March 11, 2016

Project Update: Living Room

i'm excited for today's post - our family room!! (warning - it's long!) i really love what we did in here and it completely transformed the room. it's a 180 from the original so brace yourself for the "before" as you scroll down!! and if you don't want all the gory details and just the pretty pictures, keep scrolling.

photo credit: kate renyi KER Photography

the whole reason we took on this project was to make better use of the space - before we had the tv on the left wall and a sectional that eventually made it's way down to the basement. i was anti-hanging the tv above the fireplace but it made for a tight squeeze out to the porch through the doors on the right. oh and not to mention the YELLOW walls courtesy of the builder and those red red RED stripes i put above the fireplace. i kind of can't believe i'm sharing this - seriously a hot mess and i hope you don't hold it against me :)


i then came to my senses a little and painted the stripes gray and the walls a blue gray. also changed out the light fixtures which made a big difference.


before we started on the work we changed out the rug, moved the sectional downstairs and added new chairs and a sofa from restoration hardware. but the chairs only exacerbated the space issue with the doors behind because they're even deeper than the sectional.


so i decided to make a plan:
1. rip off the existing mantle which was really too high to accommodate a tv at a decent viewing height and rebuild the mantle at a lower height and with a less traditional feel than the old one.

2. shiplap the back of the bookcases and wrap it around the fireplace. also replace the raised panel cabinet doors with recessed shaker style doors and restain the tops of the built ins which was a very traditional cherry stain. (it's little details like those that create a cohesive look)

3. paint paint and more paint! the existing built ins were a frumpy off white and as much as i liked the blue gray walls, i needed something more neutral to bring the space together.

4. move the chairs to the opposite wall and turn the rug 90 degrees to create easy access outside to the porch.

*all photos by kate renyi, KER Photography*







if you know that we have 4 year old twin boys you had to be wondering, where are the toys? see that gray bookcase thing? that's where. and also inside the console behind the sofa in the first photo, in the built ins, and on that side table next to the sofa too. ;)


sources: sofa | chairs | ceiling fixture | floor lamp | rug | steer art | wall color - BM silver satin |

8 comments:

Lacey said...

My question is how do you keep the upholstery so bright and clean with 3 boys and a pup?! Looks amazing- you did a beautiful job. Much more cohesive and I am impressed with how much the separation walls between the kitchen and living room define the spaces. Stunning!!

meredith said...

Excellent question! What I failed to mention is that the ONLY way we were going to do white-ish upholstery was by going with an indoor/outdoor fabric. Restoration Hardware carries perennials fabrics which are incredibly soft (not stiff like other outdoor fabrics of the past) and have a nice linen-look. It's pricey but I think worth the cost. I'm not freaking out every second about something spilling - but we also have rules about food staying in the kitchen. I also used it on our bench at the kitchen island. One downfall that I've noticed is that the fabric does pill where it gets the most wear.

Heather C said...

It really looks amazing, thank you for sharing! It is just so fresh and bright. I am slowly moving towards this bright look, but with a toddler, yes, it seems intimidating. I really love how you repositioned all of the furniture! It just looks incredible and seems to flow so much better now. I have a similar conundrum with the TV. I never even considered re-working the mantle to lower it - maybe that's the answer!

meredith said...

Heather, thank you so much, that made my day!! The mantle was definitely the key to the whole space :)

Anonymous said...

Can you tell ne what kind of wood is the coffee table?i cant find it on etsy but i would like to try and make it.do you know if it is oak or maple?thank you

meredith said...

It's white oak :)

Erin said...

I really love the whole look of this space. I've been looking for a great coffee table just like yours, would you mind sharing the source?

Kelly J said...

What an awesome makeover! Love Love Love!

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