The House Files: Planning the living room

livingroom2

I told you it was a blank canvas didn’t I?

Please say hello to our current, very uninspiring living room, which contains a mixture of boxes, random half pairs of curtains from our old house and two sofas – one of which needs to go somewhere else, while the other just needs chucking.livingroom3livingroom1livingroom5

It’s SO beige that even adding those sample squares of Juniper Ash by Little Greene has made me feel better.

But it is a great size, with three windows so – despite the photos – is lovely and bright.

You might also be wondering why there isn’t any sign of the kids. Well now we’ve moved, they have a playroom right next door to this one which has all their toys, books as well as a sofa and TV. Basically, this one can be a grown up room!

And I cannot wait to rip up the carpet and start putting my stamp on it. This is what I am thinking so far:

 

livingroomideas

For the walls, as already mentioned I want to use The Little Greene’s Juniper Ash which is a gorgeous inky blue, but with a lot of warmth. I can already envisage this giving the room a lovely, cosy vibe. For the floors, I cannot WAIT to rip up the carpets and replace with wide wooden floor boards which I will soften with Beni Ouhrain rugs.

There are tons of great versions on the market (West Elm and even La Redoute for starters), but I’m heading straight to Edit58, which you should check out if you haven’t already. Owner Lisa is a complete design junkie with the best eye and can source the perfect Moroccan vintage rug (and other decor pieces) for your space. I have ordered one already with another planned – eek!

And how great is this light fitting? It’s from Next and I thought it would add a bit of dramatic country lodge look to the room.

 

sofas

I am a bit stuck sofa wise. I really want to section off the room and have a seating area configuration similar to the one we are currently working with (see below for what I want to do at the end of the room). Fluctuating between navy blue velvet, emerald green velvet, or playing safe and going for grey is my current mood, although whether we choose an ‘L’ shape sofa and a couple of arm chairs, or play around with two sofas is up for debate! I love this one at Loaf and this one at Graham and Green.

built-in

At the bottom of the room, around the doors that lead into the garden (which the previous owners blocked off with a sofa!), I want to build in bookshelves around each corner that will be painted in the same colour as the walls. We have a LOT of books and a lot of vinyl to store, so I have this idea that we could put a lovely armchair there and have it as a reading corner.

It’s all quite overwhelming – we need to do a lot and buy a lot, so this house will definitely be a test to my patience, my saving money priorities and design vision!

Are you going through a house renovation? Please let me know where you’re up to and what sort of look you’re going for, I love the idea of doing this together and sharing our ideas.

I have set up a group Pinterest board here – pin with me! All you need to do is send me your Pinterest handle (or if you’re happy to, leave it below in the comments) and I will add your name to the board.

It’s like a book club, but for design nuts. And I know I’m not alone there!

  • Comments ( 45 )

  • avatar
    Bethan

    In 3 weeks we will be moving to a 1970s house with no character whatsoever so I need all the inspiration I can get! My Pinterest name is @rattybetty please can you add me to the board?

    • avatar
      Erica

      Done! x

  • avatar
    Molly at Roost

    Ooh yes please to some group pinning! We’re @roost0880 over on Pinterest. Can’t wait to see your finished room. It’s going to look GORGEOUS.

    • avatar
      Erica

      You’re in lovely Roost ladies – inspire me!! x

  • avatar
    Louise

    I wish I had that much room to play with! I’m usually trying to squeeze too much into a small space as is the current situation with my kitchen and bedroom, both of which are current projects. A border terrier unfortunately means that a navy velvet sofa is out of the question for me. Please add me (@louisetown) to the group board.

    • avatar
      Erica

      Hi Louise, you’re all added in! Please pin some of your ideas for your kitchen – that’s next on my list. I seriously need to start saving money!! x

  • avatar
    Kate

    Ha ha can’t wait to see when you’ve de-beiged it…….I feel a little bit sad to see your old curtains 🙁 Love that blue wall colour, it will be like a big warm cave with lots of cosy rugs and a fire……we are coming to stay already!!! X

    • avatar
      Erica

      Aaah we can’t wait for you to come and stay!!! x

  • avatar
    Sue

    Love your plans so far Erica. We’ve just started de-beiging and plan to add colour to the whole house over the next few months. Little by little! Would love to share ideas with you, please add me to your group, My name is Highstreet Edited, user name is Highstedited, not sure which one you need!! Sue xx

    • avatar
      Erica

      Hi Sue, you’re all added! Let’s get pinning! x

  • avatar
    mamasVIB

    Can’t wait to see what you do with your living room. So great to have a blank canvas to work with and I think that is living the dream having a separate room for the kids (no toys….) Love the book case idea and colour scheme! Good Luck I pin over @mamasvib would love to join in the decor fun x

    • avatar
      Erica

      I will add you now – thank you so much for your words of encouragement! Eeek! x

  • avatar
    Lynne

    Which sofa are you chucking? The small one is exactly what I am looking for! In any case – do you know the make & model of that sofa? I have been scouring Pinterest and Houzz for ideas and am in a pleasant state of shock to have found it here (came to read your mummy blogs) 🙂

    • avatar
      Erica

      Hi Lynne, so sorry it’s the big one that’s being chucked! The smaller one is a Parker Knoll wingback sofa which I found on eBay for £20 and then had recovered! It’s been reupholstered in pale grey felt. Have a look on eBay though and look past the old lady florals because you can cover them in some great fabric! Glad you found me xx

      • avatar
        Lynne

        Thanks for the info and tip about florals. I will keep a close eye on ebay from now on! Ps I love that grey seems fashionable now – love love love it 🙂

  • avatar
    Chloe

    Hi Erica
    I would love to be added – funnily enough I am giving our ‘snug’ an update and so far, my colour scheme is very similar to what you have planned (but I have charcoal walls and a purple velvet sofa) Still have a way to go, but I have pinned photos of where I have got to.. and what needs to change. (And I have ordered the La Redoute rug!!)
    My pinterest name is chloesamsmith (I think!) and my board is the ‘Snug interiors update’
    You have amazing style so I may be stealing a few of your ideas along the way! 🙂
    xx

    • avatar
      Erica

      Oh thank you Chloe, that’s so lovely. Isn’t the La Redoute rug lovely? I’m ordering that too!! I will add you right now and look forward to stealing ideas off each other! x

  • avatar
    Mrsdp

    We have painted our sitting room stiffkey blue and love it. After mismatching leather sofas (from Made and badly made….). We bought a grey wool sofa from loaf.com the feather cushions were hideous and that went back, we then ordered another from John Lewis and that went back too! We’re now awaiting the next set of grey sofas. We also have a chair in Designers Guild Bloomsbury Indigo velvet and some cushions so it is lovely and dark and cosy with high ceilings. Woodwork is in Mole’s Breath and I wouldn’t go light again!

    • avatar
      Erica

      Oh no, weren’t you happy with Loaf? I’ve seen a couple on there I like. I know what you mean about the dark shades though – I’ve only started with sample squares, but I can see the difference already x

  • avatar
    Rachel

    Hi Erica
    My house renovations have spanned an entire decade so far… and still counting! That said I have done all the work myself while juggling a full time job and bring mum to two energetic boys and a hubby who doesn’t do DIY.
    My hallway is the current project, repairing parquet flooring, pinstripe carpet and I too will endeavour to create the J Crew art wall. Love it!
    Loving your design inspiration and blog. I am up for a bit of deco desire group pinning. My Pinterest name is rachel jane, username rachelj1240. Good luck

    • avatar
      Erica

      I am seriously impressed Rachel – on your own!? wow! Please pin some pictures of your hall when you’ve done it, would love to see! Will add you right now xx

  • avatar
    Beth Goodrham

    Hi Erica, we have the builders coming in on Monday (eeek) to take down our old conservatory and to knock various rooms into one big room with skylights, bi-folds, wood burning stove and areas for sitting/dining/studying/table tennis etc. We will also be replacing the kitchen too (funds permitting) so could you add me to the group please? My Pinterest handle is styleguile. Thank you! I think that the issue for me is getting ideas past the hubby!!!!

    • avatar
      Erica

      Ooooh this is exactly what we’re going to do in our kitchen – how exciting! Let’s share ideas! x

  • avatar
    Gemma

    Please cab you add me to the board! I ave literally just re-plastered and put down the new flooring but apart from the couch everything else needs adding!!
    Pinterest name amothersstyle

    • avatar
      Erica

      Absolutely! Can’t wait to see everyone’s pins and comments! x

  • avatar
    The Blue Hair Girl

    Your style sense for your home is beautiful! So unique.

    • avatar
      Erica

      Oh thank you so much! x

  • avatar
    Julia

    I love your old curtains. Thought it was the design, to wipe the floor. I will follow you. Curious about ideas.

  • avatar
    Katie

    Would love to be added, my pinterest name is elloway1. Great blog and inspiration.

    • avatar
      Erica

      Thank you! Adding you now! x

  • avatar
    jeanette

    love love the deep blue velvet for the sofas, its great to see some drama for a change. please add me too jayjay470

    • avatar
      Erica

      I am VERY tempted by the dark blue! Adding you now – thank you! xx

  • avatar
    Heather

    Can’t wait to see how it comes out. Velvet sofas and Moroccan rugs are the pinnacle of my home goals

    • avatar
      Erica

      Mine too! I just need to stop buying shoes!!! X

  • avatar
    Meg

    I am absolutely in love with the blue walls! Personally I am a bit of a coward when it comes to interiors, although my current craze is black. I think interiors follow a similar sort of cycle to fashion, and the core colours and shapes change every 7 years or so…great excuse not to outlay huge amounts of cash!☺️ But I am on a mission to finish my house which we completely renovated 8 years ago, but then twin babies arrived and the end is only just in sight! Sign me up to your Pingroup please…I can’t wait to see your project evolve. Meg xx

    • avatar
      Erica

      Oooh yes I love black too. I’ve used F&B’s Railings as a sample square on my son’s bedroom wall, but I’m worried that it’ll turn him into a manic depressive! Although I love the idea of it with all his cool prints. My friend has black painted cladded walls in her kitchen and it looks fab. Will add you in! X

  • avatar
    Sandra Baker

    Hope I’m not too late for a yes please to the Pinterest group! Am also in a ‘project’ house, grey-ing and navy-ing one room at a time! I’m @youngdons. Thanks x

    • avatar
      Erica

      Of course not! will sign you up now! x

  • avatar
    Kim

    Hello, please, please, please add me to this group! I have just bought my first flat & about to start decorating – but I bought alone so to say I’m strapped for cash would be an understatement!!!!! Always looking for inspo 🙂 my Pinterest is kiminspo

    • avatar
      Erica

      absolutely – adding you now! x

  • avatar
    Kim

    Hello Erica

    I am loving your ideas .
    Please add me…We have recently bought an old stone cottage in Cornwall that needs completely renovating. Currently waiting for plans to be passed!!
    My username is kimmoggier

    Thank you very much
    x

    • avatar
      Erica

      Hi Kim! Adding you now! x

  • avatar
    Katie

    I’ll have a now place to do up one day fingers crossed, and I’d love to be added to the board please. My pinterest handle is Katie Kay and there’s a delightful photo of Bette Lynch to let you know its me. Thanks!

    • avatar
      Erica

      Sure will! x

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