This is our charming living room. Well, I should say that this is the living room as we found it back in the summer of 2006. This is also a good first introduction to the 1970's decorating phenomenon that took this house by storm...paneling.
North facing wall - the windows and door will be replaced.
Upon doing so, we discovered the original brick fireplace, the original plaster walls (painted pea green to match the pea green carpet), and the remnants of an old roof leak that we were already aware of. We had to hire a professional chimney repairman to remove stove insert and to restore fireplace and chimney to working order. Thankfully, it was in good shape.
As you can see, we covered up the bookcases that were on either end of the fireplace. We did this because we wanted the fireplace to be the focal point of the room.
Also, note in the photo above that the ceiling is exposed lathe. The plaster was removed and replaced with drywall.
The bookcases are gone!
The local craftsman who built our kitchen cabinets, also helped us design and build our reproduction fireplace mantle. It took a great deal of restraint to not pull up the ugly green carpeting immediately but after six months of hard work, and with much more hard work ahead of us, we peeled some away to help keep us motivated.
This is our Christmas 2006 miracle. After giving ourselves a move-in goal date of Christmas, our months of hard work finally paid off. Moving into a house with twinkling lights, adorned mantle and a decorated tree ended up being a perfect first day in the house. And I mean that it was literally our first day sleeping in the house. By then, we had chalked up about five months of living in the small one room apartment over the barn, working day and night on the main house.
We enjoyed a few months living in the house before Phase II began (see above). The contractor we hired said that we could remain living in the house while they did the rest of the work but I realize now that there are many definitions of the word 'living.'
This is Christmas one year later and new windows have been put in and the rest of the remodel has been completed.Can you tell how relieved hubby is?
Left to do in living room: buy a fabulous new couch and chairs...more photos to come!
UPDATES: February 17,2009...Christmas of 2009
Our new couch and chairs (Rowe Furniture) arrived just before Christmas of 2009. As you can see, we decided to brighten up the room with lighter furniture giving it a crisp, fresh look.
Once we bought our new couch and chairs, the paint color we chose several years ago looked a bit dull. After trying out several swatches of different colors, we decided to go with white. We wanted the room to be as bright and crisp as possible (living in the Northwest, this is especially nice during the rainy months).
We also wanted the outside views to come in, and the furniture and art to be more of a statement than the color of the walls. So white it was...
I found a mirror that was a bit more proportionate to the mirror we had over the mantle before. I also found a great deal on some old brass sconces that add nice extra detail.
The brick fireplace was painted because it was not original to the house. We believe the blond bricks were installed (probably due to repair) sometime in the 70's. I really love the look of stone and brick so perhaps one day, we'll reface it with something that would be more period appropriate.
As in previous years, it was nice to celebrate Christmas with our 'new' room. We had waited a long time (due to the expense of the remodel), to buy new furniture so it was a great addition to the Christmas festivities.
Here are more pictures of Christmas 2009.
Below, are pictures of the living room after Christmas.