Room Redesign: Karin's Bayview Beauty
Jul 27, 2010
I was lucky to be asked to help Karin redesign her living room. Lucky because a) she has an amazing view of West Grand Traverse Bay, b) her room had "good bones" to start with, and c) she is a professional photographer and provided all of the photos you see here. Of all the rooms I've spiffed up in my 2- to 3-hour Room Redesign Sessions, this one was probably the closest to being almost there. So it's a good example of how small tweaks can make a big difference.
Here's how the room looked when I arrived:
BEFORE: The furniture was spaced too far apart and the pieces seemed sort of scattered. The rug looked too small for the room, and there was no way to easily sit and appreciate the view.
BEFORE: The colors weren't relating well to each other. Read on to see how we improved that without even painting.
BEFORE: The shelves flanking the fireplace had been a source of frustration for Karin. I helped her rearrange and rethink the accessories to make the items stand out and look better as a whole.
In a nutshell, here's what we did:
- Rearranged furniture to cozy up the fireplace area and create a separate seating area for enjoying the view.
- Switched out the coffee table with a longer, narrower one from the basement.
- Brought up a family antique from the basement, a drop-leaf table that serves as a console table behind the sofa.
- Brought in two small accent tables from other rooms.
- Swapped the gigantic plant for one of a more manageable size.
- Accessorized with pillows and textiles Karin had stored elsewhere.
- Cleared out and rearranged the shelves next to the fireplace.
AFTER: The view from the kitchen. We had placed Karin's only matching pair of lamps on the console table during the session, but they were a bit dated and large, so she went shopping for these smaller-scaled orange cuties. The color picks up on the rug and a runner that we brought into the room.
AFTER: We turned the chairs around completely, to create a nice spot for enjoying the view.
AFTER: This wedge-shaped accent table was designed just for this use. Perfect. This photo was shot with the bay under a haze, but on a clear day you can see all the way to Charlevoix.
AFTER: I really reworked these shelves. Karin let me wander the house gathering pieces from other rooms. She had a lot of interesting things that were hiding unseen in out-of-the-way places. These niches will get a new coat of paint. I recommended Dried Thyme by Sherwin-Williams (SW-6186) to help tie together the color plan. The pheasant feather was a contribution from Karin's 6-year-old daughter, Lauren… I thought it was a brilliant addition to this layered vignette!
AFTER: To bridge the gap between the bright, saturated colors in the rug and the neutrals in the hearth and walls, we raided Karin's large stash of pillows and placed a few on the hearth. They create more comfortable seating and also help carry some brighter colors through the room.
AFTER: This 1960s table had been banished to the basement, but I wanted to use it because its shape was more suited to the proportions of the sofa and fireplace. Its top was worn, but we pulled this runner out of storage to cover the faults and further emphasize the brighter color palette.
So there you have it, another room redesigned in 3 hours. And all Karin bought was a new pair of lamps. —Diane
All images ©Karin Willman of A la Carte Photography.
Want me to help you work some magic in your own room? Email me to set an appointment for a Dwelement Room Redesign Session in the Traverse City area. Only four more days to take advantage of my July special, $50 off! More information here.
TAGS: interior redesign design traverse city northern michigan use what you have decorating home staging budget decorating inexpensive design affordable interior decorator edecorating e-decorating
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