I can't believe it's been almost 3 years since I bought my house. I'll never forget the day I got the keys. Mom and I were walking around it, and I was jabbering on about all my plans to renovate it. Momma lovingly said, "You have no idea what you've gotten yourself into." And she was kind of right. I thought it was going to be a simple make over of painting and decorating, but it ended up being insulation, roofing, flooring, tearing out tile, etc, etc, etc. Lucky for me, I have a Daddy who works hard and has more knowledge about building and fixing than anyone I know, and the major renovations were finished within months. Since then I've decorated, redecorated, and tried my best to keep it clean, which is really where Momma's line of me having no idea comes into play. Who knew keeping a three bedroom ranch house with only one occupant (and a huge dog) clean would be so much work?
Regardless, I love my house. The place I love the most is either the kitchen or the living room, so today I'm going to talk about the living room. When I bought my house, it looked like this....
After pulling the carpet, laying down hardwood, removing the built in, and switching up a few things, it now looks like this.
You may remember that I got new couches about a year ago. Nothing has really changed since then.
I'm kind of getting an itch to switch it up, but I really like the way it is, so we'll see.
Since you all have seen this before, I thought I'd get into a few details. You should know that I did not decorate the place by myself. My Momma, Grandma, and her friend, Paulette, helped me a lot. And here are the three lessons I learned from them while decorating my living room.
1. It's all about balance.
Sometimes I sit in a room, and something just isn't right. All of the furniture is beautiful, the nicknacks are adorable, but it just isn't quite right. A lot of times that's because it isn't balanced.
This took me a bit to learn, but if you use a pop of color on one side of the room, it needs to appear on the other side. Like the color orange below. The same with furniture. You can't put a heave couch on one side, and a small TV stand on the other. It isn't balanced if you do that. At the same time, negative space has it's place. Notice that I don't have anything hanging to the left of the door. It's all about balance.
2. Think outside of the box.
When I decorated my living room, I couldn't really afford a lot of stuff because I'm a poor teacher. So I had to get a little creative. I knew I needed something large scale for above the couch (which goes back to balance). To find a painting the size I needed, I would have been spending a few hundred dollars. There was one at Pier 1 that I adored. It was $499. I didn't adore it that much. One day we were in Hobby Lobby and I found a mirror that had cracked. They marked it down from $300 to $30 because of the crack. Paulette told me to buy it, so I did. When we got home, Daddy removed the mirror from the frame for us, and we hung it above the couch. Then we put two smaller paintings that we got from a garage sale for $5. For $35 I got a large scale wall piece that is perfect. (Side note: I never did like the smaller paintings, but the colors are right, so it works beautifully.)
3. Use pieces that you love
It's kind of ironic that I just said the thing abut not loving the leave prints in the large frame, but I don't hate them. They are just a little formal for me. In the end though, it's important to use the things you love. That's why I have Scrabble Tiles in a bowl on one of my tables. I have orange glass on my piano which most people would find a little gaudy. I have a coffee table made from a rusted cart. It's the little things that I love that make it home. That's why my house will never look like the pages of Pottery Barn, because I don't love perfectly matched sets. I love the random things that are found at garage sales and my grandma's basement. I love that my house is eclectic. If you love it, it's worth living in.
Like I said, I'm not a decorating expert, but hopefully if you're looking to re-do your room, these little tips will help.
P.S. This post is linked up to Kelly's Korner - Show Us Your Life!