Monday, August 15, 2011

Progress: The Living Room

I love Emily Henderson's Secrets of a Stylist on HGTV. When J and I style our home, we really try to incorporate both of our styles a la Emily. The living room has probably achieved it best. J wanted neutrals, comfort and function. I wanted details, texture and an overall cozy lived in feel. I think we've really achieved a cross between the two in our living room. I'll call it cozy function.

We see our living room as a place to relax and entertain friends. We definitely wanted it to be livable. J is a big guy, so more than anything he wanted a big couch. When we were searching for furniture we ended up with an extra long, extra wide couch in a neutral color - it literally hit all of J's points. It worked out perfect because in the same collection was a chair with a floral print that hit all of my points.
When we bought the couch and chair, we also got a coffee table, end table and entertainment center. I originally wanted white furniture, but it would have gotten a bit too feminine, so we went with a darker wood. Now that we have the furniture, the main pieces are in place. It's time to start adding details, which is where more of my stlye will get to come in.
When it comes to details, we don't want to spend a ton of money. We've sort of gathered pieces over time from HomeGoods and West Elm. I think my favorite is the ruffle throw we have on the couch. The couch is super comfy, but it doesn't have a lot of style. I think the ruffles add a nice touch. I bought it on clearance at HomeGoods last year and they recently started carrying it again. I just bought it in a gorgeous green that we'll use in the spring. It's by Cynthia Rowley. I also added a furry pillow to the mix to get some of the texture I love. I'm hoping to add some more texture in the room, maybe adding a furry throw or maybe cable knit over the chair and throw pillows with different designs.
Last year West Elm had a big sale with 20% off your whole purhase, so I got a few items to accessorize the book shelf including owls, a mirror sphere and mercury glass votives.

J's favorite part of the room is our big screen TV. I think it helps tone down the girylness of the room, until I put on one of my girly movies. J's other favorite part of the room is the fireplace. This thing is going non-stop in the winter. It definitely adds to the cozy effect that I love, too.
We've still got a bit to do in here. The biggest thing is paint, which you can see we are deciding on by the paint chips over the fire place. We're thinking of doing just one accent wall, but I also like the idea of color blocking. J isn't too keen on that. The most time consuming project will be a collage wall. Because our fire place is off center and we have a long mantle, I think a collage wall will look better than just adding on picture over the fire place. We're also thinking of an area rug. I want something super textured, but J thinks it will get too messy with Sky pup. I know he's right, so we're kind of on a standstill with that. We have to paint a piece of wood that was added when the floor was installed. The big thing is just adding details. I love how the room is coming, but it doesn't feel lived in yet. I like collecting pieces over time because we get pieces that are really us. I don't want to run out and get things just for the sake of having something. Plus finding the details is part of the fun.

Other than that, I think it's pretty close to what we're going for. I think it definitely fits cozy function. It's come a long way from where we started, but still needs some work.

The in between:

We were given couches from a family member to hold us over until we purchased our own.
 What's your design style? Do you and your partner have similar tastes or do you have to compromise to find the right balance?


  1. It looks great! I love the neutral color palette!

  2. Hee hee...noticed the 'Just Married in Newport' sign. We got one of those as a wedding gift. It hangs on our front door. Since it's been almost four years, I just crossed out he 'Just' part.

  3. Love the little details on the bookshelf!

  4. All the changes look great! Love all of the details and personal touches you've added.

  5. @ Coasting anon, It's a Newport wedding staple! :)

  6. I LOVE that chair. Looks great so far, can't wait to see what else you do!