Hey everyone, it’s Ginny here with another e-design. This time we’re tackling a living room space where the husband and wife team had very different design styles from each other. As most of you know we love mixing styles here at EHD so this was a fun one for us to tackle. Here is what our client Shauna had to say when she emailed in:
“I prefer mid-century. My husband is more of a traditional kind of guy. I also like a beach house vibe. The outside of our house is a traditional/transitional brick two story built in 1993.”
They wanted the room cozy, warm, cheerful, pulled-together, welcoming, young, and current. Maybe even a little artsy as well as being hip and functional. Quite a list but we were excited to tackle the project for them to turn the space into a place that they could use and enjoy. They have 3 kids and this is the room they use the most to hang out in, watch TV, play games and eat snacks.
While they weren’t planning to paint the walls for a couple of years, they were totally open to any color story for the room and did welcome a paint suggestion for the walls for when the time comes down the road.
They also let us know that the definite no, no’s for this room consisted of “Anything that makes it feel like a grandma lives here. I would prefer to not have the TV above the fireplace. Faux distressed furniture. Sofas with rolled arms; overstuffed furniture.”
With all that info in mind, we called upon our e-design gal Ali to fuse together a design for this cozy traditional mid-century family room. As always Ali started off by pulling together some inspiration. We always like to send our e-design clients this first so that we can all get on the same page about the design and they can give us their feedback with their likes and dislikes of each space. This also helps the clients really think about what it is exactly that they want to see from the room.
For example with this inspiration, Shauna and her husband really resonated with the top left image “mid-century paired with traditional” I like the colorful tufted ottoman and accessories and the mix of a leather chair with a fabric sofa. But commented saying that they didn’t love the idea of the leggy lamps in the middle of the room as they knew they would eventually be knocked over by the kids. It’s small details like this that really help us to deliver a design that is most suited to out clients.
Blue Rug | Sectional | Leather Chairs (no longer available) | Credenza | Coffee Table | Arc Floor Lamp | Brass Floor Lamp | Large Art | Surfer Art | Woven Basket | Marble and Gold Side Table | Greylock pillow | Blue Colorblock Pillow | Blooms pillow | Beige and Navy Pillow | Color Block Pillow | Linen Curtains | Curtain Rod
We gave Shauna two different design options and both worked off the midcentury vs traditional vs beach vibe that she had originally mentioned that she wanted. In both options we started with a neutral palette then added color and life through art and pillows.
For the general layout we suggested a sectional as that would be the best fit for the room, both functionally as well as maximizing the space and seating. We proposed 2 darker fabric options so that they could stand up to the ware and tear that her kids might put them through.
The first option plays into more of a grey, blue and oatmeal route that is offset with pops of teal and soft coral. The rug is simple in pattern, yet brings in a solid color that we elevated with other accessories around the room. We went with a simple round coffee table which helps to soften the angles of the sofa and fits nicely into the space. We also added two leather tufted wingback chairs that play into the traditional vibe without being overly stuffy and formal. These help to bring warmth into the space along with the wood from the credenza. To bring in some color we proposed two pieces of art: one for above the sectional and one above the fireplace. Both of these are happy and playful which work great in a family room, they also help solidify the color story and fill the walls nicely. The pillow choice works particularly well with the art and pulls the teal, coral and blues throughout the space but also balances out a the neutral oatmeal. We also kept with a more neutral oatmeal color for the curtains, that way they don’t compete with the rug and other colors in the room.
Rug | Sectional | Leather Chairs | Credenza | Coffee Table | Wood Floor Lamp | Brass Arc Floor Lamp | Large Art | Surfer Art | Woven Basket | Side Table | Table Lamp | Greylock pillow | Blue azure pillow (no longer available) | Handwoven Mayan Throw Pillow | Color Block Pillow | Floral pillow | Linen Curtains | Curtain Rod | Planter
The second option highlights a different color story of blue, cream, black, and mustard. The rug is neutral in tone but playful in pattern and brings in warmth with it’s thicker pile. Again we opted for wingback chairs and a wood credenza both of which could work well with the first concept and vice versa. The coffee table brings in a beach vibe through its lighter toned wood, yet it is grounded by the black base. Again, the art is proposed for the same areas as option one, and allows for us to make the palette feel cohesive, yet doesn’t compete with the rug or other items in the room.
We mixed up the lighting in this design by using wood tones, black metal, and blue/grey glass. This helps to give it a more eclectic vibe but still feels part of the same room. The pillows really make the concept pop by the use of strong mustard tones mixed with the navy blue and oatmeal color scheme. We added a small scale floral pattern as well which feels modern, adds a fun pattern without making the space feel too country/granny, which she definitely wanted to steer clear of 🙂 Lastly, we added a simple stripe for the drapery that almost blends into the background and becomes a solid color but allows some interest without competing with everything else.
With both options Shauna has the potential to mix and match some of the products i.e. put leather chairs from option 1 into option 2 and vice versa. Although they weren’t looking to paint right now, we suggested a couple of paint colors since with our proposals to help make the room feel fresh and highlight the moulding and the fireplace in the best possible way.
Shauna emailed back saying she was having a hard time deciding which one they liked best since there were things they loved about both options and then last week we got an email with her final decision:
Just letting you know we decided (finally!) on design option 2. It was such a hard choice because we could see ourselves living in both! You should see all the texts going back and forth changing our minds. Ultimately we decided to go with option 2 because I think it fits the style of our home better and so I won’t be constantly worried about the kids and hubby putting their feet on the furniture. But, we’re finally done with our summer holiday travels and have ordered our furniture and accessories. Yay!
We love hearing a review like that and could not be more thrilled that she is happy with the final option. Which one is your favorite design for her room, or which one would you pick for your own? Does anyone else butt heads and disagree with their partners on designs styles? Let us know below and we might just tackle it for you here on the blog.
In the meantime if you are craving more Design Agony and E-Design posts? Check these out: Updating Basic Bedroom Furniture with New Bedding, Should We Paint Wood Panelling?, How To Layout A Narrow Living Room, Kitchen Nook Refresh, Cures For A Maple Orange Kitchen, Master Bedroom Refresh Plan, A Rustic Mid-Century Family Room, Neutral (Well Mostly) California Nursery.