Update – check out the curtain debate solution here.
When you buy your first house, much of your furniture may be “acquired.” As in, when you catch wind someone you remotely know, or your parents know, might be, maybe, getting rid of some furniture – you’re all over it. Between Chris and I, we started with almost enough furniture for a one bedroom apartment. We’ve gradually added to each room and now have something in every room. Okay, most rooms are functional. And, I just cleaned up the junk room so it is now a room with an ottoman and a chest…and a drying rack.
This brings me to our living area. Some might call it a formal living room, but I would really like to take the “formal” out of ours. It is full of hand-me-downs and I’ve made it work for now. I’d like to take it up a notch and this is where I struggle. I want a more casual, but still polished vibe.
I acquired my favorite chairs from my childhood that my Dad lovingly held onto for 12 years after my grandmother passed away. I really wish he had also kept the crème velvet Chesterfield couch because it would be so cool. I’ll take the chairs though! They are a pair of blue and yellow stripe chairs that my grandparents upholstered themselves. They are a staple in every King Family Christmas memory and were one of a couple of things my 13-year-old self asked for when the time came to sell her house. You see, I LOVE these chairs! Exactly as they are. Such a sentimental thing and perfect given the era of our home. But, my stylish grandmother picked some fabric that I’m not really sure how to decorate with….
Here’s what I’m working with:
Couch – Dad’s childhood game room couch, then given to my parents in the 80’s, needing new fabric
Coffee table – Herndon a.k.a. expensive, Mom bought it when she was in a fight with Dad circa 1993, Dad clearly was excited to get rid of this one
Rug – Craigslist purchase, happens to have yellow and we happened to need a rug in here
Side tables – both from family, and free
TV table – my first DIY staining project, sooo wish I had kept its original color, Dad’s first anniversary present to Mom in 1981
something funny to note, Mom and Dad have been divorced for 22 years. Obviously, my parent’s have some issues getting rid of things! But, it benefited me!
I think the couch will be in the budget for some new fabric in 2016. I’m thinking something a little more neutral to give the chairs the spotlight. The rug can move to another room, but this room needs a rug. I really don’t want to buy more rugs this year. 2015 was the year of the rug in our house. The coffee table could be sold, but then I would need a replacement so I’m guessing it sticks around for a little while longer. This basically brings me to the topic you’ve all be waiting for – CURTAINS!…well and pillows.
Since the rest of the house seems to have a cool blue color story, I was thinking about doing some patterned curtains that go with the colors in the house. Am I totally crazy for doing pattern on pattern? My photoshopping skills are impeccable so you might need to squint a little (and Kelly, I’m sorry you need to pull it up on your phone since your employer isn’t cool and doesn’t show you my pictures at the office).
My initial finds were at West Elm. At a little over $21 or $34 a panel, these don’t have to be up for the next decade. I like that. But is it too much pattern? I checked out Ikea, Urban Outfitters, and Pottery Barn‘s curtains online, but nothing else fit the bill for a living area with a less formal vibe but still pulled together. I feel like a little whimsy is needed to go with the chairs!
I could do a crème/neutral linen-looking couch and the pull out the blue or even the yellow a bit with some pillows. I even found a pillow with both (too much?) I think I would be more likely to run with the blue for accents since the current rug has yellows, but if you just love the “horseradish” as the yellow is more formally known then that is cool too.
Ok so really, what do you think of some patterned curtains to play with my vintage striped chairs? Let me know in the comments below!