Thursday, July 21, 2011

Welcome to My Home: Our Living Room

In the spirit of virtual cul-de-sac hospitality, I welcome you to my home.  

We've spent most of the past six years remodeling, and then re-remodeling, our house.  It's been a chore, in part because we are trying to walk that fine line between re-sellable added value and money-pit-over-improvement.  We've tried to be good stewards of this home, knowing that it won't be ours forever, but ultimately, some cosmetic issues will be left to the next owners.

I live in a traditional Georgian-style home, and the floorplan nods to the yesteryear.  This is our toy-free, tv-free “formal” living room, which we use often for entertaining, and for quiet evenings of conversation or reading.  I love the lack of clutter, the crisp plantation shutters, the beautiful natural light during the day, and the intimate lighting at night.  The room measures 17 x 18 and is reliably the only clean cleanest space in my house.

The two sofas are from Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams Chester Collection and are covered in a chocolate brown velvet.  They were definitely investment pieces, but I love them and consider the brown a neutral backdrop for the blue, gold, and copper accents throughout the room.  I had originally wanted these from Restoration Hardware, but they didn’t have the right color fabric for me.  I then learned that MG+BW designs and makes some of the furniture for RHPBWS, and C+B, and that you can buy similar designs, with more fabric options, for less money, directly from them. Yay!

The crackled blue occasional table is a Chinese antique reproduction from Four Hands Home, which is an excellent source for eclectic occasional pieces.  The glass lamp and shade are from Restoration Hardware.

Have I mentioned my love of hydrangeas?

I designed the oval ottoman myself after not seeing anything I liked in retail.  I chose a fabric I liked and found a local carpenter and upholsterer to make it for me.  It is absolutely my favorite piece in the room, and it cost me less than $300 in labor and materials.  Plus, even after six years, it is wearing well and is totally child-proof.

The blue and gold striped silk chair is a hand-me-down from my mom that I re-upholstered.  I like the subtle Asian style, which I pick up in some other areas of my home as well to honor the Chinese influences that inspired Georgian design.

The rattan and glass console table and the blue and white lamp are more Asian-inspired hand-me-downs from my mom.

The photograph of the blue and green hands is called The Blanket Weaver and was taken by photographer Greg Davis in Vietnam.

The brown and copper striped silk chair in the corner was purchased on clearance at a Henredon truck sale.  I heart truck sales.


The mirror is a clearance purchase from Z Gallerie.  It reflects light from my dining room chandelier and the colors of the painting on the opposite wall. 

The large abstract painting is an original by designer and artist John Kapla.  It picks up all of the colors in my house beautifully and has hints of copper metallic, which I especially love.

The floors are solid Brazilian Cherry; the paint color is Restoration Hardware’s Butter; and the plantation shutters are Hunter-Douglas via Costco, all of which I use throughout most of my home.  And the jazz-themed art in my entry is a silk-thread-on-leather-canvas piece from West African artist Salomon M'Bala.

You’ll notice there aren’t any plants or many knick-knacks --- remember, I have three small children.  At this point in my life, finishing a room with accessories is secondary to my kids’ ability to run through the house without knocking things over. ;-) That said, I do need to accessorize the walls and tables better --- it's definitely a work in progress.  How do you balance elegance with kid-liveability in your home?

(Sharing with No Minimalist Here,  Savvy Southern Style, Saved by Suzy and View Along the Way)


  1. I love the idea of a kid-clutter free room! We only have one living space so it's kind of hard. I do keep the dining area free of 'stuff' and we have a playroom for my daughter's toys - she is 9 now and it gets easier each year to keep everything corraled. So now our living space is much nicer and more elegant than when she was a baby. Your room is so pretty - love the sofas. I find brown a pretty neutral color.

  2. Thanks for stopping by, Debra! Later this week, I'll post my *very* kid-cluttered family room. I dream of a proper playroom! In the meantime, it's good to know that it gets easier to corral the clutter as the kids get older.

  3. Thanks for linking! I absolutely love those couches.