What’s better than a client ready to take on bold design risks? Not much in this line of work! After abiding in this precious 1930 Craftsman Bungalow for 15 years, my client was primed and pumped for a solid change of pace—and a damn fine bold one, too.
Talk about dramatic; here’s the beautiful bungalow bones I had the utmost pleasure to start out with:
Mismatched paint colors and quirky furnishings dominated the space. Absent blinds; a defunct, hunky ceiling fan; missing radiator cover; and (I’ll probably take flak for this) a dated fireplace with its disproportionately-sized mantel weighed down this room’s potential.
After living in an unfinished, fleeting space (truth be told, the available furniture made for good and oft rearranging), my client was ready to start turning this 1200-square foot bungalow’s bones into a dream space.
Per the initial in-home design consult, the primary goal was to create a cozy lounge to relax in as well as entertain. To do so, knocking down the knee wall was crucial, which was surprisingly original to the design. The flooring gap was filled with a perpendicular plank—what I call an “artifact” of the home’s past.
My client has a propensity for saturated, earth and gem tones like greens, purples and, particularly, peacock blue. Painting all walls, all trim and ceiling in a powerful teal created a strong cohesion between the now open concept living and dining room.
I’d taken a liking to the rich, black raspberry-esque color in the foyer. Here, I followed suit with finishing all of the trim and ceiling in the same sumptuous hue. It brings such a warmth alongside a bold blue. The four-lite, flemish glass door added a much needed craftsman touch—lots of light, too!
With all of this dark sophistication, the fireplace was brightened up with a soft white, blending in the dentil-style mantel and transforming it into a statement piece.
An eclectic collector, my client’s affinity for art deco and mid-century design is what determined direction when it came to furnishings, with a prominence in proportion to maximize the form and function of each space.
Centralizing the living area around the fireplace and installing an accent wallpaper in the dining area connects yet defines each distinct space. A set of two wall-mounted bookcases featuring a smorgasbord of my client’s eclectic collections aids in that distinction as well.
In the living room, I found a vintage radiator cover to hide the exposed radiator (as it was meant to be!). This provided surface area and helped to shift the flow of the seating area much closer toward the fireplace.
PRO TIP: If you can get furniture off the wall, I strongly encourage you to do so!
You’d never know it, but this living room doubles as the TV room. How? What I believe is the latest gift from the design gods—a Frame TV. This magical television looks like a piece of artwork and has an almost invincible connection cord. While not inexpensive, it’s priced accordingly for its style and is an investment worth making into a design worthy home.
P.S. – The previous paragraph is not sponsored by Samsung in any way. But sheesh, I’ve sold this recommendation plenty of times—most especially in cases where it’s hung over a fireplace—so it probably should be. 😂
A bohemian area rug favorably tucks away an unliked hearth and a flat fire screen permits this without worry. A low-profile, tufted green velvet sofa shakes up the style and is complimented by two of the sexiest, channel-tufted swivel lounge chairs I’ve ever laid eyes on.
I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: there’s no such thing as too many light sources. A romantic candelabra; a six-orb arc chandelier; gold capiz semi-flushmount; and angular, milk shade plug-in wall sconces illuminate the space. Ambience is key all-day, babay.
PRO TIP: Plug-in light fixtures are an excellent budget-saving solution.
My client and I concur about finding the beauty in the old and repurposing it whenever possible. In the dining room, I had that opportunity with a mid-century, nine-drawer dresser. All it took was custommade glass and a mini bar to give this girl a glam-up.
All of that and, oooh girl, let’s take a close look at that wallpaper. The mesmerizing tropical pattern adds a polished touch of Hollywood Regency, seamlessly blending in and breaking up the bold blues that surround.
A classy set of six velvet dining chairs with brass pulls makes for intimate fine dining with friends. Classy, cool, and nothing short of cozy, indeed.
What’s your favorite part of this living and dining room makeover?
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