January 16, 2018

Client Project: Thomas Lane Living Room

hello! i hope you had a great long weekend - we had the strangest weather - hitting 60 one day and then back in the 20s now. these 40 degree swings are not cool. 😐 what is cool however is that i get to finally share a project that i worked on last year for some very special clients - my parents! you may be thinking why the change? the room had been largely unchanged for the last 10-12 years and felt heavy, traditional, and a little blah. they wanted a bright, fresh new look that still felt like "them". it wasn't easy to make such a big change and there were definitely times when i had to do some major convincing but in the end they trusted me and followed my vision. we were waiting on the last finishing touches and now i'm ready to share the entire project. all photos are by me so please bear with my photography skills. hiring a photographer was not in the budget for this project!

BEFORE! i stupidly don't have great before photos but these will help tell the story. the space was dominated by a blue sofa that was ridiculously comfortable but also ginormous. there was a leather ottoman, grain sack buffalo check chairs, and another wing chair. they had one side table, green walls, and valances with little buttons. 

new side table already added in this pic

check the valance in the reflection of the mirror!

new console and coffee table already arrived in this pic

here is a crude design board i quickly made for them. not exactly impressive but they weren't a paying client. :) because of their special status, it enables me to share every single source that we used which i love doing!

before i get to the afters, i thought i'd run through the things we kept, the things we removed, and the things we replaced. ok so what we kept: 
- overall floorplan
- the vintage persian rug they love
- the sailboat painting previously above the mantle
- the two small paintings near the sofa
- the wood console between the chairs
- decor items

what we removed:
- the valances
- the gigantic mirror and prints on either side
- extra wing chair

what we replaced:
- sofa and chairs
- coffee, console, and side tables
- fireplace art
- mirror
- lighting
- accessories

AFTER! my parents' style is much more formal than my own so i aimed to infuse some of my relaxed vibe without it feeling too casual for them. they also lean toward very warm tones. warmth is great but too much and it can feel dated. i tried to mix warm with more neutral shades to lighten things up! we opted to keep the floorplan and seating plan the same - they really like the way it works when they have company. there is a walkway from the front door all the way through the house out to the back porch that we needed to keep clear and that limited our options. my parents also didn't want two sofas - they liked the idea of separate chairs so we used stools that can be pulled up to create extra seating that's truly comfortable. as with pretty much every project i work on, there is a good high/low mix here. custom furniture paired with accessories from target and homegoods. let's get to it!

i think i'll break down each space by wall starting with the sofa wall. the sofa is by lee industries #3063-32 and is upholstered in lee's basket natural. the legs are stained weathered gray on maple with brass casters. i chose this style because it's streamlined yet comfortable and a total change from big blue (the predecessor). one thing that took some definite convincing was the pillows. it's hard to "go for it" on pillows and stomach the expense that are custom pillows but they really make such an impact in a space. especially in this case where we decided to leave the windows naked, pretty pillow fabrics were a must.

pillows from left to right: 1 | 2 | 3 (similar) | 4 | 5

my mom always wanted matching side tables and that was easy to deliver - these wood and brass tables with raffia tops are a gorgeous addition. since we used two side tables, we opted for a table lamp as opposed to a floor lamp. i love this lamp - it's interesting without taking over. the large gold knot is a favorite of mine as are the marble coasters. the blue and white bowls are antiques from thailand that my mom received as gift.

on the other end i used distressed vases with a little fern, a glass box we found at homegoods, and books my parents already owned. the art is from a gallery up near me called powers gallery.

vases | fern | glass box (similar)

on to the fireplace wall! this was a fairly simple makeover with new artwork that my parents selected themselves (using dimension guidance i supplied!) and a few new simple decor items paired with a couple of vintage ones. i left some open wall space to give a visual resting place since there is a lot to look at in the rest of the room.

the blue and white jar my mom picked up at a local boutique years ago and the brass trophy vase was a gift my great grandmother received at her wedding. i love that it has a home here and adds some wonderful character. the candlesticks were a last minute add that bring in some modern, architectural interest to an otherwise traditional fireplace surround. i also used my favorite white jars - they really work everywhere!

moving to the chair wall! we again used a streamlined shape for the chairs to work with the sofa but used a fabric with a small stripe to create some interest. i love the shape of the back and arm. the cabinet was an existing piece my parents love and i love the character it brings to the room. we moved the painting from it's original spot over the fireplace this wall and leaned it to help it feel less formal. the subject plus the thick gold frame makes it feel serious but leaning it takes the edge right off! i added a pair lamps and love the organic shape and presence they bring.

the chairs are by lee industries, style number 1293-01, and upholstered in lee's sterling flax. the legs are also weathered gray on maple like the sofa.

and last but definitely not least, the mirror wall! i knew i wanted to include a grasscloth covered console and a large round mirror here. the space needed some roundness! it's also a long wall so we needed to add something on either side of the mirror to balance the room - sconces were the logical choice (we didn't need more art) - but going through the effort of adding electrical was off the table. we started talking about non-electrified candle sconces and my favorite ones from dunes & duchess were the answer! this was another spot where i had to use my persuasive powers but i knew they would look amazing. we did navy lacquer and, as always, they came out so well. 

so many times you see stools that are intended as extra seating when guests are over but you look at them and think, how can anyone sit on that?! these stools are not that kind. they're large and comfortable and truly meant as a seating option. they are by lee industries #9259 with a wood base (charcoal on oak) and are upholstered in lee's migration blue. the bird pattern is truly perfect for this part of the country where birds play a big role in the local culture. plus we've always owned bird dogs (even though we don't hunt!) so it worked doubly well.

my mom fell in love with this oversize blue vase and it anchors the console table so well. i think having something so large helps to balance the stools and mirror. the mirror is 43" round to give an idea of scale! i love the lip detail that extends out beyond the glass.

almost forgot - the coffee table! we took a 180 from the leather clunker that was here before with this sleek brass and glass table. the brass tied in nicely with sailboat frame and the glass lets us see through to the rug.

my mom found that great tray at homegoods a couple of years ago and i'm still so jealous of it - it's perfect! the silver bowl is by georg jensen and a gift from my grandfather. the fern is a maidenhair which is super fussy but if there is one person who can keep it alive, it's my mother and her green thumb.

that's a wrap! the biggest comment from their friends who come over is how much larger the space feels. it's hard to convey that in photos but it's completely true - it's amazing what furniture and paint will do! the wall color is benjamin moore dune white and the trim is decorators white. as i mentioned in my stories on IG, we will likely layer a sisal rug underneath the existing rug since the one they have is a little small. i'd say the only thing i didn't "win" on was a ceiling mounted light fixture. but as with any client, what matters most is that they are happy and in this case, i know that's true!


Catlyn Banh said...

Beautiful transition! Great high and low mix.

Shelley - Crazy Wonderful said...

What an incredible transformation! Your parents are such lucky ducks to have you work your magic for them!

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