100th Post and New Design Board Reveal!

It’s a milestone post – number 100! We’re surprised to be here already, and we’re thrilled that you’re here as well! So since we have a monumental post, we thought it would be a good one for a project reveal.

This project is a living room. The client is looking for a fresh look to reflect their casual and beachy style. They also need help with furniture arranging, as their room has two disparate focal points at opposite ends of a loooong room. An additional challenge is the lack of wall space – this room connects to just about every other space in the house, so three corners are circulation, and one full wall leads out to the deck. Here’s how the room looks now:

P3212991 P3212992 P3212982 P3212990

And here is the concept board we put together!

mood board

Here is our layout and elevation:

Grzybowski Living Room floor plan copyGrzybowski Living Room fireplace elevation copy

Now for the breakdown. We tried a ton of different layouts to try to reconcile the two focal points of the room – the fireplace and the TV – and there jus wasn’t a logical solution other than to stop fighting it and embrace the separate functions of the room. (A perfect solution would have been to move the TV to the fireplace, but a lack of power and cable over there made that impossible – plus it would have required some demolition to the fireplace that the client wasn’t up for.) We created a laid back area for multiple people to watch movies, and another area that can work great for conversation by the fire, or curling up with a good book. A great bonus is that the slipper chairs we’ve spread around the space are easily moved, so larger groups of people can come together for entertaining, as this couple is likely to do!

The client wanted to keep the woodwork finish as is, which is understandable since it’s a very tall ceiling that bridges between the kitchen and living room. We decided to go with light, natural colors, reminiscent of the beach as that is this couple’s dream home location. The natural woodwork actually fits in perfectly with this theme. We think that painting the fireplace white will help freshen things up, and will also help make those three awkward shelves disappear. We’ve also tried to accomplish that task with an asymmetrical arrangement of art and accessories. Additionally, repainting the brass elements on the fireplace with a silver high temperature paint (like Rustoleum) will really help with modernizing.

1-3. Our wall color is Santorini Blue by Benjamin Moore – this is a really great and versatile blue. In fact, it’s one of the Pottery Barn colors! We decided to do double curtain rods across the patio doors and create a full wall of fabric with patterned sheers and drapes from IKEA. The masculine geometric shapes here are a great counterpoint to the fabric we’ve chosen elsewhere. The sheers were chosen not only for the undeniably beachy feel of white drapes fluttering in the breeze, but because this is the south elevation so they may want to block out glare much of the time. The drapes we’ve chosen won’t fully darken the room, but will knock down that sunlight enough for daytime movie watching and should keep out most of the heat.

4. We opted not to get rid of the ceiling fan as we had an idea for a statement light fixture elsewhere, but we decided to replace it with something more current. An additional bonus for the room is that it has a light, whereas the existing fixture didn’t. By putting this on a dimmer, they’ll have loads of flexibility.

5. Our fancy chandelier is made of capiz shells, and should hang right over the corner slipper chair. This will work great as accent lighting for the space, or direct for reading here.

6. Because we were working in a large space with a limited budget, we decided that art-wise, we were going to get the most bang for the buck with an oversized stretched fabric panel. The floral print is feminine, but the large scale and coloring make it less intimidating for the man of the house. (Sara did this project herself here.)

7-9. We wanted to have a lot of seating and lounging possibilities, but as you can see from the before photos, oversized furniture is quick to overwhelm the space. The perfect solution here is a sectional sofa with a chaise lounge at one end. When it’s just the two of them, both people can spread out comfortably, but it could easily seat a group of four or five. A large square coffee table with clean lines and natural finishes is a perfect place to set drinks, and the TV will be at home centered on the wall on this fresh white unit. (Note: we love IKEA for so many things, but there is a fine line between picking up great accessories there, and furnishing your home with their most bargain pieces like a college dorm. Here we were sure to choose furniture items that are solid wood and metal, with features like drawer runners rather than slides for functionality and stability.)

10-11. The first of three slipper chairs is located in the corner under the previously discussed chandelier. We’ve paired it with these super functional ottomans that can be used for as many or as few things (footstool, side table, etc.) as the client wants thanks their nesting design. (In case these chairs end up beyond the client’s budget, we’ve found these that work as a great budget alternative. The other two create half of the fireplace seating area.

12-13. To avoid making that conversation area too formal, we selected this chaise lounge that is perfect for curling up with a book or magazine. We also have coffee table here as well.

14-16. We created an arrangement of natural finish frames from IKEA on the fireplace to help balance out the awkwardly placed existing shelves. We chose a bunch of naturalistic blue toned images from Vintage Printable. Alternatively, the client could fill these with personal images and photos. We also chose some glass bud vases and a faux coral sculpture to keep with our beach theme.

17-20. Finally, we chose several blue throw pillows for the sofa, and white lumbar pillows for the slipper chairs. We like to bring in an additional bold color to keep the space from looking too perfect, so we chose this bold yellow throw.

So there it is! We hope you like it, and we can’t wait to see the afters!


-If you are in need of a new design for a space in your home, read about our eDesign package here and contact us about pricing!

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