When we moved in I was ecstatic over the color our living room was already painted - I LOVE a red/burgundy room. I think the color is actually Merlot by Olympic. Between that and the stone wall created for the fireplace, I was in love.
Our furniture, however, didn't work so well with the space. The TV we had was too big for the room, so we had to put our bedroom TV downstairs (see previous post where I said "don't ask" about the drive-in movie theater in our room) and find a proper stand for it. In order to view the TV and not completely screw up the flow of the room - the only way to get to the kitchen/dining area from the stairs or front door is through my living room - we had to, for the time being, put our loveseat in front of the fireplace opening. It didn't come with doors anyhow, and Tyler was only a year old... so we figured it was best until we could address it.
Here are some shots of the living room when we first moved in:
First thing I did was hang a few things and address the windows - quick fixes (well, drilling into the stone wall was some work). The next step was a bit pricey - new furniture - and as a result I applied for the teaching job I have now. I basically returned to work to buy a new couch :)
We purchased a cream couch, a funky chair, and some ottomans. They really brightened up the space, since the other couch and loveseat are a deep green. We moved them into the sunroom, which you can see in my previous post.
Once last fall rolled around and it started getting chilly, I insisted that we get a fireplace cover. We chose a black (surprise, surprise), somewhat contemporary set of doors. They had to be special ordered since, like everything else in an older house, they weren't a standard size. I absolutely love them and think they make the stone wall more of a focal point in the room.
The final step (well, almost.. I'll explain at the end) in our minor living room renovation was to add recessed lighting. For some reason this room was the only one that did not have its own light source - every other room has some sort of fixture in the ceiling. Even with 3 lamps in the room it seemed dim in the room at night and, since we don't have a family room and thus spend a great deal of time in there, we thought it was a prime candidate for 4 recessed lights and a dimmer switch.
It was a VERY messy project. The ceilings are plaster and literally crumble and turn into piles of dust. It gets EVERYWHERE. I vacuumed every day 3 times a day for a while. And, while cutting the holes in the ceiling, we hit a snag. Right smack in the middle of one of them was a wire running into the playroom - it was the old armored cable typical of the time period and had absolutely no slack. There went our perfectly symmetrical square of lights. We moved the ones over the couch back towards the window a few inches and in towards one another a few inches - so they form more of a trapezoid than a square. In the end it worked out fine... the lights actually shine right down on the couch, making it easy to read there at night.
So, without further ado, pics of the final results:
Our final step will be replacing the carpet. Ivory carpet + dog + toddler = disaster. And our new lights highlight every. single. stain. We hope to replace it with something a few shades darker and a bit more durable... but after our kid gets rid of the hole in his chin.
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