Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Living Room Redo Part II: The Big Reveal

I know you've all just been on the edge of your seats after I whet your appetite more than a month ago, so here it is. I finally got some pictures up on the walls and had it clean enough to take some pictures. Here are the before shots:

We picked the orange color when we painted right after moving in four years ago. I wanted something more brown and Logan wanted something more orange (seriously. MORE orange.) so this is what we compromised with. It is hard to capture the color in photos, but I think we best described it as creamy pumpkin pie. It was one of those colors that changes a lot through out the day depending on the lighting and such. I never loved it, but put up with it. As I said in the first redo post, it was too dominating of a color once I was spending most of the day in there. I wanted to repaint and wanted something much more soothing and neutral as well a color that we could likely get away with leaving on our walls if we were to move. So I went with a color called "Interactive Cream" from Sherwin Williams. I was this close to painting it the next darkest color on the strip only because it was called "Bagel" and I love bagels, but figured "Interactive Cream" was pretty radical and it was the color I liked. I'm quite happy with the way it turned out. And it is so interactive.

It took me a while to decide what to do with the large wall behind the couch. Side note: we sort of hate our couch but it just wasn't in the budget to replace it. I know its not the best combo with the wall color, but I opted to coordinate with the furniture I loved and knew I would keep instead of the couch that I hope to be able to replace in the not so distant future. Okay, back to the wall. It is a nice big wall, but it has a lovely thermostat in a really inconvenient spot which makes it hard to do anything in larger frames. I had this idea to frame a series of big aerial photo maps of Cambridge and had it all ready to go, but then realized it wouldn't work on that wall unless I punched a hole in the middle of one of the frames. So I decided to go with the only art we have around or can afford: photos. I have sort of mixed feelings about family photo walls. I love it in theory, but I think ideally it would be on a wall that was less prominent like in a family room or hall way as opposed to the living room. But since we have a limited number of rooms in our apartment, that's not really an option. So after careful consideration, I opted for four shots of us which aren't just faces and two non people shots. I am pretty happy with them. One or two of the pictures need to be reprinted since they are cropped weird and are too dark, but I haven't gotten around to doing that yet.

I also replaced the couch pillows with some more fun orange ones (they were brown before) and made some pillows for the two chairs. Since I was taking all the color out of the room by making the walls neutral, I wanted to bring some color and pattern in with pillows. You can't tell in these shots, but the blue ones have green piping on the edges. So fancy.

We got rid of our love seat (which I liked even less than our couch) and replaced it with my orange chair and a Poang (I know, so original, right? Shut up, we like it and it's comfortable) and moved around some book shelves to accommodate the two chairs a little better.

My favorite area of the room now is the corner with the orange chair. I wanted something big and interesting on the wall with lots of color to complement the orange chair. So I decided to blow up a photo I took of Logan and Soren at Castle Island and frame it in a huge frame. I love this picture (in case you can't tell, there's a HUGE airplane flying through the sky) and think it looks great in the space with the chair.

So that's it. There are a couple more little things I want to do, as well as some bigger things. But all in all I am really happy with the way it turned out and am much, much more comfortable with the room now than I was before. If it keeps me from going (less) crazy this winter, I'll consider it a success.


anna said...

looks great. sorry about the thermostat - those things are so inconveniently placed.

and creamy pumpkin pie is a good description.

oh, and we love your Halloween costumes. Logan's is amazing.

Amberli said...

ooo, i love it! all of it! i'm totally digging the interactive cream although i never disliked the creamy pumpkin pie. but you're right, now it's all bright and happy to help fend off the winter gloom. and i so love the airplane shot! that was a great choice! everything looks really nice. and the halloween party - oh so sad we missed it! it really looks amazing and the costumes were sweet this year. i'm really impressed with the ghostbusters combo! great idea! ayes, i'd love to hang out soon! when is a good time for you guys?

Alia! said...

i love this color! so much brighter. lovely.

J I L L A I R E said...

I understand your family photo wall qualms. I kind of feel the same and in AZ I put them in the stairway. We don't have a stairway here and when we moved in I didn't have much art other than the family photos, so I ended up doing a whole family photo wall by the kitchen table. It is a serious conversation starter and people love it. We've got black and whites of our parents and grandparents when they were first married or young kids along with our own childhood family photos and more recent ones. It's a totally eclectic mix that has ended up working out great.

Ken and Jen Perkes said...

Jen and I have always admired your decorating savvy and your new re-do is very cool. We really need to come and see it in person; it has been far too long!



Linda Perkes said...

Excellent choices! We look forward to seeing it in a few weeks : )
You've come a long way since those early days of rearranging your room. Very nice.

gumpin said...

Seriously, are your raising B&B rates now?