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Design Dilemma
Design Dilemma

Help with living room redo.

peggybroughJanuary 27, 2013
I'm re-doing my living room. It is 11'5 x 12'8 with an opening that is appx. 5'7. The lace curtains are being replaced with white plantation shutters. The total window space is appx. 9'. The piano, curio cabinet and grandfather clock are sentimental but everything else goes, including and especially the carpet.
I need help on size and placement of new furniture pieces. Do I go with a sofa and chairs or a loveseat and chairs? How do I work these sentimental pieces in? It was suggested that I move the grandfather clock into the hallway. I love the idea but what do I put with it? I need help!
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Hi - I can see you've posted this a couple of times - One idea might be to start an idea book here, with examples of rooms/styles or other pieces of furniture you like. This will help get more comments/ideas for your room. One question tho - how high is the ceiling in there? The grandfather clock should look great in your foyer, if you have the available wall space (you may have to move console table/mirror). In order to make your "pretty" living room more functional, you will want more space for some side tables and more ambient lighting. But maybe, think of this as more of a "music" room and decorate accordingly? I'm guessing you probably have a family room where you gather?

Traditional Living Room design by San Francisco Interior Designer Kendall Wilkinson Design
Idea pix with curio cabinet
3 Likes    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 9:22AM
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Put a bright color on walls, a mirror above piano, recover chairs and sofa, hardwood or recarpet flooring.Take out coffee table and put in side tables with lamps. Take out clock and armoir and put in other rooms.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 9:30AM
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First consider the purpose of the room. Do you entertain there? Do you give private music lessons there? What activities do you pursue in this room? Would you like to use this room for something different? My piano is located in my family room in the basement. My first thought was to ask you if you could move your piano to a different location.

The other idea I had was to remove the architectural element between the foyer and the living room to make the room bigger. You'd still want to maintain a feeling of "entrance" somehow. Maybe you can remove part of the divider and keep the portion near the door. Your room is small like mine.

Once you know what activities you want to pursue, you will know what to do with the room. Don't keep something just because it was always that way.

The picture above the sofa is hung too high. I'd follow the suggestion to use it over the piano because it mimics that shape. Hang 3 pictures over your sofa so they follow the shape of the sofa's back. Yours has a camel back feel to it and is not straight across.

Where is your focal point in this room? To me it almost seems as if you've highlighted the piano. because that is what you see as soon as you walk into the room. that might be appropriate depending on how you want to use this space. But if it were my room, I"d choose an architectural feature like the windows for my focal point. I'd keep them as bare as possible if the view permits. Usually the sofa is placed across from the room's focal point, but I'd fool around with putting it on the wall where you have the piano. That might become a secondary focal point. However, I don't know enough about design to know if one can have two focal points.. a major and a minor one in such a small room!

Look for a book entitled "Use What you have Decorating," by Lori Ward. I think you'll find that helpful.

Best of luck and may you enjoy much pleasure in this lovely environment.
    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 9:48AM
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Love the architectural detail in the foyer!! I would just recommend removing the runner, elevating the topiaries with some small books and slipping a small ottoman or chunky wicker basket under the console table to eliminate the "leggy" look of it and you are good to move on to the living room !
    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 9:51AM
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Jean Tuck
Boy I sure love the rm as it is, with the exception of the beloved piano which I personally move to another area, possible a rec room. I like the archway to the entrance, very nice.I love the seating peicesthat you have.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 9:58AM
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I love lessismoore's idea of focusing on a music room and I also LOVE the lines of the 2 chairs. I would recommend removing the sofa, paint the wall behind the piano the same color of your 2 chairs... Using flat paint, NO SHINY WALL! Relocate the chairs on each side of the opening and install a nice rug between the piano and chairs and a beautiful large art piece over the piano since you already have a mirror in the foyer... This should make a big difference without spending a fortune!
    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 10:04AM
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I will start an idea book. Great idea. I love the idea of the mirror above the piano. I'm also fine with moving the table and mirror out of the foyer and putting the clock (with something else?) in the entry. I could even put the clock in the office that is also in the works. (turning a bedroom into an office). I really don't want to recover the chairs and sofa. It would be just as expensive to do that as to buy new ones and I don't really love them anymore.
    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 11:35AM
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Great suggestions! I'm going to start moving things around a bit. Maybe draw some sketches from all the ideas. thanks so much!
    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 11:40AM
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Woodwork at your entrance is beautiful. This is an off topic selfish question...what are the dimensions of your entry?
    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 11:41AM
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My front entrance and living room are just about the same as yours, but without the architectural details. It hardly feels like a foyer. So, I recommend not to remove the detail work. It does make the actual space bigger, but too me it doesn't feel bigger or better. **Just personal opinion! I'm not a designer.
    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 11:51AM
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Thank you so much. The dimensions of my entry are about 7x10. There is no way my husband would ever agree to removing the detail work. Its there to stay.
    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 3:31PM
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I also love the entry detail. Why are you putting up plantation shutters? It will change the whole "mood" of the room. If that's what you want, your furniture has to be changed not just recovered as the shape wouldn't work well. Either way, I would change the window coverings in some way - perhaps to shadow magic style blinds. I have them and love the soft light and privacy they provide. I think the clock could go in the hall to replace the table and mirror. Just be careful not to block your vent, but rather camouflage it. If you put the mirror above the piano, be sure to place it horizontally to match the piano length. I agree that the large pic is too high. Not a designer. These are just my observations. BTW, I do love your grey chairs...just think they wouldn't work with plantation shutters unless you went with a totally grey and white theme with one bright pop of colour.
    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 8:15AM
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If the piano stays, then the curio and clock need a new home. Office for the clock sounds good. Since the room is small,l I'd put the piano where the sofa is now and get a loveseat and two smaller scale chairs. Put the love on the wall facing the foyer and the two chairs either side of the foyer detail. Add a coffee table and two end tables and lamps for the sofa side. In the window area you might try a chaise or a pretty oval tea table. For the windows, consider replicating the crown piece that tops your entry door but design it as a cornice under which you could mount four panels to flank the window. This ties the two areas together. Unless you need privacy, I wouldn't put anything else on the windows. The starting place for all of this should be an impressive, beautiful large area rug that spans the room from chairs to sofa. It will set your color palette and be the centerpiece of your room. It should look gorgeous from the foyer! Below is an approximation for wood cornice and panels, but hardly exact; just for inspiration.
Living Room · More Info
    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 8:50AM
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Blinds Direct Canada
I agree with the shutters I think its a great choice!!!

    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 12:56PM
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