Emily Henderson

The Lorey's Home

Bright and airy family room makeover

What I wouldn’t do for this bright and airy family room, kids included. I want to get all fatal attraction on this family, sans the fatal part – and more love and appreciation than ‘attraction’. This room belongs to the family of the tween girl, adorable boy and the master bedroom that I redid and blogged about here, here and here. This room actually needed very little help when we got there, but I really wanted to do it mainly because I wanted to take credit for the bright architecture, that awesome leather sectional and the general good vibe. Its just such a happy room.

So, here’s where we started:


The sectional is awesome caramel leather goodness (I think its from Restoration Hardware), and then the dining table/chair situation is great so I had very little work to do, which I totally appreciate. They really just needed some pretty pillows, accessories, rug and a couple stools/poufs. The sofa is super deep so they didn’t need an ottoman to put their feet up on and they liked the idea of keeping it relatively open for the kids to play.


Hello, happy.  Sometimes all you need is some styling.  So here’s what we did:

1. We added the cowhide rug after MUCH debate on the perfect rug and size for the space.  The rug they had was strangely small (you can’t tell from that photo but the rug is wayyyyy too small), bad for kids because kids, being the reckless raccoons that they are, can just really cram those crumbs into the carpet and overall just kinda awkward.We didn’t want a dark rug because the rug is dark, but we didn’t want a light rug because they have kids. We didn’t want a rectangular rug because the space inside the sectional is square (the sectional is square) and ultimately it would come out awkward underneath the sofa, but if we got it really big so the whole sectional saw on the rug then it would be really expensive with a lot of wasted square footage underneath the rug. So the sculptural cowhide was perfect.


It fills the space visually, but in a really organic way.  We got this one from Ikea for $200.  That’s a very well spent $200 right there.

We added color through a couple major elements:

1. Trees to break up the horizontal space of white and engage the corners of the room.  Yes, i know. I like fiddle leaf figs. I’m dying, just DYING for my local nurseries to carry a different indoor tree that has the same impact as these fig trees.  They are just good.

2. Colorful occasional stools (put a book/tray on it and its a table) that the kids can play on and not hurt themselves and are relatively indestructable.  These are from Lawson Fenning, the worlds best local stores.


And then we wanted to address those built-ins so we styled them out with succulents naturally.  My plant obsession is getting towards Angelina Jolie having children proportions  – i should stop collecting them, but i really like them, I’m kinda really good at buying them, and while I know its becoming kinda trite, i just can’t stop.

But to make it look more collected I added a bunch of framed family photos in oh-so chic frames from Target and the terrariums from West Elm.

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I actually really liked the pillows they had, but they were made the vintage kilim rugs and its like rubbing your face on roof shingles.  They are more ‘looking at pillows’ and less ‘rubbing cheeks on sofa’ kinda pillows.  I have 1 myself and I like to style it, shoot it and arrange it, but when it comes to my tv watching bearcat cuddling hours, those kilim pillows just don’t cut it.  But You know what does? The mohair pillows from West Elm.  The throw and the blue/white pillows i bought from my favorite store, Lawson Fenning.


Meanwhile on the other side of the room is their little breakfast table.


They have great taste and had already bought the saarinen table from DWR and the chippendale chairs from Jonathan Adler, basically all I did was add the tree and take the credit.

In fact if you or someone you know has a well decorated house and you want me to come and add a frame and a plant and take credit for it, go ahead and give me a call.


Literally the before photo of this would be the exact same photo, with an iphone camera with bad lighting, and no props, but basically the exactly the same.  Its just such a pretty and simple vignette so I wanted to capture that.

So thank you, lovely clients, for already have many wonderful items in a room that I want to spend all day in.

Shoot produced/styled/art directed by me, shot by the WONDERFUL Zeke Ruelas with the help of the lovely Orlando Soria.

See the whole Lorey house here: Tween Bedroom Makeover with Land of Nod | 5 Tips to Design a Timeless Kids Bedroom | Dining Room Makeover | Office Turned Guest Room Makeover | Master Bedroom Makeover

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