Thursday, May 19, 2011

Parade of Homes: Current Living Room

As of April 30, we have lived in this house for three years. Of the eleven homes we’ve lived in, there’s only one that we’ve lived in longer than this one.  In the past we’ve always been pretty quick about painting and decorating, I guess because we knew if we waited we’d probably move before we got anything done.  We will be in this house for the foreseeable future, and while we have most of the rooms painted, that’s about as far as it’s gone.  I don’t have much on the walls, and I don’t even have any family photos out. 

It has occurred to me that I never really finished the parade of homes, as I only showed the builder model of the house we’re in now.  I’ve been waiting for it to be “done”, but since that’s not happening, I’m just going to get on with the parade.  If you’d like to start at the beginning, I have chronicled all ten of our previous homes in a series:  Parade of Homes.

We had this house built, but it’s just a plain boxy builder home.  In addition, the living areas are not large.  You can see from the floor plan that the family room is about 14x14 and the living room is about 15x14.  I’m not complaining; I love my house, but trying to figure out how to make it look pretty and still be functional is eluding me.

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Part of the problem is that every picture I see of a room that I like, whether it’s online, in a magazine, or in a catalog, has significantly different bones than my room.  I have yet to see a anyone do a makeover feature of a small square room with no architectural details and wall to wall carpeting.  I was lucky enough to get 9ft ceilings, but magazine rooms, even the “boring, boxy” ones, have soaring 10-12ft ceilings.  They have hardwood floors and huge windows.  They have crown molding and 6” baseboards.  They are considered small if any one dimension is less than 20ft.  In magazine terms, my living room would be a nice walk-in closet.

Here is my living room right now, enhanced by my totally awesome photo splicing technique:

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These photos are older, so a few accent pieces have changed, but not the main furniture.  This will give you the full tour of the room and an idea of the size.

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Points I feel obligated to make:

  • I know the current drapes (top photo) are too short.  They were on clearance and I’m trying them out; if I keep them I’ll add some fabric to make them longer (but I’m probably going to go back to my dropcloth drapes)
  • the furniture is really too large for the room, but I will be replacing it this summer because it’s full of holes.  I’ve almost saved up enough to buy the Ikea Ektorp sectional and chair, which are smaller in scale
  • this room functions as the TV room, so while unfortunate, the placement of the armoire is necessary, as is having enough seating for the whole family
  • it’s hard to tell, but the room is in fact painted in the top two photos (Benjamin Moore Natural Linen)

You might also be interested to see the consultation I won from Layla Palmer of The Lettered Cottage a couple years ago, and her ideas for this room.

Weekend Bloggy Reading

9 comments:

Cannary Family said...

I think it looks cozy, but I agree about the drapes and the furniture. Only because the arms of the current furniture look like they take up a lot of real estate. the all color is great and i like the furniture placement. If it works for you - leave it!

Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

Fun! I like seeing other people's homes....gives me ideas. :) I agree that the furniture is large, but you also have more than one kid and like you said--it's a "TV/Family room." You need furniture that will be good for lounging/hanging out. I liked Layla's suggestion for the bamboo shades and the rug...will add some texture. Love your coffee table!!!!

Birdie said...

I really like the house! I live in a ranch with low ceilings and your home seems so open! I don't know if you plan on changing much, but laminate flooring is inexpensive, durable and easy to install, plus it looks great! Also, crown molding is dirt cheap, it's like $1 a foot at Home Depot. That big armoire is gorgeous!

FrouFrouBritches said...

I love, love, love the window with the # over the door!!! Is that room really small? Maybe it's just me, but it doesn't look small. I like your furniture. Looks comfy. Comfy is important to me! Our living room has crown, but it's the only room in the house. Love your armoire!! Very pretty!

Shug said...

This was a great post....I think our homes speak so greatly about our personality and by posting pictures of you home, it allows readers to get a real feel about who we are...
Enjoyed
shug

Mom in High Heels said...

Your photo splicing is awesome. You got skillz. ;)
We have two chairs from the Ektorp line and they are soooo comfy. I really want the sectional, but with us moving so often (military) we never know if we'll be able to fit it into our next house. Sigh. I can't wait to see yours!
I think you can do loads with that room.

Cozy Home Scenes said...

Trust me on this. If you went to the homes of 90% of homes in this world, you would probably find that they do not have magazine style homes either. The magazine style homes I've been in are pretty, but they are really not welcoming or inviting. I'm much rather have a home that people feel comfortable being in than a house that looks super pretty.

I saw the potential updates and they look great too. I agree with keeping the white blinds so the outside view will all match with the same colored blinds. However, I like the suggestions of the artwork. The color and texture would break up some of the beige walls. The room is already nice, but I'm sure it will be great when you get your new sofa.

Florence Carole said...

I have to agree that those drapes are way too short. Buying an Ektorp sectional is also a good idea. I'd love to see your living room after the makeover.

living room furniture sale

hand planes said...

We also had the same problem. Our living room was a little bit bigger though. What we did is we bought smaller furniture to make the room little bit cluttered.