One of the biggest decorating jobs in our new home is definitely our living room – ironically the most “finished” room of the entire flat. I’ve been itching to make some changes in here since we moved in and we’re finally kicking things off this week – praise be.
The size of the room is fantastic, which leaves us a lot of room to play with, but also a lot of things to consider. After much Pinterest-searching, I think we have our ideas honed in and we know exactly what type of space we want to create. It’s going to look so different, which I think is a great thing, but our guests might not agree – everyone we’ve had over absolutely loves the decor in here, while I could definitely do without it…
The plan is to play up to the Victorian history of the flat and give it some grandeur back; the previous owners had ripped out everything remotely period, and replaced them with smooth walls, plain cornicing and a pretty tacky marble/LED fireplace. Oh dear. The walls are a kind of weird khaki-cream colour, which looks dull and quite dark for such a bright space, while the alcoves are painted an aubergine purple. Two of my least favourite colours; it’s safe to say that they’re on their way out!
We’re planning on painting the alcoves and the fireplace wall a delicious deep French blue, this shade in fact. It’s warm and cosy and dramatic, and something we hadn’t considered until I saw the photo above. It’s love! We’ll be building in bookcase shelves in both alcoves, so the blue won’t be too dark, and all of our books and bits can be properly showcased and stored, instead of piled on the floor… We’re also ripping out the fireplace (cannot wait for that…) and hopefully replacing it with a reclaimed black cast-iron Victorian one. I want to put a beautiful brass mirror over the fireplace, but I think I might have to settle for the TV going there instead.
The rest of the walls are getting painted a really bright off-white to compensate, it’s actually a light-reflecting paint so the overall effect should be really bright and warm, while tying in that period, heritage feel I’ve been lusting after. All of the woodwork and the shelving will be bright white too – I can’t wait to see the end effect. It has to look better than this anyway!
We’re keeping the biscuit-coloured carpet as it’s pretty new (and essential for sound insulation!) but we’re binning those awful slatted blinds and replacing them with some beautiful painted roller blinds to give the room a bit of femininity – it will also make the room much more pleasant for guests when they stay, as they might actually get some sleep! I’m going to dress the windows with white voile panels too; we have three huge bay windows which are a big feature in the room, so I want to play them up as much as possible.
I guess we’re going for a kind of Victorian/1960s look in here; while the paint colours are very heritage and I want to add in the fireplace and an elaborate ceiling rose, I want to mix things in with some retro-inspired looks too. We want a wooden trunk for a coffee table rather than our IKEA one, so I’m on the hunt for one of those currently, as well as a retro 60s sideboard to use as a computer desk and a low-key brass chandelier, to replace the black acrylic one already here. I’m also going to buy this cool blue armchair at some point (i.e. when it goes into sale….) and we’ll get a different sofa at some point too.
I want to tie in a couple of other colours in a small way – as the sofa and the carpet are a biscuit colour we’ll need to keep those shades in, but that should be fine with the wood furniture. I want to mix in a bit of brass here and there too, which I think will look beautiful against the blue walls.
One idea we really liked was creating a feature wall of vintage cameras – Lewis is pretty passionate about photography, so this is really cool way of tying in his hobby with something that looks amazing too. I also love the idea of a themed gallery wall, like the travel-themed one in the snap above. Lewis is going to create some sketches of cities that mean a lot to us (Glasgow, Edinburgh etc.) and we’ll mix those in with some prints – I like this one and this one in particular.
We’re getting started on all of these plans this week and I can’t wait to get painting and get shopping! What do you think of our plans?