Lauren Grossman bought her first home as an investment, but it has turned out to be a really fun do-it-yourself project.
Grossman graduated from LSU in 2017 and purchased her two-bedroom condo near the Garden District the following spring.
She liked that it was close to LSU and to her job at Covalent Logic, where she is a public relations account manager. Also, her mother and stepfather are just five blocks down the street.
"The location could not be more perfect," Grossman said, "but what really sold me was when I walked in and saw the courtyard."
The individual condos are designed around a large, open, multi-level deck with a massive live oak. A pool and tennis courts are behind the courtyard.
Built as apartments decades ago, the condos have spacious rooms and open floor plans with a kitchen/living room combination. There's two full baths, big closets and a full wall of built-ins in the master bedroom and kitchen area.
Grossman's living room/kitchen has neutral-colored tile floors that blend well with her color scheme, but the carpeted bedrooms were another subject.
"I was not a fan," she said.
With help from a friend, she tore out the carpet and laid wide-plank laminate oak flooring she got from a big box store.
Selecting paint colors took a little trial and error. She picked four different colors before settling on a soft khaki for the main room.
"I painted one whole wall before I decided that I didn't like it," she said with a laugh.
To complement the new wood floors in the guest room and master bedroom, Grossman selected two shades of gray with the master bedroom's hue having a little more blue. Draperies and other fabrics carry out the blue-gray theme throughout the condo.
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Grossman's biggest helper and adviser is her mother, Lou Hudson Coulter, who is redoing the home that has been in her husband, Chip Coulter's, family for generations.
"We are working on the two projects," Grossman said. "It's a fun little hobby. I go over there every day, and my mother comes here a lot."
One of Grossman's greatest pleasures has been decorating her new home.
In the living room, she's settled a large navy sectional sofa, a bar cart, a vintage-style mirror and a white apothecary chest.
At Tuesday Morning, one of her favorite places to shop, she found wonderful bedding and a rug. And, she said she also enjoys "bargain shopping" at her mother's home.
Grossman grew up in New Jersey and lived in Texas during her high school years. She moved to Baton Rouge with her family before she entered LSU. She didn't expect to stay after she graduated but fell in love with the local culture.
"It's different being here after college," said Grossman, who enjoys having friends from away visit, especially on LSU home game weekends.
She also relishes time spent with her older sister and two stepsisters.
"I love being close to my family," she said. "Because we are all grown, we can enjoy the fun parts of doing things together."