Thursday, August 12, 2010

living room and, driftwood?

I should probably admit I've been putting off sharing the full view of the living room because I'm still not even close to being in love with it, but I'm slowly on my way. Remember when the living room looked like this:

Just a big, blank space lacking any character at all. Well although it's not anything to "write home about", it's certainly an improvement.

Oh, what is that you see? Driftwood? Inspired by (& copied from) Holly at Life In The Fun Lane. The moment I saw that post of hers I knew I wanted to do the same thing. The problem? We live in, Ohio. Can't say I figured there'd be a ton of places nearby to search for driftwood. But, when my parents visited from Florida earlier in the summer they stayed at a beautiful campground on the Ohio River and thanks to a dad with some muscles and a supportive stepmom, I came home with driftwood to spare.

Is it too much? Honestly. I started to feel like the walls are now looking too "busy". And I'm not one for a "cluttered" space. So the Ikea shelves and my recent made over bookcase looked like this before:

And after removing some "clutter":

Better, right? My only issue has been wondering if the photo shelves are too 'modern' for what I'm going for. Since a slipcovered sectional is not in the budget right now, the plan going forward is to...
  • remove the white sofa
  • remove the recliner (for sure!)
  • repaint the buffet turned media cabinet white to match the coffee table
  • move the sofa so it faces the tv
  • put two slipcovered wingback chairs where the leather sofa is now
  • prime, paint, and distress a side table I recently purchased to sit between the wingbacks
  • and, finally get pillow covers made for the leather sofa pillows
Other than that I'm still trying to decide on what to do about those photo shelves. Leave them? Remove them and hang the driftwood there? Remove them, leave the driftwood in place and hang a vintage sailboat painting there? (More on that in an upcoming blog post. *wink) Maybe with a few baskets lined up below it filled with pillows and blankets for movie nights/snugglefests/guests to cozy up with? I'd LOVE to replace the ceiling fan with a lovely iron chandelier but Travis isn't having that. He says we "need the air to circulate since this is such a big room". Blah. :) And, the light that hangs above the entry, that can go too.

Before I end this less-than-exciting post about the 'always a work in progress' living room, I wanted to add that I've seen a few posts from fellow bloggers lately about heirlooms or things in their homes that have a special meaning and it inspired me to share a couple of mine. That conch shell you see on the bottom photo ledge? That belonged to my aunt we lost many years ago to breast cancer. Mid-thirties. Healthy. A huge heart. And, a caring soul. Taken so quickly from us. My uncle eventually remarried and understandably passed on some of the posessions he shared with my aunt to other family members. Recently my grandmother passed the conch shell to me. And it shall forever remind me not only of my love for anything ocean related, but of my love for my aunt who will always be missed. And, although the driftwood isn't something passed down to me by family, the memory of that morning near the river with my dad, stepmom, youngest brother, and Jack all walking along collecting the "prettiest" pieces while they affectionately laughed at my adventures will never be forgotten. It really is the little things in life that mean the most...

Thursday, August 5, 2010

living room sneak peak.

I am obsessed with stripes. Fabrics. Walls. Rugs. Doesn't matter; if it's striped, I'm sure to love it. So in thinking about what to do with our sofa pillows and searching for fabrics I've started leaning toward doing striped linen opposed to solid white linen. I mean how could one not want a little dose of this kind of lovlieness...

*all images courtesy of decorpad

Soooo, what do you ladies think?

*this* (the wide striped linen) for the large pillows covering the back of the sofa?

Or simple white linen for the large suede pillows with just a few striped toss pillows added?

By the way, recognize that coffee table? My $20 Craigslist find that used to look like this? And, the rug that all of my closest Ikea stores were sold out of but with a $29.99 price tag, it was worth my parents going an hour out of their way on their visit home from Florida this summer to pick one up for me at the Orlando Ikea. Check them out here.

So, there's a minor sneak peak of the always under construction living room. The dilemma now is, solid or stripes? Help. :)

Sunday, August 1, 2010


It's not anything new that my thoughts on what to do with our akward living room change frequently. But, I think I've started to accept that our giant leather (less than three years old) sofa must stay. Emphasis on started to accept. So, I've been going over ideas in my head and searching blogs and images online trying to find ideas that will make me not hate the giant dark beast that feels like an eyesore in our living room.

Recently I did come across an image on Rebecca's blog from a visit to her aunt and uncle's house that made me looove the look of their leather furniture with gorgeous gray walls and lots and lots of WHITE!

I am in love with this room. Leather and all. :) That chandelier. The linen romans and drapes. Giant picturesque windows. Dark hardwood floors. The fireplace. Um, that sailboat! I dream of it all. Buuuuut, since I only have the leather furniture and linen drapes, I'm thinking that may be a good enough starting point to go ahead and embrace accept our leather sofa and make it work for us. So, no slipcovered sectional for me just yet and back to the game plan of having white linen pillow covers made for the suede pillows that serve as the back of the couch we already have. I've decided though I want decorative pillows as well and in my search for "striped linen fabric" for those, I came across a darling little fabric store,

Sew To Speak fabric store not more than thirty minutes from our home! AND, she has a blog!

Despite not having found any simple linen stripe fabric like I thought I wanted, I did find this:

Not only am I obsessed with stripes, but I have a new found love of yellow. And, how could this NOT remind me of the beach??? Completely unlike my typical simple style, I think I need this fabric for fun summery toss pillows. Looks like a trip to a certain nearby fabulous little fabric store is in order...