Friday 6 January 2012

Living Room Makeover - Part 1

When I first meet with clients I ask them why their current space is not fulfilling their needs.  We discuss function, colour & style preferences as well as how they would like to 'feel' when they enter that particular room.  Like anything in life it is important to understand why you want to change something before you look at initiating that change. To see more about questions asked during the consulting stages,  click here to read my post about 'Where to Start'.  

When I first met with Dorothy and Geoffrey their living room was painted a dark green tone & there was no fixed lighting in the room.  They wanted the room to be brighter & wished to update the decor by using some of their  beautiful antique items and introducing modern furnishings as well.  

We discussed what furniture was staying, what could be re-worked and what was going to need replacing.

A large tree outside their window blocks a lot of natural light from entering the room.
We discussed how many people they typically entertain for so as to clarify what seating was required.  To address the lighting issue I suggested placing sconces on the wall by the fireplace and adding secondary lighting with floor and table lamps, as drilling into the ceiling was not an option. 

The fireplace had hand painted floral Portuguese tiles and if they were to stay, they would have limited and dictated the style and colours for the room.  It really was essential to replace these tiles to update this room and give it the face lift my client's desired.

Carrara Marble Tiles with the brass insert gives this fireplace a clean, classic and polished look. 
The floor had some damage to it so it was sanded down and re-stained with a natural look finish.  An area rug is a great way to add softness to a room and will help ground the space.  However, until one has been chosen, my client's are enjoying their gorgeous hardwood floors! 

Prior to finalising the paint colour I recommended painting 18" x 18" samples with the 2 colours that they liked best and place then on a larger white background on the wall for 48 hours.  It is important (and surprising) to see how colours change throughout the day and into the evening, so I always encourage this exercise prior to applying the paint.  I know people say 'It's only paint' but by doing this and getting it right in the first place saves a lot of time and headaches in the long run.

  Paint - Benjamin Moore- HC99 - Abingdon Putty.  Still to come -wall art, a rug, coffee table & accessories.

As you can see, the room has been totally transformed and looks stunning.  My client's are thrilled with the way it is coming along and so am I.  We started work on this project in September and were fortunate to have all of the upholstered pieces and draperies completed and recieved before Christmas. 

When ordering customised items it's important to be aware of  timelines for delivery in order to manage expectations (yours or your clients) thoughtfully and carefully.   As I've mentioned before, HGTV makes this business & the process of Interior Design look quick and easy -that just isn't the case.

To see the professional photos - which are stunning!! - head here to the portfolio page of my website.  

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  1. Great job! It looks so much more inviting and warm than it did before :) -Ange

  2. Beautiful Claire! <3 Em

  3. beauifull chairs

  4. The chairs are gorgeous and in 'Living Room Makeover Part 2' I will be focusing more on the re-upholstering of the chairs and the draperies. Thanks for all your comments!