August 29, 2011

Oh, Deer!

Last week I had mentioned that in addition to doing mood boards for the rest of my rooms, I hoped that I would eventually get a chance to whip up a little something for others. Well, I’m pleased to say that day has come much sooner than expected!
A few weeks ago, I went to visit my friend Amanda’s new abode (does nearly a year still count as new—I know, I’m a terrible friend for not visiting MUCH sooner). During that time, she made a comment, while giving me the grand tour, that she really should eventually get around to hanging up some art or something in the living room and maybe painting the walls. I, of course, jumped right on board and (practically jumping up and down with excitement) squealed, “Ooooooh! Let me help! We could do this and THIS and that and OMG-it-would-be-awesome to put up so-and-so!”
Ok. Maybe I wasn’t quite that bad, but it did get me thinking. I began doing a little bit of research with her particular style in mind and all of a sudden I was pinning pillows and baskets and cardboard deer to a board set up specifically for her. So, I went ahead and called her up and asked her if she still wanted help working on a design for her living room and she (lovely girl) said yes, she’d like that!
Now, in addition to trying to figure out what the heck to do with my own house, I’m also having a blast (getting distracted and) figuring out what to do with her house. :) Lucky for me, though, she puts up with it and is even kind enough to plan on letting me invade her home in a couple of weekends in order to play interior decorator.
Here’s what I’ve come up with while cruising the net, all the while keeping in mind Amanda’s earthy-funky-hip-low-maintenance-doggy-parent M.O.
I originally had in mind a soothing green scheme for Amanda’s living room, but as her husband said immediately upon hearing that idea: “I will not have the EVIL color in OUR HOUSE!” (For those who don’t know, Kelly is a HUGE OSU fan, which of course makes him an enemy to The-University-Which-Shall-Not-Be-Named, whose mascot rhymes with a bad word. You know which one I’m talking about…)
So I immediately began thinking about different color schemes and it didn’t take a whole lot of brains to decide that orange might be a better choice for these two Beaver-Believers.  This is the room that I found the most inspiring:

I ran it by Amanda and she agrees that it’s quite the quirky little beauty. She’s even a fan of the grey walls (so much that she and Kelly ran out immediately to buy grey paint samples—they’re going to get it all done before I show up to help with the finishing touches)! So, having got the go-ahead, I made up this mood board for my wonderful friend and her green-hating husband.

1. As usual, I flitted over to Design-Seeds to find a color palette that would fit. There were a lot of palettes featuring orange, but many of them also included the bad-G-color in them, as well. This one I liked because it had multiple shades of orange and a couple of shades of grey (you know, the good-G-color).
2. One of the things that I like about Amanda’s living room (and her whole house, in fact) is that it has lovely hardwood floors. However, I thought that adding an area rug to the living room would not only break up the expanse of hardwood (um…), but also anchor all the furniture together, creating a cohesive look. I chose this subtly colored rug partially because it was a nice neutral with a pleasing pattern (not too bold and not too boring), but also because it’s indoor-outdoor quality, which I think will hold up better against the pitter-patter of (not-so) little feet (have I mentioned that Amanda has two dogs—one of which is possibly part Great Dane—as well two cats? They’re her adorably furry children.)
3. Now, you may have noticed that in the inspiration room, there’s a large, floor-to-ceiling, painted-white fireplace. Well, Amanda has one that is actually very similar to that and (call me crazy) I just love what they did to break up the expanse of white brick. The orange background and framed porcelain deer head is muy odd and oddly chic, but have you seen how much porcelain animal heads cost? Try something like $300 for one that’s about 12”x16” (is it super dorky that I know that off the top of my head?). Anyway, I know I can do better than that. I found this little guy online for under $30, and while they offer it in white, I think that traditional brown will look lovely with the other natural colors in the living room, not to mention the orange accents.
4. I couldn’t resist throwing in a little puppy fashion in the pillow department. It’s like a grown-up (and way less annoying) version of those tacky pillow pets.
5. I know it seems like a lot of brown, however I chose this camel color throw not only to provide warmth in the upcoming autumn months, but also because I think it will look outstanding thrown over the arm of Amanda and Kelly’s deep brown couch (part of the room that absolutely has to stay for the time being).
6. When I asked Amanda what she wished she had more or less of in her living room, she mentioned that there’s not any overhead light in that area and that they’re making do with a floor lamp that they’re not so crazy about right now. Well, I’m a huge fan of the giant paper lantern (as Denny will tell you—each of our apartments has had one and I have plans to hang some in our bedroom soonish). I think a couple of these in varying sizes, hung in the corner, will add light and charm to the room.
7. She also mentioned that they have a lot of electronic stuff (which I knew, seeing as I’ve met Kelly once or twice before—that was sarcasm btw) and quite the assortment of dog toys (likewise, having known Amanda for more than three seconds—try closer to…12 years? Holy crap!). However, they have hardly any storage for them, so I picked out a couple of natural baskets in varying sizes and shades, which ought to do the trick when it comes time to corral them all.
8. And, lastly, I suggested to Amanda that instead of the lonely chair they currently have sitting next to the fireplace (it’s a little out of the furniture cluster), she should create a “command center.” I don’t know if that’s an actual term or if I just created it, but it’s what I call that space where you toss your keys, sort your mail, and put things that you need to remember to grab before you run out the door to conquer the world. These custom-covered magazine holders can help facilitate an orderly command center and are pretty darn cute, as well.
Holy crap! Over a thousand words on anti-Duck sentiment, cardboard deer, and being a pushy friend with delusions of design grandeur! Please accept my apologies. I hope you’re not too burned out on the look though, because I have serious plans to report back in a few weeks with some before and after photos, as well as the secrets to our DIY look. And until then, here’s the…
Product Breakdown:
Inspiration room by Judith Balis from HGTV
Design-Seeds color palette
4x6 Indoor/Outdoor Concentric Diamond Rug in Khaki and White from Shades of Light - $134
Medium Buck Jr. in Brown from Cardboard Safari - $28
Fuzzy Camel Throw from Pier 1 - $36
Hanging Paper Lanterns from Pier 1 - $6 & $9
Waterhyacinth Baskets with Handles from Pier 1 $12 & $29
Magazine Holder Inspiration from Aparment Therapy


  1. I am way too excited about all this! I am stoked to buy paint and get the walls done (which I am hoping to do next week), and I think I want to see if I can find a shortish bookcase to put in the command center...

    I think we shall have lots'o fun :) And Kelly says we can do "Anything that doesn't bug me" which seems to be a lot of leeway.

  2. @Amanda - I'm super excited too! I pinned some possible large scale art onto your-my Pinterest board btw. Let me know what you think!

  3. Really? A deer head? Really. Do you have to follow the original design that closely that you have to hang cardboard Bambi on the wall? Not a fan. You may have noticed.

  4. I'm back. Why don't you just hang a big old beaver over the fireplace? It could be a middle aged beaver too. Either one.

  5. Ahhh, but I love the ridiculous cardboard deer head! I shall call him Frank and he shall guard my humble living room with all the mad skills that can be had by a ridiculous cardboard deer head.

  6. @Kaydeemcdee - But it's SO Amanda! I knew right away that a deer head was essential to her new living room! :) And, see? She likes it! And they don't make beaver heads. Although if she prefers a nice buffalo, I could definitely work something out...

    @Amanda - Frank? Lol. I feel like the name Frank goes hand in hand with orange vests and hunting caps (the kind with little ear flaps?), but that just seems weird given his...uh, species. Oh, well, "Frank" it is!

  7. Well I have a strange habit of naming all the random life that goes through my house "Frank" i.e. "Oh look there's a daddy long legs, lets let him stay and call him Frank!"

    I was also considering Alejandro as an option :)