Tuesday, March 24, 2015

The Formal Living Room

The front door of our home enters right into the formal living room, so it was important to me that this room look really put-together. 

I also wanted something of interest since there's no central staircase or foyer in this home. My solution to the latter was to install floor-to-ceiling bookshelves, along with a rolling library ladder. I liked the idea of this room with the fireplace being more library in feel rather than a boring formal living room where no one ever goes. 

Here's a wide-view of the room:

The matching chesterfield sofas are blue leather and I absolutely love them. I've liked the chesterfield style for a long time, but you typically see these sofas in a brown leather. In this case, the blue color brings a nice jolt to the room and to me they are the perfect combination of modern and traditional that I'm always trying to find. 

The two brass side tables are from the old house, as is the rug. I'm not 100% convinced I like how the rug is working here, but I'm going to stick with it for a while and see. It's a large, heavy wool rug from Pottery Barn, so I'm not interested in jettisoning it right now, especially when I don't really have another place for it. 

The artwork is mostly all from the old house, and a mix of vintage and contemporary pieces, with the exception of the "Tokyo Is Yours" photograph which is one I took when we were in Japan last year and had blown up. 

I knew I wanted to do at least one gallery wall in this house since I love them so. In the old house I had a massive one with lot of different colors, styles, and mediums represented. I wanted to keep it a little cleaner and more curated here, so I went with a tight black and white color pallete. 

It took a lot of tweaking to get this wall arranged in a way I was happy with, but I think it finally got there. I know I'm far from finished buying art, so I tried to loosely arrange it with the idea that I can add more works as I add them to our collection without having to redo the whole thing.

The bookshelves are styled pretty, but the books are those we actually do/have read and love. Well, all except Infinite Jest. I've tried, but man I just cannot hang with DFW on this one. I'm keeping my copy though, and holding out hope that some day I can do it! 

These days most of my reading is done via ipad, but there's something about having physical copies of books around that I just can't get away from. In fact, I'm thinking seriously about getting hard copies of books that I've read electronically and loved. Maybe I'm crazy, but I like the idea of books as objects, even if I prefer to read them on the ipad.

Behind the bookshelves I layered in a pretty patterned wallpaper. You really can't see it unless you are up close looking at the books, but I like that it's a fun surprise when you see it, and it adds another layer of interest to the room. 

Facing the other way you see the front door, closet, and this area of the room:

I'm not completely satisfied with this part of the room, but it is what it is today. The console table is one I got at Pottery Barn years ago, and I still really like it. However, our moving crew dropped it and so now it has some big gashes and a chunk taken out of the wood. I'm sure it probably could be repaired, but since I've had it for over 10 years, I'm thinking maybe it's done its time and I should look for something new. Maybe a mid-century-inspired piece, like this one I spotted at Hutch the other day: 

I'd like to do two side chairs on either side of the console too, but they need to be interesting ones, possibly with a little pattern or a bright color. No boring beige here!
JARDIN faux bamboo SIDE CHAIR from Bungalow5. Also comes with arms and avail in several colors like navy.

Also notoriously missing from this room (and honestly, almost all the rooms) are window treatments. But, I'm on it. I found some gorgeous fabric from Gray Line Linen that I ordered and am having drapes made from. They should be finished in a couple of weeks and I think they'll set the room off nicely when they are done. I'm using the same fabric in both the formal living room and the parlor that you see here: 

Lastly, here's one more view looking into the front parlor/piano room: 

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