Home Tour: Living Room Edition
I am the first to admit that decorating my home is a job that never feels finished. Of course I’m also a perfectionist, a S-L-O-W decorator and still trying to better understand my taste in design. So it’s quite possible that I will always feel like there’s more to do in a room. But in the spirit of learning to love your space in all stages of development and accepting the fact that most houses are in a constant state of flux, I’d like to share my current progress with you, starting with the living room. Furniture and decor sources are included at the bottom of the post.
I’m lucky to have inherited quite a few pieces from my furniture-addicted family, so I can easily say that only 40% of the decor in these images are truly mine. On the other hand, I’ve learned to be very careful when family members are constantly giving you furniture and artwork. As much as I adore their generosity, I have to be certain that (1) I LOVE what they’re offering and (2) that it fits somewhere in my current space or what I want my space to eventually look like. Otherwise I give them a hug, thank them for the offer and tell them that I think it might be better to give it to someone else.
My couch and marble side tables are purchases of mine, both from Pottery Barn, and the ottoman is from a New Orleans furniture store. While there are a few things I would change about the couch (like how wrinkly it gets and how many times I have to fluff the back pillows) I chose the neutral gray color because it gives me the option to change up my decor as much as I want and goes with anything. And I’ve also discovered the benefit of one giant seat cushion, which is that it makes the couch an excellent bed (about twin-size) for when we have an overflow of guests. We enjoy the ottoman because it’s also a classic piece and allows everyone to put their feet up at the same time.
Outside of the living room I have three window box flowers fixed to our balconette. Other than making the exterior of the house look pretty, it’s also wonderful to have flowers peeking in at visitors from the inside and out. I feel like it adds an extra dimension to the decor. The down side is that boxed flowers don’t do well during the Texas summers. I think this is my fifth round of flowers, but someone recently told me that I need to be looking specifically for “drought resistant” plants if I want them to withstand the heat. So if these die (which I’m convinced they will), I will find those and then resort to planting fake flowers when I’ve given up entirely 😉
My mother got me the large magnolia prints in the above photo during one of the many auctions she attends. I’ve been with her to some of these auctions that combine multiple estate sales and I have to say, you really can find some good deals there. Just make sure you sit next to anyone you go with so you don’t end up unknowingly trying to outbid one another from different sides of the room (that actually happened to my grandmother and parents while I tried signaling wildly at them to stop).
My mother also got me the credenza that the TV sits on. Because we don’t have enough wall space for bookshelves in the room, I eventually stacked up some of our books underneath, which also had the dual purpose of hiding cords. I tried to make them color-coordinated like the book shelves in the kitchen, but it seems I’m running out of books with colorful spines and am working on other solutions. In the meantime, I like having the books visible to anyone who comes over as it can always be a good conversation starter.
Collecting pieces from traveling also make for good conversation starters. So though I find that hard to do on trips, I always try. The ornamental piece above is a didgeridoo, which is an instrument made by Aboriginies in Australia. I spent most of my childhood growing up between Melbourne and Brisbane and was lucky that my mother thought to bring back some of the artwork. I wasn’t sure at first that the distinctive art style would fit with my decor, but I think it’s important to have pieces of your heritage out and about. These days it looks right at home, nestled by the plant my cat refuses to stop attacking.
Whatever stage of decorating you’re in, remember to take a step back every now and then and acknowledge the parts that already bring you joy. It may not be much, but you have to start somewhere and you’d be surprised how little people notice what you think is an eyesore. Can’t wait to show you the rest of the house as I S-L-O-W-L-Y work on decorating! You can follow me on Instagram to see the little changes I’m making here and there. And I’ve included a list below of today’s furniture/decor sources: