Saturday, November 20, 2010

A living room makeover

This fall one of my goals has been to work on my living room. The walls were looking in the need of some paint after 5 years of life with children, the curtains were faded and shrunk and the chairs I had slip covered were desperately in need of new slipcovers. I also just wanted to update and change things a bit. The carpet needs replaced badly too, but that is something we are still trying to figure out what to do about- we want a wood floor but are reluctant to put it in yet as we are thinking about an addition which would change the floor plan and then the floor we laid would have to be redone. So I am working to be content with our carpet for now and eventually we will figure out what we are doing with it.

These pictures are the before pictures:

This corner table tended to collect "stuff". Ken didn't like it to much so we moved it out and found another purpose for it. I hope to share that new purpose in the not to distant future.
 You can't really tell how bad the walls looked in these pictures. But they were very ready to be refreshed!

 We did have to spend some money on this project but I tried to keep it reasonable. The whole project was under $100 and it included:
~2 Gallons of paint (Brown and cream) we have paint left of both for further touchups. -$35
~18 (I think) yards of muslin and 6 or 7 yards of fabric for slipcovers -$50 (I used a coupon and a sale)
~A wooden shelf to hang on the wall- $12
Everything else was made using what we had.
The first big project was to paint the end wall with brown paint. I used a ragging method to give it interest. This project took one day.
The next project that I tackled was touching up the cream walls- Lantern light is the name of the color- I love that name! I didn't fully paint the walls, meaning I didn't paint carefully around all the windows and trim or up to the ceilings- I just painted the areas that really needed it.

In the picture above you might notice some of our Thanksgiving decorations: The kids and I had fun making a "Give thanks" banner from stuff we collected in the woods and then we also made a "Thankful Tree" which I will tell more about later.
We also decided to do some rearranging. For painting we had pulled everything away from the walls and it would not have been very exciting to put everything back in the same places! Jonathan is my boy that thrives on rearranging. He was more than delighted to help with this project.

One of the things that got moved was the bookcase. We decided to try it out in the dining room and then move my ficus tree to the living room. We also moved the chairs around to different places.

Next project was slipcovers. I decided to use brown suiting fabric with green piping for both chairs. I hadn't been sure that I had enough brown (I had bought all they had) so I had thought I might have to do the chairs opposite of each other with the rocking chair mainly green but I did end up having enough. I like the way they turned out and I think they will be sturdy and not show stains very much.

A story at bedtime- what this room is for- family togetherness!
Next project was curtains. The side panels were easy but then I had trouble figuring out exactly what I wanted to do for the valances. I eventually decided on the above look, using some leftover slipcover fabric as an accent.

The curtain tie backs were a burst of creativity that I am still trying to figure out if I really like or not. I have admired decorative bean balls that I have seen on other blogs but I didn't have any place to set a basket of them for decoration. So I though- what about having them as part of the tie backs? That of course meant that I would need quite a few of them. 

  In thinking how to do them frugally I realized that we had a bunch of "dead" tennis balls. So I put them to work. Anyway- what do you think? Are they neat or awful?

Here are some more small touches that I added to the room: 
Throw pillows for the couch- using leftover muslin and some wool from my wool skirts project.
Some fall flowers in a blue canning jar.
Our free canvas print from UPrinting which I put on a frame. I also got this little shelf which I am having fun putting seasonal things on. I had hoped to find a bigger shelf which would look a bit like a mantelpiece but I didn't have any success. Maybe later I will find one. And maybe someday we will have a fireplace here. :-)
A mossy grapevine wreath that now hangs over our stairway. I had made this wreath this summer to take to the fair but just lately hung it up.
Color for the center of our table. We found a fun deal after Halloween at Walmart. They had mini pumpkins and gourds for cheap. We spent a dollar and got 4 of each which we have had fun putting around the house.

I am really enjoying all the fall decorations now but the snow coming down tells me that soon it will be time to change the theme a little bit! But first we are hoping to have a wonderful Thanksgiving and we hope you do to!


lilpeasinmypodfromgod said...

LOVE it!

Christy said...

Everything looks so nice! I esp. like the brown sponged wall. I think it makes things warmer in there! I like the pillow with the leaves and I think I like the tennis ball tie backs. I'd really like to see them in a visit would be fun! :) Someday...I'm going to paint and redo my living room. Right now it seems like such a gigantic project.

Markie said...

Pretty! :)

Tracy said...

I like the brown wall. It looks really nice.

Growing Blessings said...

Tanksfor stopping by my blog! I LOVE your rag paainted wall! How do you do that? It looks so cozy! We are covered in ICE this morning in Zimmerman, MN.....did you get ice? ICE=me not going ANYWHERE;)

Anna said...

The wall is beautiful and everything looks so very nice! Bean balls, I will have to see in real life to give you an opinion :)Your valances turned out very pretty as well.

abdul said...

We offer multi-canvas prints, in which an image is split and printed across multiple canvases to achieve a very striking result.
Canvas print

Abbi said...

Thanks everybody for the kind comments!

To paint the rag wall I swipe paint on with a brush in swirly sort of patterns (a little bit at a time) and then work it around with an old t-shirt until I get the look I want.

Nola said...

Very nice! Want to come decorate my house? :) It really need it! LOL

Abbi said...

Nola-Sure! :-) I just wanted to let you know that I finally answered some of your questions in some of my older posts- like about the watermelon. I am sorry I take so long to answer questions some times!

Nola said...

:) No problem, I am blessed with a memory for detail, so believe it or not I actually know which comments I put where and go back and check them now and then. LOL its kind of funny. I don't read many blogs at all though so its not like I don't have a life or something :)


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