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Design Dilemma
Design Dilemma

How does this family room look. Any suggestions?

Mary Grant JustinJanuary 30, 2013
Hi, I'm trying to make my family room cozy yet inviting yet stylish.
The room measures

from fireplace hearth to back of couch 124"

Back if recliners to entertainment center 11'

Couch. 92" X 40"

Wall that entertainment center is on 170"

Entertainment center. 114" X 33"

Rug. 5 X 8

Fireplace. 5'

We use the fireplace everyday in winter and watch tv.

Couch and recliners are new so can't replace them.

We will be redoing the fireplace so it looks bad right now.

I'm open to suggestions/advice.

Thanks in advance
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Mary Grant Justin
Oh and husband doesn't want to large of rug as he likes the travertine floor. :-)
    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 9:55AM
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Ah, Mary, you knew a larger rug would be the first suggestion, right? LOL. Actually, I think you might get away with turning the rug the other direction. I like your fireplace. I would paint out the brass plating black and hang, rather than lean, the picture. And look for a real end table instead of a tv tray for the corner. I think you've achieved the inviting and cozy part. You might find some more exciting throw pillows to make it more stylish.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 10:14AM
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You have a nice start. I would put larger and dark or red objects on the shelves. Do you have books? Larger end-table would compliment the leather furniture--I would keep it a light color, perhaps even white or red. I think that you also need a coffee table and more floor lamps.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 10:15AM
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Melanie Hon
Oh I was just going to say you need a much bigger rug for the space until I read your comment above. It's not right for the space. It looks like it's leading people to walk towards the TV. Try putting it closer to the couch with the front feet on it, or remove it completely.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 10:18AM
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Welcome Home designs
Your room is already looking quite cozy but just needs a few tweaks.
My first suggestion would be to "declutter" which means removing the TV tables,odds and ends in the corners and on top of the shelving unit.
You can then see what needs to be added back.
I would suggest a coffee table and end tables instead of the TV tables.
I like the colours in your rug but it is a bit small (sorry hubby - but tiles are not warm and cozy). A larger version of what you have would be great.
You can then pull out the accent colours from your rug for accessories such as pillows.
You have some interesting items on top of the bookcases. It might be fun to use them on your fireplace mantle.
Good luck - have fun- keep us posted.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 10:18AM
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Mary, I like your couches and recliners. I agree with "declutter" the room a bit. A solution that could really open up the space and give a whole new look to the room would be to remove the entertainment center and instead use a product like TVCoverUps. TVCoverUps would be an elegant way to hide your a flat screen TV and not interfere with the room's decor. Instead, you could use your family portrait or other art to provide the focal point - until it swings upward to reveal the TV hidden beneath. The unit comes in automatic and manual and allows for TV tilting hardware also. Each unit is custom to some degree, so it is always best to give us a call -800.706.4653.
    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 10:55AM
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Mary Grant Justin
Ok, let's start with the rug. Yes I think a bigger rug is needed and will continue to work on husband on that. But in the meantime, what do you think about this arrangement. Or go with the larger rug? Pillows will be next.
    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 1:05PM
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Mary Grant Justin
I just want to say Thank you for your input. All of which is good advice and suggestions. The TV trays are just temporary until I can find just the right end tables. Which seems to be more of a challenge then I had anticipated. The one near hubby's chair which is next to couch has to be 24" H and 15-17" wide and deep. But I will continue to search for those perfect tables. TV coverups. What a cool idea!! I will run it by hubby but when we put in new kitchen and did the floor one of the things he asked not be changed was the hutch. The other was the ceiling....
1 Like    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 2:45PM
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put a pic of one direction jk u should paint it light gray its very popular now and u should take out the carpet and have a nice wood floor on get new floor answer my posts thanx
    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 3:04PM
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I don't think that angle works. Try the other two ways suggested. Long ways under sofa to fireplace or tucked under sofa and your husbands armchair. If the other armchair is your sitting spot I suggest you switch chairs and let him have the travertine floor. ; ) To be honest he has a point. It is lovely and a shame to cover up.
    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 4:12PM
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Mary Grant Justin
LOL nikitasmon.
    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 4:18PM
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Mary Grant Justin
Ok. I'll also try the other angles. Might not get a chance until Friday. I look forward to hearing from the rest of you. Thank you
    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 4:20PM
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Mary Grant Justin
Sara, I have two big golden retrievers and as much as I love wood floors found they don't mix well. I know gray is in right now but I wanted something a little but warmer and natural
    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 4:23PM
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Hi, I will be brutally honest. You have nice things but it is too much of a good thing. You need to break up the "wagons round the campfire" look. There is a lot of black leather closing in a circle effect with the fireplace and wall unit.
The rug, as you know, is too small. It just visually chops up the room. It should be big enough to at least go under the front legs off the furniture.
My only comment which is not necessarily helpful is, if you don't want to change the rug and you don't want to hide the tile, and you agreed the wall unit has to stay and all the furniture has to stay, what is left to change ?
It seems like you have a fair amount of open space in the area beyond the two chairs ( glass door area)

If you removed the slight angle s of the two recliners and brought them closer together , side by side with a small table between them, creating an L with the sofa, you will open up the left corner by the fireplace for better traffic flow . You shouldn't have to walk between two chairs to get to the sofa.
Additionally, if you have the space to back the chairs up a little ( into the room with the glass doors - remember the chairs will be closer together and not near the door )and move the sofa down a little, further away from the wall unit, it will take the tight circle look away.
The way the chairs are spread there is too much black everywhere. If the chairs are closer together it will leave a corner free of black.
The only absolute is the rug doesn't work centered in the room because of size. It is lovely but it just won't work unless you:
Create the L with the two chairs and sofa and the rug is placed more toward the sofa ( under the front of it and chairs . It will define the seating group and not be floating in the middle of the room.


Just remember, you can't make it very different if you have a certain amount of square footage and you don't want to alter anything in the room.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 5:20PM
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Mary Grant Justin
Karmeg, thank you for your suggestions. I hadn't thought of putting the recliners together but it does make sense. I am limited on pushing them back into the room with the windows as there is a wall that protrudes out and this is the passage to the hall. However, I might gain some room putting chairs together. I will try this out this weekend. Thank you.
    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 8:52PM
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Mary Grant Justin
Didn't get a chance to do any moving of furniture or rugs this weekend. Maybe this week....
    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 3:12AM
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paint a deep warm khaki/tan.look for open, 2 tiered tables in white or glass.
you didn't say how you plan to redo the FP. painting it white would be a huge chg and balance the room. the 3 large squares compete for the eye. they are the tv, the fireplace opening and the family portrait. move the picture to the wall near the DR. add a pretty firescreen. the FP if it's white, could have 2 topiaries in terra cotta pots on each end of the mantle with something not square in the middle. an oval mirror or an artsy ceramic or glass piece. move furniture as karmeg suggested. get the clutter off the top of the entertainment center.
add floor to ceiling window treatments in this room and bring them into the dining room. they could be a simple white using wonderful hardware or find a great print using white and red or white,red and khaki. look at ikea or ballards.
    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 4:49AM
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The carpet is a bad idea!
    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 5:13AM
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The first photo I saw was of the large tv unit and I thought you were going for shabby chic. When I then saw the leather chairs I was confused (very easy to do). I'd suggest that you move that unit to some other room and place the tv over the fireplace. It's not a huge room and you really need only one focal point. The brick on your fireplace probably does need cleaned, but the natural brick goes with the dark furniture. As was suggested, the tv trays need to be replaced by "real" tables and that very large floor lamp seems out of place. Maybe tables lamps on your new tables.
    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 5:16AM
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Deborah Butler, Brickwood Builders
Mary, please make sure you protect the wonderful picture over the fireplace. Since you use the fireplace freqently, you may want to clean the brick and put the picture where it will not be ruined by soot.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 5:22AM
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Mary Grant Justin
OK, so I got a new larger rug. Put it down while hubby is out today. :-) Changed the pillows a bit and things on entertainment center. Changed the chairs around. What do you think? Just need to figure out how to upload pics into this conversation....
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 10:03AM
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Mary Grant Justin
Here we go.
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 10:08AM
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Mary Grant Justin
One more photo
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 10:35AM
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Melanie Hon
Looks a lot better! I know this is a bit nit-picky, but have you considered switching the couch with the chairs, as in having the couch face the TV and the chairs face the fireplace? The couch seems really close to the entertainment unit and then 3 people would have a good view of the TV vs. the 2 in the chairs. (Actually even the chair closest to the couch would have a good view as well as it would be angled towards the TV.)
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 10:40AM
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I'm with everyone else in regards to the rug. It needs to be bigger and the color of the one you have isn't working with your floors. When you see your room, the focus goes to the rug and not the travertine. Try something more neutral to soften the space. What changes are you going to do to the fireplace (I apologize if you already mentioned it and I didn't see it)?
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 10:45AM
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Mary Grant Justin
Hi Melanie, Yes I have considered changing the couch and chairs and still might give that a try too. Their is only two of in the house 99% of the time.

Wmpj, Thank you for your input. I have a red hutch in the adjoining room and was trying to bring some color into this room. The fire place we will be using a natural stone on the lower part. Not quite sure about color or type as we pick up the mantel in a couple of weeks. The mantel will be a hand hewn beam. Then on the top we were thinking of doing the same texture coating as the wall and painting it the same color as wall too. Hope this makes sense
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 11:02AM
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Melanie Hon
I agree it's a little hard to concentrate on other things in the room with the rug dominating as it is, but if you put a wooden coffee table it will soften it and give your eyes somewhere to rest.
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 12:22PM
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Mary Grant Justin
Yes Melanie, I agree. I'm looking for a nice wood coffee table, not too big and not too small. :-)
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 2:29PM
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When I look at the pics, I think the color of the wall unit is too light. I feel as if the red carpet looks great with the wall unit and the furniture looks great with fire place; but all of the pieces don't work well together.
Just had a thought, you mentioned 2 people were in the room 99% of the time--do you even need the sofa? Perhaps a bench with nice cushions instead.
Is the wall unit one piece or three separate? If separate, think about relocating the two recessed units to another room. This will give this room more space.
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 3:30PM
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Mary Grant Justin
Thanks misecretary for your input. If it wasn't for our spoiled Golden Retriever couch potatoes no, we probably wouldn't need the couch. It's really "their" couch. LOL Seems we pretty much have built our lives around them, but love them!
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 6:48PM
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I understand. :)
    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 6:50PM
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