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Vintage, folklore and contemporary. Renovation of a Zakopane apartment

25 of January '24
Technical data
Name: Apartment in Skibówki
Investor: private
Location: Poland, Zakopane
Studio: Agata Popieluch Studio
Designer: Agata Popieluch
Photos: Anna Michalek
Area: 50 m²


  • design
  • implementation


In an apartment in Zakopane's Skibówki, modernity intertwines with history, thanks to a thoughtful renovation by Agata Popieluch. This is not the first such thorough metamorphosis of a Podhale apartment to the architect's credit. This time she focused on changing the interior layout, white, wood, golden details, as well as folklore and vintage.

The Zakopane apartment of 50 square meters is full of unique vintage furniture and folk accessories. The architect decided to combine two smaller rooms and turn them into a spacious living room with a kitchen. The space opens to the south, illuminating the interior, and the household members can look at the majestic Giewont.

Część dzienna została utworzona z dwóch pokoi

The living area was created from two rooms

Photo: Anna Michalek © Agata Popieluch Studio

In the living room, the orange armchair and patterned carpet, which survived the renovation, attract attention. Meanwhile, the wooden finishes, along with the white walls and gold details, give the space a light touch.

The interior is decorated with furniture, paintings and memorabilia that reflect the artistic soul of the owners. Noteworthy is a wooden bas-relief with a folk motif, hung in the hallway," adds Agata Popieluch.

Fornirowane fronty zabudowy w kuchni

Veneered fronts of the built-in in the kitchen

Photo: Anna Michalek © Agata Popieluch Studio

In the kitchen, for the veneered fronts, the architect selected a white countertop and glossy ceramic tiles. The cabinet, next to the round kitchen table, is complemented by a display case from the communist era, hiding a collection of unique glass and ceramics. The dresser is decorated with a gray-blue lamp, the color of which is, foreshadowing the ceramic tiles in the bathroom. These, juxtaposed with the texture of marble, form the backdrop for the free-standing bathtub and the custom-made wooden cabinet under the sink.

Łazienka z błękitnymi kaflami

A bathroom with blue tiles

Photo: Anna Michalek © Agata Popieluch Studio

interview with Agata Popieluch

Dobrawa Bies: What is the history of the apartment? Did the owners approach you with a ready-made idea?

Agata Popieluch: A part of a large house belonging to the owners' family was adapted into an apartment. When the clients presented inspirations that repeated bright interiors, lots of wood, natural materials and vintage elements, I knew it would be a good collaboration. They also had an idea for the functional layout, but I managed to push through a different solution, which gave us a larger living room connected to the kitchen on the south side.

Mieszkanie na Skibówkach, stan przed remontem Cześć dzienna mieszkania na Skibówkach

The apartment before and after the renovation, the architect left the orange chair

Photo: Anna Michalek © Agata Popieluch Studio

Dobrawa: In the interiors you can see a balance between elements from the communist era, folkloric and contemporary. How did you make your design decisions? What remained of the old decor, and what had to be categorically changed?

Agata Popieluch: The entire finish required changes—floors, walls, kitchen, bathroom. Most of the furniture was also replaced except for the orange chairs. On the other hand, design elements, such as numerous paintings, sculptures and ceramics, remained from the previous arrangement.

Korytarz, stan przed remontem Architekta zachowała drewnianą płaskorzeźbę w korytarzu

The architect kept the wooden bas-relief in the hallway

Photo: Anna Michalek © Agata Popieluch Studio

Dobrawa: What kind of atmosphere did you want to create in the interiors?

Agata Popieluch: I wanted the apartment to retain its soul, but in a refreshed edition. It was to be cozy and peaceful.

Łazienka przed remontem Łazienka po remoncie

bathroom before and after renovation

Photo: Anna Michalek © Agata Popieluch Studio

Dobrawa: What was the biggest challenge, and what gave you the most pleasure during the design process?

Agata Popieluch: There were no major challenges in the project, I was lucky to find investors whose sense of aesthetics agreed with mine. As a result, the very first version of the project was realized practically without changes.

Komoda z czasów PRL-u z kolekcją szkła i ceramiki Złota armatura w kuchni

The architect's favorite place is the round table

Photo: Anna Michalek © Agata Popieluch Studio

Dobrawa: Your favorite place in this apartment is?

Agata Popieluch: The round table in the dining room, where you can enjoy a majestic view of Giewont while chatting with your household members over afternoon tea.

Dobrawa: Thank you for the interview.


interviewed by Dobrawa Bies

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