Saturday, October 1, 2011

From "oh..." to "oooh!"

"Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say, and not giving a damn." - Gore Vidal

As mentioned previously (in this post), we've recently been finishing our living room, which I have to say, has been a royal pain in the butt. However, it's done, which brings our total rooms completed up to three (main bathroom, dining room, and living room). Yay for that! So here we go...

In the beginning, there was a really depressing living room...

It had grungy, dented walls, matted carpet, and sad, sad plastic blinds. 

And of course you can't forget all of that dark wood (including the low-quality trim).

So we quickly decided to spakle (?), sand, and paint that sucker. 

This was during a time of great chaos in the house (don't forget to check out that low hallway entrance. Weird? I think yes. 

We...well, Stephen, ripped out the ceiling in the hallway, opening it up a lot. 

While I sanded and primed the living room. This picture just doesn't convey the excitement we had comparing the old paint to the primer. 

There were many late nights with generous friends helping us restore our sad, sad little house. 

We also got new windows, which made the house sturdier. I kid you not. It doesn't shake as much anymore.

James helped us pick out paint colors. And paint...and paint...and paint! (Imagine ballerinas painting)

It was exciting when we had the new wall color up and the ceilings painted a bright white. 

But this was when I started panicking because the house still looked dingy, and we were getting married and moving in in less than a week. A WEEK. 

Thank God the new carpet saved our butts. So I put up a Christmas tree (naturally) before we even had a working toilet. 

And our dining room table arrived...with no chairs. 

Nevermind the fact that we hadn't painted the trim around the windows, put up baseboards, trimmed out the large window, put in a closet door even...we had a table, a lamp, and a Christmas tree. Priorities, people.

After the wedding, we were excited to relax in our new home, complete with hand-me-down furniture. 

It was a happy time. 

We couldn't believe how great it was having our own house. Even one that the entire neighborhood could see into due to our lack of draperies. 

So we got on that...and our house stayed that way for a very long time. 

With the addition of a few things, like end tables, games... 

...and two awesome recliners (and homemade artwork - check that wall). 

So our living room was a cozy, mismatched, and crazy room for over a year. 

Until one day this summer, I looked down at a thrift store and saw THIS BABY: 

I'm obsessed with this console. 40 bucks to make our living room a
different, more grown up, room.
Then things got crazy. We added a ton of art in the form of picture frames and meaningful mementos to the entryway wall. (And awesome matching lamps - yay no more college ones! And ottomans)

And Stephen finally finished the hallway. That spot above the hallway may or may not have been primerless for over a year due to an oversight. Meh, no biggie. It's done now! 

And look at those pretty doors and that awesome trim. Stephen's a pro. 

Suddenly, one night while out on date night, we found the most perfect couches for a wonderful deal and BAM the living room suddenly went into overdrive. We moved the plaid couch (which was super uncomfortable) to the basement (which, as a side note, now looks like a used furniture store)...

All so Stephen could finish up the trim in the living room (yes, two years this room's had the original, paint-splattered trim. The reason it was paint-splattered is we thought we'd have time to do that before we even moved in...ha ha ha...good one). 

There was a lot of anticipation for the new couches. 

Except from poor Nonnie...she was very distraught and confused. 

Say one last goodbye to that sloppy trim. 

Okay, one more close up so you can see what we've been dealing with for two years. 

 Oh yeah, did I mention the windows STILL weren't trimmed out? They got covered up with the curtains and all of a sudden we just didn't care anymore. Typical, right?

 Oh, and Stephen painted the closet doors and the front door while waiting for the new couches to arrive. He's sort of the handyman superman.

And Ta Da!: 

Wanna see a before and after? Of course you do. 



Now we can (as Stephen put it) sit in our beautiful living room looking at our beautiful dining room. It's sort of fantastic. Seriously. I must be old to be this excited about a couch and a loveseat...but I mean, come on....check out those before and afters. It's incredible what my husband can do. And yes, he's for hire. (Shameless plug, I know). So there you have it, a majority of our living room pictures and a quarter of our excitement about having this room done (it just can't be expressed through a blog - you'd need to have been there for me to see the couches in the room for the first time...there may or may not have been jumping and squealing).

So, who wants to come over for cocktails in our new living room? 

Vanessa, Stephen, and Anya


  1. Love the changes! and Kiel and totally bought that coffee table and the matching end tables for our apt in college! If I had known I would have given the end tables to you somehow.... :)

  2. Haha - the coffee table is the one crappy thing left in the living room - it's a hand-me-down from Stephen's sister and it's so sad and worn out. Hopefully we can get rid of it asap!