Mary is a client who found my services when she was looking for a new home, she needed help with some odd shaped rooms, unique room layouts, and picking colors..
When she bought her new house in Golden , CO, we first started working together to help her find the perfect colors to paint her rooms and carpet the bedrooms.
I like to start with a redesign client by getting a sense of what they love, where they are from a design standpoint and then I work from their preferences toward a decision point. In Mary’s case, she loves cool pastels, shabby chic, and a romantic feeling from the discussion we had and the pictures she chose from Pinterest. I love Pinterest because there are so many pictures to choose from and you can easily search “shabby chic” (or whatever type of design you like) and find the feeling you are looking for in order to guide us in the direction we want to go.
When Mary had closed on her new home, painted and carpeted, and moved in, we were ready to put up the finishing decorative touches with furniture arrangement and artwork.
Our first area to address was her large living area in her basement. The downstairs living space takes up the entire length of her home Long narrow rooms can be tough to design because they need to be broken into spaces that make sense without making the room feel closed off.
The previous owner had created a television media area at the end of the room. This set up will give people the idea that since the expensive wiring is already in place, it rules out any other scenario for TV placement and watching. The effect ends up making the TV generate a big black hole at the end of the long room, making it even longer, and where else can you put the sofa but in front of it? This closes off the space from the rest of the room, essentially blocking the flow and energy, and this wasn’t the look and feel we wanted.
The less obvious solution to this dilemma, is to move the television onto the far right wall and bringing the sofa into the left wall facing the TV. This removed the block from the area and created a cohesive room where it feels inviting and open to the rest of the space while creating a balancing effect with the dark brown sofa and the big black television. It feels like you’re invited into the space. (Surround sound no longer surrounding? answer at the bottom!) We placed Mary’s large decorative mirror where the television had been making a large decorative statement and adding a cohesive element to visually pull the little surround sound shelves together. We also flipped the rug, to show off the pattern. Now the dark TV across from the dark sofa, with the dark elements in the wall shelves and rug all play together to make the media room cozy and inviting.
To decorate the rest of the room we had a large panoramic photograph of downtown Denver with strong shades of plum and a couple other pictures Mary’s boyfriend John had wanted us to hang in the basement. When hanging pictures, it adds importance to group them together, and you definitely want to leave some walls blank for the eye to rest. Mary had an armchair with the plum color in it, and John’s father had build a beautiful sideboard I thought would make a gorgeous reading nook for this area.
Now instead of a long narrow galley into the depths of a television, Mary and John have two spaces in the basement that indicate multiple uses and feel welcoming. Galley turned into gallery!
Now we turned to the upstairs living area and kitchen. This living space is so small that it could fit into the media area in the basement. Since that lovely living area was ready for company and conversations, we decided that this upstairs space must be used for a dining room. Since the home lacked formal dining, this solution made a lot of sense and appeal.
Mary had found some great shabby chic boxes that we used as wall art in the dining room. Three framed photographs pulled the design together for the entryway. Along with a table I had made from a vintage window, we created an elegant entrance foyer, even though this small home doesn’t have an actual foyer, you can do wonders with smart decor.
Mary had also bought a set of the boxes in dark grey. We chose to put these in the kitchen just a few feet from their sisters in the foyer. Mary’s new kitchen is fairly industrial and cold, with bright white cabinets and grey counters. Adding a distressed, worn and aged looking element in the same dark grey pulls the room together to create unity with color and texture.
I love Mary’s home. She has room for entertaining, room for relaxing, and room for creativity. I recommend that she leave the space in front of the reading nook open, it’s a great spot to do yoga, organize photos on the floor, maybe grand-babies are in her future and she will need a spot for a crib and a blanket. I also think a low wall unit at the base of the stairs for additional kitchen storage would make sense, she could also create a mudroom of sorts down there to keep outdoor gear out of the kitchen.
Remember, all of us go though change, having your environment reflect the best you is important. If you want your environment to looks it best, call me! Beth 720-837-0853
Now for the answer to the question, how do you get surround sound when your TV isn’t under the surround sound speakers? Wireless media! Time for Mary and John to go shopping when it’s time to rent a scary movie!