Living room before & after

Ta da! the house is sold. I’m actually shocked this only took one weekend… and my husband is even more shocked;)  I’m torn between being happy and sad (that I have to leave it)…But… I just hope the next house will have as much potential as this one and I will, again, have the opportunity for this much fun in redecorating it!

Finally I was able to pull together the living room. The day the furniture came was like Christmas to me and I’m so proud how it came out! This is a before pic (not the best one I know) Initially it was dark burgundy (?) and these dark colours are popular in Canadian homes. It was cozy (I suppose:) but I guess I just proposed scandi theme and risked not being understood by potential buyers. It didn’t have too much daylight during the day:(image

But first things first. The colour scheme: grey, white and pale pink, duh… As for the feeling I wanted it to say: I’m cozy, I’m rural, I’m subtle, but interesting. I wanted it to be gentle, but not boring, definitely have harmony, but just a bit of edge, we all need:)


The room was essentially a quick fix, had good bones (hardwood floor) and we didn’t have to do too much, just the paint. We considered changing floors, but we had carpet in the bedroom so we would have to change that too, which seemed like too much hustle and cost. I chose Benjamin Moore Apparition 860 first, when we moved in, but it was still too dark greige, so just before the sale we painted it BM Pale Oak, which had been 75% de-saturated. It had a pinkish undertone in it so it went well with pale pink details.

87-3333_New-9You are probably asking yourself “what are these rectangles on the wall:) Well, I was tossing and turning to figure out what can I do to a bare long wall which needs to be a focal point and I saw this:

 http://mobelpobel.blogspot.nl/2014/09/diy-pa-budsjett.html
That led me to idea of pink and grey (a shade darker) shapes on the wall. It was risky, as the target buyer was either mid-age single or retired couple, so more traditional, then somebody who stays on top of “newest hot trends” (not that I know everything about hot trends:)) I tried various shades but this one was the best. It was meant to be pale, nude pink (I think eventually it was BM Early Sunrise).

87-3333_New-7That buffet I got from Bouclair Home, they have Atelier collection and very interesting pieces which look nice, depending on the context. It has a small scratch and I always pay attention to these kind of details, so first I wanted to return it or exchange, which on the other hand wouldn’t be the ideal situation (we were time limited). I called them, emailed the pics and was granted discount. That was fair enough for me, as the defect is not very visible and I really like the shape, plus it’s solid oak.

87-3333_New-8The sofa is from Structube and I’m quite happy about the shape and looks, but the material is not the best child-friendly (I think it’s synthetic microfiber), so we cover it with plead for now. But I think I need to figure out more solid solution to protect it, otherwise it’s not gonna last long:(…

Coffee table is from EQ3, also oak (how I looooove oak and light colours:) I had to add some industrial feeling so I thought Tolix-style stools would look nice. But since I was getting low on budget I had a quick reminiscence I saw something like that in…Canadian Tire! Yes, they had these in silver and it was like $150 for 2. I don’t think you can get them cheaper than that!

87-3333_New-6

But the biggest steal was the rug. My nearby Target was just closing (RIP) and I was lucky to get it for $100:) The other thing was the TV, what do you think about placing it so high, does it bother you? We had to do it, so that the kids won’t be able to reach it, but one of the agents we initially talked to suggested this should go on the buffet as this is more traditional way… I stood my ground and eventually I think the buyer liked it this way, as they wanted us to leave it with the house. Lesson learned: agent is not always right:)

The art is from minted.com and Chapters and again, I wanted something very subtle and pale, not to destruct the eye too much, plus I really like to put it asymmetrical way. I wanted to add more, but then I thought 3 is a perfect number for the art wall! I got frames from Ikea and Michael’s (I love very thin black frames trend!)

Last but not least – flowers. Nothing else makes the room come alive! I loved how they did it here and this has been my inspiration for the room: 

I saw this pic first on decor8blog.com, but this is originally from Swedish real estate broker website.
It doesn’t always have to be anything expensive – tulips and fig tree is good enough to add some greenery.

Overall: 1. remember not to put too much furniture, 2. stick to the colour scheme consequently (meaning, if you have 3 colours, don’t introduce 4th one in “just one detail” or add a rug that has 2 from your palette but additional colour nowhere else, cause the eye will pick it up), 3.straight lines will bring harmony to the arrangement, 4. be creative when it comes to focal points – you don’t want bare walls, 5. if your room has too little light stick to light colours, but not whites. When taking photos for the listing open up windows and switch on the lights – this always looks inviting!

Let me know what you think, this will be very helpful for me! Cheers!

Photos by Lauren Leies , courtesy of my agent Trevor Pentilchuk , it was awesome to work with him!

1 Comment

  1. Przem says:

    I loved the transition. You took ugly and turned in to beauty-divine. Two thumbs way up for job well done !!

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