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Living Room looks "Blah": What should go over couch?
kellypmart
December 26, 2012 in Design Dilemma
My living room looks boring! I need something to go above the couch but I am at a complete loss.

Here is my problem. There is a wall with a fireplace that is angles out from the side of my couch. I have a large American Flag canvas there. It seems like it will compete with whatever I put over the couch.

Also, the couch is dark charcoal grey, but is looking more purple-like. I am not sure if it is the light blue and grey rug below it or what. In general, the room is looking dull.

What can I put over that couch that will brighten the room up (there is a mirror in the dining room right by this room, so I can't do that) and to tie it all together? Any ideas?

Please help. I SO appreciate it!
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judianna20
Is that the only spot for the sectional? Can it face the fireplace?
December 26, 2012 at 11:12am     
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larry1333
Maybe these??? Or maybe an Eagle?
December 26, 2012 at 11:17am   
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kellypmart
Unfortunately, yes. The wall across from the couch is too small for it. ;(
December 26, 2012 at 11:17am   
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kellypmart
I like the horse and the birds. It may look good to put a couple of the same variety of images in a row across?
December 26, 2012 at 11:19am   
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nikoyam
Personally, for this odd of a space I would not have gone with a sectional, or I would have choose a left sided vs. the right sided. There should have been a loveseat or sofa instead. Maybe even two large sitting chairs. For the space above the couch, I would create a picture collage with 3-6 well-framed and matted photos. If you choose personal photos, they need to be cohesive and cropped properly, maybe all in black and white. With the same frames. Wall color or paper is what will set the couch color in the right direction, it does appear purple, but that can be offset by the right wall color. Go to your local paint store, Sherwin Williams is good, and get some samples of gray tones in all variations and narrow down a color that will off set the gray sectional. Best Wishes!
December 26, 2012 at 11:27am   
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LM Designers
I think if you choose the proper mirror with pictures on both sides of it that would give the room more depth as well as bounce light off the wall. I use mirrors to make the rooms appear larger and expand any natural sunlight.
December 26, 2012 at 11:34am   
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ATGStores.com
Hi, Kelly! We normally wouldn't suggest this for a space that appears so high-end, but you may want to consider wall decals or Simple Stripes (http://www.atgstores.com/wall-decals-stickers_1297.html). They're inexpensive, easy to apply/remove and versatile, and you could create a design that fits more naturally with the space. Also, if you end up not liking it, you can just take it off. We hope this idea helps and wish you luck!
December 26, 2012 at 11:53am   
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kellypmart
All of these ideas really are tremendously helpful. Thank you all. I am wondering - for the mirror suggestion (I know, I said no mirrors!) - what would be the shape/size of the mirror you would suggest? What would the ratio of the mirror size to the smaller pics next to it that you would suggest? I am so off on dimensions sometimes. I am leaning towards this suggestion with some of the other ideas mixed in.
December 26, 2012 at 12:04pm   
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elklaker
My first thought is that the flag is the problem. While I like it, it seems out of place with the style of the room (and, I think, too large for the fireplace. Is there another place where you could hang it? The idea of black and white photo collage is great. And, as always, some throw pillows to incorporate color and texture. Enjoy the process!
December 26, 2012 at 12:42pm   
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Darzy
I agree it's the flag that is throwing off your space. The flag is more American Folk Art and everything else is contemporary. I was thinking a large abstract over the sofa, then a flowing tree decal on the right of the fireplace (to center the FP wall) then flow up over the FP. This will balance the FP wall and add a little pizazz.
December 26, 2012 at 12:51pm   
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orangecamera
If you love the flag (and I think it's okay to mix styles), put it over the sectional. Put something round over the fireplace, to help balance it out.
December 26, 2012 at 1:06pm     
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decoenthusiaste
Does the lounge separate from the rest of the sectional? Here's an inspiration where contemporary and traditional begin to mix pretty well. Can you float the sectional in the center facing the FP? Do you have a foyer or dining area where the flag would fit better? It is too large for the FP but if the sofa is floating you could put a long wood table on the wall where the sofa is now and use the flag above.
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December 26, 2012 at 1:32pm   
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kellypmart
Darn! I thought that flag was somewhat modern because it had brown paint splattering on it. Now things are getting a bit more difficult. I don't really think it will look good behind the couch because the colors seem off. I guess I could move it somewhere else in the house but I really don't want to.

Beyond the fireplace it is an open area.
December 26, 2012 at 1:55pm   
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ATGStores.com
Hi, Kelly! We actually agree with you that the flag is mod; very mod, in fact. Maybe we'd call it traditional if it were painted on old barn planks or something, but the American flag has been used as a retro artifact in countless contemporary design schemes. It works with your decor even if it causes aesthetic dissonance. It's edgy and we think you should keep it in the mix.
December 26, 2012 at 2:02pm   
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orangecamera
Yes, keep it. Especially since you like it so much. Don't let adjectives define your design. It has to *feel* right to you.
December 26, 2012 at 2:21pm   
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Nancy Hehmann
You have gotten a lot of great suggestions. You can look for wall art or photography on Etsy.com. It is a website with "shops" from all over the world and US. You can contact each owner easily with questions. You can input whatever you would like in their search engine such as Photography Venice, Paris, Horses, coastal or even a certain color. They also have shops with wall decals. If you like photography, I would be priviledged to have you view my shop, nancyhehmann. Have a Happy Holiday season!
December 26, 2012 at 2:46pm   
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Darzy
I think the flag could work as modern design. But, if you don't think it will work above the sofa is the same reason I don't think it works above the FP. The style/colors of the flag with the sofa and very nice rug seems off and they are close together. I think the flag would look good above the sofa, if you had a different rug.
December 26, 2012 at 5:20pm   
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elklaker
Darzy and I are on the same wavelength! Perhaps incorporating some of the red in accessories. I know that I sound like a broken record with toss pillows but, the color and texture are invaluable.
December 26, 2012 at 5:45pm     
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JDice
BINGO! My thoughts exactly!!! Add a splash of red (or navy if preferred). Some element needs repeating - color, motif....Even if you add a mirror, keep with the same finish as the lamp. Cool space!
December 26, 2012 at 6:10pm   
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groveraxle
The problem with the flag is that it is centered on the fireplace wall and the fireplace is not. It MIGHT work if the left edges of the fireplace and canvas were lined up. I would prefer to see a grouping of black and white photos in black frames centered over the fireplace and the flag moved somewhere else.

I like the sofa and little ottoman thingies with the rug. I would look for large artwork that echoes the purple-y tones you've got going there. Maybe a diptych or triptych. No mirrors.
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December 26, 2012 at 7:06pm   
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claudiann
I would like the flag over the sofa. Use a throw and pillows in blue and/or red. Over the fireplace use something abstract such as an large apple with a tall real plant on the off centered side of it. I would get a coffee table that the two ottomans would fit under. A comfy plush rug would warm and soften the room.
December 26, 2012 at 8:32pm   
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Ralston Decorating Group
I am not trying to put our flag down, but, it really needs to go!! The sectional is out of place, but, you already have it, so, why dont you paint the wall behind the sectional a metallic silver and hand a large painting in the center with vivid colors and make that wall very focal. I dont see a coffee table either, which makes the room feel " unfinished "
December 26, 2012 at 8:42pm   
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augustinao
i like mixture of gray with yellow, red, and orange. HEre are some ideas. I will say a few bold pillows, throws, and paintings might help
December 26, 2012 at 8:54pm   
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Darzy
How about this behind your sofa. This is cool, modern and kinda mimics the leaves on your rug.
It comes in 40 colors.

December 26, 2012 at 9:09pm     
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kellypmart
Wow. All of these comments have been incredible. My husband does not want to move the flag out of this room, so there isn't much I can do with that. I think I will move it above the couch. By the way, if the lamp goes over the couch, do I center it between the end of the lamp to the end of the couch? Or, do I center it in the middle of the couch still?

I will try to tie in some red on the pillows, maybe do a tree by the fireplace where the off-centered portion is. Then, above it do the black-framed themed pictures. Thoughts?

Any ideas on the patterns of pillows? As you can see I stink at design. HA!

THANK YOU ALL!
December 27, 2012 at 4:57am     
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claudiann
Is that wall above the couch flat? I would center the flag in the middle of the couch if it is. Don't worry about the lamp. Do you have a Steinmart where you live? It has a whole wall of pillows. I would pick three of whatever grabs your attention, take them home and try them. They would look good in the corner with a complementary color of throw on the chaise part of the couch. You could get a funky reclaimed end table to put by the lamp. I'm thinking of an small upside down barrel painted the color red in the flag. A black shelf centered above the fireplace opening would make a nice mantle. You could put pictures on it or if you do put black and white pictures on the fireplace itself you could add some color on the shelf. I just helped someone put such a shelf over the fireplace in an apt. It was simple to do and did very little damage to the wall with the holes ....could easily be fixed if you want to take it down.
December 27, 2012 at 7:49am   
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Darzy
BTW...I think ATG stores "Liberty definition" wall decal would look fun mixed with your photo collage...showing pictures of family and friends exercising their right to "Liberty".: )
December 27, 2012 at 11:22am     
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ATGStores.com
Thanks, Darzy! We thought it would pair well with the American flag, too. ;)
December 27, 2012 at 11:24am     
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Darzy
ATG..yes, relates to the flag too! Great suggestion!
December 27, 2012 at 11:29am     
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MAlps
I would get rid of that american flag. it really doesnt belong in this room
December 27, 2012 at 11:44am     
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Fawn Dunlop
Flip that couch! Keep the American Flag! Add a larger oval ottoman instead of the little one, put a nice wood tray on top. Add some red, cream accent pillow and candles to the room, you need some nice wood wall shelves, add some d├ęcor to pull in the Americana/country / cozy feel I think your looking for.
February 21, 2014 at 7:23pm   
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LEICHT New York / LEICHT Westchester
You may want to consider flipping the couch and adding something like this modular wall system. The unit would define the room and make the most use of your space at the same time. You can choose drawers and shelves in any color and the best part is they are completely interchangeable.

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Best of luck with your design! Let us know if you have any additional questions.
February 25, 2014 at 4:12am   
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