I was wrong.
When I bought the house in which I now live, once again I looked at one house, in one town, and immediately made an offer (I am nothing if not decisive). I didn't even have to walk in the door - as soon as I saw the listing I knew it was the one.
Once I moved in I had very little time to furnish it, to make it the home that I wanted - needed - it to be for my children. I managed pretty well (I hope), and here is the first Before and After reveal :)
This is what the living room looked like when I saw the house:
Here's what it looked like once the previous owners had moved out:
Personally, I was beyond excited to live in a house that also has a family room so I could keep a TV out of the living room (televisions in living rooms have their points, but I hate them almost as much as I hate TVs in the bedroom).
And after trying unsuccessfully to convince several clients to paint one room or another in their home Palladian Blue from Benjamin Moore, it finally dawned on me that I could paint a room in my OWN house this amazing color:
I chose the living room. And I love it just as much as I knew I would. It's a pale blue-green that changes with the light. So beautiful.
Enough with the before, here's what it looks like now:
The couch, chair, and ottoman are from West Elm, and I have admired them for quite a while - I was slightly nervous about going with such a strong color but I'm SO glad I did as it keeps the room from being too neutral.
The elephant used as side tables were bought by my parents and it means a lot to have things that I remember from growing up in my home now.
The rug is another item I had been lusting after forever and after much Internet research I was able to find it for much less than I expected - yay!
The rocking chair is an antique, from the grandmother of my significant other, and I love love love it. Aside from the family sentimental value, I grew up with a rocking chair in our living room and having one here makes the room feel complete. It doesn't hurt that I love the dark wood, pale caning, and beautiful lines of the chair :)
The mirror over the couch was a Craig's List find (when you have five minutes and about five dollars to furnish an entire house, CL quickly becomes your BFF) and I was lucky to get it.
Those two beige chairs are from Joss and Main and were ridiculously cheap. I think I paid less than $300 for the pair. The table between them is from Craig's List and let me tell you THAT purchase was quite the experience and included an offer from the seller to be his girlfriend (I politely declined). The bookcases are two of the (very) few things I took from the old house - they were in my home office and fit here perfectly.
The wooden chest is also from Craig's List - it's in perfect condition, has wheels, and is perfect for storage. The chairs are antiques from One Kings Lane, and were not cheap. At all. But I loved them with a passion that would not die so I bought them anyway and I'm not sorry - they have ELEPHANTS!!! (Yes, I may have a small elephant obsession.)
The framed letters on the wall are also brought from the old house - they written by Woodrow Wilson (before he was president) to my grandfather and given to me by my father before he died. I don't have much from my grandparents on either side, so these letters mean a lot.
Here is a gratuitous close-up of the china Staffordshire dogs on the mantel, the dogs that everyone loves to hate. Everyone. It's like unanimous. Whatevs, haters! Their names are Hampshire and Windsor and if it seems like they are looking down on you, they are. Oh, they are!
And here? Here we have the bar cart for which I have longed and longed. The upside to getting divorced is that you can get the bar cart that you have wanted for ages. It's a little thing, I'll give you that, but sometimes it's the little things that get you through :)
Let me know what you think! Unless you like the Before pictures better, in which case keep your opinion to yourself #justkidding #giveittomestraight.