Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Before and After

I always like getting sneak peeks into people's homes, so I thought I'd do a little tour of my living room.

We've lived in this house for 17 years. It's our first house. A lot of people don't stay in the first home they buy, but this home has worked for us and we've been happy here. It's not perfect, and it's not fancy, but it really suits our personalities.

I took these photos in September, the day that I was waiting for an interior designer to come do a consultation. For years I wanted to have an interior designer come help me arrange my furniture. I'm very confident in choosing colors and furniture by myself, but when it comes to arrangement, I tend to plunk things down and never ever move them because I don't have a clue where things should go.

Here it is before the designer saw it.

Bookcase in the middle of the big wall. Piano next to it. Tree by dining room arch:
Couch under window, chair at a right angle to it. Table "belongs" to couch:

It's nice enough. It's fairly spacious. I didn't want to fill the room up with furniture, but I wanted to add a bit more seating if possible.

Now here is what it looks like after the interior designer moved some things and made some suggestions. (I did end up doing a little shopping and bought two new pieces.)
Ta da!

The couch is now centered under the window. The bookcase is next to the couch (I never would have thought of that!!!). The chair is turned at an angle, and the table now "belongs" to the chair. The tree moved from the dining room arch to the corner behind the couch.

The decorator suggested a coffee table, but I really didn't want a coffee table in the middle of the room, so I decided to get an ottoman instead. The ottoman can be used as a coffee table, but it can also serve as extra seating, and it is easily pushed out of the way if we need the floor space. Plus, if we had a coffee table, the kids would just put their feet on it, so why not get something that is actually designed to have feet on it?

The decorator also suggested moving the piano to be centered on the big wall, but that didn't float my boat. If the piano were centered, that would leave awkward empty space on either side of it--too big to look good, but not big enough to do anything with it--so I opted to leave the piano as-is and get an accent chair:
I need to fix the art work on that wall. It was hung around that bookcase being there, but now without the bookcase, it looks awkward. I am going to keep the photo over the piano, but my plan for over the chair is to hang four separately framed blackwork pieces. I'll get to that after the holidays.

So that's my "new" living room! I liked it before, but I think it looks more pulled together now. My only fear is, where are we going to put the Christmas tree? I think we'll have to remove a chair for the holidays!


Glenda said...

We've been in our house just shy of 9 years. When we bought it, we figured we *might* stay 5 years. I've never, ever in my life, lived in the same dwelling for even 5 years, so 5 years seemed a stretch. But the longer we live here, the more I fall in love with our house, the less interest I have in moving. If it doesn't feel too small as our son moves through his teen years, then, yep, I could totally see us staying here for 17 years or longer.

I enjoyed looking at the Before's and After's. I love the big ottoman!

We have the same dilemma every year about the Christmas tree. This year I suppose the Total Gym (which we leave open all the time) will get folded up and pushed against the wall, and then we can tuck the tree in that corner. I am SO ready to get it put up; don't think I'll wait til Thanksgiving this year -- we need Christmas tree lights, stat!

Isabelle said...

Your house is lovely. I'm amazed that you could afford something like this as a newlywed. Here (Edinburgh in Scotland) houses are very very expensive and yours would cost a vast amount. (Of course, maybe you're very rich.)

besomom said...

Isabelle, your comment has me giggling. No, no riches here. We were actually married two years when we bought the house, and my husband had been working for two years (and I'd been working for one) when we bought it, so we'd been saving up for awhile. Housing around here is not the least expensive in the country, but also not the most expensive.

Tricia said...

The room looks great!!

You could always decorate the tree you've already got in there! Just kidding - not much room for presents under it :^)

I occasionally move things around in my front room, but not drastically. It's our back room (office / guest room) that I really need to re-arrange. I even went so far as to measure everything and cut out little pieces of graph papers. I came up with a couple of possibilities - then I lost the pieces and nothing ever came of it. Start over, I guess!