2017 One Room Challenge, Week 2

Deciding on the Design Corner Stones for My New Living Room
Filed Under > Living

Blue & White Living Room, 2017 One Room Challenge, Waiting On Martha

If you missed the exciting news last week, or are new here to WOM—welcome!— I’m dishing some design details on my living room today as part of the 2017 One Room Challenge. 

The beloved ORC is a high energy 6-week design project with fellow bloggers/designers around the web, and it’s one of my favorite ways to kick my butt into gear to redo spaces that need some attention and a little TLC.

And before you say it; I know the room pictured is already beautiful.  I LOVE this room!  But this photo was taken three years ago.  So you can imagine that the space doesn’t look entirely like it once did.  It’s the most lived-in, most highly trafficked rooms in our home, one been torn apart for many a movie night and photo shoot – I shoot all of my food photo shoots in the living room.  Not to mention, Addison, my Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, has completely destroyed my beautiful Lacefield pillows by using every single one of them as a bed.  

But back to the living room redesign.  In tackling this space I face a few key challenges I needed to meet head on from the get go.  First, I don’t have a formal living room. Meaning this room is it.  So the room has to be beautiful yet functional. 

Second, the layout is funky.  It’s directly connected to my kitchen and dining nook in an open floor plan, and proves to be a bit limiting when coming up with my big design dreams.  Due to its size and shape it simply HAS to have a sectional in it, but sectionals are large and tend to suck up the entire room.  Especially a room this size.

Which brings me to my third challenge.  I need to find accent pieces, think side tables, bar carts, and additional seating, that can easily be brought in and out of the space when needed.  

Luckily, this isn’t my first rodeo when it comes to the space and after hours of pouring over and testing out the cornerstones pieces of the room I think I’ve finally settled on a design and can get moving.

Below—BlogLovin’ friends be sure to click into the post to see the full detailed list!—I’m sharing those five design elements that I am leaning on to pull together the room and truly act as “anchors” for the design. Truly, MKR

P.S. You can read about week one of the Fall 2017 One Room Challenge HERE.



Envelop L-Shaped Sectional

Bassett, $5,287

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The Ideal Sectional Sofa

So sectionals are hard.  I think the problem is that they’re either super masculine-leather-and-oversized, they’re very formal, or they’re one of those stiff, uncomfortable ones. 

When I set my eyes on this L-shaped sectional by Bassett, I knew instantly that it was the perfect piece for our space.  It’s just modern enough; the envelope shape of the cushions along with the more traditional base is simply gorgeous. 

Besides the fact that it’s going to be incredibly comfortable and basically a cloud for our at-home movie nights, it’s also really easy to move around and adjust.  Seriously…you can move around the pieces of the sectional as you can see the video here.  

I’ll be talking alllllll about the selection process of a sectional sofa later, but until then I’ll be hanging tight until it gets delivered.  With furniture like this, you always get a little nervous about timing.  So that’s why I knew I needed to get this baby ordered ASAP.


Karastan Forfar Hazelnut Rectangle

Bellacor, $385

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A Rug to Ground to the Room

A rug is obviously functional, but it’s also the perfect way to infuse that hint of modern, that pop of color or that vintage detail.  It’s how I like to add personality or feeling into the room.  And when done right, it grounds the entire design.

I’ve seen this rug by Karastan, what I like to call an Antelope Rug, in various designed spaces.  I’ve always, always loved it as a stair runner.  I’m especially drawn to it for this space because it will hold up well in such a high traffic area. 

I’m also a big mixer of patterns and prints.  Very much like my Thibault wallpaper as seen in my home office, the print is really just a pretty neutral that adds interest. It’s one of my favorite statement pieces for this space!

P.S. I’m so over rug pads in general.  I’m officially converting to rug tape to secure a large piece like this one. 


Jute Wide Puka Grasscloth


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Texture to Add a “Wow” Factor

I knew I wanted to incorporate tons of texture to the room.  Texture’s just my thing.  And in my opinion, fabric is one of the most fun things to pick out.

But once you settle on a design, you need to remember that it all takes time to upholster and reupholster furniture, and create custom drapery.  It can take up to 6 weeks for even the simple projects.  And just because it seems simple to you, that doesn’t mean it will be a quick turnaround if your upholsterer is busy.  A good rule of thumb?  Always allow for at least 10 days cushion for anything custom (drapery and upholstery), or you may get slammed with a hefty rush fee. 

As for my status, well I’m really pushing it right now because I first need to finalize the sectional and the rug – the two biggest pieces of the design – before moving forward with any of my fabric orders. 

I do know that I want to use the same grasscloth wallpaper from Bradley that I used in our shoppe in Atlanta. 

I’m also debating between a couple of Stroheim fabrics, along with a fun trim for the drapery.  And yes, I’ve decided that I will be keeping the bamboo window treatments. 

When we do share more about the new drapery in upcoming weeks, I’ll go into detail about measurements and rules of thumb when doing this at home.  I’ve found that it can be a bit confusing! 

I’m also going to be recovering the x-bench stools as seen in the photo above with another Stroheim fabric that will complement the rest of the room.  

Bassett Mirror Marney Bar Cart

Gilt Groupe, $399

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Functional Pieces

As I mentioned above, my living room is THE room in my home.  I don’t have a formal living room or a formal dining room.  It’s attached to the kitchen and dining nook in an open floor plan.  That being said, I always need to consider functionality for the pieces in the space.

So here’s what I’m on the hunt for: a large surface to serve as a coffee table that also stores and displays accents and necessities, baskets for blankets, a side table and/or foot stools, etc. 

I’ve already scored this beautiful Bassett Mirror bar cart.  Its unique silhouette and easy mobility make it a truly versatile addition to the room that I’ll be thrilled to put to use. 

Because the sectional is such a large piece, and because my living room is a limited space for all of this living, all of these pieces need to be small enough to be placed, and used, throughout the room.  

Robert Abbey Jonathan Adler Ventana Ebony Wood & Antique Brass Eight-Light Chandelier

Bellacor, $823.86

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Lighting as the “Jewelry” of the Room

I absolutely love custom lighting and fixtures in a space.  I’ve always considered them to be the “jewelry” on the room because they are the icing on the cake when the design all comes together.  Really, really pumped about the chandy I’ve settled on. 

I’m really lucky with this space when considering what piece to invest in because I don’t need to worry how much light the chandelier puts out.  I have a ton of natural light and recessed, or can, lighting already in place.  

I do however need to worry about my husband’s 80″ television. I can’t have the chandelier hanging low enough so that it blocks the view of the TV from the sofa. 


Featured image, Rustic White for Waiting on Martha

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