Friday, September 17, 2010

Color Needed

Dear blogger friends, I need your input!

Okay, here are shots of our new living room. Very neutral, no? Our sofa, the walls, the brown mirror frame and the brown accents on the lamps – definitely needs a punch of color, I just don't know where to start. (And, I just threw in shots of our dining room entry hall for the heck of it.)

With a couple of other paint jobs in the works, we’re not going to be painting the walls or reupholstering furniture in this decade, so I need to come up with something colorful to flank the mirror. But, not sure what. Prints or artwork in colorful frames? Toile plates – or is that more appropriate for a kitchen or dining area? And did I mention we’re on a MAJOR budget? (By the way, the curtains in our living room are not pink, they are actually red, but the color appears washed out in these photos.)

Oy, where to begin. Any creative suggestions are most welcome and VERY much appreciated.

TGIF, everyone. Have a great weekend!

P.S. - To blogger friends old and new, thank you for all of the kind words, for compliments on my blog of late, kind messages and for just checking in everyday to read this little blog of mine. I really value you and appreciate your support. Thanks so much! And, thanks for your patience as I try new fonts and layouts. It's a work in progress!


High Heeled Life said...

Lovely spaces in your home ..

You actually have an amazing canvass to work from ... neutral...perhaps a punch of colour can be added with some coloured cushions on the couch and an area rug in the living room.

I like your idea of art for the walls ... that always helps to give a room that little extra.

Always a pleasure to visit ..Happy week-end..HHL

Tickled Pink Talk said...

I second the idea of some colorful pillows for the couch, maybe pull in the red? And an area rug also. Then you can pick up on those colors with prints on the wall. You can even go all HGTV and just paint some canvases from Michael's. Cheap and then you can do whatever color you want. What nice space you have! can't wait to see more pics.

kayce hughes said...

I think that you need bigger tables at each side of the couch. I have had great luck finding matching pairs on craigs list and salvation army. Paint them a fun high gloss color.

hostess of the humble bungalow said...

I am not a decorator but I would move the big mirror off centre and create a group of framed photographs, paintings, or prints on the wall...different sizes...keeping the frames in a colour theme but adding interest.

Maybe an orchid on the coffee table and I think a great rug would be fun too...and a couple of solid colour pillows.

I'm coming back to see what others say later...this if a fun idea!

Danielle said...

You do have great bones to work with here. I have a couple of different ideas. I agree with the idea that others have mentioned to give a pop of color with pillows on the sofa. You need something to separate it from the wall and the added color would do that. An area rug is another idea to draw the eye away from the monochromatic color scheme and provide an anchor to the room. I would try to get one with some color and not another neutral.

As far as the walls, you could got he shabby chic way and pick up some old picture frames (with or without artwork) at a local thrift store and create a collage of empty frames on either side of the mirror. You could do the same thing with various sized mirrors.

Another idea would be to paint a brighter color squares on each side of the mirror and then hang a smaller picture inside the square. In other words, the painted square would be a frame to the artwork.

Good luck! Be sure to let us see what you end up with.

Tiffany said...

Good morning!

My first thought was also an area rug. I agreed with the suggestion of getting larger side tables. I'm scared to suggest this b/c it can go wrong so fast but if done right...colored lamp shades. And either a collection of artwork to accompany the mirror or even interesting sconces to flank it.

I LOVE this post! We're in a new house, too, and my biggest fear is that I was making it too vanilla. But vanilla is good to start with -now just start layering in an edited way. Good luck & please let us peek at the results! xo

p.s. as a blogger, i live on comments. they make me smile and make it seem worthwhile! ahhhhhhh...somebody is reading out there. not just my mom.

Anonymous said...

You have an amazing template to work with. Seeing that you do not plan on painting the walls, you will have to bring out punches of color through your wall hangings. You can always find fun frames at flea markets, thrift stores, etc. There are always so many neat architectural items out there these days wanting to be found at such reasonable costs...I could see an old barn door or an iron gate hanging on one of those large walls.

Like other's said, throw pillows and an area rug will make a huge impact. TJ Maxx and Marshalls are always great for unique and reasonably priced pillows. In addition, the area rugs at IKEA are pretty well priced if you have one in your area.

Some may think I'm crazy, but would you be willing to paint some of your wooden furniture? This would add color and character. I can see some painted terra cotta pots with plants on them throughout. You can also get sample paints at sherwin Williams that only cost $4 for a quart. You wouldn't believe how much you can paint with a quart of paint. It also enables you to be able to pick the exact color you want.

This was such a great idea for a post and I hope you get the suggestions you are looking for. Sorry, I'll close my mouth now...Sometimes I just babble and babble and babble. Just ask my husband...LOL!!

James said...

I suppose a zebra skin rug is out of the question? Thought so. Well good luck, I'm sure your good taste will prevail.

Main Line Sportsman said...

A nice Oriental rug under the dining room table and a larger one in living room. You can work the colors easily.

Town and Country Mom said...

I, too, would vote for 1) adding a rug (I've bought several Persians from eBay, with great success--email me if you like and I'll give you some pointers) 2) pillows also would be nice but I'm not sure I'd go for a "punch" just something subtle to add a little warmth 3) consider lowering your mirror and painting a few inches and 4) replace one of your side tables with a small chest (this could be a Good Will find that you spray gloss black--it can move or be sold at a garage sale once you find that perfect period bachelor's chest!) Have fun! Your house has great bones, and you have lovely traditional taste! Enjoy the process and don't buy a bunch of junk, just to have it "done."

Tessa said...

Your new home is beautiful! Congratulations! You already have a great starting point.
Here's my 2 cents on what to add:
1. Replace the shades on the matching pair of lamps with black ones.
2. Add a large area rug. I would go with seagrass even though it adds another neutral. The texture would be great and it is easier to work with than a patterned rug.
3. Hang the mirror vertically instead. Flank it with botanicals or blue and white plates. Blue and white would look so pretty in there.
4. Have some new throw pillows made for the couches. Ikea has 24x24 inch 100% down inserts on the cheap. A couple of fabrics I love and might work in there for pillows are:
The check would even be pretty on a skirted table.
5. I'd also play around with the furniture arrangement and see if you can't pull one of the couches away from the wall and group the arm chair in closer.
Ok, that was FUUUNNNN! Good luck. You can't go wrong. It's a lovely room already!

JMW said...

Great ideas, everyone! Thanks so much. I neglected to showcase what was on the wall to my right, from where I took some of the photos: a huge antique rolltop desk. So, because that spot is a good fit for such a large object, we're kind of limited on the arrangement of our other furniture in that room. Then again, perhaps I don't have an eye for these things and I haven't seen the potential of other pieces going in other locations. Love the comments - keep 'em coming!

Natasha said...

This is such a great way to get decorating ideas-I love it! I must say that the first thing that I thought of was also a beautiful rug. I have two Persian rugs and adore them. They provide colour and contrast and they can be as busy or as neutral as you want. If I see any good pictures I will be sure to send them your way!

Best wishes for a wonderful weekend,

Tiffany said...

I had to come back and see what people were suggesting. I liked what Town & Country mom said & also when I said colored lamp shades, I really had in mind the black ones I have on mine, like Tessa mentioned. Love black shades!

LPC said...

I crave serenity in my house. So I wouldn't pop anything, no pillows, no lamps. Instead I'd spend my whole budget on the best rug I could find, largely in the same tones you have, but one more color on the other side of the spectrum, for example, if the rug is largely pink and sand, some celadon or rust.

EntertainingMom said...

i say pick up one of the colors from the couch... can you take a picture of the pattern and show us?

If you buy benjamin moore paints you can buy small sample sizes and just paint various squares on your walls...

Once you find your paint color you can work out the other details. Paint is powerful stuff. It will change the tone and the mood of your room. You may choose to have a different area rug, for example, after the walls have been painted, than you would have before they have. Ok, now take a picture of the detail of your couch and post please!

I'm off to the Nate Berkus show on Tuesday. I have decor on my mind... and him too! ;)

Jo said...

Your photos remind me of our home when we first moved in. It was all the same ~ blah. I added color to many walls and now I'm going back to a more neutral palate.

I would suggest larger tables and introducing color into the room with rugs, pillows and art on the walls.

Can't wait to see what you come up with ~

kp said...

I know you said you didn't want to paint, but it is the easiest and least expensive way to make a huge difference in a room. I would paint your living room. If you used a darker color, it would liven up all the beige. A rug would also warm up the room. Good luck!!

Teresa Hatfield said...

I would put an area rug with the cream or beige background and bright whimsical colors popping out. Then I would add pillows to bring out the draperies and the rug.
I love the idea of the painted frames. I have used heavy, gilded, empty frames before and love that idea too! Always put a mirror where it will reflect what you want to see, and I can't tell what you have in front of it.
I love your furniture and home, and those hardwood floors are perfect.
have a great day,

QueenBeeSwain said...

yes, I vote colorful pillows as well


bevy said...

Oh my... I'm too late in commenting as I would basically just reiterate what everyone else has already said - especially T&CM. You have a great canvas per se in this room. I agree you need a rug. That would be my big splurge if possible. Never knew about oriental rugs on ebay. Maybe I should check that out too. I need one for my entrance hall!

pve design said...

A little color can go a long way - add a graphic rug with some orange tones- pick up the accent tones in the painting. I might be inclined to add sconces...on the back wall, perhaps move the mirror since you have one in your foyer.. A tufted ottoman might be nice in a pop of a fresh color!
Great start!