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help me finish this room! (pic)

post #1 of 42
Thread Starter 
UPDATE with pictures, post #26!

I have a few ideas to finish off this room, but before I ask opinions on my ideas, I'd love to hear yours!

What would you add to make this room less cold, and more comfortable?

Thanks for your ideas!

http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...vingroom-2.jpg
post #2 of 42
Well, clearly the colors aren't the coldness, it's the geometry and repetition.

Everything that isn't repetitively rectangular is hard edged. I'm referring to the round, but not soft, tables. The repetition of the shades and the other rectangles in the room is very dominating. Even the couch looks stiff and hard-edged and rectangular. The overall repetition of colors and the fact that everything matches makes it stark.

What would I do? The main qualities I would focus on would be multicolored, organic forms, and softness. But just a taste, so it doesn't actually conflict with what you have.

I would probably go for a single large multicolored fiber art item on the couch wall--maybe non-rectangular--, something soft on the couch to make it appear more comfy (like a folded quilt) or a zesty artsy pillow-pal creature, and some colorful things in the window that would play with the light when the shades are up. Hmmm.... Some kind of quirky antique items displayed as a collection instead of the art hanging? Also a lively, textured painting could work. Sunshiny would be nice! Leafy might fit. Rainbowy could work. Something with a little bit of the geometric quality (but not too much) would help tie it to the room also--abstraction would tend to be a natural in a room with these qualities.

I think the choice of art over couch could make or break this room.

I would avoid adding many things because clutter would detract from the attractive minimalism you have here.
post #3 of 42
If it were my space, I would add some art work with blues, greens, reds, yellows. Fun, bright art above the couch. I would also add some window coverings that have some color, pattern, and texture to add some dimension to the space. The last thing I would do is add a rug that is more fun and colorful.

Rug I would pick:
http://www.1001arearugs.com/Surya/Go...y/details.aspx
post #4 of 42
I like what plants add to a room (maybe a tree for the side of the couch with no side table). I also like wall decorations (paintings/framed artistic photos/mirrors). And maybe some sort of unbreakable (bamboo/wood) vase for the center of that table. Possibly some couch cushions...
post #5 of 42
I would add some art behind the couch. Add a couple of green plants, something tall and thin behind the chair. Then a couple of fluffy, off white cushions for the couch (would soften the angles of the couch, and still tie in nicely with the room)
post #6 of 42
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the great ideas!

I was thinking of adding some side curtain panels on either side of those rectangular windows, perhaps in a silk because the texture would show nicely with the recessed lighting that is on either side of the window. But how would I put curtain panels up just on the sides? They'd be kind of like faux panels I guess, because I don't think I'd want or need them to be fully functional. Could I put a curtain rod across the whole thing with faux panels just on the sides?

I agree about the art. I was considering a family photo collage above the sectional on the empty wall, but based on your feedback I think that would just add to the rectangular, stark repetition that's going on. Some nicely textured, big artwork would be much better.

One other thing I am considering is adding floor lamps or a table lamp and a floor lamp.

We do need to replace the rug anyway, so I will make an effort to choose an interesting rug such as the nice one suggested.

Lots of potential for cushions, possibly a nice big one on the beige chair as it's a very deep chair.

I'd love to hear any more feedback.
post #7 of 42
My first thought was to add art on the wall above the couch (personally I would do some kind black and white nature photo cause I like that kind of stuff ) and then floor lamp behind the chair.
post #8 of 42
I would definitely get some artwork up on the walls and try to find a different rug and get some decorative pillows... something with some pattern/color in it that ties together the colors of the room.
post #9 of 42
Cute room! I actually like the rug as a neutral, I'd stick with that since it's not really a piece you want to change too often. I think the room looks very warm, you just need a bit more interest.

I'd go for a big piece of art on the sofa wall, nothing too elaborate that would conflict with your lovely minimalist theme but hopefully something to echo the colours in the room. Also some throw cushions to give the sofa and chair some colour - I see a pale green on the side table and red in the corner (another chair?) so I'd repeat both those colours in the pillows. I'm thinking 5-6 throw pillows would be a good number.

Other than that, I wouldn't go too crazy - then again I'm not a fan of over-decorated rooms. I think keeping the rug and potential drapes warm but neutral will avoid competition with the beatiful wall colour and the bright accents. For the drapes I'd probably get something cream/wheat coloured (not stark white) and hang them high and wide above the window. That way you can open them and push them completely out of the way so they don't block the view. And when they're closed it will make the window look even bigger.

BTW, how do you like that coffee table? I've been thinking about getting it for our basement but DH is concerned that it will be too wobbly.
post #10 of 42
I also think everything that is in the room looks fantastic! It just needs some art on the walls and maybe a tall floor lamp or tall tree in that back corner. I'm not a huge fan of throw pillows, but it could add a nice burst of color or an interesting pattern would be nice too.

If you go to art.com you can look at massive amounts of artwork and you can sort it by colors you like or type of art. You may not buy from there, but it could give you an idea of what you like. If you click on "see it framed," you can choose your wall color to put behind it to figure out what colors would play off your paint color.
post #11 of 42
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the great tips everyone!

Re: the table: It's okay, very sturdy, but I'm noticing the veneer is beginning to peel, and it's particleboard so I know it's releasing all sorts of nasties into the house. But, it was affordable.
post #12 of 42
i think the most simple would be curtains on both the window and sliding door, and then some pillows on the sofa and perhaps a throw blanket.

you can make your own fiber art by doing wool felting. start with wet wool felting to make the background fabric (it's very simple, actually, and you can find tutorials on youtube), and then some needle felting onto that so that you can have flowers, or faces, or whatever you want.

this would be a nice (and inexpensive and family fun) way to bring some fiber art to the walls. and it would be nice and abstract. and it's definitely something the kids can be involved with too.
post #13 of 42
i love it!!! our den is similar, but with orange faux walls and brown sofas too. you could put up curtains or window treatments, but i probably wouldn't. i like it the way it is honestly. i would add some decorative pillows on the couch, (probably something funky and beautiful with browns, mustards, reds, and oranges - maybe with a moroccan type vibe). i'd also put candles on the coffee table, with some red, mustards, brown, orange colors swirled throughout....and maybe a funky bowl or something as well. i'd put artwork on the walls, especially behind the couch....and something on the wall the chair is off (but not a painting, instead i'd hang a moroccan plate or something there - http://thebluesaffron.com/thebluesaf...ue/plate31.jpg). instead of the plants on the table, i'd put a nice lamp there. you could also add a floor lamp on the other side of the couch, but you don't need too. anyway - i really like it!
post #14 of 42
Great room! I too would add some couch cushions, plants and a sizeable piece of artwork.

Your cat is awesome.
post #15 of 42
I like what you have so far!

To finish it off, I would do a few of the following:

1. I would toss a quilt or down throw or chenille throw on the closest sofa arm to soften that hard edge. A fleece throw would be okay, but will age quicker than the others. Personally, I would try to find (or make) a multicolor item and make sure it has your colors AND includes some blue and/or purple.

2. I like clean simple lines of your windows. I would add something to the walls on either side of the window (maybe both, maybe one, but I am not into symmetry). Multicolor art or sconces or an oval 3-D type shelf to hold a candle....anything that adds some depth and breaks up the round and rectangle theme. I like the round and rectangle, btw, I just would add a third shape. Most decorating principles work best in odd numbers, particularly in threes.
ETA: Depending on how you bring in color and shape elsewhere in the room, this area (window wall) could potentially be a good spot for a few 8x10 or larger portraits. However, I am wondering about the area where the photographer was standing when taking the picture. Maybe that wall (inside the room) would be a better place?

3. One large piece would look fantastic above your sofa. A big oval mirror (horizontal) or a rectangular art piece with organic lines. I would include all your colors in your room (or at least several to tie it in) and I would make sure there were a few cool colors to balance it out. The best decorated rooms tend to have a strong warm or cool color focus and then the accents are in the opposite. For your room, obviously you have a very strong warm color focus (perfect for a living/family room!), so adding a few small accent pieces in cool colors will help finish it off visually and it will help "warm" it up by providing a balance. Adding a bit of deep blue and violet are instantly what I thought of when I saw your picture. I'd also repeat the green you have or break up those three items on the one side table.

4. Do you need lighting for the tasks you do in this room? That is something that popped into my mind right away, also. It looks like you have recessed lights overhead, but what about eye level lighting? A floor lamp with a built-in reading lamp (two lights in one) might work nicely and would also add in some organic lines.

5. While I love the lines of that chair, I wonder what it's function is.... It seems a bit out of place. Right now, the rug color and the chair color tie in nicely. If the rug changes, then I would consider a different item for where the chair is. Actually, I would suggest a big leafy potted tree in that place anyway. It could go behind the chair or in place of the chair.

Have fun with the finishing touches!!!
post #16 of 42
For art behind the couch, how about letting your kids go at a canvas with some coordinating paint? One color at a time and let the first mostly dry before the second and it won't go muddy.

A large branch with some kind of lacquer to preserve it could be good too for a natural look.
post #17 of 42
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the great ideas!

As to what's on the "other wall" where the photographer is standing, it's this:
http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s.../otherside.jpg

It's not finished yet. In particular, we are doing our backsplash in the fall.
post #18 of 42
Oh, NICE!

I have more to say now...

1. I might use the narrow wall with the switches for one big (10x13 or 11x14 or bigger?) family portrait.

2. I might put the mirror I discussed earlier above the piece of furniture between your kitchen and living room. Although, if you wanted a photo wall, this space might work for that.

3. If you were to get a table for this space at some point, I think an oval-ish or rounded rectangle shape would look awesome!

4. Both pictures are screaming "add blue" to me.... in small ways, but blue and orange can be really stunning. Perhaps a cobalt vase? Perhaps blue in a multicolor throw on the sofa or blue candles (swap one green on the side table for one blue)? If blue/orange doesn't rock your world, perhaps a violet hue of some kind would work for you....

Such a nice space you are creating!!!
post #19 of 42
Really nice looking place.

I also agree with adding in softer shapes - like pp have mentioned, a really soft throw and some pillows would do it. Something big, colorful like a quilt/batik throw/canvas above the sofa. And I'd try to add in blues, possibly yellows (and depending on how much light you end up getting in the area when the sun shines - whites too (like in the pillows/artwork). I'd do bold cobalt blues or possibly a light but bright robin-egg blue (depending on what you prefer).

Having a lamp-less living room ourselves until recently - we now have a floor lamp which is really nice for the evenings. something like this ('soft shaped' & light colored shade) would look real nice.

I think that your idea of a large across the wall rod would work - mounted over the window, with nice curtains along the sides (something with a mix of pattern and/or with shine to it like this maybe or done in a fabric like this that repeats some colors and adds new ones.)
post #20 of 42
Thread Starter 
Wow, I definitely asked the right people. Thanks for all the great ideas!

Does anyone know where to find 8' long curtains? Our ceiling in 9', and all store-bought curtains or drapes seem to be 7' for standard-height ceilings. I love the Pier 1 curtains linked. Wish they were long enough .
I may end up sewing my own. I am able to, just time-challenged.

Hmmm...how feasible is it to sew a solid colour trim panel onto pre-sewn store-bought curtains? That would look nice and solve my length problem. But would it ruin the drape of the curtain?
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