Tag Archives: LoveHouse

Living Room Make Over Part II

After Michael had surprised me with a newly painted room, we just had to properly furnish and decorate it. Before we even moved I had created a mood board of a golden fall inspired living room. We absolutely fell in love with the aspen painting by Parvez Taj and coincidentally it popped up on one of those deal websites on sale and I snatched it up like a dollar bill on the side walk. Pew pew!

We used a few existing pieces of furniture and bought a couple of new ones andย  slowly we turned the midnight blue bat cave of gloom into our wonderfully warm, cozy and bright living room:

(click for larger photo)

We were both impressed by the huge leather sofa from Pottery Barn. I had never been the biggest leather fan thanks to black, bulky bachelorpad-style sofas but this one is sooo soft and warm looking, we had to have it! Not to mention it fit perfectly in the window nook. PB collaborates with interior designers that scrutinizes your house for free and suggests lots of PB furniture to fill it. If going into Pottery Barn for furniture didn’t feel grown up then having their interior designer come to our home sure made me feel like an adult. Michelle was wonderful and had some great ideas for both of our living rooms. Mind you at that point this one was still midnight blue black. The cabinet and the lamp in the corner all came from Pottery Barn but she encouraged us to incorporate existing pieces as well. It was definitely a fun experience and she was so great to work with!

I got some throw pillows from World Market and was quite surprised by how reasonably priced they were compared to some online options. How cute is that owl?! Don’t remember where the striped red ones came from – I’ve had those since my first apartment in Charlotte.

Michael found a hammered metal accent table thingy at World Market and we added two slipper chairs from Target that were nicely priced. It was tough to pick a fabric that wasn’t too boring but not too crazy either to compete with the aspen picture. Target did have tons of fun ones to choose from and they’re comfy, too! The original mood board had one leather seat but we both thought a single seat would have not been enough to carry that wall plus we didn’t like the matching one to our sofa and were worried about finding the perfect mismatch.

As for the rug, we had ordered a brown and cream one online. Eh let’s just say it looked like a brown mess. Yuk. Not a fan! After staring at way too many rugs (don’t believe me, check out my pinterest board ;-)) and vetoing each other’s choices we finally ordered the red/orange ombre one and are quite pleased with how it adds warmth to the room.

Looks like someone likes the new rug… ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Night And Day Living Room Make-Over Part I

The previous owners of our house had a pretty contemporary sense of design and we really enjoyed touring the house when it came back on the market. They had a great collection of eclectic art and fun furniture. So thankfully we didn’t have to do much with our dining room, kitchen, and bathrooms. However, once their furniture came out and we moved ours in, the midnight blue living room looked like a dark bat cave.

That color had to change! It was a depressing shade of midnight gloom. Ick. We had fallen in love with Parvez Taj’s picture of aspen trees that’s leaning against the wall and wanted to find a warm color for the perfect backdrop. On top of that, the dining room is attached so the color needed to look good with the white and grey colors from there, too.

It was easy to decide on yellow but holy moly, there is no such thing as yellow or 50 shades of yellow. There are “Honeycomb”, “Yellow Brick Road”, “Twenty Karat”, “Heart of Palm”, and even “Jersey Cream”. Way too many! Ever thought your job was horrible? Be glad you don’t have to come up with paint names!!

PearI like bolder colors, Michael likes subtler colors but in the end we were both OK with a Valspar color called “Pear” (EB14-3). We got a little sample and painted a poster board to hold it up against the wall in different lights. And then we just knew that was the one. No not really. It was a lot of going back and forth but in the end we just didn’t find anything better. The next big Sherman-Williams sale came and so we pulled the trigger and had them mix up a few gallons. Yay our living room was going to look like a pear!

So then what you do is you go on a business trip to Germany and when you come back your living room has magically turned from super dark into wonderful peary yellow! It was an unbelievable surprise, in the week that I was gone Michael had patched up the walls, primed them (three times!!) and painted two layers of pear! It must have been completely miserable but what an awesome surprise!

Even the monster on TV is happy the gloom-blue is gone!

The transformation is incredible and seriously like night and day! Our living room is so bright and warm but without Michael’s fear of it “looking like a school bus!!”. It has easily become our favorite room of the house. Funny what a week in Germany can do. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Stuff in Our Trees – Insects and Humans Alike

I wasn’t the only one working from home the other day – we had an arborists team here, too, to take care of our trees.

Before we ever even closed on the house but after the previous owners had moved out we drove by one day to see this:

They took care of that branch but our poor neighbor was rather scared of having the rest of the tree fall into her house. The way it was leaning was just a tad bit too much of a liability…

We’ve also had the nastiest problem with a sticky film of a sap-like goo all over our cars. Logic solution number 1: park cars in garage – uhm we don’t have a garage. Logic solution number 2: Find out what’s causing the sap. And so we did.
There’ve been huge swarms of snowflakes, wait no, it’s summer, white fuzzy bugs rather, living in our Hackberry trees. The poor trees shed their leaves and everything from cars to patio furniture and grill cover got covered with a nasty, milky, sticky film.. Thanks to gardening books from the library and Google we identified them as Wooly Hackberry Aphids.

So we bought Wooly Hackberry Aphid poison and gave it to the trees to drink. Didn’t do a heck of a lot unfortunately but it sounds like this should have been taking care of in spring anyway. But slowly the trees had gotten rid of most of their leaves so that helped with our cars at least…

Nonetheless, the arborists recommended taking one of them down as well. And BOOM did it come down! The crew did a really impressive job, climbing up and taking out branches until it was save to cut the trunk. They also cleaned up a lot of our other trees and took out a dead dogwood tree.

Thanks to all the clearing we now have a ton more light in our front and back yards. Raised beds full of tomatoes here we come! Well, next year. For now I’ll just focus on planting skeletons and headstones!

All Hands On Deck

While the inside of our home still looks like a mini minefield that I get under control every few days only to then succumb to some new giant card board box that shows up in the middle of our hall way, the great outdoors are shaping up nicely.

We’ve been doing some work in the yard – due to our opposing work schedules this months with quite the gender division. He’s been working really hard to save our poor, neglected deck. I’ve been working on more beautiful things – flowers.

So far he’s saved the trim and the privacy wall that sits on one side of our deck. First he patched up the damaged areas. Then he cleaned the wood with wood cleaner (it has amazing before and after photos on the bottle but our before must have not been that dirty to begin with based on the contrast we saw (or barely saw). Nonetheless it takes off grime and in our case more important sap from the trees. Then he applied a lovely looking brown solid stain to add some protection from the elements. He had actually suggested two very pretty colors, a tan for the deck and a reddish brown for the wall and trim. Looks great so far!

Wood Filler Staining the trim

Deck with dark trim

Yes, you saw that right, that’s a head lamp. Between coats we went on a little walk in the park and dinner at the brewery date with our dog. The housemonster then went back to work. He said he finished at 1am. Outsh! And yes, I tried very hard to help him but my gosh he’s so STUBBORN! I did clean the deck today so he can go at it tomorrow with RescueIt. Can’t wait to see it all done, put the furniture back on there and sip a glass of wine on our deck!