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Design Dilemma
Design Dilemma

Is there hope for this living/dining room

azelizabethNovember 13, 2012
So many of you helped with my bathroom, that I thought I would get over my shame and ask for help with this room. First of all, the dining room table and desk behind it have been sold, I plan to put in a dark wood oval dining table. Also the drapes and 100 photo's above the sofa are coming down. So if you can visualize the blue sofa with the two chairs, lighting and some panels... my questions are: What color paint for the living/dining area and seperate color for hallway? I tried RH pumice, on the wall are swatches of Dunn Edwards silver polish and in the hall overcast. They look way too blue. I am not replacing the carpet or the tile (oh how I wish I could). I am not liking the house, yet it is almost all mine in an incredible neighborhood... so I am hoping I can update on a budget starting with paint, drapes, a throw rug, lighting, etc. So... anyone inclined to help me? I know the end result of what I like sophisticated traditional, but don't quite know how to get there. A few things...room is vaulted, tons of sun as I am in AZ, and the footprint of my house is perfect for us, it is just the decor that is well... yucky. One other side note...don't laugh as I am asking for a change... is there any way I can keep that curio or is it too dated (it is sentimental).

Thank you in advance... so many of you are so talented I sit in envy of the homes you design. Feel free to send links of any ideas or paint color names.
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I know the photos are not the greatest as the sun was hitting. The sofa I am keeping is blue/gray, the chairs are dark charcoal with the apricot, lime and blue ribbons, the carpet is cream and the table will be dark wood. I am stuck as to what to do for a paint color to begin with.
    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 5:19PM
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what do you mean by a curio?
    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 5:47PM
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Oops you can barely see it next to the couch. After I figure out some colors I will post a photo.
    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 6:19PM
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I think you have a lovely home. The curio cabinet is very pretty just as it is. I think when you change the drapes to something lighter and put your new dining table in the dining room, you will be happier. Since the dining table is dark, you should change the chandelier above the table. It would also be nice if you put a console table and a mirror or large painting above it in the entryway A large oriental style rug in the living room which has the blue tones in the paint swatches you have up right now would be nice. Once you have chosen your rug, then pull an off white or neutral color from that to choose the wall color. Just the few changes you have in mind should make you feel more comfortable in this space without having to spend a fortune.
    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 7:43PM
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Thanks. I was thinking of picking the paint color then the rug? Any suggestions on colors for the living/dining rooms and hall? I am unsure of DE silver spoon and definitely don't like overcast for the hallway. I wonder if the blue couch is stumping me?
    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 7:50PM
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Meghan Goodman Interior Design
If you are planning on a rug, I would pick that first, as you have so many more options with paint. I think you should find a rug and then pull a medium neutral out of it. Something like Sherwin-Williams Latte or Martha Stewart Natural Twine. If you want to go a different route, go natural with a soft green. Try out lots of samples on different walls, as green is hard to work with. Behr Premium Plus Ultra has some really nice greens: try UL200-16 Wasabi Powder or Benjamin Moore Georgian Green.
Another direction would take it a bit more modern: try a deep taupe like Martha Stewart Mushroom (MLS248).
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 7:18AM
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Any ideas on what rug may look nice with the blue sofa and the 2 chairs? What size usually goes nicely 5x7? I was thinking rug in living room and no rug in dining. Any thoughts on the DE silver spoon? Is it too baby blue? I appreciate all of your comments.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 7:44AM
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If you haven't purchased the table, I would rethink getting an oval. It leave those sitting at the end of the table with less room and it is hard to find table cloths. I have one and wish I had a retangle instead.

As for the wall colors, how about a warm cream or a light grey? I would do the whole space (hall, living room and dining room) the same color.

Though I would settle on the replacement drapes first before wall color.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 7:50AM
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Good thought on the table. The wall curves at one end so I thought oval would be nice. I keep going towards a light blue/gray because since 96 everything has been beige, cream and taupe. Given the carpet is staying creme and the tile is staying beige... I see some sort of color. I am not worried about window treatments as I will do panels. I do want to get some paint and rug ideas to go with blue sofa and chairs. Any examples of some rugs that may look nice? BTW... the table I lust over is the Ethan Allen Halthaway... not sure it goes. Trying to do this on a budget solo is never easy, I definately am keeping my day job :-) . Thanks.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 8:01AM
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can you post a few pictures of rooms you like? My initial thoughts: take down all those drapes and cornices. Put up matchstick bamboo blinds or similar to control the sun, and hang lighter drapes from a rod near the ceiling. Get a huge gorgeous piece of art or mirror -- I'm talking 4 X 5 at least for above the sofa. The coffee table is way too small and complicated. Get a big ottoman with a tray, or a big round glass coffee table. The curio cabinet is a little out of scale for the height of the room -- and I don't love the two tones of paint on it. I'd paint it one color with a contrasting color inside (maybe whatever color you make the drapes, or a blue gray like the couch.) . I would also paint the inside of the front door -- I don't love the builders oak. If you are going to show off wood, let it be really gorgeous wood. Also consider some great, primitive antiques to mix things up. Everything is really contemporary. Are you keeping the slipper chair? Not my taste in upholstery -- if you are keeping it, think on pillows to tie it into the couch -- maybe something in the same blue. Get a large area rug for the couch area to tie the chairs and couch together further. It needs to be 8 X 10 or larger. Much depends on the color scheme you are after. Replace the chandelier over the dining table -- that is important real estate. Make it a statement piece. There are all kinds to choose from. You can inject a ton of personality with that.
The general rule I use for decorating: just a couple of pieces should be eye catching. You dont want to make the room a jumble. Pick your battles -- I'd say: gorgeous wood table (I love round -- I regularly fit 8 around a 4' table) but I also have a 9 X 3 antique refectory table (don't be fooled: antiques are often much cheaper and better made than new.) Get slip covers for your chairs -- the lavender velvet is super dated but easily concealed and they look comfortable. post a note on my blog at howtorunyourlife.blogspot.com with your color choices and links to a few rooms you like, and I can post a bunch of suggestions for you there with pictures and links. --best pam
1 Like    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 8:08AM
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Wow. Thanks. I don't even know what a slipper chair is? The charcoal one with ribbon pattern? I am writing from my phone so I will post pics later. I like that sophisticated traditional look, nice patterned blue gray creme tug, dark furniture with clean lines, somewhat simple, etc.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 8:34AM
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I feel like of I can tie in a paint color and a rug with those sofa and chairs I can move forward. I feel a bit stuck.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 8:36AM
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Let me suggest something quite different from what you have that I think will look great -- paint the walls robin's egg or tiffany blue. Will look terrific with the couch and the (almost) slipper chairs (slipper chairs are upholstered with no arms). Paint the curio white on the outside. Paint the inside an accent color -- could be metallic gold (if you really wanna get into it, do gold leafing. Its easy and fun and shimmers beautifully. that will play with the gold in the chair). Or paint the inside lavender, or coral, or bright yellow. Bring that color out with some throw pillows on the couch -- if you choose yellow for instance have a yellow and white ikat print pillow, a yellow and white chevron, and something perhaps blue and yellow that works with the couch. Use a plain yellow pillow on the slipper chairs. Then have a large area rug with maybe a yellow and white medallion or moroccan graphic (substitute coral or pink or whatever if you go in a different direction on color). Slipcover the dining chairs in a coordinating yellow and white print -- easy to sew up if you don't get too fussy. Stick with matchstick bamboo blinds, but make the drapes white, and give them a yellow border on the botom or yellow pom poms. My vision takes you well away from the earth tones you seem to favor but will SUPER freshen it up. Sort of a hollywood regency look. Then paint the interior of the front door the same yellow (or coral or whatever). Replace the coffee table with a glass round table, big (or a tufted ottoman, maybe in navy blue velvet.) If you don't like blue, select another color and follow the same prescription. It's just paint, for the most part. I am standing firm on a statement chandelier -- something fun and if you do blue, I'd go with something rough textured to offset the lady-likeness -- like driftwood or similar. I'd make the dining table wood, and old as well. Think of your room like a well planned menu or meal_ you need something bitter, salty, sweet, smooth , crunchy. Same goes for decor: sweet (the blue and white) rough (sisal and wood chandelier), salty (yellow and white prints) sparkly (table lamps in glass or mercury glass), solid (table) smooth (white curtains)...
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 10:11AM
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I would replace the valances and drapes with white plantation shutters. Paint colour I would go with something like Sherwin Williams Rainwashed. Your home has interesting features and angles, play up on that. I would replace the existing chandelier with one that has more heft and shape to it.
I think a rug with grey, blue and red accents would give some punch, along with red cushions (i love Union Jack design). I don't think the coffee table works. Too small and too intricate. A bench style table would look good. I think the curio cabinet should stay as it has sentimental value, but find another room for it. The scale doesn't work in that room.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 10:13AM
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Meghan Goodman Interior Design
or http://ak1.ostkcdn.com/images/products/P12983002.jpg and slip cover the patterned chairs.
If you are keeping the dining room chairs, you could slipcover those as well, or learn to reupholster. A stripe that incorporates your colors would look great with some of the more curved lines of the rugs.
If you are going to paint the walls in a blue/grey you will need something to warm up the space. Try a wood sofa table behind the couch so it isn't blue on blue. I am not a big fan of blues in living spaces, but that is probably because the light here in the NW is so cold. Try the Affinity colors by Benjamin Moore: Exhale AF-515, Amsterdam AF-550 and Montpelier AF-555.
Your space and your furniture are contemporary, so you might want to add trim to make it more traditional. Think about installing chair rail and painting the lower section a deep color (Flint AF-560) and the top a lighter one (Exhale). Or Martha Stewart Slipstream (MSL272) over Shale (MSL276) and paint all the moldings Zinc (MSL267)
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 10:17AM
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Great ideas. Doesn't a chair rail or molding look funny with a vaulted room? That is why I didn't suggest it. I like the colors of the PB rug but really want something non-oriental. Any suggestions? There is a dining room in photo's that has a great blue, dark brown and cream pattern but it is custom. The dining chairs and table are sold so I am not keeping them. I really want a dark wood table and possibly a dark wood cocktail table. Any suggestions? Is DE silver spoon (you can see a patch on the wall) way too light? Should I start over in my thinking? My old sofa's are cream with rolled arms and rope fringe on the bottom... tuscany style.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 10:39AM
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Meghan Goodman Interior Design
Try looking at the rugs on overstock.com,or homedecorators.com. You can search by color and style. If you find one that speaks to you it could be a great spring board.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 10:57AM
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What size do you suggest? Does it go under sofa and chairs or in the center of them? I really appreciate your help. Now I am regretting the blue sofas... sigh.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 11:07AM
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Meghan Goodman Interior Design
I think the blue sofa can work, but painting the whole room blue will be tricky to pull off. The front (at the very least) of the furniture should go on the rug. Depending on the size of your room you will need a 9x6 or 8x10. I generally like bigger rugs. You can add nail head trim to the couch to dress it up.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 11:21AM
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You can go really classy and traditional. Light colored duponi silk drapes. LIght colored wood blinds are excellent with other window coverings...so practical. Your choice of a glass dining table was a good impulse, encouraging that "open", inviting feel when one enters the front door. I agree that you need to be careful with an oval table that it isn't too wide at its widest as to block visual and flow spaces. Unless you are committed to solid dark wood, may want to look at dining tables with a wood frame with glass inserts and substantial chandelier...the open room can handle that. Your home has contemporary lines that are nice. I personally like the "putty" color on the walls, not fond of the "silver", but then I am no decorator. Given any thought to installing crown molding? About 8-9 feet up..not at the ceiling...which would bring down all of the "cubic" footage, great for soft lighting. We love our tall spaces, but have trouble figuring out what to do with it! This would bring down the size of the walls, simplifying choice of art, etc. Rug first, large enough to get the frontall pieces of furthen wall color. By all means, keep the curio...the dining table I am suggesting (French or Italian, perhaps?) would fit with that, and still fit the sofa and chairs you plan to keep. I like the ottoman idea (maybe two smaller ones) with large trays so they can function as a table. Yellow seems like leaning toward a country space, but that's just me. I would not paint the curio. It can be staged with colored fabric to show off your collectibles without making permanent changes, and add a punch of color. A venetian treatment in your paint colors would give some "note" to your walls without reaching beyond your color comfort level. Good luck.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 12:29PM
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Paint color- try Benjamin Moore Bleeker Beige- has nice grey tones- I would stay away from blue paint on walls. As far as the curio- if you love it keep it . Houses look like catalogs, homes are filled with unique and meaningful items. Lucky you to have lots of sunshine!
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 2:20PM
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Interior · More Info

1. Change out lighting. Shown Z Gallerie pendant, also available in smaller size for foyer.
2. Replace drapes with place rods and buttery golden drapes like Pottery Barns Margo Medallion, on sale for around $59 a panel.
3. Remove throw pillows that match chairs. Replace with great prints from etsy.com priced from around $25. Don't worry about matching anything.
4. Paint a buttery gold or lighten up the color below for your lighter color carpet.
5. Add two glass shelves in the niche. Hardware stores can cut to fit and sell everything you need. The light will shine through the three areas and give ,ore options for decorating such a tall niche.
6. Those great pictures in the living room. Move these to the entry and group them like you have done but closer. Consider a gilded mirror in the entry to open it up and provide a place to primp before coming and going.
7. Add companion art pieces with a touch of blue and gold over the sofa. Make them LARGE! You have interesting pieces, maybe an abstract landscape.
2 Likes    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 3:03PM
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Great suggestions. My bedroom has been gold for 10 years... so I don't want to go there with the living room. I love that light. What about something like this rug with the DE silver polish paint? Then maybe the latte color in the hall? There is rug that shows up in the poplular pictures but it was custom, I love it... it is cream, blue and dark brown.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 5:29PM
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I love that idea but not so sure about the chairs at this point. The previous colors will go with the chairs.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 7:25PM
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Apricot walls, window panels the same color as the rug, have your throw pillows taken apart and put a full fringe in apricot.
    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 7:36PM
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I would do browns.
    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 8:00AM
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