I have posted many throwback Thursdays over on facebook and instagram for a few months now. Most of the time, the social media post is enough to catch the idea and vibe of what the room went through. Some rooms, however, are more meaningful and much more extensive than a quick post can explain. So, here's a little bit behind the last one. Our living room!
This is the first before & after I have posted of our current home. All of the before/afters have been from our previous lake house that we sold in June 2017. Our current home is a 1926 farmhouse colonial. The previous owners had lived here for over 30 years and meticulously maintained the homes structure and integrity. The home had great bones and a lot of our 'must haves' checked off, but it needed some updating to have it fit our aesthetic and our family (wall to wall carpeting in every room with a baby and two dogs was just not going to cut it!). Here is a couple of before pictures to give you an idea of what it looked like when we purchased the house last year.
The living room is the heart of our home. I know some people say it's the kitchen, but it's our living room where we feel like we can truly relax. It's where we can unwind after a long day and where Jude spends a lot of time playing with his toys. Our living room is the first room you enter in our home, so I wanted to make sure it felt calming when we returned after a long day.
In regards to the 'big ticket' items. We had the wall to wall carpeting removed and installed brand new hardwood floors. The entire first floor of our home (and upstairs, too) now have the same flooring. Having cohesive flooring and paint color really makes our home feel like one big place instead of separate rooms. You know those homes, where if you stand in one spot, you can see six or seven different flooring types? Yeah, that was this house. We had about six shades of carpet, hardwood floor, and linoleum. Adding hardwood floors is such a great investment as they are easier to keep clean, are durable, and adds value to your home. It's a win-win-win, really!
The other big thing we did was add drywall to the ceilings and skim-coated over the wet plaster. Now, this is going to be very controversial, especially in our city, because wet plaster is true to the homes style and age. Their are a lot of homes in the area with wet plaster walls. It works for some people, but for us, it didn't. I am not going to keep something in my home I don't love. It's just that simple. This was one of the best decisions we made for this room. The living room now feels crisp and clean and the smooth walls really modernized our space.
We painted the entire home Benjamin Moore's White Dove with Pure White trim. White paint is a lot harder than I thought. There are SO many shades of white and some look blue, green, yellow, and even purple! It took a lot of trial and error but I think the one we chose is the perfect balance of a warm white that doesn't feel too 'stark'. We also painted over the brick fireplace with the same color as the walls. My husband built the mantel to look like a big chunk of wood, but in reality, it's poplar boards from Home Depot butted up against each other incasing the existing mantel.
We also removed the heat exchanger out of the existing fireplace and turned it into a gas fireplace. We hired professionals to add a gas line and install a new sleek door. The fireplace is the focal point of this room so now it's not only functional, but nice to look at!
Our banister got replaced as well, not because we hated it, but because it was a safety hazard. It was very wobbly and had been since we purchased the home, but once Jude got older and we weren't able to securely install a baby gate at the bottom, we knew we needed to replace it. We decided to go with a craftsman style banister with the squared post, but went with wood spindles (instead of iron) to keep the house look 'farmhouse-y'.
What is your favorite part about this space? What do you love most about your living room? Click the links below for sources on all of our furniture and decor!
sources: reclining chair| ottoman| couch| rug| clock - Kohl's, no longer sold| throw pillows - At Home stores, not sold online| lanterns| floor lamp| baby gate| toy basket| kids wagon| black nesting houses| globe| wood sculpture| gold frames| black matted frames