December 10, 2011 12

living room facelift…

By in Living Room

My living room was one of the first rooms I did something to when I moved into this house almost 8 years ago. The room was painted sea-foam green and I had it painted a soft yellow with a darker yellow trim. Surprisingly, the paint went with the already existing, but somewhat dated, drapes, so I let them be. I was sure I would soon replace them. Yeah, that didn’t happen. The floor was also covered in wall to wall brown shag carpet. A friend and I removed that about 4 years ago now (I think). Other than that, and a few different furniture configurations, I haven’t done much else to the room since then.

During my recent painting spree of upstairs bathroom, stairs, downstairs hallway and more, I decided I really wanted to paint my living room to match what I had done upstairs and in the downstairs hallway. Everyplace else was so fresh and bright the living room had been feeling a little dark and drab. So I added it to the makeover list.

In the process of taking down the curtains to prepare for paint prepping, I realized how much I really liked my deep window sills with the inset wood on the sides. I also realized how the curtains had been hiding a lot of that, so I decided no more curtains! I also finally removed the wood grain contact paper the previous owner had put on the sills (this woman really, really loved contact paper. It’s everywhere in the house). My Mom and a heat gun helped with that, and it came off pretty easy, but also left the window sills pretty sticky. Some Goo-Be-Gone, scrubbies, TSP substitute and elbow grease and a lot of the stickiness was gone. Several coats of clear polyacrylic and they are as good as new!

After prep and caulking, the thing that took me the longest was painting the windows and window trim. I think the end results were well worth all of the time though. The trim is Behr paint in Swan Wing and he walls are Behr paint in Ostrich. My surround sound wires, which are hidden above the crown molding, used to run down the wall behind my curtains, the curtains hiding the mess. I installed a wire chase next to the window by the t.v. and painted it the same color as the wall and it worked out perfect! I also had to go around and lower all of my base boards, as I had never done that after removing the carpet. Nothing in my house is level, so there are a few areas where they don’t touch the floor, but I don’t think it looks too bad. Maybe when I re-finish the floor I can put in some shoe molding that will hide the gaps.

Lastly, I put in some Levolor cordless cellular shades in place of the previous curtains and metal blinds and I love them! They give me privacy and let in a beautiful amount of light into the room. I also put the same blinds in the downstairs hallway window. I also had to re-hang all of my artwork. I had hung it too high before, so I tried hanging it 57″, but it was just a little too short for me. I went back and changed it to 67″ and I think it’s perfect. Here are the before and after pictures!

12 Responses to “living room facelift…”

  1. Christina says:

    Nicely done!!! Some advice, hopefully U take it the right way: Some smaller carpets(or do U call it mats?)(which are washable in the machine) under the chair/coach and tables will gather the furniture. Sometimes it will look better if U put the pictures more together ie don’t spread them out so much. Hope U get what I mean! U done a great job, know how hard it can be doing redecorating stuff on your own.
    The Old Swedish Lady

    • Adam says:

      Thank you Christina! I had previously removed all of my carpets and mats due to my former cat and my current dog, but I have been thinking of adding some back into the living room, at least a rug to put in front of the sofa and under the coffee table. I’m going to be adding some more artwork in too, I’m waiting for it to arrive. Hopefully it won’t look as sparse after.

  2. Christina says:

    Ciao or maybe I should use the Swedish Hej!
    Animals and children sometimes make U to reconsider the way U decorate your home, but sometimes it is worth while just for the benefit of loving your home, both functional and aesthetical….

  3. Christina says:

    Ciao again!
    Do U by replace mean getting new furniture? About the colours: I think U should choose what U like, not to many though, think there should be a “red” line(do U have that expression?). Here in Sweden we very often like light colours because of the lack of light in the winters (why people tend to get depressed, need sunlight). I like colours that make me happy, often bright colours but I try to not mix to many in the same room because I want a calm environment in the same time, especially in my bedroom. That’s the snag!It’s easier to change fabrics than furniture…

  4. Anna @ D16 says:

    Woooooooooow. That is such a MASSIVE change! It’s really almost like a different room. The amount of light you get now makes it seem like you put in a whole wall of windows!

    Speaking of windows…man. Totally worth the effort cleaning them up. I love that you left the wood unpainted, and shades in place of heavy curtains makes all the difference in the world.

    I agree with Christina about a rug, too, if you think Chloe will tolerate it. Maybe a nice big sisal or jute rug?

    • Adam says:

      Thanks Anna! I love how it looks without the curtains, and I never would have considered not having curtains until I took them and all the hardware down. I really like these Levolor cellular shades a lot- so much so I’m thinking of adding more of them throughout the house. They are not that expensive and very easy to install. I was thinking of a sisal or jute rug, or maybe one of those recycled polypropylene rugs I saw on

  5. rose says:

    Wow wow Adam. I figured after the bathroom and upstairs hall you would be done for months! That will teach me not to check in. The stairs and hallway are AWESOME. The painted runner looks so nice. I really like how now the wood in the living room looks like you want to show it off, its special, not just not all over left there by the previous owner. Does it feel good to you? Like “damn I’m good”.
    I’d say look at the colors you put in your paintings for colors in your rooms. What makes you feel happy, comfortable, peppy, relaxed.
    Great job all around.
    Happy Holidays!

    • Adam says:

      Thank you Rose! It does feel very good to me, I feel like I’ve accomplished a lot the past several months. I’m taking a break until spring, although I might paint one room over the weekend. I hope you have a very happy holiday as well Rose!

  6. Christina says:

    UR welcome! Wish U a merry x-mas & happy new year from a rainy Göteborg, Sweden!

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