I’ve been meaning to post our living room glow up. Now that it’s all decorated for Christmas, I figured it’s the perfect time. It’s more of a cosmetic glow-up as opposed to a full transformation because the bigger things we’d like to do to transform the living room (rip out the soffit, rebuild the fireplace wall, put custom built-in cabinets around the TV, etc.) require a lot more time and money. Our cosmetic glow up made such a huge difference though, and the room feels so much more “us”—makes me so happy!
I’ve always been aesthetically against having a sectional couch, but after staying in several Airbnb’s over the years, I’ve fallen in love with sectionals (a good one, at least) and the way they bring our family together into a good huddle and make a room feel warm and inviting. I pictured movie nights with us all sprawled across the couch, pillows everywhere and as close as we can be to each other. So this summer while we were in Michigan, I noticed a site I love was having a great sale, so I pulled the trigger on a sectional I’d been eyeing. The rest was history. If you give a mouse a cookie.
Let’s start with where our living room was before. I actually loved our couches, but I wish I would have been more daring and gone with something that had a little more character. There were a few design things in the room I knew were off as well that could be simply fixed. First problem—our curtains were too short, so they were hung just above the window. I knew buying longer curtains and hanging them closer to the ceiling would make the room look bigger. This window wall was also a constant frustration. It’s really great for flooding the room with light, but there was nothing grounding on that wall—no place to hang art above the couch, no stopping point for the eye. The lanai is right behind that door, and with nothing grounding to stop the eye from looking beyond, it just became a giant sea of clutter—pool floats, lanai furniture, beach towels hanging everywhere. I wanted either a dark color on this wall or a fabulous wallpaper to ground the room and create separation between the living room and the lanai.
The other problem is this TV wall. I really want to close off the bookshelves with cabinetry and have a Frame TV here, but for now, I needed an easy cosmetic fix—paint behind the TV so it doesn’t stand out so much.
So a little paint, some wallpaper, new curtains properly hung, a delicious velvet sectional and some pops of color…
Our Glow Up:
The sectional is the Asher corner sectional from Interior Define in Peacock. I ordered it on the last day of the sale, and I wish I would have ordered swatches because I probably would have gone with the emerald green. The peacock is more blue than I thought it would be; and if I was going to go blue, I would have done the cobalt. But it’s grown on me and I still love it.
It’s such a fun color to play with contrasts for pillows and accessories. I like down throw pillows, so most of the pillows are either pillow covers with down inserts or pillows that came with zip covers and polyfill inserts, so I could switch their polyfill for down. I sourced everything at the bottom of this post.
Other than the couch, my favorite thing in the room is the wallpaper. Once I ordered the couch, I started playing around with different wallpaper and accessories by visually laying them out in story boards (see how the photo of the couch here looks more green?).
Once I found this wallpaper from Anthropologie, it was a done deal.
It creates the exact effect I was hoping for in this room. This window also never had trim (not sure why), so my dad added some which makes it look so much more finished, especially with the curtains hung higher.
Painting behind the TV hides the TV and helps make that area look a lot less cluttered too.
I knew I wanted a lighter colored round coffee table because of the darker colored corner sectional and spent hours this summer searching for one. I’d find something I love and then realize it was too low, or the diameter wasn’t big enough, or it was out of stock. I had my sister on the hunt, my cousin on it, links being texted day after day. I had ordered this one (still love it!) in Winterwood from West Elm, but the wait time on it was so long (Covid has really delayed a lot of furniture production!). We ended up canceling the West Elm one and choosing this one from Haverty’s over their Labor Day sale because they offered an amazing protection plan at an extra cost if it gets damaged (which is likely in our home). It wasn’t supposed to come until late January, but we got lucky and they called us last month and reported it came early. I haven’t styled it yet with what I really want to display, but for now…Christmas :o)
The chairs are from Joss & Main (also available at Wayfair), and we love them. They’re 50% off right now. Someday, when our dog is less crazy and our kids are older, we’ll invest in an amazing wool rug or something vintage. I love Rugs USA for these rough-on-stuff years, and this rug we bought is the perfect foundation for a bolder couch (we did 9 x 12).
I’m mostly happy for more color in this space. It feels so much more “us.”
We’ll normally position the sectional against the window wall and only have it this way to make room for the tree, but it’s nice to have this option (which is why I wanted a corner sectional). Is it just me, or do you walk in people’s houses and wonder where the tree goes? I have a friend who’s buying a house and my first question when I saw the living room was, “Where will the tree go?” Obviously not everyone puts trees up and I’m evaluating the world based on my own celebrations here, but seriously—very important design question for those who are into trees.
Seagrass Accent Table (out of stock right now)
Marble Top Accent Table
Merete Curtains (my sister got me on to these IKEA curtains—they never fail. And they come in extra long sizes for our high walls,)
Mantel Mirror: antique, a present from Heidi for my 40th birthday
Test Tube Plant Holders on Plant Wall
Down Inserts (I always buy 22 x 22 inch inserts for 20 inch pillow covers. I like them fully stuffed. I’ve bought this 2-pack so many times. All of the throw pillows in our house have these in them.)
Salmon Velvet Pillow (We have several of these velvet pillows from World Market. They’re super affordable and have a zipper so you can take the polyfill out and replace it with a down insert.)
Golden Velvet Pillow
Oui pillow was Clare V for Anthropologie but no longer available
Red Pom Pom Pillow (so glad I snagged one of these—just bummed it doesn’t have a zipper)
Black and White Pillow (my mom had this on her couch, and I loved it so much I ordered one from her house)