in our bedrooms is important so that we feel immediately relaxed when we enter and it promotes relaxation and rest.– Ayessa, UnDiplomaticWife
When we saw this place, I was so happy it had crown moulding, because it reminded me of our flat in Berlin. I did not like the peachy beige color, but I planned to paint it white to make it feel like our Berlin flat.
DIPLOTIP 1: Always ask your landlord for window treatments as part of your rental. Ask for roller blinds in white or light gray because this is the easiest to maintina. It’s not standard to have window treatments in rentals, but it’s one of the most expensive things in a home here in Manila.
DIPLOTIP 2: Ask your landlor to paint the unit in basecoat white – no mixing for shades. This will update the dated look because two-tone mouldings makes it look old. We totally forgot to do this so I had to paint the living room myself and hire painters for crown moulding of the rooms because they were too high for me to paint myself.
DIPLOTIP 3: Ask that all Airconditioning units be replaced with Inverter ACs. This will save you a lot of money! But avoid the brand Condura. We had so many problems with their AC units and they are also the most expensive brand. For AC I usually prefer Samsung. They have a 24/7 Customer Service hotline.
Don’t you just love the white crown moulding? We had it painted in BASE COAT WHITE in SATIN so that it would have a different finish from the walls which are matte. One secret to having an all-white home that doesn’t feel too clinical or boring is to have different finishes and textures of white.
White beddings are the easiest to maintain for me because you can easily bleach or use stain remover without worrying about fading. Usually when you try to remove stains on colored fabric, the area can come out lighter than the rest and this would really bother me. To keep things simple and not worry about matching sets of linens, we just use all white. because it gives us
Can you see which items give my bedroom different textures of white?
The carved birdcage art was purchased in Vinoti Living in Jakarta, while the winter forest wood art was purchased here in HabitatMNL. The A&G glitter letters were handmade by myself for our wedding reception in Germany. He had the tiniest wedding with only 16 people including my husband and myself, but it was such a wonderful time with friends so these letters bring those lovely memories back.
The Jeff Koons inspired lamp was from a museum store in Hamburg. I really loved it when I first saw it. The second time we went to Hamburg I went back and bought it. Thankfully it was our anniversary so I told TD it was his anniversary gift to me LOL! He was happy he didn’t have to look for a gift.
The photos with DiploBaby were done by The Stork Studio. You can schedule family portraits with them or, like us, take advantage of special promos to get cheaper rates. This was part of a 3 generation photo shoot. We all dressed it white and it’s perfect for our black and white TV photowall.
The white lamp below with the old timey string to pull down from HabitatMNL is another favorite of mine and TD did not want to buy it at first but I really think it makes this one of my favorite corners in our home. Especially with my lounge chair
I always try to recreate a version of this black and white themed photowall wherever we go so that the TV is part of the photowall and it creates a less visually cluttered space. The TV is usually a bit of an eyesore, especially for an all white space like ours. So combining black and white art and photos with pops of brass/gold creates a soothing visually uncluttered space for the eyes.
I don’t have a place or wall to put these on so I just placed them leaning on our windows and they are the first thing we see when we open the blinds in the morning!
TD has a little desk and ergonomic chair, called the TACIT chair. It’s a Japanese design and I found it preloved but in great condition from Ken Mishuku, the admin of Manila Furniture Art and Collectibles group. You can also see the designer Mid Century Modern pieces at Midcentury Manila.
Another thing I always try to remember LOL! Below is DiploDog’s bed and toy.
Bad decisions make good stories.– unknown
The best way to organize jewelry for me is still a cork board. I love using corkboards with white trim because it’s pretty and blends with my space. This way I can see everything i have. I did not drill any holes to attach this to my wall. Here is a trick to attaching things to your wall without drilling any holes.
When renting, pick and choose your battles when it comes to drilling wholes. For things like this I don’t, but for big paintings or the hooks for clothing (see clip hooks in the photo on the left) we do drill holes. It’s just safer.
I designed a full length mirror that does not need to be drilled to the wall. It’s easier and safer because it’s a heavy piece.
I just want to show you that my home is not perfect all the time. So showing you this corner in my There are messy wires and stuff I haven’t tidied (because life happens. When I do end up tidying the section below, I’ll show you how it looks after pictures!
The stuff on the left are our winter stuff from our trip to Japan, some of the stuff we bought during that trip and shoes that I’m airing out.
When shoes are kept in their shoeboxes or plastic containers in our warm climate, they become brittle & the glue comes apart so it’s good to regularly air them out.– Ayessa, UnDiplomatic Wife & DeclutterMNL founder
Do you have questions about decorating or organizing your home or bedroom? Let me know in the comments below or follow me on my Instagram and feel free to message me there too!
Very Minimalistic for me,So good to stay at this beautiful home of yours very neat and clean and very organized.love it!+
Thank you so much dear! It really helps with my mental health to have a neat and organized space. I’m still a it stressed witht he corner hehe. Hope I will be in the mood to fix it soon.