Giving New Life to a Cafe

This is a graphics software exercise, creating a completely new look from a photograph using Photoshop only :-). Please note that the cafe is fictional!


Take a look at the “before” photo below.

The original coffee shop

BEFORE image -- The original coffee shop.

The “story” goes as follows.

This small cafe located in an area with many modern, chic coffee shops, has gone bankrupt. “It was most likely because it could not differentiate itself from the rest of the competition”, opined the new owners, two sisters who grew up in London. Now they planned to run a new tea shop that served authentic English tea. They wanted the cafe to have a unique look and feel from the neighboring competitors. “We want to offer the career women who work around this area a comfortable, homey space where they could kick off their high heels and relax with their favorite book or magazine while sipping on fine tea,” said the new owner, Margaret Wren.

Design Concept

Here is the “after” photo. Photoshop rocks!

Redecorating a coffee shop

The coffee shop after redecorating.

The redecorated cafe is British Chic, a combination of modern cafe interiors with the comforts of a lovely English home’s library. The customer is greeted by two Hampton 9-light chandeliers from Lite Source (but modeled here in papier mache to be light-weight enough!). On the counter is a classic swan neck scrolls lamp by Inspired by Light, in the late Victorian style. Books and magazines fill the mahogany-veneered bookcases that line up the walls. The chairs and tables from the previous cafe have been reused but given an antique brass coating. Golden Bourgie baroque table lamps by Kartell–classical, rich and traditional on one hand and innovative and contemporary on the other–complete the look.

Presentation Board

Here’s a look at the presentation board.

The presentation board with floor plan and ad copy.

The presentation board with floor plan and ad copy.

We Would Love to Hear from You!

So, what do you think? Do you like this style? Do you have similar ideas or products to recommend? Please share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.


  1. slf says:

    I don’t think it’s a good idea to hang chandeliers outside the cafe. Is that really done? It seems a shame to waste their light on the outside…

    • clairekaiya says:

      You’re absolutely right! Only Japanese or Chinese paper lanterns can be hung out like that. My teacher said that it was physically impossible to hang a chandelier of that bulk on even a fixed awning. I guess that if I insist on displaying them that way I should note somewhere that they’re made out of papier-mache! It’s my over-the-top example of “function follows form”–putting chandeliers out front just to drive home a certain “look”…

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