I’m actually posting this post!
For a while I never thought our living room would come together but here we are! It’s about as complete as it probably (realistically) ever will be.
Designing the look and feel of this room seemed easy in the beginning, then quickly seemed like a huge challenge because once we moved in we weren’t sure what living room furniture we were keeping and what we were going to replace or how we wanted to tackle the layout. Being that our apartment is an open concept space, figuring out how to separate different areas was the number 1 challenge. We wanted it to feel open yet inviting. On the furniture front, the only new pieces we bought were the sofa, the lamps, the dining room/living room divider cubes and the dining table and chairs. All of which were bought with the intention to use again when we eventually have more permanent housing. The stacking cubes, for example, could be reconfigured in a number of different ways in any kind of room.
Christopher and I are both designers so naturally we both have very strong opinions on things like how to design a space. Luckily we like basically the same style, mid-century modern, he likes things to be as functional, minimal and user-friendly as possible, however, I tend to like things that are more eclectic and colorful.
During the time we were designing our living room I was visiting The Walker Art Center’s gift shop and came across the book Swedish Details. Each page was filled with interiors that showcased clean lines and lots of color and personality in the decorations, like lamps, art work, pillows, etc. I was floored that the kind of design we both liked, which felt like a hybrid for the two of us, was an already established style.
Using older pieces of furniture was obviously cost effective but it was also really great to see how these could be used in a different set up. For example, our side tables were once our nightstands and the bookshelf next to the TV use to be in our bedroom.
The two things that I am the happiest with are the floating shelves above the sofa and the refinished coffee table/ottoman. The shelves are a great way to show our art collection while being able to switch pieces in and out easily. It’s like our own curated little gallery. Since we have the head room above the sofa, we would like to hang a few more pieces over the shelves once the framing is complete.
As for the coffee table, this originally came from our senior BFA design show. Christopher helped design and build these exclamation point benches and bought one of them when the show was over. Until recently it was just used as a coffee table but when we got our sofa we needed an ottoman too so for the majority of the time we put some blankets down for our feet to rest on but we had always dreamed of refinishing them with dry erase paint so we would be able to write on them, perfect for making lists, keeping score while playing a game, or just doodling for fun. When we moved it was the perfect time to do that. It took two cans of paint to do the job but now it’s just how we always wanted it to be. I love that this sentimental piece has 3 jobs and kills at each one of them.
The interesting thing about designing this space with Christopher was learning the pace at which each of us worked. I wanted everything to be done right away, but Christopher wanted to think about things much longer than I would have. In the end we met in the middle, which is good because we have a space that we both love and we have plenty of time to enjoy it.
#jonesloft (what is written on the coffee table) is what we call our place in the social media scene. Yep, we’re that nerdy