| || |
Living in your living room: part two
November 25, 2008 - Bethany Fehlinger and Marjorie Stromberg
Many weeks ago, I left off with my brown couch making it through my apartment's skinny door, but I came to realize I had too many pillows, with too many color schemes. How would I fix this color problem?
There wasn't much for me to do, so I included as many neutral items as possible. Furniture, especially for the poor, post-college person, should be simple and as close to one color as possible. All brown or black. A brown couch equals two brown end tables and a brown TV stand. Lucky for me, my parents were feeling generous and gave me their two end tables, in hopes they will finally buy themselves new ones after 20-plus years. They also decided to throw in '80s-esque plant stand and magazine rack that were, guess? FAKE WOOD! or possibly real wood, I'm not sure. My dad also decided I needed two porch chairs, but what he didn't know was they fit into my living space! Cheap seating is always key.
Now that every furniture piece is neutral, how did I add spark? Well, add art! Hanging pictures on the wall is the best way to liven up a room. Everyone's taste is different, so I can't tell you what to pick, but I would say to decide on a color scheme and stick with that for all your accents.
But wait, don't I have that problem — too many colors? Well, my dad had art from his former office space that were these '80s-esque paintings of nature in the colors orange, blue and green. YES! My two Pier 1 pillows are orange and green, and there is some blue accent in the pillows with the couch. Lucky for me, that blue in the pillows looks more like gray. I hung two paintings over my couch, which is the best thing to do. I also put another one on the wall to the left of the couch.
Filling all the walls is a must if you can, because without it, it can sometimes look barren or like you never completed the room. It doesn't have to be all art. For me, two sections of a wall are still available, one behind my door leading to my bedroom and one near my front door. If a door can usually hide a barren wall, that's good! Putting something on the door on the side that is visible when open is a good way to distract eyes away from what is, or is not, behind the door. The other side right now is empty, but I am planning to build an "In-Out" box for myself (another blog idea, perhaps?)
Art isn't the only thing that makes a room. I need to put stuff on my couch and end tables. For picture frames, I picked natural ones, to go with the theme of the room. I also love candles, because they are a cheap way to accent a room.
Another thing to do is to utilize pieces that someone may be giving away or something you can get at a yard sale. For me, my former roommates did not want this deep glass bowl. Originally, there were pinecones in it for the winter. I use it now for the seasons, which leads to another tip!
Leave room for holiday decorating. You don't want to pack away frames or items that you would love to see year round every time a holiday happens, so pick accent items that can be switched out during the holidays. For me, the glass bowl now has fakes leaves in it. During the winter, I am going to put pine cones in it, and in the spring, fake flowers. Another item that you can put on an end table that is universal for all seasons is a plant. My one end table is near a window, so my plant gets a lot of sun. It also takes up most of the table now!
As for lighting, it is good to get a lamp, whether a table lamp or a stand lamp, for your room. Most rooms you are renting will have a ceiling light, but when you are relaxing at midnight, do you want that bright light in your eyes? Having a lamp with a softer light is always helpful, and remember to use CFL bulbs because they save energy and money. Again, look for bargains or yard sale items, and then try to customize them to your space.
It's not hard or expensive to decorate a living space that is acceptable when friends and family stop by, and still comfortable when it's just you. Somehow, my living space turned into a flashback into the '80s, but I only paid for the couch and TV stand, a total of $240. With the money I saved, I could pay that heating bill I owe, or buy that new pair of shoes I saw last weekend.
No comments posted for this article.
Post a Comment