Loving the Living Room
Well, slowly but surely, I’m continuing to make my way around the house for my room tours. Just in time to move.
The living room, while the most energy-inefficient room in the house (several degrees above/below the other rooms, depending on the season) is my favorite room in the house. It’s gotta be because of the IKEA curtains I had my heart set on for quite some time.
Here’s a little secret: with four windows, curtains can add up very fast. These IKEA beauties weren’t cheap at $60 per set (I mean, that’s not a ton but more than curtains at Target would be). Since the windows were so small anyway, I thought a whole panel would look a bit strange on each side of the window. Things would get really heavy really fast. Do you see where I am going with this? I cut each panel up the center and hemmed them, thereby making 8 panels from 4. Making that first big irreversible cut was so hard to bring myself to do! I’am really happy now, though. The bamboo blinds came with the house and I hated them until we got the curtains up, and now I love them. Isn’t life funny?
When we first toured the house we were to move into, I had visions of making everything white to look like whitewashed adobe walls you’d see in interiors of the southwest. So, that’s what we did! I feel that it helps the walls seem cooler and with the numerous but relatively small windows the room has, I needed light to bounce around as much as possible. So, with several coats of white on the walls, I was determined to infuse color into the room using textiles, art, and furniture, and prove to myself (a color addict) that a white room can be colorful!
The mantel proved more challenging than I originally thought it would be, since it’s pretty shallow. I know it looks deep in the next picture, but trust me there isn’t really room to layer objects (like Emily Henderson’s recent video recommends). Behind that large frame is a little cut-out, with a bumpy, non-functioning outlet in the bottom of it that makes it impossible to use as a showcase for doodads… yep, so we just covered it up. I like the height that the frame gives to the all-white fireplace, and it was a good opportunity to showcase some wedding pictures as well.
These photos are from the time I shot my home tour (in March?) but not much has changed. I have done some rearranging here and there, and I finally painted the inside of the fireplace in with flat black, and we sort-of-but-not-really finished the dresser by the front door. Another post for another time, that.
- Blue couch, free. My, my, my. This blue couch has been passed down through several dorm rooms, to Lisa (my old roommate) and now to us.
- Gray couch, free, reupholstery, $130. Last summer we drove to St Louis for our anniversary and then made a hop on over to the town where my dad grew up in Illinois (and where my grandma still lives) to pick up this bonafide family heirloom. The cushions (original to the 60s or 70s) were pretty rotted out so we got brand new cushions in a cool gray microsuede we picked up at Hancock Fabrics on clearance.
- Coffee Table, Goodwill. Refreshed from a pretty sorry state.
- Sofa table (holding the TV & Playstation), handed down to me when a neighbor passed away [not shown].
- Side chair, free, plus materials for my first reupholstery project.
- Side table (gray), got used when our alma mater had a garage sale. Side table (wood), is actually a drum!
- Entryway dresser, Goodwill–repainted using house paint (the same color as the guest room). Only two of the drawers were usable so I transformed the bottom section into a shoe catchall!
- Rugs, both natural fiber from World Market. The circle one from 2005 and the jute one from last fall.
When my in-laws recently decided to list the house for sale, I was pleased that the realtor agreed to just use the photos I’d taken of each room for my house tour on the listing. My first foray into real estate photography! If I want to get serious, I’ve gotta get a wider-angle lens, but I told him to pass my name along to any other agents in the office if they liked my photos!