Jun 182013
 
The previous owner's family room design.  This was taken during the home inspection for our home.  Ignore me inspecting the homeowner's artwork.

The previous owner’s family room design. This was taken during the home inspection for our home. Ignore me inspecting the homeowner’s artwork.

When we moved into our home 10 years ago, we knew we would have to update and replace a lot of things. The family room carpeting was high on that list. The carpeting was tired by the time we moved in but you could tell that at one time, it has been a nice, multi-colored berber that camouflaged dirt and stood up well to the abuse it received in a high-traffic room that sat at the intersection between the garage and the outside.

The sorry state of the berber carpeting.

The sorry state of the berber carpeting.

The previous occupants of our home had a great decorating sense for the high-end country/farmhouse style. They mixed it in with some Colonial pieces and it worked and was cozy and bright and reflected their personalities. If you follow Sherry and John Petersik’s Young House Love blog, the “before” shots of their new home look strangely similar to our home and both houses must have been decorated with the same philosophy. I am not sure what to call this style, perhaps Virginia Country Colonial?

For us, however, this style was just not us. My husband prefers streamlined and modern. I like classical elegance. We both appreciated how the previous owners had pulled the house together though. Having such a high bar to start from makes it a bit intimidating to make any changes. We always fear that the changes we make will make our home worse rather than better.

When we first moved in to our empty home, we knew immediately that it would be more to our taste to reverse the paint scheme in the family room from dark trim and white walls to white trim and beige walls. We took down the wood blinds when we found they were blocking most of the light coming into the room. We also took down the navy blue floral valances that were covering an additional transom of windows.

All these changes brightened everything up and made the room look much larger. We didn’t really know what else to do with the room at that point. We moved in a couch and TV

Our first family room couch -- a very comfortable but dreadfully hard to clean sectional.

Our first family room couch — a very comfortable but dreadfully hard to clean sectional.

and we put up a Colonial American flag above the fireplace.

The Colonial flag was a find from Williamsburg.

The Colonial flag was a find from Williamsburg.

The room kind of sat that way for a while.

We held a birthday party for my daughter two years ago where we had to remove most of the furniture from this room and push the remaining furniture to the side. We ended up loving the space that this opened up and the room made sense for the first time as an exercise space.

The first time we cleared the room for a party.  The room let us know at that point that it needed less furniture in it.

The first time we cleared the room for a party. The room let us know at that point that it needed less furniture in it.

So, the room has sat largely empty for the last few years. My children love to run around in it. Last year, we finally started thinking about how to finish this room off properly and came up with a game plan.

A  minimalist use of the family room for Christmas.

A minimalist use of the family room for Christmas.

We are definitely slow as molasses with regard to home decorating. The Petersiks seem to know instantly what they want in their home, make a list and just go about checking it off. Another Virginia design blogger, Miss Mustard Seed is similarly efficient. Her strategy is to just keep tweaking a room until it finally reflects her vision. She has repainted her bedroom seven times in six years(!). Her current bedroom is amazing but wow what a lot of work to get it!

For us, we have to let the room sit for a bit as is and wait until the space “speaks” to us. As you can tell, sometimes this takes a while!

The first step was to get rid of the carpeting and that required a lot of thinking about flooring. Tomorrow, we’ll share the options we considered in this process.

 Posted by on June 18, 2013 General Tagged with: , ,

  One Response to “Our Christmas Present to Ourselves this Year: A New Family Room!”

  1. You are so creative and fantastic. What a wonderful energy level you have.

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