I really wanted to get the living room update done before we had Christmas here and we’re very, very close. Close enough for a reveal! The BEFORE photos are from when we first bought the house (Feb 2012), but the plastering, painting, and bookcase were done right after the sale went through.
Since the last before and after post, we realized that cats destroy all furniture. We bought a $20 vintage leather test sofa to see if they would trash it. They did. So we designed the sofa bench, bought a custom organic cotton futon for the bench, and ordered a custom cushion cover and bolsters. We also swapped the sheepskin on the mid century chair for velvet cushions, moved the wire chair and found, painted, and reupholstered a vintage rattan chair – staying away from upholstered chairs that the cats will destroy. I realize this sounds crazy. Theoretically, I like cats more than I like pretty wingback chairs. Maybe. Maaaaayyybe.
What else? We added: another shelf to the bookcase, a lot more pillows, the new rug, a new coffee table, side tables & lamps, swapped curtains for roman shades, repotted a few plants in nicer pots, and put in a new front door. We also moved the boys trunk of toys out and will let them fill one of the new bench drawers with toys.
There’s a few things left – for one, we can’t leave the tree in that corner forever. I have no idea what could go there, though, so it’ll be empty until I figure it out. We’re still waiting on this magazine rack, and the art above the sofa bench is temporary until something jumps out at me. The folding screen (purchased at an antique shop when I was 17, holy cow) is temporary until we build a giant fence outside in the spring. Neighbor issues! We also need to paint and frame the front door, please note paint color strip and blocking around the door. Ooops! We’re thinking either grey to match the cushions or green to match that little table under the mirror.
When we were deciding on the fabric to use for this chair, I asked my mom “What would Nana do?” – so we dug out old photos of my grandmother’s living room in New York. Green on white toile was my favorite of her decor – and I already had this roll of blue and white toile fabric.
Meet Moon! He’s nothing like Huey. I think he’s part Siamese because he has blue crossed eyes, super long legs, talks a lot, and opens cabinets. He’s the dopiest cat I’ve ever met, but I volunteered at the Humane Society here and couldn’t leave without bringing a new friend home.
The rug seems short for the room, but without going custom we couldn’t go any larger on the standard sizes without getting too close to the wood stove.
Best Christmas in Vermont yet. We held our celebration on Christmas Eve this year, which was nice and felt more festive than doing it earlier. (The boys go to their mom’s house for Christmas Day, no matter whose week it is.) Sean made the most amazing meal, and we were all warm and cozy and content. Hope you all had a wonderful holiday!
It’s cold out there! We’ve been prepping the house for winter on top of the living room update, which is coming along nicely. I pulled out our vintage stash of tartan throws, ordered a new festive doormat, and finally got around to getting a log carrier so our sweaters and floors aren’t covered in wood debris. I really don’t know why I put so many basics off for so long – it feels amazing to get things dealt with and to build our little nest out. Here are some of my cozy finds to get you ready for winter!
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We’ve had our first dusting of snow, and the leaves are mostly off the trees – here’s some shots from around New England from the last two months to say farewell to a too quick season. The Christmas music is on and we’re starting to nest up here in Vermont – not much else to do when it’s dark by 4:15pm!
I’ve basically been having a complete meltdown over the state of our house – living in renovation / decorating flux for 3 years is starting to really wear on me, especially as I cruise toward turning 39 and feel soundly middle aged. Ok, I don’t really feel middle aged, but there are some milestones I’d like to reach. One is feeling like my home is comfortable, cohesive, and deliberate. The living room is next on the list to tackle, and it’s been a real challenge to get comfort, style, cat proof, nothing-disposable, and non-toxic all in one.
Here’s the vision I’m working on now – and will hopefully unveil before the holidays!