When it came time for me to tackle my living room, I realized a couple of things too late… the ugly wallpaper in the room was not decorative. It was functional. It turned out that in most places, that ugly wallpaper was covering up crumbling plaster walls.
So I tore the wallpaper off, discovered this disaster and had to form a new plan. I had to fix the walls. By the time I finished patching and attempting to smooth the walls back out, I realized that unless I put up new sheet rock in the entire room, I was going to have lumpy walls. I had been thinking about color, but realized that any strong color was going to highlight the lumpiness of my walls. I decided on a medium khaki. Ever since I’ve regretted that decision. My furniture is all in shades of brown. Most of my decor items are in shades of brown. The carpet is brown. The trim is brown. The room is very…. brown.
But now I’ve been considering a new color – a blue color and to heck with my lumpy walls! I’m going for it. I need color and I need light and shimmer and….
Okay, I’m going for color.
So I decided I wanted some blue… a light gray/blue. So I wandered on down to my local Hardware Hank where I found some paint samples that were pretty similar…
The top is close, but I’m looking for a more gray blue. If that makes sense….
Great – bye bye photo wall and hello wallpapered wall and book shelf!
The bookshelf idea comes from the new store I’m involved with. The owner of Italy Ava – The Handmade Marketplace (a shop where she sells her own handmade wares as well as consigns others handmade wares such as mine) had a bookshelf similar to a Ballard Designs book shelf. I fell in love. That will be the style I go with for my living room for sure…
(Shown here with my items in the boutique)
Except that mine will be dark colored because I’ll be painting all the trim in my room a dark color. So then I’ve been thinking about the rooms contents. I currently have light fixtures that are extremely plain. A very high ceiling in the room means I have to drag the kitchen table into the living room to stand on to change a light bulb (or I suppose I could invest in a ladder, but well, ya ‘know…) I’ve been thinking I should take advantage of that height and hang some chandeliers in their place – like this capiz shell chandelier Neiman Marcus sells – (*except obviously I’d make it myself because these are $995!!!)
To top it all off, I happened to wander into a new “consignment store” that recently opened in the area and found THIS HUGE FRAME! (I have to type that in caps lock because it’s just so HUGE) for only $25!!!!!!!!!!
(Both of these frames are in desperate need of paint, but WOW what a steal!)
The HUGE GIGANTIC FRAME I plan to paint and hang empty on the wall. The ship painting will have a frame repaint, but I’m keeping the painting because I kind of like it, and it has a really interesting story behind it (more on that in another blog).
My living room is tan. Which is okay, but it’s been tan for a long time. I’m drawn to brown. Most everything in that room is brown. The effect has become a little too “claustrophobic” and so I decided I needed a little more adventure in that room. My favorite rooms are those that look like an old English mansion library, and I just happen to have a large room with high ceilings, and so I could do that. The first thing that happened when I started thinking about the room, was I went to my favorite store and found this:
I’m not a big fan of the nautical thing, but something about this painting made me fall in love with it. Yes, the frame is a little beat up, but I think I can fix that. I had to have it.
Next, I started thinking about wall colors and saw in a television series, a wall color that caught my eye. I’m having a hard time finding out what it might be called, but I did find this picture of it online:
I’m so excited to get started on this room 😀
Since there are only two bedrooms upstairs, the two daughters share a room (or will once the baby is old enough to join her sister upstairs). Previously, Ethan (10) had a “cabin themed” room. Don’t ask me why? I don’t know what I was thinking. When baby No. 3 came along, we decided to switch the kids bedrooms around so the girls would have the larger room, and so I took the opportunity to paint both rooms and redecorate (I didn’t think Ethan would much appreciate having a purple bedroom).
Here’s Ethan’s room:
For wall art I used some photos of friends, as well as some vintage finds from the Treasure Stop and the Benson Flea Market in Sioux Falls. For his night stand, I used some pages from one of his favorite books – a vintage fossils book that was falling apart. I simply used Modge Podge to affix them to the table, and a coating of Modge Podge to seal them on. His bedding is still a work in progress. I haven’t found anything I like enough to use in his room. I divided the upper half of the room from the lower half using Valspar’s Chocolate on bottom and Sea Moss on top.
Here’s Madelin (6) and Olivia (the baby’s) room:
In the girls room, I used a Valspar paint (again) in the color Fairy on top, and chocolate on bottom. There’s a creepy attic door on the wall in this room, so to cover it up, I used a shower curtain and made a seam across the top – hung it over a decorative curtain rod that I suspended from the ceiling with plant hooks and wire. Then I put a feather boa across the top and pinned some butterflies to the curtain. Ta-da! Super girly creepy door cover! All of the shelves and picture frames in the room are junking finds and they all came in that ever-so-popular 1970s gold finish (even though they’re plastic) so I painted them all a matte white. I also used a fixture sleeve to make an impromptu “fake chandelier” in the window dormer just because it looked bare. I added some ribbons around the top with jewels hanging from the ribbon to dress up the brown crochet and make it look a little more “girly”. I found both the vanity table and the lovely chair with it (I didn’t even recover it! It just came this way!) at a garage sale for $15!
My living room has been the same way for some time now. While the tan and brown theme seemed like a good idea in the beginning, I’ve decided it needs a more mature look, so here’s the “befores” and someday within the next year I hope to be able to post the “afters”. I’m picturing a lovely shade of blue/gray on the walls, dark wood trim, and lots of classic 1920s Hollywood decor.