Monday, August 3, 2015

From Inspiration to Reality!

My actual inspiration page, from which I then actually purchased my wants and wishes!

When I first began considering how I wanted my main living area to look, I started by collecting pictures of things that I was drawn to stylistically. As I collected, I came across a rug from IKEA that became the anchor for my design inspiration.
Alvine Ruta rug, measures 5'7" by 7'10"  
Based on this decision, I was then able to focus my planning and inspiration board to fit around my anchor piece. For me, I selected paint colors next because I feel as though that is the actual first step in designing a room, getting color on the walls. The colors I was left with originally were cream, dried blood red, and a pretty but not coordinating aqua.

Living room - Before
Dining room - Before
I selected a yellow that was not the same shade as the mustard in the rug, but instead a light buttery color. And I paired it with a navy in the dining room, which I pulled from the edge of the rug. My personal paint preference is Pratt & Lambert interior latex in an eggshell. I used Eggnog (10-30) and Captivating (24-14) as my wall colors to replace the mismatched combos above...

Pardon the blue tape everywhere, that doesn't exist anymore! 
I then collected the items from my inspiration page, and other items that matched the board. The pillows from the inspiration page were purchased at Target, and the chair was picked up at IKEA.

And in searching for the link for this post, I just discovered that they make the chair in YELLOW now!!! Oh man! I have the urge to own a contrasting set... Good thing the chair doesn't fit in my little Honda, or I'd be on my way to IKEA right now! 

My favorite pillow of delightful feathers was also from Target. 
The couch was custom made by the Best Slipcover Company. Their products can be ordered through Vintage Hardware! I selected a classic shape from the Cindy line and then selected the fabric that I wanted to pull out the gray border on the IKEA rug. The couch was definitely my investment piece, being constructed from solid wood and the cushions are down stuffed. It is made in the U.S.A and can either be slip covered or fully upholstered. I opted for the slip cover so that I can easily wash it if necessary and can potentially change up the cover down the road if I feel like it without having to buy an entirely new couch. Talk with Becky at Vintage Hardware to check out all of the couch, love-seat, chair, and other furniture options.

The yellow throw pillows are inexpensive options from Target's Room Essentials line. And the navy chevron pillows (one not pictured) are Target purchases as well! And so is that snazzy lamp! The lamp was purchased about 3 years prior to ever looking for a house to buy and was meant to be! Although Target sells this base as a set now, they also have a more budget friendly, different lovely yellow lamp

The remaining large furniture items including an upright piano, large bookshelf, coffee table, side table, and other miscellaneous things were acquired in my favorite way. From garage sales, inherited, or purchased from local salvage businesses. My style is definitely vintage inspired, with rough edges, but balanced with warm, cheery tones and a variety of textures. 

I've owned this map since high school and finally put it to perfect use! It's a great pop of fun colors!
The concept of creating an inspiration board can seem like a waste of time or overwhelming, but I think it helped keep me organized. Plus, it was definitely not as overwhelming as I think creating a room would be if there was no direction or guide. Obviously everyone tackles projects differently, but I'd recommend creating an inspiration board based on an anchor item. And don't think that anchors have to actually be large items. It could be a pillow, artwork, a rug, a piece of furniture, or even something small like a special memento item. Decide what is important and work from there, selecting coordinating colors, and a variety of textures. My BFF Ali told me during this process that a good room should have at least six different textures, and I am confident that I have well over that number! And I've received Ali's approval on my house so it must be properly textured... :) Love you Ali! I used fabrics, wood, metal, and ceramic to create a large variety of texture. Some are soft, some are hard, some are smooth, some are rough, but all create a cohesive space. And feel free to mix patterns! I used chevrons, stripes, geometric prints, and solids. Oh, and one feather embroidered pillow! 

Mostly, I think the most valuable advice I can give in regards to creating a living space that you love, it means you have to select things you love to be in that space. If you don't LOVE LOVE LOVE it, don't bother. Mediocre is only going to bother you in the end which means spending more time and money to get something you actually want. And if you really LOVE LOVE LOVE it, then sometimes that means you spend some decent money. Shopping at Target and IKEA helped save some money, as did garage sales or fleas, but sometimes perfection is ponying up the cash for a long-lasting, quality piece that you will love for years to come. Prioritize what items you plan on investing in. For me it was the couch. And if you could sit on or nap on my couch, you'd understand why I went big on it. Seriously, it's that awesomely comfortable. If you have to live someplace, then you should love everything you can about it. Especially if it is someplace that you've committed 30 years to!

Cheers! And happy decorating!

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