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Intro Post: OrMOMdo and OrlanDAD are Getting a New Living Room!

You guys! It’s me, Orlando! I’m working on a number of projects up at my parents’ house and I’m sharing the step-by-step here! I’ve already blabbed to you about the totally fun kitchen reno I’m working on for them (Mini-update: we finally got our permits and demo starts this week! I underestimated how insanely slow the permitting process in Sonoma County is). This week I’m here to talk to you about their living room, which we decided to tackle because it’s adjacent to the kitchen and we’re basically turning the whole room into one big family hangout room. They moved into this house about four years ago, out of the house I grew up in in Yosemite National Park. They brought most of their furniture with them and have been trying to make it work in their new house. But the tiny craftsman bungalow I was raised in was a far cry from their new house, both in style and scale, so a lot of the furniture isn’t a match for their new house.

Soria Living Room 6

Before I say anything, I should say that I actually love my parents’ taste and everything they have. They’ve been collecting art and objects forever and have a wonderful treasure trove of smalls to choose from. They’ve done a few great things in their home already, including painting over the gross beige colors the developer-flippers put in before they moved in. They also replaced the carpet with warm maple hardwood floors. They chose a color I was a little perplexed by but ended up loving. The reason I was confused is that it was my dad’s idea and his style is much more traditional/Craftsman than my mom, who likes more modern/contemporary stuff. The light Scandinavian style of the wood floor makes the home look way brighter, but calls into question the large amount of more traditional looking furniture.

Soria Living Room 5

As it is right now, this room is a joyful place. My siblings and I love coming over because it’s such a bright happy house. While it may not be super polished right now, it’s a comfortable and welcoming place we love to hang out in. My goal with this makeover is to increase the amount of seating, make it much more loungey, and get rid of some of the heavy/wonky pieces of furniture that my parents bought years ago and no longer are into. Keep in mind that the wall with the sliding doors is going away once the kitchen remodel happens and that whole side of the room is going to be a breakfast bar that looks out over the kitchen.

Soria Living Room 4

Soria Living Room 1

One of the more obnoxious details in the room is the diagonal fireplace. I’m wondering if these will make a comeback. I’m not a fan of them. I wanted to take the doors off but my parents were worried my niece or nephew might fall in so we’re leaving them for now. A fun fact about me is that I grew up in the forest in a house heated by a wood stove, so my parents hate fireplaces now because they got so sick of how messy and annoying it was to heat their house with one. They thought about ripping this one out but it was going to cost too much and also seemed like a weird thing to remove in case they ever want to sell. So for now the lame fireplace is staying. I’m hoping to figure out some good styling for it that makes it a bit more elegant. Maybe I’ll add a festive basket!

Soria Living Room 2

We’ve had the sofa and the loveseat for as long as I can remember. They’ve gone through so many patterns at this point. I think they both started off floral. Now both are a pale grey. They’re fine, but I think we could use something less heavy, not slipcovered, and more structural in here.

Before Before Soria Living Room

Just so you know what my parents were working with, this is what it looked like before they moved in. This is the BEFORE before pic. Gross carpet, cheesy 1977 brick fireplace, nasty furniture. They’ve done A TON to make the room look way better. The whole house was that beige color. HELP!

Inspirtaion Soria Living Room 2

Catherines Kitchen Render Island Living Post

As a refresher, this is the general style of the kitchen. We’re knocking down a huge wall and making it span the entire side of the room. We’re installing a giant peninsula filled with storage so my mom can finally have a place to put her five million kitchen gagets. The style of the kitchen is transitional traditional, with shaker cabinets and other traditional nods combined with a few contemporary touches and an insanely luxurious Bertazzoni range.

Soria Living Room Layout 3

Soria Living Room Layout 2

The layout of the space will be designed to allow flow through the room but also as much seating as possible. I’m most excited about the sectional from Interior Define, which is going to add way more seating while creating a better layout than the current, choppy one. Behind it, we’re going to add a custom bookcase from Hedge House that will serve the dual purpose being a resting place for lamps AND storing toys for my niece and nephew, who come over all the time and basically destroy everything by pulling their toys out and throwing them all over the place. I did this rendering in a rush in order to figure out sofa size, so the wall with the TV is missing (don’t worry, in real life the sofa won’t just be facing a giant hole in the side of the house!).

Soria Living Room 11

Resources: Painting (by me), Vintage Art and Accessories, Wall Color Alaskan Husky by Benjamin Moore, Modern Marble Table LampsDouglas Bookcase from Hedge House, Caitlin Sofa from Interior Define, Reclaimed Coffee Table, Grey Wool Blend Rug, Lacquer Media Console, Round Basket, Stickley China Hutch, Eye Clock, Loveseat, Ceramic Table Lamp, Vintage Tea Chest. 

My parents have had this Stickley china hutch forever, and they love it. It is a really beautiful piece that seems slightly lost in their 1977 modern house, so I’m going to add in a few more warm wooden accents to tie it back in. My mom has these beautiful tea chests from her childhood in Japan that make excellent side tables so we will use those again. And we snagged a new mission style coffee table from The Mine. I haven’t chosen the loveseat yet and I’m not sure what I’m going to put in there yet. I’d like something leather but it’s going right next to that china hutch and it seems like a lot of warm brown for one side of the room. I want it to be the kind of loveseat you can kick your feet up in, so I’m going to look into some cozy velvet/linen options.

Soria Living Room 15

My parents had the living room painted Alaskan Husky by Benjamin Moore before they moved in. It’s a really great grey, warm but not muddy. Very bright, fresh, and clean.

Soria Living Room 13

We’re going with the beautiful Caitlin Sectional from Interior Define because it was the perfect combo of contemporary and traditional. We’re doing a large size to get as much seating room as possible. I’m so excited to see this in the space because it’s going to completely change the vibe. We ordered like 20 fabric samples and thought about doing this in so many colors, but I love the simple bright fabric we chose (color is Linen Pebble Weave). So long, granny sofa!

Soria Living Room 14

We are doing a customized version of Hedge House’s Douglas Bookcase to store all my niece and nephews living room toys (there are other toys hidden in multiple places throughout the house). The bottom row of shelves will be drawers to hide toys .The upper shelves will be styled with books and objects (my parents have plenty of both). We’ll be adding these cute Target lamps on top to help give the room some low, warm light.

Inspiration Soria Living Room 3

I drew a lot of inspiration from this old project of Emily’s (that I actually helped out on years ago!). The combination of the pretty grey walls, a contemporary sofa, and lots of mid-century and traditional furniture gives it the kind of natural eclectic look I’m going for at my parents’ house. Theirs will be slightly more Craftsman influenced, but the comfy, cozy vibe will be the same.

So there we have it! That’s the plan. The kitchen renovation is due to be finished by December 1 so I’m hoping to finish the living room by then as well (I’ve already ordered the sofa and the bookcase is in progress, I need to get on ordering everything else!). Next I’ll be sharing the fun update I’m doing in the guest bedroom. It’s going much more luxe and inviting. STAY TUNED YOU GUYS! Okay bye.

***Photos Courtesy Emily Henderson and Robert Stilin











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Jennifer Foster
6 years ago

I’ve been following your blog and it never disappointed me! Craving for more of your quality post that feed me new knowledge.

6 years ago

If your parents don’t like the mess of a fireplace, perhaps they would enjoy having a gas fire installed. Push a button on the remote control and you have a lovely fire. And you can get attractive glass doors for them to protect the grandkids.

Or, if they like wood stoves, how about a wood or pellet burning fireplace insert. We have a pellet fireplace insert. (Most of them are hideous, but there are a few that are fairly attractive.) We have found the pellet insert to be much less messy than our previous wood one.

6 years ago
Reply to  Caro

Agreed. Gas logs are the bomb. So easy, so pleasant, and they actually put out a fair amount of heat. We have to turn on the gas and light ours with a match, but we use them every single day in the winter. Love them!

6 years ago

Love it! Love the inspiration photo, your plans. All of it. Including your relationship with your family.

Cannot wait to follow along and see it when you are done.

6 years ago

Orlando – I love you and your design plan for Ormomdo and Orlandad’s kitchen/living space! Quick comment – would it be at all possible to relocate the door to the deck from the kitchen to the main living space? (behind the island where your large plant is being shown in the 3D floor plan view). I’m sure there would be an added cost to modify the large window and I’m not sure of the existing exterior and deck conditions… But just a thought! It might help with the flow of the space, and prevent congestion right next to the beautiful Bertazzoni range where Ormomdo will be cooking up a storm.

6 years ago

Hi Orlando! I’m excited to see this all come together! I’m certain it will be beautiful as always. Sort of sad to see their current live-edge coffee table go, that’s a beautiful piece, but maybe the scale and color is wrong for the new sectional. I’m sure it’s going to a great new home.
What about a blue color for the love seat? To tie into that gorgeous tile in the kitchen? Also is there a new Samsung “Frame” TV in their future?!
Can’t wait!

6 years ago

Great vision here! I was interested in the loveseat for a small sitting area, but it’s linked incorrectly. Can you tell us where to find it? Thx!

Melanie Gehman
6 years ago

I’m on the hunt for a loveseat. The link above is not correct, could you let me know the source of the loveseat? BTW, love the makeover. Your parents must be thrilled.

6 years ago

I’m so excited to see the reveal! I love Orlando’s style.

Susan L
6 years ago

Looks great! What is the loveseat you show in the board (link goest to Nate’s lamp at Target)?

6 years ago

I have the Caitlin Section and the look of it is amazing for the price. I will say that it is not a sink into it super comfortable sofa. The chaise part is quite comfortable, but the sofa part is pretty stiff. If it wasn’t for the great price I might have returned. Of course it depends on what you look for in a sofa, but if you want lounge-y you might be disappointed. Just passing along my experience! Inspiration looks great!

6 years ago
Reply to  Sara

Completely agree – I do love mine, but I wish I loved it a little more… I’m hoping that it might break in a little over time.

6 years ago

I love the practicality and elegance of this design – I especially love the idea of toy storage in a console behind the couch, but I’m perplexed by how to secure it so it can’t tip on the kids. Have you found a solution for this?

6 years ago

I really like your choices of colors, accents, light fixtures and focal points. I think your apartment reno was fantastic and I’m anxious to see your parent’s home in your portfolio. I see so much individual talent in your work that differs from Emily’s (in a great way). Keep making your own statement and keep sharing your personal designs because I enjoy your originality very much in the current marketplace. Best of luck.

6 years ago

Can’t wait to see the finished rooms! Maybe the loveseat in a pretty blue-grey or seafoamy-grey velvet would look nice and tie in some of the blues from the kitchen? Something like the Duck Egg velvet from Anthropologie:

6 years ago

We have a living room in an old house (1910) with a corner fireplace and it has been hard to figure out the furniture placement. After several attempts, we have settled on a diagonal floor plan with the sofa lined up directly across from the fireplace and the rug lined up square between the fireplace and sofa. The side chairs are sort of circling around the edges of the room. It seemed like it would be awkward but is actually really cozy and friendly, creating great conversation areas and good flow. The tv is on a wall next to the fireplace, not directly in front of the sofa, which actually gave us more good seating for tv watching. I tell you this because I worry that a sectional in this room might end up being difficult to place with the corner fireplace. Our living flows into the kitchen area and it felt really cut off when the sofa sort of cut the room in half

Régine from The 256 Project
6 years ago

I’m looking forward to this for a number of reasons, one of which is we have the same fireplace situation (on a diaganol and, for several reasons, are keeping it) and I’m interested to see how you fix it up. We painted ours bright yellow (search “fireplace” on The 256 Project to check it out) and that has been helpful to make it more fun and interesting, but I feel like it’s in the way and need help with it.

6 years ago

Very nice! Sure your parents will be so happy with the results.

6 years ago

I want to replace my sectional and I think the Caitlin looks PERFECT. (Not to mention its the same spelling as my name!) Can’t wait to see it in a space!

6 years ago

Wouldn’t it be better to have direct porch access from the living room? To go outside you’ll have to go around the peninsula, through the kitchen and out the door. Why not make the peninsula an island to get direct access to the porch door?

Rehana Malik
6 years ago

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6 years ago

Great Blog ! Your Blog Contents Use New Ideas and current topic well use it.

6 years ago

Very informative blog you share and I will save you blog in future reference.

6 years ago

Your post is really informative and useful for everyone..

6 years ago

Love the blue rug! Where might I find it?

6 years ago

Everyone has said everything I wanted to say, EXCEPT for: I love the names you came up with for your parents! You’re very funny.

6 years ago

I’ve been following your blog and it never disappointed me! Craving for more of your quality post that feed me new knowledge.

6 years ago

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