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Caitlin’s Living Room Update + A Burning Question: What Are You Supposed To Put in A Corner?

Nobody puts Baby in a corner – except me, because I AM A GIANT BABY and I’m literally stuck in a corner. Two months ago, your comments and feedback helped me figure out the layout for my pass-through dining room (THANK YOU), so today, I’m coming in hot with a similar, seemingly simple-to-answer question: WHAT THE HECK DO YOU PUT IN YOUR CORNERS? Or, more specifically, what the heck should I put in the corners of my living room?

As a chronic over-thinker who has spent too much time staring at these walls (literally, in a “I did not leave my apartment for months at a time during quarantine” way, but also figuratively, in a “all I do is copy and paste furniture into Keynote to see how it looks together in an attempt to imagine it in this space” way), I could use another set of eyes. Or like, hundreds of thousands of sets of eyes. EVERY EYE HELPS. But first, let me get you acquainted with the “before”…

WELCOME TO MY LIVING ROOM. These are the original Craigslist listing photos, but I think it’s helpful to see an empty space so you can really imagine where the pieces I’ve sourced so far will be going. (I also thought this apartment was a total scam when I first saw the ad, BTW – it was below market rate, had been sitting on Craigslist for over a month, and the copy was filled with things like “***LARGE PRIVATE GARAGE***” – asterisk emphasis theirs, for the record – along with a single sentence that read “Cedar Closets and Loads of Kitchen Cabinets.” I still can’t believe it’s real and that I was the only person who wanted to live here – I lucked out, right?!)

Architecturally, the space is kind of a dream – it’s 14′ wide by 20′ long (!!!), with a 5′ window to the front, a beautiful fireplace (wait til y’all get a closeup in the reveal) flanked by two great-sized windows, stunning old-school molding, PLUS a huuuuge walk-in closet. So far, my only problems have been things like, “it’s too big for me to decorate quickly without declaring bankruptcy” and “the windows are huge,” which are pretty freakin’ great problems to have.

You can see a bit more into the dining room here, and that door on the left is the aforementioned walk-in closet – it’s actually almost structurally identical to Erik’s, except mine is “ugly” and “filled with junk” and “not anywhere close to being as beautiful as Erik’s, why would you even force that comparison on yourself?” But because this whole space is fairly open concept (for the 1930s, at least), I’ve really been trying to dial in the design so both rooms can exist harmoniously. Last year, I landed on a descriptor that’s been a great north star, though: DISCO DECO.

My goal here is ’30s-meets-’70s – think glam lucite and leopard-meets-classic brass and leather. I want to embrace the deco roots of my building (like those original sconces above the fireplace – SO GOOD, right?), but I also want to balance and modernize some of the busier deco elements with clean, simple, geometric lines. It’s been a total labor of love – I’ve been saving for and slowly gathering these pieces since August of 2019! – but I’m excited to show you what I’ve gotten so far. READY???

Paint Color | Vinyl Storage | Bookshelves | Swivel Chairs | Rug

WHERE DO WE EVEN START? The bookshelves were the first thing I bought after moving in – I wanted to fill up the wall between the front door and the closet, and I’d also always dreamed about having my own wall of books. (Plus, I had to use that CB2 coupon that you get when you change your address with USPS – the savings are TOO good, you know? They’re also over $100 off right now, just as an FYI.) The metal valet was a lucky $100 find from Luxe Midcentury (the NICEST guy in the biz!); the tubular lucite coffee table was a late-2019 score from AES of LA (you can read more about them, and my other favorite secret vintage sources, right here!); the 1960s spring floor lamp was a quarantine find from Lackluster Co. (incredible selection with fair prices!).

My design progress stalled for a while (or, uh, a year – was busy trying and failing to buy a house ad nauseam, remember? Here is where we left off on that) until I found this 1980s leather sofa on Instagram in March of 2021. It was way out of my price range and I begged Blair, the man behind Modtiques, to hold it for me while I saved up…and in October of 2021, after 7 months of scrimping, it was finally delivered to my house. I have forgotten and/or blocked out how much it cost (probably the latter, TBH), but I thiiiiink that it was a little over $4k including shipping – it’s by far the most expensive thing I’ve ever bought myself and I’m still proud of myself for figuring out how to make it happen!!! (I love it even though all of my friends call it the “hot dog sofa.” It’s a nice place to rest my buns, at least :))

Progress picked up again this year when I found those Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams swivel chairs. I knew I wanted upholstered chairs in here and was on the hunt for something in Sunbrella (I know people usually think of it as an outdoor-only option, but it’s the only upholstery fabric I’ve found that can hold up to my cat’s claws) and BOY, these chairs fit the bill. The scale is great (these are a little petite – I have a weird and unexplainable thing about huge chairs), the lines are clean and special, and I love the 70s feel of the wooden bases (I went with “natural,” but there are a ton of finishes available). The Room & Board media cabinet was my most recent find and it’s going to house my vinyl collection – the height is PHENOMENAL (guys, it slides in perfectly below my super low window!!!!), it’s absolutely heirloom quality, and I love how the white oak talks to the chairs. I’M SO EXCITED. Let’s talk about that paint selection real quick, yeah?

I tested five pink swatches from Sherwin-Williams – Alyssum, Innocence, Charming Pink, Intimate White, and Romance. (I used my ColorReader and my wallpaper to help me narrow it down – it’s AWESOME.) Romance is currently the front-runner – it reads a little cooler in my eastern-facing space than it does on the internet, which I love. That said, I’m planning to paint last after I see how everything looks together – I’m still figuring out my rug and curtain situation, so I don’t want to totally lock myself into pink walls in the event that I’d rather opt for a pink rug or pink curtains. (I’m about 80% sure that I’ll be opting for the faux hide above, though.) In any case, I am really excited about combining these super “feminine” elements (pink, lucite, curves) with more “masculine” touches (natural wood, clean storage, leather) – it’s going to be a ~Disco Deco~ CELEBRATION in here. 🙂

Now that you’ve gotten the full update, let’s talk layout – this is where I need your help the most (I think, at least!). Here’s what I’m planning on right now – I’m feeling a little stumped as I’ve never had a space big enough to float furniture before, and now I’m not, uh, totally sure…like, what’s supposed to go around the floating furniture?

First, some scale references (if you care – if not, skip ahead!!!): the bookcases extend 12″ off the wall, there’s a ~3′ walkway between the shelving and the seating area, the sofa is about 7′ long, and there’s a little over 2′ between the fireplace and the sofa. The 3.5′ round coffee table will be fairly centered with the fireplace, and both chairs will have a nice amount of breathing room (because again, I have a weird thing about chairs with breathing room for reasons I do not understand). I’m also planning to grab a cute vintage coatrack for the space behind the front door – there’s about 21″ to play with back there, so I hope to find something sweet and interesting (like with all things vintage, I’ll know it once I see it :)).

My problems, though, are the two corners – both have about 3’x4′ of wall space that I’d like to use for, well, something. I don’t necessarily need more storage, but it also feels awkward to place more seating behind the main seating area (unless that isn’t weird?). Here are all the things I’ve considered:

  • A Work Setup: This is actually still my frontrunner and it’s something I still really want to move into this space. I’m hoping that the dining room – and its new layout, thanks to your advice! – will now be a space for nighttime relaxing and spending time with friends, and not a place for me to be making Zoom calls and writing blog posts in at three in the morning (I have the weirdest internal clock, y’all…and like, what else is there to do when you’re up that early?).
  • Something Sculptural: I have a lead on one of these wicker motorcycles (and it’s in my price range!), but it’s also a ~ 4-hour drive away. My concerns here: I almost feel like I need to be looking for something taller – does everything on this side of the room feel a bit low to you, too? I also worry about too much wood – I feel like a need a hit of black.
  • Something Big and Sculptural (That You Seem to Not Love): Yeah, I’m talking about that huge pencil reed wine bottle cabinet from my last post. It’s been removed from Chairish (tragic) but it’s still available on Instagram (#blessed). I know it’s weird and I don’t have enough saved up to buy it right now, but it would technically fit in a corner…
  • A Game Table + Small Chairs: I don’t know when this started, but I am newly OBSESSED with the idea of game tables. I don’t think they’re a trend yet, but I think they’re about to be. I’d want one that’s a little less fussy, though – trying to keep it clean and simple in here!
  • Plants: Here’s the thing – I love plants and I used to be a biiiiiig plant gal, but I travel too much to keep them alive and I’d rather not pay for a plant sitter at this point in my life. Maybe someday, though?
  • A Storage Cabinet: I’m still in love with this piece that Julie chose for the Velux project, but I think it’d be a little scene-stealing in this space with the black AND the wood AND the glass AND the brass…but maybe something with a similar shape and a more uniform finish would be nice?
  • ???: What would you put here? I think the reason I feel so stuck is because I don’t even know what I want or what I’m looking for – it’d be a lot easier to figure out if I had some direction, you know?

Here’s where I’ll leave you – 2020 photos of my apartment that were, uh, not really supposed to go on the internet (though maybe the stuff on the floor and cleaning supplies really gave that away, huh?). This facelift is currently in progress – it’s looking a lot different in here these days – and the reveal is coming THIS YEAR…once I figure out these freakin’ corners, at least!!! Any thoughts? Comments? Suggestions? New ideas? I’M ALL EARS (because I need the help – and maybe you have some great advice for other people struggling with this design conundrum, too). Happy weekend, LET’S CHAT? xx

Opening Image Credits: Design by Barrie Benson | Photo by Anna Routh Barzin | via ISUWANNEE

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Siel
1 month ago

Slightly off topic but why not center your couch to the fire place? Then you’re not closed of with your back to the dining room but to the wall of bookcases.
I would go for something vertical in the corner(s)! The bottle cabinet or an easy plant (f.e. a yucca?).

Lacy Ellsworth
1 month ago
Reply to  Siel

I agree, it could still be very conversational to have the chairs in front of the window. Walking into the back of it from the dining room is pretty abrupt. But I suspect the tv is over the credenza which could be why she placed it there.

Lacy Ellsworth
1 month ago
Reply to  Lacy Ellsworth

on there’s a window over the credenza. Yeah I’d move the sofa. But the layout of the room you could just try both seating layouts regardless of what you put every where else.

SJ
1 month ago

It feels “weird” because it is emotionally unsettling to have your back to a doorway. I practice Feng Shui and you want the couch to be on the longest wall-if you are using a wall- and you should be able to see who is coming/going through the door! Facing the credenza is a good placement. What goes in your corners? Tall faux plants if you have no green thumb. OR a candle factory LOL candles on plant stands; a skinny bar cart or the home edit’s acrylic one; hanging plants in great hangers ( ETSY is your friend here) or a cool hanging art piece like this: https://www.etsy.com/listing/1268164387/large-dip-dyed-navy-ombre-brass-hoop?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=hanging+wall+decor&ref=sr_gallery-1-18&frs=1&cns=1&sts=1&organic_search_click=1

Deborah
1 month ago
Reply to  Siel

Siel, I was thinking that too, but in the photo with the striped sofa facing the fireplace, it feels and looks awkward as you enter the front door. I have a similarly shaped and sized living room (no fire place – planning to add a faux one) and I floated my sofa in the same place as Caitlin’s diagram which looks great as you enter the front door (same place as Caitlin’s) because you see the sofa (mine is a curvy camel back) mostly head on with it’s pillows and further behind it the door to the kitchen. That layout really helps to define the space. I also have two chairs facing the sofa with an oval glass topped black iron coffee table, though my chairs are below a huge picture window and not floating. In the corner, I have a large TV (not flat screen) on a mid-century cabinet for enjoying from the sofa and from my new, very long console table to go behind the sofa (I need more lighting!) as a desk area, though it’s still in the box! 🙂 The corner where I have my TV might make a good place for Caitlin’s TV too, especially… Read more »

Maria
1 month ago

Loved this update! I would definitely go for the work setup, simply because it is the most functional option. I also loved the rattan motorcycle haha, maybe for the other corner, in front of the main entrance?
For all that you’ve written on the blog about your messy house I wasn’t expecting such a nice before! You’ve been too hard on yourself! I really like the striped sofa and the sculptural chair, and you have really beautiful and unexpected art pieces, where do you usually buy them?
Can’t wait to see the reveal!

Karen
1 month ago

As I began reading I thought, “Duh! Plant!” But quickly took that back with, “Caitlin probably doesn’t do plants for an extremely logical reason”. Happy to see I was correct on that 🙂
I enjoy that your considering a wicker motorcycle, like what? Who even made those things??
For workspace idea: Glam secretary for middle of the night writing? The desk can close for non-work hours and likely has cabinet storage in the top portion.

Katherine
1 month ago

Ikea makes some amazing fake plants—maybe that banana plant they have? It’s got height, and is unkillable. Also has a cool seventies vibe that is sort of sculptural.

1 month ago
Reply to  Katherine

Yes, a big fake plant to the left of the dining room door, and a pile of big old books to the right of the fire place.

Emily J
1 month ago

pendant+chair on either side
extra chair
round table+pendant
pendant+desk and chair

pendants in corners FTW

Lacy Ellsworth
1 month ago

I like the idea of a storage cabinet. The variety you could find is infinite and budget friendly, they’re practical and beautiful. I don’t see a game table being utilized over a dining table especially because it would need to be small to fit in the corner, the dining table would fit more people. A work area is cute, but I just moved a desk off a wall, I really did not like working on a wall. You can actually get special slow drip plant waterers to water plants by itself, there’s also water crystals. Water beads are another option, I know about them because my kids play with them, but originally they were used in agriculture. Do some research, there’s a bunch of ways to slow water plants. I’d definitely vote for one big tall tree.

Stassy
1 month ago

What about a cactus?

wally
1 month ago

My cat loves to attack cacti. Not good. But she is into EVERYTHING. Some cats are nonplussed. Maybe look into renting one to see how your cat(s) do?

🥰 Rusty
1 month ago

Isn’t that watering system called a friend/neighbour?

Nicolettte
1 month ago

Faux tree! I am a plant lover but my husband loves to live in a cave meaning our living room is too dark most of the time to keep a real tree alive. I have a faux olive tree in the corner and it looks great!

Mollie
1 month ago

Faux plants. Problem solved.

Alice
1 month ago
Reply to  Mollie

I was going to suggest this but was afraid of the plastic police. However there are some beautiful faux plants out there.

🥰 Rusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Mollie

“Plastics Police” here … WYKYK!👍🌏

Erin
1 month ago
Reply to  Mollie

Guys!!! This: https://www.ohohdeco.com/diy-monday-fake-plants/
not for every room, for sure, but would work if your space is funky, whimsical or fun. Kids space? I love the idea that faux plants don’t have to be plastic and these examples of paper, like the delicate orchids, and that it could easily be done diy. The cactus are so FUN! Would like to see something crafted on a larger scale. I might try this using some of the old vintage tins my dad and I have collected over the years for the pots.

Liz
1 month ago

Def a tall tree or plant that doesnt need much water. I have a 6 foot tall pencil cactus- no sharp spikes and only needs a deep watering once a month. Every room needs life or will start to feel like a furniture gallery. And a plant will speak to the frond shapes on your wallpaper. Love the sofa!

Alice
1 month ago
Reply to  Liz

ZZ plants can also go a month easily.

Emily
1 month ago

What about a floor length mirror? And i think you could get away with a faux plant.

Rebecca
1 month ago

Yesssss Horse mirrors would be AMAZING in this space. I loved them when the first post went up and I love them for your space even more now!

Rebecca B
1 month ago

I am also a strong YES on the horse mirrors! Those are amazing and would be perfect with your vibe for the space, IMHO. I’m an avid reader of this blog who has never posted…never even once….a comment. The horse mirrors spurred me to it – no pun intended!

Jessica
1 month ago

You MUST hang those horse mirrors! They are perfectly deco!!!

Michelle
1 month ago

Love these horse mirrors. I’d love. Disco deco work scene. But also consider leaving them empty for awhile. An empty corner can feel luxurious and lows for seasonal considerations like a holiday tree. Re the paint color, did you consider F&B Peignoir? It’s got my eye and I think has a lovely historic feel to it.

Erin
1 month ago

oh yes, stack those mirrors and disco. do you still have that cylinder brass basket too? it would be perfect next to your fireplace.

Susannah Elliott
1 month ago

One thing in this fun post, no lighting is shown in the floor plan or referred to aside from the fireplace sconces. A tall focal point lamp could be cool for one corner. What will be the reading lamp situation by the sofa and/or chairs?

The lead photo is amazing inspo. That wall color! The piping on the sofa! So much other stuff in there! Ok, moving on. 1. I love the layout you picked. It’s very similar to mine and I find it works well. We both have the fireplace flanked by windows, one side open to the dining room and one side with windows. 2. I love that striped couch you currently have. 3. For the corners, I say, for one, yes to a wfh situation. I currently have that set up in my living room in a corner, but not one of my window corners. A window would be better. You don’t want to work in the dining room. It just makes stuff pile up. The idea of a not piled up with crap dining room is nice. For the other corner, maybe a tree? Or a sculptural chair? That’s what we have (both) in one of our window corners. Our other window corner is a mcm walnut wood + chrome filing cabinet with mirror over it. Oooooh! Yes, on the wall where you had the teak bookcase by the dining room, I’d suggest a mirror. It will reflect the light and… Read more »

Suzanne
1 month ago

Benches under the windows flanking the fireplace would look great, but I also love the idea of a small desk/wfh area.

Lori
1 month ago

My first instinct was to say plants, especially one of those palms that remind me of the indoor palms you’d see in old Art Deco hotels. But if watering is going to be an issue, what about something that can take long periods of neglect, on a tall and interesting stand? Like yucca, some variety of cactus, etc.? I have huernia spilling over a wall planter with bilbergia planted on top that I bought in last winter and and it only needs water once a month or so. Plants add so much to a space, so I would try to sneak in something that’s hard to kill. But if plants aren’t an option, I think some kind of big sculptural piece of diffused mood lighting would be good in a corner. Maybe an undulating paper lamp that hangs from the ceiling or something? In the far corner, maybe a super comfy chair for reading? I second whoever said you’d actually use the dining table for games over a game table. But if a work space is what you think you’d use the most, that’s what I’d go with in the far corner I would also shift the sofa-chair combo so… Read more »

kiki
1 month ago

I’m having the same problem as you! Big room, SO expensive to furnish…what do I do in the corners?? If you’re into something from the ceiling, I’ve been eyeing these guys after seeing the real thing in Gwenyth’s AD home tour: https://www.satulight.com/product/akari-e-ceiling-lamp-pendamt-light/?attribute_pa_size=small-2&gclid=CjwKCAiApfeQBhAUEiwA7K_UH1nuykaPZoq78Vb4mOjjHppv3hBFD8nxb8yfEmZ_5DU14QnkcmL4pBoCKLwQAvD_BwE&epik=dj0yJnU9b1JYemh2X0tvV0ltSHg5MEdLb0wwMHVuWUZLMkNROVgmcD0wJm49SWFkaE1iNEJ5VERxTHdzTHZpcklIZyZ0PUFBQUFBR0wyZzZj

wally
1 month ago

What about a hanging chair?

Jessvii
1 month ago

My number one idea would be something tall and skinny and with an organic shape, to balance out the strong, straight lines of the bookcases. A sculpture is a good idea. It could even be a hanging sculpture or piece of art. Or a pedestal/column with something cool on top (something more disco-deco than a large vase). But have you considered an artificial tree? They have come a long way!

🥰 Rusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Jessvii

And they’ll last for several hundred years in land fill.

Elizabeth
1 month ago

I currently have two torchiere lamps in my corners. They are holding the space till I find the perfect thing, but look good doing it.

LouAnn
1 month ago

How about an antique or vintage screen? Something with a cool fabric or pattern. Hide your vacuum behind it. 😉

Stacy
1 month ago

You mentioned wanting something sculptural,v and maybe black.
I suggest this sphere planter with a faux or low care tall plant in it. ( It those drop systems).
Planter is from Crate and Barrel and looks great in the corner of my bedroom.

https://www.crateandbarrel.com/sphere-dark-gray-indoor-outdoor-planters/f78139

Stacy
1 month ago
Reply to  Stacy

Sorry for typos! Meant to say- “Or use one of those drip systems”

Julie
1 month ago

I like the idea of a cool floor lamp and or a floor length mirror! I actually think it looks luxurious to have empty corners – so don’t put anything too bulky that will make it feel crowded.

J
1 month ago
Reply to  Julie

This! In my house, I try to leave at least one corner empty in each room. I think it helps with a spacious, luxurious, restful feeling.

Juanita
1 month ago
Reply to  Julie

100% agree!! Furniture/lamps/etc. in corners = cluttered vibes, it will feel much more high-end and spacious to have empty corners. Leave the corners alone!! (Said in the “leave Britney alone” voice)

Ruth
1 month ago

If you google it, there is a replica for about $500

A
1 month ago

Awww!! ❤️

Deborah
1 month ago
Reply to  A

Very cool lamp!

Adam
1 month ago

Whatever you do, don’t put Baby in a corner. Just don’t do it.

Jacqui
1 month ago
Reply to  Adam

Ha. <–I actually said this aloud.

Kira
1 month ago

My vote is still for at least one plant! Get a snake plant and a ZZ plant – both of them thrive on neglect. If you have a large enough snake plant it can be very sculptural, too!
If it’s really a hard no to plants, I’d say maybe layered lighting and some sort of tall objet d’art.

Mouseface
1 month ago

Please get the wicker motorcycle, you need the road trip and its a truly YOLO item! You will style with it FOREVER!! I had a light pink living room and it was sick but I would highly recommend the ‘Intimate white’ color …the stronger pinks can look too infantile on walls IMHOP. AND you know I never stop yelling at you about Nichols rugs and those have strong colors, so in my fantasy you get one soon and the strong colors live there, the lighter wall colors tone off it. Plus deco uses jolts of dark woods, so I personally would use lighter walls and add some pops of dark furnishings. I have similar taste to yours and a long skinny LR too- I have plants and mirrors in all corners. I have a 10 foot fiddle leaf fig and a 5 ft ficus , both from CL .. It’s easy to find 70’s mirrors here so I lean them on walls. . There are like 8 mirrors in my LR RN. For your amusement attach a photo of my old light pink LR, with the Nichols rug I found in the trash and the credenza is from a the… Read more »

lr.jpg
Mouseface
1 month ago
Reply to  Mouseface

This look may look a bit dated but I loved the light in the daytime and the darker items grounded it so well in the evening

Mouseface
1 month ago

Those ceilings were everything. I have cats and plants of al kinds with no problem. I love the hanging Noguchi lamp dupe idea .. and how about a Higgins mobile? https://higginsglass.com/product-category/mobiles/

Clare
1 month ago
Reply to  Mouseface

Just painted intimate white on my bedroom, looks great and not too dark but still pink

Adriana
1 month ago

I personally think corners sometimes should be left empty. An empty corner gives space for the layout to breathe. Full corners can make a small place look smaller IMO. So if i were you I’d pull it all together first without anything in the corners, and then only put something if it feels empty. And even then I’d go with something light and airy and sculptural, not with heavy wood furniture.

Ashley
1 month ago
Reply to  Adriana

Co-sign on this!

Kim
1 month ago
Reply to  Adriana

yes .what’s wrong with putting the rest of the room together and letting it breathe and live for a while so you can see if you actually want and need something in either or both corners.

Andrea
1 month ago

A large ZZ or snake plant on a stand would look great in a corner and only need to watered about once a month. Can’t wait to see this room come together!

E E Deere
1 month ago

Oh, I second the Noguchi long skinny lamp idea. I was burning to add that, and then saw someone clever beat me to it. I have a small Noguchi lamp, it is so wonderful in a room. It adds texture and a glow(when lit) and has presence in the nicest way.
I think the idea of a dedicated little workspace is appealing.
Or, a vertically arranged group of paintings/art. Or, a textile, like a long skinny silken robe or runner. If you have colors or a fabric you really like I’d get it made up into something to hang.
A thousand years ago West Elm sold white painted cubes 6″ square cubes. So you mount three or four or five of those cubes, which look sculptural and put whatever you like on top. It shouldn’t be too hard to get someone to make them.
I’d skip the plants, in this particular case this sounds like plants would be stress-making. This apartment is ADORABLE. If you ever decide to move I will quit my job, leave my family, and move right in.

Suzanne
1 month ago

I like the idea of tall cactus and mirrors. The vertical lines could be a nice contrast to all the curved furniture.
Question: if the front door is in the living room, is there a place for guests to drop purses, shoes, coats?? Otherwise, a coatrack in the corner?

🥰 Rusty
1 month ago

This is gonna be SO “~Disco Deco~ ” !!! 🤣🤣

I suggest something curvy or round in the corner (or a rall plant) because…it’s a corner! Balances out the hard edges energy trap. 😉

Heidi
1 month ago

I commend you for buying the sofa of your dreams. I’m about to do the same thing. I think your sofa is awesome and will travel well to your next home, too.

Kc
1 month ago

This may be unpopular… but I think nothing (except maybe some art for right now.

I think there’s something said for waiting. This way you don’t get something as “filler” right now, that you end up regretting or not needing. Once it’s set up and you’re using the space, I think you’ll know exactly what you need or maybe you’ll go thrifting and find the perfect piece.

Then you can do an update post! Although, I do love the idea of a game or puzzle table if you think you’d use it!

mallory
1 month ago

Definitely a real plant, preferably a big glam tree like banana leaf! You can do a drip system. There’s lots of fancy automated ones out there for under $50, or just an upside down bottle of water with a hole in the lid stuck into the soil while you’re traveling should be enough to keep it alive. Can’t wait to see the final reveal, it’s going to be a show-stopper!

Kimberly
1 month ago

Game Table! I had one for years, and it was in the corner much like a room you have. It was smaller and we loved it, it was a great conversation piece and we played many games on it with friends over. I had found it at a garage sale, and i wished i had kept it. it had a dual sided table top. Your room looks great!

Lane
1 month ago

1) Some sort of white column floor lamp could soften the look of the styles you are considering. 2nd idea a braided column urn on a pedestal, but it’s expensive and requires something to fill. 3rd idea a small desk and a chair for work. 4th idea a comfortable chair for reading or a daybed. 5th, a tree. I understand that you don’t have a lot of luck with plants but perhaps you want to learn and experiment? A tree could be cheaper than other furniture or big accessories. Thus smaller loss Maybe someone on Craigslist is giving one away or selling? 6th, a rug and empty space to exercise or for doing yoga. Or prepared space for some other hobby.

Karyn Meadows
1 month ago

Caitlin, you need something green in this fabulous room that you are doing! Why not a faux plant? There are a TON of great ones…I have a faux banana tree from C&B and it looks so real! All I have to do is dust it a couple times/month!! It’s 72″ tall and the planter is a gorgeous globe so really looks fantastic in the corner.

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Karen
1 month ago

This is when I think design and use of a space is a marathon, not a sprint. Get your new peices in. Marinate. You will regret buying something just to fill the space. But I guarentee you, that you will know when you know. Not just regarding the design but the use (which only you can decide).

Elle
1 month ago
Reply to  Karen

Marinate? As in drink, no wait, a BAR! Where is the bar setup?

Kim
1 month ago
Reply to  Karen

Exactly

Deborah
1 month ago

Love your collection Caitlin! The pink walls will be wonderful leading into your dining room with the fabulous wallpaper! The game table idea sounds like fun, though not large enough for a fun game night with friends – dining room tables are best for that, but why not a game table that you can also use as a desk? Though to do that you’d need to be able to keep a neat workspace. If you tend to have a messy work area (which fosters creative energy!) mask the area with a screen, maybe art screen or even a solid screen that you –> WALLPAPER!! 🙂 I like the idea of a mirror in a corner to add light, and the Noguchi style hanging lamps that were suggested in some comments look amazing! A Disco Ball – your LR needs one in a corner! 🙂 So, an artificial tree would be “easy care” (often found at thrift stores) and I saw this great DIY tutorial (I cannot find it in my pins) for making a Ficus tree more sculptural by artistically trimming it. I have 2 artificial Ficus trees that I bought many years ago and sometimes have out, I would… Read more »

Erica
1 month ago

How about a round bar cart?

Karyn Meadows
1 month ago

As I asked about using a faux plant in one of your corners, I remembered something else!! There are watering tools that you can use when gone on a trip or vacation. https://www.amazon.com/Wyndham-House-Watering-Globe-Set/dp/B01M32CRKG/ref=sr_1_5crid=2WRFO3NWE94NJ&keywords=watering+bulb&qid=1660334807&sprefix=watering+bulb%2Caps%2C144&sr=8-5. Could save your plants while you are gone!!

Hanna
1 month ago

I think the wicker motorcycle & a cat sounds like a recipe for disaster. I know it would become a giant scratching post for my demon kitties.

Elizabeth
1 month ago

Well, since you listen to vinyl, how about some large vintage speakers? I have a pair of Bose 901s on pedestals, but there are a plenty of sculptural options available.

Patti
1 month ago

I travel for long periods as well and have a large snake plant on a corner pedestal. I swear the thing thrives on neglect! I hardly EVER water it and it’s grown a foot in the past year!

Linda F.
1 month ago

I had almost the same living room in my first house and I loved it! You might want to consider 2 matching trees or palms in each corner. I had palms and it was gorgeous and sculptural, and it really highlighted the great architecture on that side of the room 🙂

Sheila
1 month ago

First, I saw a Caitlin and knew I needed to wait until I had time to settle in at my computer and take my time to enjoy your writing and get a good look at the photos. I’m in love with what you’re doing here and you’ve gotten tons of good advice already. For now, I say stick with function (work station, storage, lighting, etc) before getting into corner fillers. Lighting does concern me as you’re floating most of the furniture but cordless options for mood lighting are multiplying rapidly. If you can find a slim vintage hall tree with a mirror to put behind your entry door, it would give you and your guests a little foyer moment which would be a nice addition to the space.

Suzanne
1 month ago

I’ve always wanted a game table. The kind with the chessboard painted or stained on top, with nice chess pieces set up and ready for a game. Unfortunately, I have so many other tables, I can’t really justify it. And I’d also want to find something less fussy. I think a small one in the corner would be fun for one and two person games. Maybe you could find one that can double as a wfh desk, unless you need a desktop computer setup all the time. I like the idea of a wfh spot, too. I also love the idea of keeping some open space, which can also be achieved with airy hanging art, sculptural lamp, or a mobile. I linked a couple in another comment from SJMA and DWR, but I suggest checking museum stores for great options. You can even make your own: https://crafter.com/product/brass-mobiles-workshop/ Also, many people mentioned a disco ball, and I thought the same thing for a disco deco living room. I love the potential pink walls, but I’d also love pink curtains (Jess’ are so good). As for layout, I might prefer the sofa facing the fireplace (like Erik has), but it sounds like… Read more »

Suzanne
1 month ago
Reply to  Suzanne

I also wanted to say that I prefer small scale chairs. I like my feet to reach the floor, and I’m not even short at 5’7”, but so many chairs and sofas seem so oversized.

Dena
1 month ago

Have you seen those vintage metal palm tree lights? I think Liz karumel has one. That would be cool! And then leave the other corner empty until you decide if you really need anything else or not! Good luck big baby!!! Love where you are headed!! 😃

Kj
1 month ago
Reply to  Dena

I just saw this vintage faux palm tree in Wesley Moon’s design and thought of Caitlin immediately: http://www.wesleymoon.com/portfolio/2021/5/25/whimsical-beach-house. That one is vintage but here’s a sculptural floor lamp: https://www.overstock.com/Lighting-Ceiling-Fans/Metal-and-Wicker-Palm-Tree-Floor-Lamp-with-3-Lights/35653929/product.html?option=68617373

Deborah
1 month ago
Reply to  Kj

Kj, that metal and whicker palm floor lamp at Overstock is fabulous! It would be wonderful in Caitlin’s LR! It looks like when it’s the light is on, that it would cast magical shadows on the ceiling and walls, something I really like with plants that have up lights both inside and in landscaping. BTW, I want to thank you for posting the link to the history of the metal Penguin ice bucket in this office reveal post: https://stylebyemilyhenderson.com/blog/minimalist-office-design-ideas It was so interesting and when I was at my local Goodwill treasure hunting I FOUND a Penguin ice bucket ($4.99!) mixed in with the pots and pans on the bottom rack! I grabbed it and put it into my cart, though eventually when I was ready to make my purchases, I decided to not get it (not really my aesthetic) and put it with the barware and drove to my Trader Joe’s. On my drive home, I realized that the Penguin ice bucket would be perfect for my best friend (a designer who loves MCM, birds & cocktails) she lives in another state, and whose B-day was coming up, so I went back to the Goodwill and thankfully it was… Read more »

Caitlin
1 month ago

I love the “glam Secretary” idea for one corner, and while this is nowhere near as badass as a rattan motorcycle, I am obsessed with this palm tree on 1st Dibs: https://www.1stdibs.com/furniture/lighting/floor-lamps/rattan-coconut-tree-palm-tree-floor-lamp/id-f_26542952/

Caitlin
1 month ago
Reply to  Caitlin

I should add that it is insanely expensive…😬

Zoe
1 month ago

Ok, totally weird idea, but maybe this is the right audience: what if you used a bike rack to hang the wicker motorcycle? Then it would be a vertical sculpture instead of a horizontal one, and there’s something unexpected and fun there. 

Lisa King
1 month ago

Your apartment is coming together beautifully. LOVE your couch. I tend to be a stuff person so I was all in on the LAMP! PLANTS! comments. I’m in the process of working on my living room in SICILY. Thank you to all the empty corners are good commenters. I needed to hear that too. What’s up with your international house hunt?

Jacquie
1 month ago

Tall plant in one corner, real or fake doesn’t matter but greenery does so much for any room.
Some kind of “Schreibschrank” the other corner (or however that’s called in English?) for storage and work purposes, likecomment image?imgopt=twic&twic=v1/cover=700×700, https://www.etsy.com/de/listing/1224337574/mid-century-sekretar-nussbaum-60er-jahre?external=1&ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=schreibschrank&ref=sr_gallery-1-2&pro=1 orcomment image?bwg=1572626265

Pam
1 month ago

I just saw this article for the best floor lamps from Etsy. Some pretty cool ones you might like to check out.
https://www.etsy.com/blog/best-floor-lamps

Victoria
1 month ago

There is some really cool looking cat furniture available now.

Valerie
1 month ago

Low maintenance plants! Snake plants are super hardy. There’s also options for irrigation systems or plant watering globes to keep them alive while joker gone! I’m a plant lover who also travels a lot & mine do fine even with the occasional neglect!

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