Today is the most exciting before and after so far: our living room! (If you’re catching up on our Nantucket decorating progress, check out the reveals of our guest bedroom, upstairs bathroom, sitting room, and downstairs bathroom.) This is one of my favorite rooms in the house, not only because we spend the most time here but because the difference between the room two months ago and the room today is just so drastic. I’ll let the before and after pictures speak for themselves…!
Before the living room had yellow walls, dated window treatments, a scratchy area rug, and a furniture configuration that blocked off the open floor plan into the dining room and made everything look squished.
Taking down the floral window treatments was a crucial first step in brightening up the room and bringing it into 2017. This room gets fantastic natural light and has a wall of hedges outside for privacy, so we opted not to replace the window treatments we took down (which weren’t super functional to begin with!). After my dad patched in the holes from the curtain rod, he and I painted two coats of white, which made the room feel even brighter.
There was so much furniture crammed into this space, including this random outdoor chair for additional seating. (There are six people — and two dogs who sit on furniture — in our family, plus a revolving door of visitors during the summer months!) We played around with the furniture layout a bunch and ultimately maximized seating by arranging the striped sofas opposite one another and replacing the one overstuffed armchair in the corner with two comfy armchairs we scored at Ikea. Now the room seats the same number of people as it did before, but in a configuration that feels more inviting and way less cramped.
I was really happy that we decided to save the striped sofas instead of replacing them with something new. They’re such a fun statement and they really make the room, especially now that they’re not competing with floral curtains or yellow paint. These were in the house when my parents bought it, but you can get a similar look with this or this. We did upgrade to this Dash & Albert Petit Diamond indoor/outdoor rug, which is so much softer than the previous rug and adds a little texture without competing with the sofas. I think I own five Dash & Albert rugs at this point but they just have the best patterns! We also considered this and this but I really think this subtle diamond weave is just right for the room.
Here’s a before picture of the striped sofas and the coffee table in their previous configuration. There was so little space to move around the coffee table and the sofa on the right totally blocked off the walkway into the dining room. We were a little worried that moving the loveseat size across from the full sofa would make the hallway feel crowded (you’ll see what I mean in more photos below), but it totally opened up the whole downstairs.
The coffee table was also an existing piece of furniture and it’s amazing how much less bulky it feels now that there’s room to walk around it. We moved the existing white side tables up to the master bedroom and replaced them with mismatched rattan end tables that add a little color and texture.
As an aside, I’m loving this new lens that Will gave me for my birthday. It enables me to capture the wide angle shots that you guys always ask to see on decorating projects and will be so great for our honeymoon! He totally surprised me after asking Ali for a recommendation… #swoon.
Anyway! You can also see what a huge difference staining the floors made. This was by far the most expensive project my parents took on this summer but we all keep marveling at how great they look! The dark stain runs all through the first floor, up the stairs, and into the bedrooms upstairs. We put down this affordable jute runner in the downstairs hallway to minimize scratching (particularly from the dogs) and I love the way it looks.
My mom found this fabulous white bird lamp at the Serena & Lily store in Westport and just had to have it. I thought it was a little out there at first, but I’ve come to love it! Mom always knows best. 🙂
We love gathering around the coffee table to play board games and, despite my mom’s insistence that she’s a “total floor gal,” we thought adding a couple floor pillows would provide a more welcoming seating option (though you can see from the close-up of the rug that it’s perfectly comfortable for lounging!). This summer we’ve been playing nightly rounds of Bananagrams, Boggle, and Scrabble instead of watching TV — it’s so much more social!
My mom sewed these throw pillows (inspired by these ones in our living room in Greenwich) and I love how they pick up the blue stripe in the sofas as well as the bright blue bistro chairs in the dining room. We used to have yellow-y/orange wood dining chairs (a similar shade to the old floors) and these bistro chairs were a major upgrade in both comfort and style.
This raffia tassel pillow was another Serena & Lily find that we just had to have (I have a wishlist a mile long of their goodies!).
This pierced white lamp was a lucky Home Goods find — I find that store so hit or miss but my mom would pop in every few weeks this summer and scored some seriously amazing deals. Makes me want to take a spin through when I’m finally home in September!
We donated a ton of paperback romance novels that had been in the bookshelves since we moved into the house — it’s nice to look at the shelves and see books you’d actually want to read! The painting at the bottom is a watercolor of the Chanticleer where we’ll have our rehearsal dinner next week (!).
Amy gave us these Ralph Lauren cocktail napkins as a hostess gift earlier this summer and they’re perfect in our entirely blue and white house. 🙂
One more brilliant Home Goods find was this raffia tray. My mom and I always drool over the Oomph raffia pieces available at 28 Centre Pointe on the island and this was a fun way to get the look without breaking the bank. I’ve looked all over and can’t seem to find anything similar that’s not wildly expensive. Let me know if you have better luck!
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