Monday, 7 July 2014

Living room tour


The back room of my house has now been through three different incarnations.  When I moved in almost six years ago, money was tight so it was very much a case of using what I already had: mainly cheap Ikea staples.  As you can see in these photographs, it wasn't exactly a look to set the heart on fire.  My house has good bones - plain white walls, stripped floorboards in almost every room, lovely high ceilings - but is a typical Victorian terrace in that it has relatively small, square rooms.  I couldn't ever quite see how to make the fairly dark and poky back room into a welcoming living room with character and style.

Last summer I decided to update the colours from dark purple and red to a more contemporary grey, blue & green scheme, and ever since then I've had an image in my mind of a more midcentury modern look for the room.  Wanting original pieces, however, means it's been a matter of waiting to come across the right secondhand finds.  I've struck lucky lately, and the combination of the vintage bits plus a new curtain pole, new mantlepiece and new bookshelves (all thanks to the DIY skills of The Boy) has completely changed the feel of the room.



The coffee table was my first bargain, picked up for £30 from a secondhand warehouse near my mum's last year, and earlier this spring I found the mirror at a junk shop in Leicester - a steal at only fifteen quid.  In May, my beady eyes spied the glorious 60s globe in the marketplace in Hay-On-Wye and then, joy of joys, we stumbled across the most perfect chest of drawers for only £20 at Leicester's newest secondhand furniture store, Plank, last week.

Combined with framed prints (how ace is my new typewriter print, which was a birthday gift from The Boy?!), vintage books, an Eames DSW chair and homemade cushion covers - the blue made from South African batik fabric and the white from two fat quarters of Orla Kiely fabric via eBay - the whole look is beginning to come together.  The result is a room which is so much lighter, brighter and less cluttered than previously.






* Furniture: all vintage thrifted apart from TV table: Ikea; sofa: Ikea via eBay; chair: eBay * 
* Picture frames: all Ikea * Chevron lampshade: BHS * Table & floor lamps and shades: Ikea * 
* String of ball lights: Cable & Cotton *

22 comments:

  1. Love your sideboard/mirror/coffee table. That kind of mid-century modern furniture actually makes me swoon a bit. I've never been one to go soft over shoes/handbags, etc, but vintage furniture...ahhhhhh.

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    1. I'm the same, and I think it's partly the fact that if it's vintage, I know I will never be able to have it myself. Y'know, you see a pair of shoes you love and you find out where they're from and you go and buy them, but a vintage mirror - nope, never going to find the exact same one.

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  2. it's a lovely room, nice a bright with lots of cool pieces. I really like your chest of drawers - what a bargain! The Russian dolls are cute - my mum's got a v.similar set that's she'd had for forever!

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    1. Thanks! It's actually a really dark room, particularly in the winter, so I'm really happy with how much brighter it looks since I've made it over. I've had the Russian dolls since I was about 7, when my grandparents brought them back from Bulgaria for me, so they're pretty special to me.

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  3. I absolutely love your living room!

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    1. Thanks! Me too, I'm so happy with how it's turned out.

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  4. Wow, really loving the new updated living room! The chest of drawers are amazing and the Orla cushions look great. x

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    1. Your posts about your amazing house have been inspirational as I put this room together!

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  5. Your living room is just perfect! I know what you mean, it can take lots of time (and money) to get a room to how you want it. However, it looks as though it was definitely worth the wait in your case :-) xx

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    1. I'm also very impatient, I kind of want everywhere to look perfect straight away but on my budget that's just not possible.

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  6. I absolutely love it all. Those shelves are great and the whole thing is fresh and bright which is lovely.

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  7. I love this too. Love the colour scheme and the mid-century theme. And I LOVE the fact that its Victorian - I know the rooms can be small in these types of houses, as you said, but it means they often have a quirky layout and you can do a lot with the space. It really makes me want to get rid of my two giant evil couches so that I can do something awesome like this with my living room :)

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    1. Our couch is HUGE so we felt ok getting rid of the armchair (also huge - and not really got rid of, just put into the bedroom) and replacing it with a small Eames chair. I'm amazed at what a difference it makes to the room and how much more spacious and light it feels with just the one sofa.

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  8. Wow, what a beautiful room! Thanks for sharing, I also love your chest of drawers, and only £20! Maybe we should stop by that shop on Saturday?! I have viewed a nice house recently and this is good inspiration for me too. Was the wood stove there before you moved in or did you have it added? x

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  9. Lovely, lovely room. So welcoming. I bought my first flat last year - another Victorian property, and am also struggling with the oddly shaped and sized rooms. There are things I love about the furniture I have - but it doesn't feel "finished" somehow. I love how yours comes together without being too matchy matchy!

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  10. I LOVE that sideboard. As a mid-century modern obsessive I love this room - I've tried the same with our two rooms, I think vintage furniture really gives a place a lived in feel. Thanks for popping by my blog too :)

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  11. Your living room is gorgeous! I've become so happy since moving from my grotty studenty flat to a lovely retro maisonette with second hand coffee tables and a proper wooden desk and 60s style wallpaper!

    Lulu

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  12. I love how light it looks. And the furniture is awesome. I can't believe that so much of it was such a bargain! I really hoped our hosue would have beautiful floor boards but it's failing me and has rubbish one. Very jealous. x

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  13. What a gorgeous room! Stylish and homely :)

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  14. Phew, so many comments! Thanks all :)

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  15. Well I just bloody love your house. This room is so light and bright and the fireplace is great! Brilliant styling!

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