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Bianca's Bright White Cottage




Cape Town, South Africa



Square Feet:


What I Love About My Home

My husband and I lovingly renovated our cottage from a dark and gloomy fixer-upper into a light and charming first nest. As our first major project together since our wedding our little home has grown with us over the past year and it really is our very own work of art.

Biggest Challenge in Furnishing My Home

Our biggest challenge is probably a little different to other small home dwellers as our cottage is double the size of our previous 1 bedroom apartment. With the opportunity to furnish new spaces our toughest challenge was to make final decisions on what new items to buy as they were likely to be items we'll keep for many years. The pressure to make these decisions before we moved in resulted in a few mistakes but a year later we're finally living with pieces of furniture that we love!

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Comments (49)

I love everything about this!!

posted by FallonLatrece on April 5, 2011 at 5:30pm
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At first I thought it was too much white and black for me but as I was looking through the pictures I really started to like it. Love how there are pops of color througout. I really adore the kitchen area. Good job!

posted by Tracy333 on April 5, 2011 at 11:28am
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The bedroom is really cute, what suprised me most was this in in South Africa, you definitely changed my perception of this area of the world

posted by applebomb on April 5, 2011 at 12:06pm
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Adore this! I remember if from a house tour (?) earlier... loved it then, still love it now.

posted by _kristinb on April 5, 2011 at 12:38pm
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I like how light-filled it is.

posted by martigny on April 5, 2011 at 2:06pm
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Very airy, pretty without being too girly. Don't you get sick of being locked into a color scheme though?

posted by MsPface on April 5, 2011 at 2:19pm
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Love the black and white with the clear/ghost furniture.

posted by RocketScientist on April 5, 2011 at 4:17pm
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The lucite makes everything more airier and gives a more spacious feeling... love it! The splashes of yellow are genius!

posted by coastalchic on April 6, 2011 at 9:33pm
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Very well put together; it´s airy, full of light and looks comfortable

posted by IAMSNWFLK - dondehogar on April 5, 2011 at 4:46pm
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Very well done. Elegant.

My only difference is in the choice of a more weighted chair in the dining room area, like an S chair. It just has no presence and overuses the chair type. But, again, very, very nice. It's hard to find anything here that isn't publishable right now!

posted by minimalist1 on April 5, 2011 at 5:12pm
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On the color scheme being locked in...man, it would so easy to radically change the color scheme with new colored pillows, throw, etc. and have a whole new look. That's how well this is done.

posted by minimalist1 on April 5, 2011 at 5:13pm
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I usually don't like the black/ white combination. But this is really gorgeous! I also love the kitchen and the floorplan of your apartment! The whole apartment feels so bright and airy. Very nice!

posted by California Sleepybears on April 5, 2011 at 5:37pm
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i love that you really commited to the black and white thing. very cool! and ven though i feel there's way to much ghost furniture, it works well with the space. the headboard is awesome! however, i really dislike the placement of the living room furniture.

posted by conejitoasesino on April 5, 2011 at 6:08pm
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I really like the use of the plexiglass chairs and tables, it helps a small place feel bigger, it kinda disappears, I'm a big fan of it.
A very sophisticated look.

posted by Chris in FTL on April 5, 2011 at 6:42pm
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This is just amazing, love it!

posted by ModHomekeeper on April 5, 2011 at 6:59pm
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I love the black-and-white combo, so fancy, and those chairs are beautifull, I want them. We have a winner right here.

posted by Ofelia on April 5, 2011 at 7:18pm
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Love the pops of yellow. Also love all the acrylic. Perfect for a small space.

posted by robertspeg on April 5, 2011 at 7:28pm
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Love your style, it all meshes together so nicely...great place!

posted by smoothsailing on April 5, 2011 at 10:56pm
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I really love the bathroom!
In the other rooms there is a bit too much plexiglass for my taste. It gets a bit repetitive.

posted by diridi on April 6, 2011 at 7:14am
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Thank you for all the kind comments :)

I opted to use the acrylic chairs and stools in the open-plan living/dining area as this space is incredibly tight and the see-throughness helps make the space feel less cluttered (as most of you pointed out). The 2 chairs in the living area are used when guests come to eat dinner - making a set of 4. We also have a lovely view of our side courtyard through the large sliding doors adjacent to the dining area and it's great we can still see it clearly through our furniture.

There also really isn't any other arrangement for our living area with the furniture we have as we tend to prefer to face our TV which is directly opposite the couch. Also the bathroom door is behind it and we think it is better to have this area face away from it :)

As for comments on the colour scheme I have always been a black & white sort of person and struggle to commit to lots of colour! My wardrobe is very similar in this respect. But each of the rooms does have an accent colour and I often change these smaller items when the mood strikes me :)

posted by Bianca-Jade on April 6, 2011 at 9:02am
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Is it just me, or is 982 sq ft NOT small???

posted by Bobolouli on April 6, 2011 at 2:02pm
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I 'puffy heart' your apartment.
My favourite is B&W and just love how you have made use of all the transparent furniture.

posted by Sacha on April 6, 2011 at 1:43pm
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I'm in love with this apartment. So dreamy and divine. Perfect.

The bedroom is my favorite.

posted by Reeses902 on April 6, 2011 at 1:51pm
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well i have to say if u are not a decorator/designer ...u should be!!!.....this space is smartly done...and though my tastes lean towards warm patterns and colors and comfort ...i have to applaud you for all of your choices....i love the painted head board....so smart....i love dark colors in bathrooms ...the black is perfect especially with the balance of white on the lower half....and i will say the use of acrylic is genius in small spaces because it really does make things look less cluttered....thank you this was a treat to see

posted by tdawg on April 6, 2011 at 3:09pm
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I love it! I, too love black and white with pops of bright color. Also am a fan of mixing the modern with hollywood regency touches. I know what you mean about the tv! I often feel like my tv gets in the way of different arrangements & possibilities.

I do feel there are quite a bit of items in that living space area, I could see you removing the ghost chairs (maybe for an entry way or in the office?), pulling the two tables together so parallel with the loveseat (like one longer coffee table). Then putting the ottomans between the tables and the tv. Or, pulling the love seat out a bit, putting the two tables on each side of the love seat and then putting the ottomans in front of the love seat. But... I can't really see the space around the area, you may cut into your walking space if you move things around? I know I have that problem many a time in my less than 800 sq ft space.

posted by mauishopgirl on April 6, 2011 at 4:52pm
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Bobo, the limit for the small cool space contest is 1000 sq ft so for this purpose, yes.

I think it just depends on where you live on what is considered small. 1000 sq ft in New York City would be considered quite generous but in the area I live, its small (my neighborhood has 1/3 acre properties, at the minimum) and often includes 3 generations living in one house, so 1000 sq ft would be quite tiny.

posted by mauishopgirl on April 6, 2011 at 4:58pm
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I cannot get enough of this cottage. I LOVE black and white but this is just PERFECT black and white. I love all the lucite! I love the yellow! I love the silhouettes everywhere! There is nothing I don't love.

posted by mitsu on April 6, 2011 at 7:53pm
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Wow the lucite. It looks cool and calm. Very feminine. I love it.

posted by ellepebe on April 6, 2011 at 8:43pm
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Too often a mostly white theme is boring, but you've pulled it off nicely; there's just enough black & bright colored accents.

posted by ccahillmn on April 6, 2011 at 9:43pm
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It is one of those places that I love looking at, but would never want to live in. It is just too white for me, but that is just personal taste. It is incredibly well designed and I love the layout.

posted by lollybox on April 7, 2011 at 12:47am
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Beautiful balance of white and black with the restrained use of that overused word color "pop". The color accents are wonderful - not too heavy. Each room makes me smile. There are so many charming surprises.

posted by HeraHere on April 7, 2011 at 1:24am
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@mauishopgirl thank you for your suggestion on moving the furniture around, I'll definitely give it a try! The dining table is adjacent to the small couch so there is just enough space to walk between the two comfortably so I'll see the other version you suggest! Thanks so much, it's great to get such lovely feedback to improve our home :)

posted by Bianca-Jade on April 7, 2011 at 5:12am
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Like a lot of those who have commented, I'm usually not a fan of so much white--usually being the key word.

This is beautiful. It is simple, clean, crisp, and tasteful.

I LOVE the pops of yellow in the living room. And, your end tables/coffee tables are brilliant. Source?

I WISH my bathroom looked like this.

You have a truly beautiful home. Wonderful job!

posted by Jessica Jeanne on April 7, 2011 at 11:15am
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ABSOLUTELY, LOVE IT! the way she used the white/black is clever and it doesn't feel "cold". i want a cottage like this one!

posted by mssunshine on April 8, 2011 at 11:41am
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it's very crisp, clean, and stylish, but not enough color for me.

posted by mekleiber on April 8, 2011 at 12:57pm
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Wow! Well-done black and white scheme; the bits of other colors really have serious impact when you see them!

posted by csc76 on April 8, 2011 at 11:17pm
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I saw this post a while ago and am so glad to see it again! I immediately thought that it looked different from the usual AT posts and I could identify with it- and when I looked and saw it was in Cape Town I knew why. From a fellow Capetonian- congrats on a great looking home!

posted by Red Cat on April 9, 2011 at 6:37pm
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The black and white classic.

posted by thriftmaven on April 9, 2011 at 11:14pm
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I had to come back and look through these pictures over and over...I love it more and more every time I look at them! Fancy shmancy :)

posted by pheebs79 on April 10, 2011 at 10:12pm
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You've got some nice tables in this cottage! Wow... I like.

posted by Ty.M4change on April 12, 2011 at 2:30am
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so charming! you've done a great job.

posted by Raeesa on April 16, 2011 at 12:37pm
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I love the color scheme and what I love about it particularly is that it can be changed with a few accessories to look totally different.

Someone thought there is too much plexiglass and ghost furniture, but I disagree. It works very, very well, and I can see that the clear pieces can be used in different ways throughout a lifetime. They are so very versatile.

This place looks much, much bigger than it is. Whatever reno they did is first-rate without being uber-expensive. It's just lovely.

posted by Terry3 on April 20, 2011 at 12:26pm
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Bianca, your home is so gorgeous! Can you source the bedside tables, please?

posted by r2b2 on April 20, 2011 at 1:24pm
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ohhh, i love your bedroom! so cute!

posted by Vedder13 on April 21, 2011 at 6:45pm
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@r2b2 the perspex bedside tables once belonged to my dad and he's had them ever since I could remember so sadly I don't have a source for them!

posted by Bianca-Jade on April 23, 2011 at 2:55pm
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Wow you totally pegged my style....black and white, glass and lucite. I love the stencils in the place. I will bookmark this and then drool over it periodically.

posted by House Voyeur on April 24, 2011 at 8:17pm
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Beautiful space. The owners have chosen a theme and have stayed true to it's intent, creating a very harmonising and balanced interior. Good use of glass and see-through furniture to make the cottage look more spacious. Splashes of colour balance out the use of white and black. Just gorgeous!


posted by Chantaeux on April 30, 2011 at 8:51pm
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My oh my... lovely... all works well together!

posted by Mrs T in Jersey on May 2, 2011 at 10:06am
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I love the accent color on the Ghost Chair! Would love to see more pictures

posted by xHale on October 14, 2011 at 4:38am
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