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Tag: living room decorating tips

Living Room Makeover {Reveal}

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color - emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue.  Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

I hope you are having a wonderful week.  I am in pure bliss at the moment.  Between the amazing 60 degree sunny days we’ve been having + finishing the living room, I am incredibly delighted.  plus my little guy is going to be turning 9 in a few days and that just makes my heart happy…

So yes, the living room makeover that I’ve been working on for the past 4 months is FINISHED and I am overly joyed to finally share details of the makeover + the big reveal!

The evolution of this space has been quite long + slow.  And I am perfectly content with that because we’ve gotten the chance to “live” in it to know what works + what doesn’t.

When we moved in to our home about 5 years ago, it started out like this…

welcome to our new home – ugh, ok not so pretty. 

before living room

We needed color right away, so we painted the fireplace wall a deep burnt orange hue, while the other walls were covered in a warm-beige, cardboard brown tone.  Furniture from our previous home went into place and we were happy to have a space for our family of 4 (at the time).

before living room

With some minor updates + layers, eventually the space started to feel like “us”…

before living room

That’s how our living room looked until this makeover started.

Over the years, I knew the furniture didn’t work “right” for the room, but because of the emotional connection/attachment to our beloved sofa + the lil’ budget we had, it stayed as is.

Then late last year we got the bug.  Even the Mister who hates change & is content with most any ole’ space, was thinking the room needed some new life.  And it all started with the TV…

Here’s a quick storyline: The Mister wanted a larger flatscreen, which the TV cabinet wouldn’t be large enough for.  That got the ball rolling to get rid of the oversized TV cabinet [you can see what it looks like in this post].

Once the cabinet was gone, the sofa followed along with it, and rearranging the furniture so the TV would no longer be opposite of the windows because of the sun glare made the most sense.  it was near impossible to watch tv during the day because of the sun filtering in.  In the end, a friend bought most of the furniture and we were left with a big empty shell!

This was the new layout I created for the space…

Living Room Floor PlanMy creative juices started to flow and this was what I envisioned for the room. [click to read my original plan of action for this space]

collage and inspiration photos for our living room makeover

After some project fails & loss of momentum along the way, here is the result of our new living room…

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

That is the main view of the room from the kitchen & dining space.

To the right is a desk nook where the kids do their homework & keep their art supplies.  I made some styling edits when I photographed the space, but typically there is rolling cart next to the desk that holds their coloring books, notebooks, and art supplies.

Last Fall a local photographer took family photos of us, which we get to treasure in window panes (that I found on the side of the road) turned photo frames.

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

Above the desk is a recent handmade sign creation that I shared about the other day.  No stencil or silhouette was used to create it, but instead I used chalk to “transfer” the letters.  It was a fairly easy process and the “chalk transfer” technique can ultimately be used for any design onto any hard surface.

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

Continuing around the room, I decided to put the TV stand + new flat screen TV (the element that sparked the redesign) in front of the window.

When I shared my original plan for this makeover, I got some comments about the TV location – “you’re putting the TV in front of the window?” – but honestly it really works in this room.  The windows are really large + there are skylights above that bring in lots of light.  The location of this space is also in the back of our home, so no one from the outside is looking in.  I questioned the placement at first too, but we are really enjoy seeing the outdoors (ie: many snowfalls) at the same time we watch TV.

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

The TV cabinet is from Ikea and to make it unique, I added similar knobs to the china cabinet (that I transformed last year) + ‘L’ brackets to make it like a campaign-style cabinet.

The window panels are the same as those previously in the room, but they too got spiced up with new fabric on the leading edge [the material is drop cloth and here is original the tutorial].  Layered behind the window panels are bamboo roman shades – same as they were before.  When I painted the mouldings wood to white a few years back, this window with the layered window treatments took on an entirely new life!

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

Isn’t that new chair fabulous?!  It’s new and it’s daring and I love it.  I’m going to share all the sources for the new room in another post, but I have to spill the beans.  This fabulous emerald chair (yes, it’s a true emerald green color) is from World Market and it’s really a great bang-for-the-buck.  At first, I had another chair in it’s place and it wasn’t dynamic enough.  I nervously ordered this chair unsure if it would be too bold for the room.  It arrived and there was no other green like it in the room.  I thought about it and lived with it for a few days and fell in love.  Now I feel it truly makes the room!

The new black focal wall is a show stopper.  Many people thought I was crazy when I said I was going to paint this huge wall black, but it really works.  The black is a soft, charcoal hue, so it’s not harsh.  The walls flanking the fireplace were always tricky to style and since we never have enough bookcases, we built these beauties – more on that in another post.

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

The shelves of these new bookcases hold lots of our books, magazines, and accessories + some of the kids toys.  This is a living room for our family of 5.  This is the #1 space we hang out in, so when designing the new layout, it HAD to be kid-friendly.  The older 2 kids have a lot of their toys in their rooms or in the basement, but some of their smaller things are now in baskets on the shelves and are easily accessible.

I have a few more stylish baskets in the living room that also hold the baby toys. I love baskets and when they’re pretty, it doesn’t matter what’s inside. [Here are more savvy storage solutions using baskets]

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

As you continue around the room, there is a second bookcase to match the other, which holds more books, family photo albums, CDs (yes, we still listen to CDs even though it seems archaic to some), and a large basket that houses a few comfy blankets.

As you make your way around the space, the sofa now sits opposite of the window and a blank canvas above was turned into a beautiful art wall with a bit of old and touches of new.

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

The new deep charcoal sofa is heavenly.  It’s beautiful against the light blue wall + picks up the tones of the black focal wall.  It was hard to see our other sofa go (but I still see it often because a good friend of mine is now enjoying it), but this new one really fits the room so much better.  We chose a sofa with a chaise on the end, which gives extra seating + a spot to put your feet up and lounge.

The rug really is the statement element in the room and that was the one piece that started the design.  I was drawn to it because it has so many colors from other rooms in our home.  This space now truly feels cohesive with the rest of the house!  The coffee table is another piece that I love.  It’s there, but at the same time, totally disappears, allowing the rug to “speak” it’s beauty.

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

Creating the art gallery wall was fun, but challenging.  This wall is almost 20′ of open canvas, so it definitely took some planning [read more about the planning + creating of the art wall] but the extra steps to get it right was worth the effort.

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

One of the issues with the old space was the lack of lighting.  We have a decorative ceiling fixture in this space, but it’s somewhat harsh on the eyes.  Personally, I like soft light from table lamps and floor lamps.

I didn’t want to go matchy-matchy on the sides of the sofa, so instead I chose to use a table lamp between the chair & sofa that sits on a side table and an arched floor lamp (which provides a lot of soft light) to the right of the sofa.  Now when the lights are turned on in the evening, the 2 fixtures provide the perfect ambiance.

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

It was very important to continue colors from other areas of the house into this new space.  Because our first floor is all open where each room flows from one to the next, bringing in elements to make it feel cohesive was the only way this room would work and feel like an extension of what’s been created elsewhere.

From this view, you can see how the china cabinet painted in a deep raspberry color is in the adjacent dining area.  It now all flows and feels like one.

Living Room Makeover with bold black + pops of color [emerald, raspberry, coral, and light blue] Design by Jenna Burger Design, www.jennaburger.com

And just so you know we are a real family who absolutely use this space.  Here’s my crazy clan of 3 in action…

From sunrise to sunset (and beyond) we are 100% enjoying this new living room space.  Even though there were a few ups and downs to creating this new haven in our home, we are overjoyed with how fresh it feels & how much it reflects our vibrant family!

I’m sure you are interested in knowing where I found all the awesome pieces for our new living room.  Next post will be details on all the sources.

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV

Another Monday here again!  I hope you had a great weekend.  It was fairly low key on my end, but as a family we enjoyed the beginning signs of Fall, with the brisk chill in the air, by taking a family bike ride + watching football.  I also got the opportunity to shop for some colorful mums to transition the front porch, as well as the mantel.  Both are still in progress, but are coming along.  I’m waiting for some small pumpkins & ghords to arrive at the local stores – upon asking, it seems like it might be another week or 2.

Onto today’s blog topic… The TV and what to do with the wall behind it.

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COM

I often get emails from readers asking design-related questions and most of them I return with a few short sentences in hopes to point them in the right direction.  If they need more help, we usually end up working together through my E-Design ProgramBUT, last week I received a question that I KNOW alot of homeowners struggle with, so I thought it would be best to put a blog post together to assist and inspire more than one reader.

This email is from Christina:

I was hoping you can direct me with a huge dilemma. We have a tv hanging on the wall in our family room. Which I can’t stand. I prefer an armoir or built in. Any how hubby wanted modern tv on wall so I compromised. I have no idea what to do with all the extra space on either side of the wall. My style I would say is old world, electic, traditional. Could you please offer suggestions. I’m also confused if both sides need the same exact item hanging on the wall. Could I do a decorative mirror on one side and a collage of artwork on the other. Do I hang distressed wooden panels on either side or tapestry…….help. This space kills me. I can’t stand the TV on the wall.its so cold. Thank you for any guidance you can offer.

Is this a topic you’ve often struggled with as well?   If so, I have some great ideas + solutions.

Most homeowners have flat screen TVs that are only inches deep (I’m excluded from this bunch – we still have a big ole’ cumbersome TV in the living room).  The minimal depth of these televisions allows for it to be functionally integrated without overwhelming the space.  If designed right, the artwork, pictures, paintings, and/or wall decor that surrounds the TV on the wall can become just as important, or more important, than the TV.  In turn, the TV ends up not being the dominant focal point of the room.  It still functions the same, but doesn’t overtake.

Let’s dive into some design solutions…

Gallery walls are in.  Gone are the days of 1 or 2 pictures on a huge wall.  The size and number of pictures on a wall should be proportional with the wall height and width.  The wall that is chosen for the TV is often the largest and/or longest in the space, so it should be filled.

One idea is to create an asymmetrical gallery wall, which is probably the easiest because there is no right or wrong.  It allows for growth and it allows to incorporate what is most meaningful for you.

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMThis TV gallery wall is surrounded by pictures and images in an array of sizes and frame finishes, which the eye is drawn to instead of the TV. via One Kings Lane

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMFramed by two windows, this TV gallery wall is a great solution for incorporating a TV into a living room space.  A mix of black and white artwork in black or white frames, are set behind the TV which is atop of a white dresser.  via Emily Clark

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMAnother idea for a TV wall is this eclectic asymmetrical composition that displays collected art and a vintage lamp along with the wall-mounted TV.  Incorporating an element larger than the TV steers the eye away from the “black-hole” and instead allows it to focus on the other elements – the lamp + artwork.

Another idea to take away – Because many of the other elements on the wall are black, your eye is tricked into not focusing on the TV. From the black lampshade to the black frames (some with black matting) to the black and white artwork + photos, so the TV actually looks like another piece of dimensional art. via The Hunted Interior

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMSlightly different than the above examples, this TV gallery wall is fairly symmetrical.  The wall-mounted TV is centered on the console and the pictures / artwork are “bookmatched” on each side (for the most part).  Other interesting elements, like the animal horns, surround the black and white frames and bring an added dimension to the wall.

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMCompletely different than the examples above, this TV is wall-mounted and is surrounded by perfectly symmetrical black and white pictures in black frames. It truly is an art gallery.  This wall created by Brooklyn Limestone shows all the steps of how she created it, plus a video on the progress.  It is definitely one to watch.

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMNo matter the size or configuration of a space, a TV can always (well 99% of time) somehow be incorporated.  In this narrow living room, the TV is set off to the side and sits on top of a dresser / console table.  It’s tucked out of the way, not making it the focal point.  Above is a picture that is even larger than the TV, which draws the eye up instead of at the black box. via La Dolce Vita

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMThe space around the TV doesn’t have to be only for pictures, but displaying other wall decor, like shutters, mirrors, or general wall art, is a great opportunity to create an interesting and unusual composition. via Southern Hospitality

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMGoing the minimal direction, the television in this space sits on top of a black lacquered console table and is pushed to one side allowing space for a large lamp and other accessories.  the wall space around is kept fairly bare, but interesting. via The Little Green Notebook

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMAgain, going back to a symmetrical look, the TV in this room sits on a smaller dresser and behind are two larger painting, then 2 more smaller styles on each side.  Two ghost chairs sit in front allowing for the art to speak”, yet still making an architectural statement. via Maple + Shade

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMLarger artwork behind the flat screen TV can make just as much, or even more, of an impact as smaller pictures / photos. via Apartment Therapy

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMAnother great TV gallery wall designed by Kristin of The Hunted Interior, showcases the television set off to the side with framed black and white photos around.  A large white lamp with black shade sits forward of the TV allowing it to be the focal point.

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COMAn asymmetrical gallery of black and white photos surround this TV  mounted on the wall.  To the sides sit two large floor lamps bringing height to the space. via HGTV

How to Create a TV Gallery Wall in your Home

So how can you incorporate these ideas into your own home?  It takes time, planning, and a layout.  Gallery walls don’t come together as easy or as quickly as hanging a simple picture on the wall.  BUT, a gallery wall can make a huge impact that will be far worth a single photo.

When the DIYer over at Tasty n’ Chic took on the endeavour of a new gallery wall, she created several plans and layouts before deciding on what worked best.  She used a computer program to create the ideal layout, but you can also use craft paper or wrapping paper (outline the sizes of your frames), or layout the frames on the floor (that’s what I do to get the exact plan).

Here is her drawing…

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COM

And then the result…

Ideas + Solutions for the Wall Behind the TV by @Jenna_Burger, WWW.JENNABURGER.COM

I hope I’ve provided my reader Christina + all of you with some interesting and creative ideas + inspiration for what to do behind the TV.   I still have my humungous TV behind doors, but have had ideas and thoughts of upgrading.

If you’re looking for useful ideas and layouts to create a photo gallery wall, check out this post {click here}

Useful Ideas and Layouts to Create a Photo Gallery Wall

Good Luck with your TV wall creation!