By Julie Ann Segal
Having guests is a sure motivator to spruce up your home. My client Cristine had never really finished her formal living spaces. Before a party, she wanted to make some design changes to warm things up, and make the living and dining rooms comfortable and suitable for entertaining guests.
With pets, it wasn’t time for her to get new furniture yet, so we moved forward with a redesign, repurposing the existing main pieces. We rearranged some furniture, adjusted the lighting, and found new accessories and art to round out the design and add character. These simple changes made a big impact.
Before, there wasn’t much on the walls. That and the lack of accessories made the space feel cold. Also, a chair in the walkway blocked the flow from room-to-room.
After, new art above the sofa not only grounds the space, but adds interest. We moved the floor lamp to the other side of the sofa, added a soft throw and some attractive accessories. In addition, we moved the chair that was blocking the walkway in front of the window, and found a new round end table – a beautiful and functional piece. Moving a lamp from another part of the room worked well to complete the setting.
Before, on the opposite side of the room from the sofa, the seating seemed unbalanced with only one art piece on the wall that didn’t make much impact.
After, adding new art over the piano and a new mirror on the wall (both similar in scale and appropriately sized for the room) feels more balanced.
To warm and lighten up the corner, we added a new lamp. Its design is sleek and innovative, metal with a clear glass bulb. The curved base adds softness, and ties in with the new mirror above the chair. The unique design of the mirror with its geometric shapes and dark accent color adds a bold element, while still complementing the overall traditional design of the rooms.
In the dining room, a vintage radio was taking up space and impeding the flow. The table decorations didn’t add much appeal.
The radio was relocated, and an attractive piece of art which Cristine loves was put in its place, which feels softer and lighter.
A table runner was custom-made, and for ambiance we added a balanced display, with two marble-based hurricanes and a stone fruit bowl. Their color is subtle, tying in with the dining chairs, and the stone helps ground the space. All the art in the living and dining rooms is new, and creates a finished-feeling environment, along with adding visual interest and beauty.
We also had a custom floral arrangement designed for above the doorway, which softens the edges and makes the entrance-way more inviting.
Cristine is very happy with the results of her redesign. She spends time in these rooms now, which makes her whole house feel like home.
“Motivated by having a party at our home, I hired Julie Ann to help me pull together the design of our living room and dining room. They look awesome! I received lots of compliments. Julie Ann knows what she’s doing. There were some things I wasn’t sure about, but she reassured me, and the space has come together so well. It’s so much nicer, and cozier. I love to sit in the living room now; I can look at and appreciate the art. And we use the dining room now. The space looks so much more put together. I’m looking forward to having Julie Ann’s help with our next project – a rug, artwork, furniture and window treatments for our informal dining room!”
– Cristine Beers
The results of any thoughtful design changes you make? Benefits that not only charm your guests, but ones you as the homeowner get to enjoy day in and day out. Making changes to improve your space – whether large or small – are worth it.