Remember many moons ago, when I showed you this mood board that I made for my friend, Amanda? And remember how I told you that she was going to kindly consent to me invading her living room and turning the whole space on its head? Well, this was the weekend I got to put the whole scheme into action! (Yes, despite having a somewhat horrific cold, I hauled my sick self down to Oregon to play interior decorator—how could I resist?)
First of all, here are some pictures of what the place looked like prior to the mini-makeover.
Amanda sent me these pictures after she and I talked a little bit about what she wanted to get out of the room. At the time, she said that her main complaints were 1) the bland white walls, 2) having no place to stash her pets’ toys or her husband’s electronic miscellanea, 3) the lack of overhead lighting, and 4) she hadn’t yet hung anything on the walls.
So I got to thinking about possible solutions to these conundrums and ended up making this mood board…
Which, as of Saturday, resulted in this room transformation!
Sorry about the somewhat awkward lighting in the first picture—we didn’t finish the room until fairly late in the afternoon, at which time the whole place descended into semi-darkness.
We (by which I mean, myself, Amanda, and Kelly) all love the end result, and I’m pleased to say that I think we took care of all of the complaints that Amanda used to have about the space. To give you a little idea of exactly what we changed, I’ve written up a little transformation breakdown for you.
First of all, Amanda and Kelly got the go-ahead from their landlord to paint the walls. They chose “Wheat Bread (720C-3)” by Behr. It’s a very nice, subtle grey with warm undertones, and in certain lights it takes on an almost taupe-color. They decided to get the paint in a satin sheen, which really bounces the light around the room and keeps the space from feeling dark. I’m so very much in love with it that I might have to put it in my own house somewhere.
In response to Amanda’s complaint that there was no overhead light in the room, we decided to add some large paper lanterns in the corner, where it was needed the most. I suggested the white lantern and Amanda (in a stroke of genius) also picked up the small orange one. The two of them together creates a sense of movement and the pop of orange is both warm and fun!
Before now, Amanda and Kelly had no accent pillows on either the couch or the loveseat, so I took it upon myself to sew up a few. The two for the sofa are 18” square pillows made from bright indoor-outdoor quality fabrics, so they should hold up to playful pups and lazy kitties. The second one is made out of sturdy, natural-tone canvas, although I wouldn’t recommend using it in any pillow fights, because the silhouetted dog and the beaded trim on the front are both done by hand—my hand, actually! I hate to brag, but I’m darn proud of that pillow, especially since I’ve never done either technique before.
We also addressed Amanda’s desire for more storage. I was able to round up some matching baskets at Joann’s that fit her coffee table perfectly. We put one on top to hold remotes and other electronic stuff, as well as two in the cubbies below to stash other things, like extra books and PlayStation controllers. The candle was one they already had on hand and it fit perfectly with the new color scheme.
Sadly, the rug came out rather crimped when we unrolled it, but you can see that once it flattens out a bit it’s going to look fabulous. The colors in the rug mesh well with the blonde wood floors and the warm grey walls, and the striped border creates an anchoring effect that holds the space together well. It’s also an indoor-outdoor rug (which will hold up better against the dogs), but it’s still very soft and made of some pretty fine fibers, so it’s not too rough to walk on barefooted.
Lastly, Amanda wanted to hang up some large, statement pieces on the wall and, after much deliberation, she and Kelly decided that instead of something abstract they really enjoyed the vintage look of this wall decal from Target. To give it a sturdy background and make it feel more like its own piece of art, I mounted the decal onto some stretched canvas. At first, we were all a little concerned about how much white-space there was around the maps, but once we got it hung up on the wall, the white really popped against the grey walls and we were all happy with the effect.
There were a lot of changes on the other side of the room, as well, including making over the mantle and installing a command center.
This handsome guy (lovingly named “Frank” by Amanda) is actually made of cardboard and is both whimsical and hip (deer heads are really trendy right now). We mounted him within a large picture frame with a bright orange and yellow backdrop, which I painted.
One of my favorite parts of this room is the large orange vessel that I picked up at Ross. I added some of my own dried grasses in it and topped the whole thing off with some twinkle-light-wrapped willow twigs, which can be turned on and off. The end result adds a bit of mood-lighting to the room and balances out the small wooden chest on the other side of the mantle.
For the command center, Amanda moved the out of place chair, relocated a small bookshelf from behind the couch, and organized the whole thing with some baskets, an OSU mailbox, and a letter organizer. She also hung up a whiteboard just over top of it. Now, they have a place to sort their mail, drop their keys, and leave each other little messages and reminders throughout the week.
By the end of the day, both Amanda and I were so excited about the end result that we could barely tear ourselves away from it (even though we hadn’t eaten all day and were STARVING by this time). The whole effect is warm and sophisticated, as well as being practical and durable. I can’t believe my first attempt at a room make-over went so well. Thank you so much, Amanda and Kelly, for letting me be a part of your experience and for letting me share the results on this blog! :) Now, if only I could get one of my own rooms to look half as awesome!