house tour {living room}

when we designed our house (technically a remodel of a pre-1920′s home), having an open living space was a priority.  our front door is an extra wide dutch door.  i love being able to open it for a breeze to pass through the house, but still keep the kids in.

when you walk through our front door, you walk right into our living room, no real entry way.  we also forgot to plan for a hall closet (and a broom closet – oops!), so these hooks to the right of the door are our latest solution.  the dresser is so functional for us, using not only as a pretty space, but also as major storage.  i found the dresser at a garage sale more than 10 years ago and repainted it recently in french pale gold by behr (from home depot).

you can see this post for lots of details on the entry way.

we have played around many times with the furniture layout and i think this one is the best.  i love that the couches aren’t facing the tv, and we really don’t watch much tv here – maybe once a week.  but when we do want to watch a show or a movie, i’ll be honest, it’s a pain.  a pain in the neck.  the couch against the windows was a hand-me-down from my brother and his family when they moved to hawaii.  its from ikea – i think it sells for about $399?  we bought a new cover for it for $50!  our other couch we’ve had for 10+ years and its from larry st. john in the l.a. area.  it also has a removable white slip cover.  so why white?  am i crazy?!  nope.  white is the only color you can bleach.  when my covers get nasty (and i usually wait until they are pretty nasty) i just unzip them and toss them in the washer.  my older couch is definitely starting to show its age, as most couches that old would.  because its been through the wash so many times, the zippers aren’t all functional anymore and a few holes are starting to show up where the bleach has eventually broken down the fabric.  but for ten years, i’d say its not too bad.  the bummer to this couch – to get replacements will be at least a few hundred dollars.  boo.

i made almost all the pillows for the couch.  here’s a tutorial for the owl/branch one.  i also finally finished the circle quilt.

i found the table at a garage sale a few years ago with my mom and sister, and eventually repainted it mermaid’s net by behr (i think) on the base and a brown with a black wash on the top.  we bought this table pretty thrashed and i didn’t bother sanding it down to refinish it since we have just added to its character with our own scratches.  that’s pretty much the case with all of our furniture – its mostly all thrifted and distressed, so when we add our own natural “distressing” that occurs with 3 kids, i feel totally fine about it.

this old coke box used t be the centerpiece on our dining table, holding our napkins and devotional book, but i love it also on our coffee table.  sometimes the mason jars hold fresh cut hydrangeas from our yard, but more often it has matchbox cars and random tiny toys residing in the crevices.  both the box and the jars were found garage sale-ing or at a flea market.

the sofa table i found at a garage sale.  it had a hutch on top and was originally a honey color.  until we started our workbox system the hutch was in our playroom on the floor as a book shelf.  we also repainted the table mermaid’s net and i distressed it with a razor blade.  after a couple years, we just added these knobs from world market.  this table has also been our entry way table, before i moved the dresser out of the girls’ room and painted it mustard yellow.  i store lots of blankets under this table, 3 of them hand knit by my paternal grandmother.  i stole the birdcage from my parents’ loft in our backyard and i put it on a red tray and have a turquoise platter inside for extra color, all vintage.

our floors are engineered maple with a walnut finish.  i have no idea what company we used, and since it was about 5 years ago, i’m sure they don’t carry the same floor.  the rug between the couches is also from world market, from about 3 years ago, but i think they may still carry it (here’s the same one but smaller size).  its made from jute not sisal, so its actually fairly soft underfoot.  i love how it has a beachy look to it.

the ceilings are vaulted and covered in tongue-and-groove planks.  we did this in our previous home to cover up nasty popcorn ceilings and loved the result, so we did it again!

the fireplace/entertainment unit was custom made when we were building the house.  we wanted a built-in look, but couldn’t sacrifice space in the rooms behind, so it is built against the wall.  its funny how some things were so important at the time, but now i wouldn’t know any different.  all of the hardware is from houseofantiquehardware.com. the tv is set in a hole, basically, and to get it in and out if needed, the bottom piece of trim actually is just latched on rather than nailed into the sides.  the cabinets on the lower halves of each side hold all of our photo albums (and boxes and boxes of photos not in albums – i’m so bad about that!), and games and toys on the other side.  my little unfinished ottoman (from ikea) also has storage inside and hold a lot of our games.

the shelves hold random knick knacks.  the most used shelf is the bottom right one.  it hold all of our homeschooling literature that we aren’t currently reading – the kids love looking through the books.  also the little basket (from ikea) holds all the different remotes – tv and fireplace.  i grew up with a wood burning stove, building my own fires, so the idea of “turning on” a fire is still bizarre to me.  i covered the cardboard magazine boxes (from ikea) with paper from paper sky, a local paper boutique (a must visit if you’re ever in town!).  we had the backs of the shelves covered in beadboard and painted a chocolate brown to break up all the white a bit.

this side of the shelves needs a little more attention paid to it.  over time, things have been pulled from these shelves and moved to decorate other areas of the house, and now i see nothing was put back in it’s place.  as much as i love beautifully decorated shelves, i just can’t get myself to go out and buy all new accessories to make my shelves look pleasing.  everything here has a bit of history to it.  my favorites are the silver cups from my sister while she was living in london, the teal footed vase from my dear friend, joy, and the dr. pepper crate i found at a garage sale (jealous, mique?).

i paid $15 for this, more than i wanted to, but it really was worth it.  its a punch of color here and it hold magazines perfectly.  i somehow have waaay too many magazines, which rarely get read.

a recent addition are the suitcases atop my entertainment center.  these suitcases migrate all over the house, but i am really happy with them here.  i got all of my luggage years ago when sean and i were first married and i first started seriously garage sale-ing and going to flea markets.  i don’t think i ever paid more that $15 for one.  i love these ones with the original stickers and postcards all over them.

oh, and since this is my most asked question here:  the wall color is called silver sage by restoration hardware.  i had mine custom mixed at a local paint store and i think my color came out a bit more grey than the original, but i still like it.  i like how its both a color and a neutral.

feel free to ask me any questions you have and i’ll do my best to get you an answer.  i normally answer all your questions via email, but i’ll answer here in the comment section so everyone can see the answers, so be sure to come back and check for my answers!

also, did you know i have a search bar on my site?  just over there —> is a little bar that you can type anything into to search around my archives.  type in living room, or white couches, or tables and you’ll find lots of old posts and you can see how my house has evolved over the past few years!

 

Comments

  1. 1

    I love it all! We just bought a dresser at the thrift store very similar to the one in your entry that I am dying to paint butter yellow. Yet again, thanks for the inspiration! :)

  2. 2

    This is really lovely! Could you please share your furniture painting technique? Do you spray or use a brush? How do you handle painting drawers? I’d also love to know how you did the brown with black wash on the coffee table top. Thanks!

    • 3
      lindsey says:

      sure susan! even though i used to paint as a profession, i am pretty relaxed with being perfect with my own furniture since i know its going to get dinged. i almost always use water based paint and a brush or weenie roller for painting. a weenie roller is the small, smooth roller about the size of a hot dog, hence the name. i only spray paint when its something spindly, like a chair because you can always tell when something has been sprayed if you aren’t really good about getting a good even coat. for drawers i only do the fronts and the top and side edges of the face of the drawer. as soon as you start painting the sides it starts to make opening the drawers more difficult. for the black wash on the coffee table, normally i’d use a glaze and mix in a tint, but i didn’t feel like going through all that hassle, so i got some black paint and mixed it with a little brown paint, and really watered it down. then i did a solid coat over a small section and quickly wiped it off almost completely with a dry rag, then smoothed it out with a dry brush. because my table was so dinged up already, the black settled in the pockets of the dings and the details along the edges.

      xoxo
      lindsey

  3. 7

    Your house is so inviting and colorful! I just love the look. I want to know if you have been pleased with the comfort and quality of the ikea sofa over time?

    • 8
      lindsey says:

      i think it is actually pretty comfortable. my biggest drawback about it is that the bottom cushions don’t stay in place very well. i feel like i’m always scootching them back after sitting on the couch. but for the price (free for me) i’m fine with it!

      xo
      lindsey

  4. 9

    i am in love with your whole home, the living room is fabulous! great details, colors, and i loove your doors… the front door and the pocket doors.

  5. 10

    BEautiful! I’ve been contemplating using tongue and groove to cover our popcorn ceilings, too, instead of having them all scraped and repainted. Do you think you saved time/money by doing so or do you think it was a wash in those respects? I do love the look…
    Thanks for sharing the details!
    Heidi

    • 11
      lindsey says:

      hmm, i’m not sure exactly what the cost difference is, but i’m pretty sure its close. figure with the scraping they also have to retexture and paint. but you have the materials expense of t&g and paint on the other hand, but a much prettier finished look.

      xo
      lindsey

  6. 12

    Thank you for sharing. I love all the thrifty finds you have used to decorate your home. Some of the favorite things in my house were yard sale finds, it’s an adventure to work little by little to make your home special!

  7. 13

    I would love to hear more about the story of how you and your husband found/built/remodeled your house. My husband and I did a gut remodel of our little 50′s rancher last year and are trying to give it some cottage charm, so I’m always eager to hear what others have done. Especially since your house is so stinkin’ cute! I have seriously read every post you have about decorating your home. I’m excited for your house tour this week!

    • 14
      lindsey says:

      you’re so sweet! thanks fro taking so much time on my site!.
      we were looking for a home to fit our growing family as i was pregnant with our 2nd. a friend found this house fsbo in a neighborhood we had never seen before. the house was pretty thrashed as college students had been living there for years, and the layout was terrible too. but we saw past all that and noticed all the charming details in the built-ins and the large property and the view. when we rebuilt, we kept the same footprint of the house in the front and expanded in the back. so from the street our house still looks very much like the original home. we also included many of the same details that were in the original, like planked wainscotting and built-ins.

      xo
      lindsey

  8. 15

    I want your house, in my house. Can you come decorate for me? My hubby doesn’t understand why I want light colored walls. This is beautiful!

  9. 16

    I love everything in this room!

  10. 17

    Its beautiful Lindsey. Every last bit and piece of it:) I lvoe how bright(& beachy) it feels yet your vintage and thrifted touches make it livable and inviting. Just the way a home should be!
    xo

  11. 18

    Lindsey, I love your house and how you decorate! BEAUTIFUL! Could you please tell me where you purchased your white couch slipcovers? Our couches are beyond….gross…at this point!

    Thanks!

    HUGS!

  12. 19

    What a fun post!! Your house is just beautiful:)

  13. 20
    Tiffany Nelson says:

    You put colors together so well. And here you do a great job of old and new too. Very welcoming room.

  14. 21

    What a perfect room. I love it. Really love that circle quilt. I like how you throw the color in just here and there.

  15. 22

    eh hem, i was with you when you got the coffee table.

    and i still think the pillows on the couch would look better on mine. :-)

  16. 23

    I have that same couch from Larry St John! My cover is tan and I can’t bleach it. White was a good choice. You home is lovely.
    xo jana

  17. 24

    Your living room is very creatively furnished and accessorized, I love it! I love that you use white, I have often suggested white to people and they ay they can’t because they have kids, they don’t get that they can bleach it. Funny.
    I love your home, it is really wonderful.
    Hugs, Cindy

  18. 25

    loveee the living room! it is so inviting and cozy… i especially love the front door. i love the idea of opening the top like you said so you get fresh air! cant wait to see more!

  19. 26

    I just wanted to say thanks for sharing, I am in love with your house, your style, your beautifulness! I have dreams of one day being able to do what you have done where you took your house and made it completely you. Love, love, thanks for sharing!

  20. 27

    I totally adore your living room! My couches are showing their age and I can’t wait to get white slip covers! I, too, love that you can simply take them off and bleach them! Love white! :) Oh, and I’m in love with your dutch door!

  21. 28
    Ang Glidewell says:

    Before I even started reading your blog I had in my mind that these were the colors I wanted for my home. I’m a missionary so I’ve had to downsize on furniture and things so thats why I have to say my dream living room is in my mind. Anyways! I love your Grey walls, white couches, White trim and cabinets, I love your black table and dark floors. Have you ever watched “please don’t eat the daisies” with Doris Day? This is where I got the idea of Grey walls and dark floor. I loved your comment about the matchbox cars and toys in your coke box. LOL Thank you for the tour.
    Ang

  22. 29

    i just LOVE your decorating style! you have amazing taste and i love how cozy and inviting the room feels! i also love that you have upcycled a lot of your furniture from garage sales, it adds so much to the character, i think! don’t you just adore world market? we don’t have an ikea in wichita, but we sure do have a world market and it’s just about my most favorite place ever!

  23. 30

    oh lindsey, i just adore your house. i recently couldn’t decide between going all white/neutral or doing something more like your house. it’s super hard for me to decide. i love your house to pieces and know i could live there in a second, but then there’s another “blogland” home that is all white/natural and i could live there too! i feel like i have to choose one or the other! did you always love color? i just finished sewing slipcovers for my couch and loveseat, but haven’t made pillows for the couches. i just can’t decide what to do! your house is always an inspiration to me!

    • 31
      lindsey says:

      sorry i didn’t reply to this sooner! i used to have an all white home, too! but over the years of having kids, i just found i wanted more color in the house. and that was the great thing about having a base of white – i could add pops of color and it wasn’t going to clash with anything!

  24. 32

    Love your house and decor! It is so fresh and beachy looking and also family friendly livable. I think the white couches are great and what a great idea to bleach them. Any chance you’ll be listing some more wristlet cluches or petal drop necklaces soon? I’d love to buy some…just saying. :) Thanks for the great inspiration as always!

  25. 34

    What a beautiful living room! I love the hardwood floors and the fireplace. I can imagine curling up on one of your sofas.

    To me, comfort is the priority, but I still want a room that’s a pleasure to look at, and you have done both with this room!

    Jeanine

  26. 35

    LOVE your home and how happy it is. Thank you for sharing the photos.

  27. 36

    im just IN LOVE with your house. :)

  28. 37

    Lindsey, I gave you props today on my blog. I posted a pic of my table centerpiece. I loved your mantel so much I wanted to make it work on my table. Thanks for the ideas!!!

  29. 38

    such a comfy but beautiful space. my favorites are the ceiling and that dr. pepper crate! i would have paid twice that much to have that!

  30. 39

    So beautiful my dear!

  31. 40

    Love the colors!

  32. 41

    Thanks for sharing, a lovely post! Please, if you have the time, tell more about how you did your ceiling…I am amazed, did you cover over the popcorn ceiling or remove the popcorn first and then installed the new? I am so curious and excited…from one popcorn ceiling friend to another, please tell more about how you got rid of it :) Thanks!

    • 42
      lindsey says:

      well these were actually installed as new construction, but in our previous home it was straight over the popcorn – no removing necessary!

      xo
      lindsey

  33. 44

    I have those magazine holders from IKEA and love how you have covered them in paper! I think that will be my next fun project.

  34. 45

    Love your living room! The bead board painted brown is beautiful behind the shelves. We have a similar entertainment center and built in in the office. Maybe they need a little painted bead board as well :)

  35. 46

    So super cute! Love all the furniture and vintage boxes : )

  36. 47
    Michelle says:

    Can you please describe the process of bleaching the slipcovers? How much bleach do you use, etc? Thanks!

  37. 48
    lindsey says:

    sure! i just fill up the bleach cup in my washer, probably about a cup? i always do an extra long wash and soak. i NEVER use fabric softener because it can discolor the fabric and leave it blotchy.

    xo
    lindsey

  38. 49

    Have I told you yet that I want that quilt? Hmm?? :)

  39. 50

    Really enjoyed the tour of your living room. We love a lot of the same colors! Thanks for sharing the paint colors of your coffee table and sofa table, it’s really beautiful. And your silver sage walls are gorgeous…I told my husband that I want to repaint after seeing your living room. =P Love it all, very inviting, colorful and fun, but still soothing. You have excellent taste and balance in decorating! Thanks for the inspiration!

  40. 51

    I won’t ask any questions. I will just tell you that I love your choice in furniture, accessories and especially the paint colors you chose on your refinished pieces.

    Thanks for sharing!

  41. 52

    What a homey looking room. I can tell from all your comments that it is a room where the family can be a family. Is the pillow in the corner of the couch covered with a vintage tablecloth?

    • 53
      lindsey says:

      yes! that is the only pillow i didn’t make. i bought it from a local girl and had to have it!

      xo
      lindsey

  42. 54

    I love how you decorate! To me it’s sort of a beach cottage feel, and I LOVE that!

  43. 55

    Your living room is so completely lovely! Thanks for sharing your great decorating style!

  44. 56

    Your house is gorgeous!!!! Question about repainting the thrift furniture…do you sand the tables, etc. first before painting? Also, do you seal it with something after it is painted to make it easier to dust?

    Have my old dressers from when I was a little girl that I want to repaint for the girls’ rooms but have no idea where to start.

    Thanks for any help and info you can share!!
    Julie

    • 57
      lindsey says:

      i very rarely sand, but its definitely the best first step. especially for an older piece of furniture like yours, you’ll want to do at least a light sanding to take off any sheen on the surface, then do a really good cleaning to take off any grease that may has built up over the years. i don’t typically use sealers, but if i’m doing a nice piece of furniture, i’ll do a spray coat with deft – its awesome!

      xo
      lindsey

  45. 58
    Janet Lawson says:

    I love your whole room..Beautiful..
    Janet

  46. 59

    What a great post! My husband and I plan to build our forever home in about 5 years and your house is one of my inspiration homes. I love how it is charming and has charachter but it’s still new. Do you think having the original home as a guide helped you keep that character? What elements do you think helped give it a vintage feel? What do you wish you would have done differently, other than more closet space? By the way, we built our current home 9 years ago and Silver Sage is still my favorite color that we used, even all these years later. I love it!

    • 60
      lindsey says:

      hi michelle!
      i think the home was definitely a guide, but we included things that we would have either way: wainscotting, wide trim, subway tiles, glass door knobs, 5-stacked-panel doors… all the details that were put into older homes. i wish we had a wider entry into our playroom, but there just wasn’t enough room to open the doorway. sine we live most of our days in that room i’d love to have double french doors going in there rather than a single, just to open it up more to the living room. other than that, i am pretty happy with our house!

  47. 61

    You house is DARLING! I love all the classic whites and little pops of color! and the barn style door is to die for!
    SO cute you have done a great job. Feel free to come on over and redecorate my house any time!
    and p.s. thanks for always hosting the WIWW. It has brought so much traffic to my blog! Its been really fun!
    xoxo
    Cami

  48. 62

    I hope you will some day do a post about garage/estate sale tips and tricks. I always see amazing things that people say they found at these types of sales, but I never find anything when I try! How do you find the sales? When do you go? What things do you look for to know if it’s going to be good?

    I think it would make for some very interesting reading!
    http://www.preparingforpeanut.com

  49. 63

    I just love how peaceful and simultaneously comfy your rooms are. You are awesome at controlling clutter. AWESOME! I can’t believe you have children:) I alos love the cool wall colors and the visual punch that the gold provides; like rays of sunshine!
    Thanks for posting these pics.

  50. 64

    so glad to see this weeks series! Your decor style is my inspiration, and since we just moved I am needing all the help I can get! thanks for your mad design skills and great taste friend!
    xoxo, ashley

  51. 65

    i love how your home is so family – it just fits you and the babes so well …. it says come on over for a hug :) le xox

  52. 66
    Jessica Poole says:

    hey lindsey! do you have a tutorial on how to make a banner?! for like a birthday or something. i know it seems like common sense, but i really have no idea where to start?!

  53. 67

    Love, Love, Love your house! I ♥ a good house tour and yours takes the cake! I just got a dutch door for Christmas (DH made it for me) and it’s my favorite thing! Yours is darling with the big windows on top. You made me drool right on my desk while taking a tour! Thanks for making my day.

  54. 68

    you have a loooot of comments on here, so maybe i am repeating someone else. first of all, LOVE your living room. so beautiful yet inviting! love your white couches! a good way to make the covers on your couch last a lot longer is to line dry them after you wash them. the bright sun works as a bleach and air drying them doesn’t break down the fibers like a dryer does. although i am sure it can be quite the workout to get it all up on the line, it also saves an arm and a leg in electricity!

  55. 69

    After our chat on Friday I wanted to go back and look through your house tour. Totally missed the Dr Pepper crate (what!?). I AM SO JEALOUS. I can’t believe you found it at a garage sale. Some girls have all the luck!
    Your house is so amazing Linds- hoping someday I get to see it in person. ;) sigh….someday.
    For now- can’t wait to see you in less than 2 weeks! Have a fun trip. xoxo

  56. 70

    You’ve probably been asked this question a million times but what color gray are your walls? I looked through the entry and couldn’t find it. Hopefully you don’t mind me asking. Darling home. Its my style: cozy, bright, fun and warm.

  57. 71

    I just want you to know that pictures of this room are my “inspiration pictures” for re-doing my own house. We decorated before we really knew our own style and one morning we woke up and realized it wasn’t “us” at all. I am in the process of lightening things up and making them more cozy and colorful. I am almost convinced I need to buy the Ikea couch, loveseat and chair for our family room to finish off the look. :) Thank you for the inspiration. :))))

  58. 72

    Wonderful blog!! My husband and I just bought a new home (hopefully – inspection is Tuesday if all goes well, settlement is set for 7/30th) and the front door also basically opens up to the living room. its a great house and no one can have it all so not the end of the world but I do love a great entry way so I have been brainstorming for ways to still define the space and have a cute entry way. I am not super creative so I needed the help of the internet. Thank you so much for sharing what you did because it will certainly help me! Thanks!

  59. 73
    Bethany Crum says:

    Do you cover up your TV now? I didn’t even realize it was there. Your house is absolutely beautiful, thanks for sharing!

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