Elisabeth and Roar renovated a ’70s house: “Decorating a home takes time”

Inspired by the architecture of the house, Elisabeth and Roar’s decor is a modern interpretation of the 1970s style. Located in Eidsvoll, Norway, the residence has been gradually transformed into a home where the past and the present blend together harmoniously.

A renovated 1970s house in Norway
The carpeting is not only soft to walk on but also ties together the dining and living areas. The couple has preserved some original details, including the decorative teak wall that separates the dining room from the entrance hall.


Elisabeth Ønseth, Roar Aarnes and their three cats. The house is located in Eidsvoll, 70 km north-east from Oslo, Norway, and has 384 square meters. The architect-designed house was built in 1969.

A renovated 1970s house in Norway
Elisabeth is an interior stylist. Together with Roar she has spent plenty of time renovating and decorating the detached house to create a cosy home they can enjoy for many years to come.

WHEN ELISABETH ØNSETH and her partner Roar Aarnes moved into the detached house from 1969 in Eidsvoll, Norway, a few years ago, they had a clear starting point for their renovation: time.

“Over the years I have learned that it takes time to settle in a new home. With this house, we have been in no hurry with it. This way the home becomes a more well-rounded whole than if you buy everything new and right away,” Elisabeth says.

The couple shares the 384-square-meter home with their three cats - a bit of a challenge considering that the couple chose to install carpeting in the living room. Scratch marks and cat hairs are a daily nuisance, but Elisabeth does not mind.

“Over the years I have learned that it takes time to settle in a new home.”

“We have to vacuum often and may also need to replace the carpet in a few years. But, regardless, I think would like to have carpeting in the bedroom as well. I am not so fond of consistent flooring, I like textures and playfulness - using different materials to create separate areas in the home.”

A renovated 1970s house in Norway
The large windows let in light from all sides, making the dark-painted entrance hall feel pleasant and inviting. The chair is a flea market find. The shelf from Ferm Living functions both as a coat rack and storage space.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
To create a modern, simple expression, the couple left out the upper cabinets and selected a white extractor hood that is almost invisible against the white back wall. The wide lower cabinets provide plenty of storage space.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
Elisabeth often scours flea markets for good deals. Marcel Breuer’s Cesca chairs in the kitchen are also second-hand - Elisabeth bought them for only 100 crowns (about 10 euros) each.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
The kitchen has cabinet doors in dark, sustainable bamboo, and the countertop in white Corian seamlessly ties them to the white walls. The salt and pepper grinders in the foreground are from Menu.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
The Madison sofa and Piero coffee table are from Bolia.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
In Elisabeth and Roar’s home, designed in 1969, rusty shades are a modern nod to the house's origins. The custom-painted cabinet wall is the center of attention in the dining room. The dining table is My Table by Normann Copenhagen. Gathered around it are In Between chairs designed by Sami Kallio for &Tradition.

As the owner and founder of her interior styling company Studio Ønseth, Elisabeth works with interiors on a daily basis, and also in her own home, every detail seems planned. When the couple moved in, they took down several walls to get a more open floor plan. Two previously separate rooms were transformed into a big kitchen area and the wall between the dining room and the kitchen was knocked down.

In order to preserve some of the original soul of the house, some details, like the decorative teak wall and sliding doors, were preserved. Vintage ceramics on shelves and tables also act as connectors between the past and the present.

”I love vintage and flea market finds, things that give a home some character.”

“I love vintage and flea market finds, things that give a home some character. I am also concerned about sustainability and therefore we have, among other things, chosen a kitchen in bamboo.”

A renovated 1970s house in Norway
Elisabeth is particularly fond of ’70s-inspired rusty colors and muddy shades, colors suit the house's architecture.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
The blue, gray and ocher pillows go together with the flowers in the vase. The sofa is an online flea market find and the Noguchi coffee table is a classic designed by Isamu Noguchi for Vitra.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
The 265 wall lamp, designed by Paolo Rizzatto, is produced by Flos. The side table is Vitra’s LTR Occasional Table.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
The few things that have been placed on the walls are often low to create a calm and undisturbed atmosphere. The shelf was painted the same color as the wall and placed on the same height as the day bed, another flea market find. The foam mattress is clad in a fabric that Elisabeth has sewn herself. The rug, a splash of color in the otherwise subdued room, is also a second-hand find.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
The bright bedroom is decorated with linen bedding that creates a gentle, charming atmosphere in the room. The sleek floor lamp blends in seamlessly against the white walls.
A renovated 1970s house in Norway
The bathroom was built from scratch, with black walls and the floor and shower in sand gray micro-cement. The result is calm and open, completely in line with the spa feeling the couple wants to evoke.

Elisabeth is also fond of colors. ’70s-inspired rusty colors and muddy shades are among her favorites, colors that also fit the house's architecture. The idea is, at some point, to paint all white walls with another color.

A relaxing spa feeling has been created in the bathroom by using darker colors.

“I find darker colors calming,” says Elisabeth. This is also reflected in the house’s newly-built bathroom: with black walls and a sand-colored micro-cement floor and shower, the objective has been to induce a relaxing spa feeling in the bathroom.

Elisabeth is very pleased with the result. Now, the only thing left is the attic.

“We have a big attic that we want to renovate. It will be our next project. The plan is to build four bedrooms there.”

Get inspired

In Between chair
Paper Collective
Green Leaves poster
Bottle grinders
Normann Copenhagen
My Table
LTR Occasional Table
265 wall lamp
Noguchi table
Linnea pillowcase

Production: House of Pictures Text: Linn Carin Dirdal Photos: Filippa Tredal Translation: Emmi Ratilainen

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