While we are finishing things up with our kitchen makeover (aka- longest makeover in the history of ever), I thought I would distract both our minds with some pictures of our living room, as it is today. Well, technically – as it was a couple of days ago when all the kids were at school and baby was napping and I managed to keep it clean for 1 hour.
Our living room was the very first room we re-designed when we moved into our 1990’s home a few years ago. It was the very first “before and after” room I posted about in this house (original living room tour, found here). I kind of felt like it was the room I was trying to establish my style and the look and feel I wanted for our whole home. I loved it then, but after a few subtle changes through the years, I love it even more now. I imagine my style and our needs will continue to change and develop – as will this room.
I will talk about some of the changes and additions (or subtractions) along with the images – but if you like a good comparison, visit my original post. You’ll also find resources for paint colors and purchases in my previous living room tour. I would also like to mention some things I am thinking about changing – and would LOVE your input.
So, here is what she looks like on a bright sunny day.
The walk in view.
Turn your head to the left, view.
Walk in a bit and turn your head to the right, view.
Now, go stand by the fireplace, view.
And this is the shrink-down-to-a-child-size, view.
Any way you look at it, it is spilling over with light and cottage fresh goodness.
We still love our horse silhouettes (tutorial here) and don’t plan on changing those any time soon. The baskets under this up-cycled butcher block table are still put to good use with library books and all sorts of hidden clutter.
However, the top of this table used to hold a lot of nicks and knacks, and just started to feel too cluttered. I also discovered this spot has amazing light so I use it for a lot of my blog pics (if you’ve noticed). I made the decision to clear it almost completely off for a cleaner look and a quick work table.
What’s on there now is just a bit random. It is all my latest finds from my latest mommy sanity savor outing to my favorite antique and thrift stores. I just sat them there, and decided I kind of liked it for the time being.
Above you will see a little teaser sneak peak into the kitchen. Still working on getting that brick wall in the background just how I want it.
I used to just place my magazines on our side tables, but the baby was destroying them as quick as he could get his hands on them. Funny thing happened when I place our reads in a tool box – he left them alone (for the time being). It is pretty nice having my favorite magazines and our family scripture reading handy by the couch.
We still plop the kids bean bags under one of my favorite pictures. They get used often each day. A new and very loved addition to the room is my husbands childhood toy box. His sister made it for him and his twin brother when they were wee little lads, and his parents passed it onto us. It makes a great toy box, but an even better slide. This thing has stood the test of time.
Perhaps my favorite change in the room is the rug. Oh, how I LOVE our new rug.
I actually discovered it on Amazon one day as I was searching for vintage rugs. It is made from viscose fibers and is so darn smooth and silky. It lays nice and flat, even without a rug gripper underneath. I love that it looks time worn and loved already. Here is the actual link on amazon, if you would like to see the details.
Finding the perfect rug has actually been the biggest challenge in this room. It needs a big one, which of course is a cost challenge in and of itself. This one is 8 x 11, and works great for the space.
Just don’t bring up the rug with my husband . . . touchy subject. We have gone through 3 already and he believes I will never stop buying rugs. Poor guy. But I fully intend on letting this one stay for a loooooong time. At least a couple of years (wink). The first rug we bought was a striped outdoor rug (seen in original post, here). I liked it alright, and it was very affordable. But, the stripes just started to feel way too trendy for me, and I was hoping to steer towards a more classic/neutral living room. The second rug (actually gifted by my mother), was this jute rug I had been drooling over for a long time. I was so smitten when we laid it down, and I still just go crazy over the texture and natural look of that rug. However, it shed itchy little fibers EVERYWHERE and my kids constantly looked like they had been playing in a dog pen. That, and the hardwood flooring looked dusty in minutes after a mopping, due to those fibers. Drove. Me. Mad.
Good new is, I found a way to still love that rug. I put it under our dining table (reveal soon), and found that in an area with less traffic, it doesn’t shed near as bad and you can have a weeks worth of crumbs and the jute rug will hide it like no other! It just did not work as the main play area for my kids. But this viscose rug has been heaven sent. I was worried because I saw fuzzies for about a week, but after a few times over with the vacuum – I don’t see them any more.
Any way – long story about a rug.
On the mantel, I switched a couple of things up. I discovered a local gal who does abstract paintings from a special song you choose. She listens to the song, talks to you about why it is so meaningful, and puts it into a painting. Pretty awesome.
My husband and I have a special place in our heart for the song “Keeper of the Stars”, by Tracy Byrd. The painting she did for us has a lot of symbolism and meaning – all with some of my favorite colors.
If you are interested, her site is called “See Your Song” found here. Not an affiliate link, just spreading the love 😉
Last change up – the pillows I currently have on the couch are from Homegoods. Ya, I normally DIY pillows – but these were just too good to pass up. They look really great with a diaper baby boy. Oh, and that baby boy is the reason we removed our coffee table. Too many head bumps, but we are liking more open space anyway.
I just want to make sure you are aware – with 4 kids this room is RARELY this clean. But it gets plenty of love and play and is the center of our home. The couches are jumped on, and usually packed with toys. Shoes, art projects and pillows are often scattered this way and that way. But it is our home. And we are grateful for it.
Real quick – some projects that are on my to-do list for this space. I intend to make some slipcovers for the couches. We bought these light colored linen sofas a few years ago and I’ll be honest . . . they are looking pretty sad. Probably not one of my most realistic purchases. However, I would still recommend light colored furniture – just buy ones with slipcovers to wash. I am a bit/extremely nervous about this project actually. It may test my sewing abilities, but I’m giving it a go any way. We simply can’t afford new couches, and I can’t find slipcovers that I like – so naturally I want to make them myself. I’ll let you know how that goes.
Also, there is a closet in this room that is like one of those closets which you better watch out when you open it. I want to re-think the purpose of it, and create a functional closet where my kids can’t shove and run.
I’ve also been thinking about the mantel. I saw this picture, and wondered if I could get away with painting the rock so it is not so much of a contrast and so orange-y. What do you think?
Lastly, the hardwood floors. I realize they are perfectly good floors, but I can’t help but imagine being rid of all the orange-ish stained wood that was saturated in this home when we bought it. Some of you have commented how much you like them, so I’m probably making a few enemies. We have really thought about sanding them down to bare wood and re-staining or even (gulp) painting them – as beautiful old looking wood floors are not in the budget. But for the time being, I’m taking comfort in this article by a color expert, where she says I can work around 1990’s orange wood maple floors. So, for the sake of my marriage – I think I’ll let this one pass. Thoughts?
And now, I’ll leave you with a quick picture of some of the new shelving in our kitchen which the hubs built – details soon (I do hope!)
Thanks for sticking around! That was kind of a long winded post 😉
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