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Design Dilemma
Design Dilemma

Procrastinating for too long. I need HELP!!

CatFebruary 11, 2013
My husband and I, recently bought a house. We are outdoors people and decorating our living room has not been an easy task at all. The layout of the living room is a huge issue for me. Also, the decor looks mismatched, to a point that I avoid going there at all.
I am in need of serious help!
We are going to reupholster the wing chair and the ottoman. But, I just don't know what to do about the rest. And we are considering adding crown molding and paint the walls a warm tan.
Thank you in advance. Suggestions are welcomed!
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Nice room! Congrats on the new house.

Since you are going to reupholster the chair and ottoman, have you already chosen the fabric? You can start with that fabric and use it to form your color palette. Or use the area rug palette.

You have a lot of browns, I think you need a contrasting color somewhere to liven it up. I see you have some orange/rust colors. Blue would play nicely with what you have...maybe a teal (see how nice your flowerpots look?)

I'm not sure I like the idea of tan on the walls, it's just more "brown". Might I suggest leaving the walls white, and painting just the ceiling a very pale blue?

Also, if your curtain rod extends, pull it out a bit more so your curtains aren't covering up your nice view.

Your area rug is small for the room. I think it would look nicer if you moved it over to the baby area, and find a matching or coordinating rug in a larger size for the sitting area.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 6:25AM
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JMittman Designs
Well, your pooches seem to like it there. :) Crown molding would be a great touch. You need to pull your furniture together in a conversation area--cozy up around the fireplace. Why is that coffee table way out in the middle of the room? Can you get a bigger rug? Clear the pictures off the mantle and find a new home for them. Longer curtains installed higher to the ceiling would help too. Can you get rid of the tv cabinet? Or get rid of the tv altogether?
2 Likes    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 6:30AM
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We are thinking about keeping the original color orange/rust and just update the fabric.

Thank you so much for the suggestions! I do like the teal contrasting with the orange. The frames have a little bit of teal as well, even though it is not very noticeable in the photo. Regarding the curtain and the rug, you are spot on again! The curtain rod is not long enough and the rug is too small for that area.

My living room faces north and there isn't much light coming in, even though it has a big window. Besides white, is there another color that would warm it up a tad bit?
    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 6:38AM
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My doggies love it there, especially during winter when it is too cold for them to be outside.

Regarding the coffee table... well, I always though every living room needed one. But then again, I honestly don't know.

I would like to get rid of the photos, but I need to find a place for them, first.

I hate that tv cabinet but, for the time being, I don't have a substitute. Do you all think it would look ok to move the tv to above the fireplace? And what do I put in the spaces right next to the fireplace?
    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 6:46AM
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Curb Appeal Renovations
I would like to suggest the Sherwin Williams website. They have color visualizer and you load in a picture of your room!! How cool! Personally, since y'all like the outdoors and you don't seem that adventurous into color, I would stay with a biege on the walls. And I'd go with a higher quality paint that you can scrub so when it does get dirty, you can clean it.

For your chair, go with a high quality fabric in some kind of print/pattern/tweed. Since it obviously gets a lot of use, don't skimp on this. Make sure they'll restuff/refoam it as well.

And, since you do have pets and you may not want to invest a lot of money on a rug...but I'm like the others, you need a bigger one for this area, why don't you check out some of the local stores in your area that might have some at good prices? Some in my profession might gasp that I'm suggesting this, but go to HD or Lowe's and see what they have. You'll still have to spend several hundred for a big rug, but not the 2/3/4x that on a "designer" one. Especially with pets...you need something that you don't feel too bad about when they have an accident and one day eventually having to toss to the curb.

I agree with the pictures. Get some shelves, put them up in other areas of the room.

The tv cabinet needs to go, it's too big. Just a simple tv stand would do. If you're using your stove that's in the fireplace now, I think it would probably put out too much heat to put your tv over the fireplace. Plus, that would be really uncomfortable sitting and watching tv from the sofa.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 7:21AM
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JMittman Designs
Regarding the coffee table, it's just too far away from the furniture--no one can reach it where it is. That is what I referred to about pulling the furniture together. TV above the fireplace: I HATE HATE HATE TV's above the fireplace--did I mention HATE? Just wanted to get that out there first! Many people solve their TV problems by mounting above the fireplace. Sit on your couch and look up where the tv would be mounted--how does your neck feel? Looks like the angle from the seating area might be too steep?
2 Likes    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 7:22AM
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You have a lot of dark surfaces in your living room...red brick, brown curtains, dark leather and a rug that gets lost against your wood floor. I suggest a lighter neutral rug like the Desa from Pottery Barn to brighten the space as well as neutral curtain panels. The oak entertainment unit really dates your room. You might consider a sleek console. Finish the room with great throw pillows. The one pictured also from Pottery Barn, features the orange red of your fireplace brick as well as a contrasting blue.
3 Likes    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 7:36AM
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We have been using valspar around the house. But, I am willing to give SW a try. Our wing chair needs some TLC. We thought about TNT initially, but the the chair and ottoman have a really good and sturdy structure, that new furniture doesn't seem to have anymore.

The pictures are gone! I am going to relocate them in other areas of the living room and rest of the house.

Im also already working on the curtain rod. ;oD It was definitely too low and narrow.

We use the fireplaces once a year, if that much. My husband hates dealing with the hassle. And I dislike having a potential fire hazard, even though we maintain it very well.

JMittman Designs, I was wondering about that. If it wouldn't be uncomfortable to watch TV like that. I am glad you mentioned that!

Thank you all, for your wonderful suggestions!!
1 Like    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 7:56AM
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If you are going to get new rods why not also get new curtains or add a solid panel on the bottom and hang the curtains almost to the ceiling. It will give the effect of a taller walls and draw the eye up. You have a nice fireplace that should be the focal point of the room. Think about dressing it up with a more substantial mantel and hang a large mirror or piece of art above it. The small pictures should be removed. Using your two upholstered chairs create a conversation area by the fireplace. Experiment with chairs facing the fireplace with a small table between arranged on a rug on which all the furniture fits. Also try a chair on either side of the fireplace to see which you prefer. The later may allow for two more chairs, a love seat, or even your couch o face the fireplace creating a very nice conversation area. With this arrangement, you could use your coffee table in the center and the floor lamp by the the seating facing the fireplace.

Place a couch or love seat at a slight angle from the window wall to the fireplace wall. Place a sofa table behind the sofa with a large lamp on it. It appears that you have a flat screen TV so I would move the entertainment center out and place the TV on a long narrow console table placed on the wall where you currently have your couch or hang it on a fully moveable TV mount on that wall, hanging it to the left of center so it is visible from the chairs flanking the fireplace as well as the couch or love seat angled by the window. The wall where the TV is will need some large art or combination of art to fill it and balance out the TV. To the right of your window arrange plants at different levels or another tall substantial sized article like a pot with sticks and grasses.

For paint I am thinking of a color similar to the grout on the fireplace, a color I call Greige, a combination of Gray and Beige. Then paint the wall you currently have your couch on a contrasting brighter color pulled from your new upholstery . A cranberry, Merlot, brick, etc. would look very nice.

If your dogs would use them, consider having dog bed covers made of the same fabric you upholster your chairs with and place them in the sunlight. It will accent your room and give them a comfortable place to be by you without being in the chairs. Also consider several throw pillows for the love seat or couch as well.

You have a great room to work with. Because I don't have the measurements of your room I may have overestimated what will fit in but I hope I gave some general ideas that you can incorporate. Have fun!
1 Like    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 8:25AM
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Digital photo frames are a space saver and a nice way to show off your photos. If you don't have a scanner then Costco or big name drug stores usually do. Another solution is to hang them as a collage. See pics for ideas.
For the television I would say get your room layout completed 1st. Then a simple stand may be enough or you may want to mount it to the wall with an articulating arm so it can be pulled out and angled for the best viewing. Check out Overstock.com which has a large selection for ideas. http://www.overstock.com/Home-Garden/Entertainment-Centers/TV-Stands,/category,/2029/subcat.html
1 Like    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 8:28AM
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Curb Appeal Renovations
If you don't use the fireplace, try it out!

Another thought for the coffee table...what about an ottoman? You could get one in a really FUN color!

And if you really like another paint manufacturer...still use the SW paint tool, find the color you like, go to SW, get the swatch of color, take it to the place you get your paint and have them match that color. They all do that nowadays!

Not sure what your budget is...but I'd hold off on the curtains until you get everything else done. Plus, if you're putting in crown, you don't want to have to work around the rods.

Only problem with the beautiful throw pillows above...is that your dogs will love them as well!!! Just think about that. I LOVE what Michigammemom has suggested...I just know dogs!!
1 Like    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 8:28AM
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The 2 dogs and 3 children can really do a number on things. That's for sure. That is also the main reason I don't want to spend a lot of money.

There are some minor changes I can do by myself and don't require much work either.

The photos that were on top of the mantle were relegated to some end tables and night stands, in our house. I think it makes a lot more sense now, than being all concentrated in one area like before.
    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 8:47AM
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love your space and floors. Your rug is great ! Maybe it is just my monitor but looks like gray in the rug, that might be a fun accent to add to your room, either lighter or darker or spot on. It does seem small for the area, the rug should not "float" in the room alone but should be anchored to the couch just like what was mentioned for the coffee table. Orange is a fun color to put with gray so your new chair and ottoman will look great in the room. Pictures over the couch should be hung lower too. 9" above the back of the couch is most of the time just right. Glad you moved the photos from the mantel !! Raising/ lengthening and widening the curtains will be a huge improvement .

Oh I almost forgot, is there room to move the couch, either facing the window or "toy" area and move to the TV to the wall where the couch is. Then the 2 chairs can be side by side facing the couch. Bright pillows and throws will brighten your room as well. With the back of the couch toward the big window along with a sofa table and lamp the whole wall /side of the room together will come together for that cozy conversation area someone else mentioned.
have fun !!
    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 9:13AM
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I have been a busy bee this morning and I definitely have used a lot of your advice. There is still a lot more to do. The difference is that now I don't feel as lost as I did. I have learned so much with all your comments. Once again, thank you so much for spending a little bit of your time, helping me out!!

The rug is red, tan, orange and dark brown. It is too small for that area, like many others had mentioned. I have also removed it from its previous location.

I have to be honest, I dislike grey, white and black. I am much more fond of bright warm colors. My husband loves brown. That explains the current color scheme.

Replacing the current coffee table with an ottoman sounds an excellent idea!
    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 9:39AM
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ps- please dismiss the grey cover on top of the sofa. It is my sons.
    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 9:41AM
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hi Cat. Do you remember where you purchased your rug, and/or what the name of the pattern is? I'm looking for an area rug and that might be just the right thing for me.

Please post pictures as you go along!

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 9:58AM
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OrangeCamera That rug is the cheapest rug I have. I have to be honest, it is also the easiest to clean. It is also very durable, considering it has a lot of traffic and how my 2 labs like it.

I think I bought it at Lowes, a couple of years ago. The brand name is Orian, and particular model is called Illusions Wild. I hope it helps!
    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 10:09AM
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Cat, thank you! Lowes still carries it :) I'm glad to know it cleans easily.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 1:39PM
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Hi Cat, sorry for the delay in response. Does the rug have much actual orange in it? Some of the reviews on Lowes said it's more orange, and some say it's more brown. So I'm confused! :) Thanks
    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 3:14PM
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Splurge with all new furniture.We just had to and it took all the work out of doing anything else with the room.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 3:27PM
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or..move the tv cabinet where the sofas are and create a warm seating area near the beautiful window, so you don't see that cabinet when you walk in.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 3:30PM
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Echo Mistwalker
Cat look on Amazon for 95 grommet panel. Tribeca will pop up. There's a seriously lovely mandarin orange drape that might work for you. Bigger rod in terms of width--go up to the ceiling if crown molding is out of the question right now. The drape also come in a 120. Get that and hem it if need be. I agree with the other posters about the TV cabinet chop it up and have your husband use it for his next bonfire or donate it and take the tax deduction. I need to go to the pit to find the paint can I used for our room. also check out SW new color Aloe. Not too dark not too light.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 4:30PM
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@OrangeCamera Hi! Yes, it has orange. But, IMO, the brown is more predominant than the orange.
    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 6:49PM
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@hopesilver I am going to get rid of the tv cabinet by the end of the month. I loath it!!
The leather sofa was bought last month. My husband the one who picked it and there is no way he is going to get rid of it. That being said, I have to work around it. I will update the curtains, the tv cabinet, area rug, reupholster the ottoman and wing chair and substitute and re-position the curtains. I plan to do most of it, by the end of the month. I also need to paint the walls. The previous owners didnt take very good care of the house. Mainly cosmetic things. Oh well...
    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 7:01PM
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@Eco Mistwalker I was actually looking at those curtains, today. They seem to be very nice, but I think I am inclined to choose a different color than just orange. I was thinking more like, 2 sets of curtains. A sunblock teal and perhaps a tan lighter set of curtains. that would match the tan rug Ill be getting. The teal ones, would match the existing planters and frames.
    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 7:07PM
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I look forward to seeing your space as you work on it ! don't forget to post pictures
1 Like    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 7:10PM
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JMittman Designs
hee,hee, I just saw the TNT comment. :) Good luck with the new curtains! Do hem them if they are too long--no puddles please!
1 Like    Bookmark   February 15, 2013 at 5:55AM
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