I started trying to tackle the room on my own, but soon realized I was in over my head. I reached out to a local interior designer and friend, Jenny Kramer, and she immediately got to work helping me. One of the things I like most about Jenny is that she's budget conscious. She's all about using what you've got, finding fun pieces at antique stores and consignment shops, and mixing and matching high quality items with things found at inexpensive home decor shops.
Here's what the room looked like before, I sure don't miss that burgundy accent wall. I hated that wall from the day we moved in, but we had so many other rooms to tackle before even thinking about this one. We ended up just dumping all of our den furniture from our old house in this room and trying to make it work. And clearly, it didn't.
Painting the room and fireplace definitely made the biggest difference in the space, and I love the addition of the tobacco basket above the mantel. It really gives the room the rustic look that I was going for, and warms up the space. We did a little rearranging for the Christmas tree this year, but the bookshelf usually lives to the right of the fireplace, instead of to the left. This was one of Jenny's suggestions, and it made a huge difference. Moving it to the wall with the higher ceiling helped balance out the room.
Another suggestion of Jenny's that I would have never thought about was to have chairs flanking the TV. Before we did this, the TV and the vintage radio it sits above were the only things on that wall, and it just looked empty. She suggested adding two chairs, and I just happened to have two victorian chairs in our attic. The chairs had been passed down in T's family, and had definitely seen better days, but I had a friend paint them, and then sent them off to the upholsterer to get them recovered. (We used Best Upholstering in Greenville, and they did an amazing job.) I also had my girlfriend Elizabeth of Wheaton Whaley Designs make matching pillows for our couch. The arrows above each chair came from Hobby Lobby.
We decided to go simple on the curtains, and picked up a pair of IKEA Rivta curtains in white. Jenny found a grey grosgrain trim that matched our couch perfectly, and my mom and I sewed the trim to the curtains to give them more of a custom look. Jenny also found acrylic rods and hardware for our curtain rods. These were dirt cheap, like less than $35. The drapery clips came from Amazon here.
We're probably going to have to move this bar cart elsewhere once Thompson is more mobile, this thing and all it's glass adornments just screams baby hazard, but I sure do love it. T and I found this on Craigslist several years ago, and it's still one of my favorite pieces. Jenny bought a few new pieces like the acrylic wine holder and hammered gold tumbler from Target, and also found that fabulous vintage ice bucket.
I am so pleased with how the room turned out, and the best part is it didn't break my wallet. Jenny's rates are incredibly reasonable, and because she was able to use so many things that I already had we really didn't have to spend that much. If you live in the Upstate, I would highly recommend using her for any project you've got! You can check out her website here.
And now on to the next project, our master bath. Y'all this room is so bad. It's fallen dead last on our priority list because T and I are the only ones that use it, but its just downright embarrassing. We started taking down the wallpaper, removed one vanity light so that we could use it in our guest bath, and then we just stopped. So in 2017 this bathroom WILL get redone. And I'm putting it on my blog to keep me honest. And yes, I'm wearing Christmas pajamas in this photo. No shame.