Need Help With Living Room: Colors, Windows and Furniture Arrangement
Ruth
March 27, 2014 in Design Dilemma
I have a living room that is 17L x 13W. Ceilings are 17 feet high and windows are 73Wx67L. Brazilian Cherry hardwood floors. Imagine this room empty - We want to replace furniture, carpet and drapes. I need help on ideas for the drapes. The sun beats in those windows all day and we have no A/C so we keep the shades downs all summer. We need help with furniture and placement in the room. Should we move the TV and put it against the staircase? Color of the room, should we change it from the Gold color? This room is used every day it is our main place for family to watch TV. We want furniture that is comfortable and we have two children so it needs to be functional. I really need better ideas for those windows and furniture placement if color can't be decided. The kitchen is attached to this room, we have an open floor plan. Thank you so much!!
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
What does the wall opposite the fireplace look like? If it's a plain wall, I'd place the TV there, with a 7' sofa facing the TV. The l would move the loveseat to a different room and have two chairs by the fire.

Now that you've moved the TV and have the sofa facing the TV, you could add 2 chairs on one side of the sofa, leaving the other side free for traffic.

Wood blinds work well for sun control. You could leave the 3 drapery panels that are on the big windows, tho I would remove the hold backs and let the panels hang loose. I would change the square pieces that are hung on the diagonal above the windows, setting them straight.

You will need a coffee table in front of your sofa.
March 27, 2014 at 8:18AM        Thanked by Ruth
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lissawaxler
I also have a wall of windows, and we live in Houston. Keeping it dark all summer is survival. I don't like it though. I always get depressed and one summer I got walking pneumonia from a pack of vitamin D. I'm really interested to hear the solutions for this.
My "ghetto" solution I'm trying out this year is bubblewrap on the outside of the windows. But of course it's horrible and tacky!
I think the window blinds that create air pockets have the same philosophy. You know- those ones whose cross-section looks like a honeycomb.
March 27, 2014 at 10:18AM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Carolyn, Thank you for your suggestions. To answer your question, there is NO wall opposite the fireplace. That opens into the kitchen and there is a granite counter top with stools. The first photo you can catch a piece of the counter top. People walk in from the kitchen and people walk in from the front door which is on the side of the staircase (photo has the loveseat). I think color will have a lot to do with how my room lays out and I'm really wanting to change those drapes and the furniture. The room needs a new look and painting, so I'm open to color suggestions.
March 27, 2014 at 1:33PM     
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Ruth
I would also like to have a shag area carpet that is a soft ivory-beige tone.
March 27, 2014 at 1:36PM   
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
Aha, a new day is dawning at your house with new paint and new furniture! So what colors do you like? Any ideas? I suggest you look at Sherwin-Williams Accessible Beige for your walls, tho perhaps I should first ask what is the white paint color that you have on your trim. Accessible Beige is a taupe which leans toward gray. I also like SW Silver Strand, a light gray/blue/green color. My paint decks have thousands of colors so just let us know if you have a particular color desire.

You mentioned perhaps putting the TV on the staircase wall. Is there really space there?
How low would the bottom of the TV be? I'd love to see a better photo of that wall. Otherwise, the TV will stay where it is, tho I'd like to see it lowered. The pictures on the mantel need to go elsewhere. Have you ever tried the sofa in the middle of the room facing the TV? Did you like the look? How long is your current sofa?

Do you have a privacy treatment on your windows in addition to the drapery panels?
March 27, 2014 at 2:22PM   
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stellargirl
How fun! Ok, here are my thoughts...

[ I N S P I R A T I O N ]
I always tell my clients to find an inspiration piece before they start a great project like this! Maybe it's an accent chair that you love, artwork, area rug... It's something to get you started.

If your budget allows, I would change the paint color. If you don't love the lack o' light in the summer, I'd lighten up the room. The gold is pretty heavy. I'd just choose a neutral you love, or one that works in the realm of your "inspiration piece".

[ F U R N I T U R E A R R A N G M E N T ]
I'd try angling the couch on the big window if you have room. Pull the right arm of the couch (right arm when sitting on it) toward your stairway so that it faces the fireplace and the bottom of the stairs. You may have to play with it a bit to find an angle that works.

I'd place an accent chair to the left of the fireplace, on the same angle as the couch.
I'd also angle another chair in front of the stairwell, on the same angle.

I'd place a large area rug on the floor, on the same angle as the new furniture setup... large enough that it brings all the pieces in.

You may want to add a small coffee table in front of the couch now.
Also consider a sofa table on the back of the couch so the people in the kitchen don't see just the back of a couch. Maybe even a tall tree or vase with sticks in the corner behind your couch to fill in that gap b/t your window and your couch.

I'd choose furniture that is small in scale. Angling pieces really opens up the room and makes it feel welcoming, but it takes up more space. Try playing with the pieces you have now to see if turning them on the angle will work.

I agree with Carolyn, on lowering the TV and removing the photos on the mangle.

[ W I N D O W T R E A T M E N T S ]
On the window treatments, what about wooden blinds? Then, I'd choose light colored curtains (so as to not weigh down the room), maybe a natural, neutral linen fabric? I'm sure you could find a heavy linen.

On the big window wall, I'd run the rods all across the window so you have the option to close them to help keep out the heat.

Regarding the curtains flanking the fireplace, I'd raise those rods up to the same height as the other rods (the rods on the big window wall), and swoop them to the outside, as you have already. That will bring your eyes all the way up so as to make the most of those gorgeous 17' ceilings!


Your home is lovely! I hope you post pics of the finished project!

Kim Scowden
Stellar Staging & Design
www.StellarStagingAndDesignOnline.com
March 27, 2014 at 9:22PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Jeffrey Hicks
You may want to treat one wall with all drapery in order to provide better furniture placement. Check out Artee Fabrics and Home.
March 29, 2014 at 8:06AM      Thanked by Ruth
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jolieblue
Your room is lovely with tons of potential. Color plays a huge part in moods and how a room feels. Since you need to cut down on the heat and light here, a cooler color on the walls would help you. Keep the tone light so it won't feel like a cave when the drapes are closed. If you want a neutral, a light gray or a cool toned taupe would work. If you like blue-greens, Sherwin Williams has a stunning color called Sea Salt you should view. It's a pale blue-gray-green that's absolutely gorgeous and would bring a fresh feeling like a cool breeze to the room.

I think it would be nice to put the tv on the stair wall, on a low console. This would open up the far end of the room for two cozy chairs flanking the fireplace. Your new couch could stay on the wall beneath the windows. I would place a large, stunning painting on the wall above the fireplace, and move your lovely family photos to the staircase above the new tv location.

Good luck with your project, post some pictures of your progress.
March 29, 2014 at 12:22PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
I agree with jolieblue's suggestions and find her SW Sea Salt to be similar to the SW Silver Strand that I suggested earlier.
March 29, 2014 at 5:46PM        Thanked by Ruth
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groveraxle
Simplify. Edit. Cooler colors. Here is SW Sea Salt.
March 29, 2014 at 7:20PM     
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sbrustein
I really like the furniture, but don't understand the sofa placement if this is a TV watching room. If this room gets so warm I'm the summer that it requires keeping the blinds closed all the time , why don't you re use the furniture and spend money on a Hitachi - type AC unit? They work well, I am told by those who have them.
I would lighten the walls and move the larger sofa to face the fireplace. Do you mind seeing the back of the sofa from the kitchen? You could put a sofa table behind it.
March 29, 2014 at 11:44PM      Thanked by Ruth
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melbourne1944
This looks like a very difficult room because it has many functions, including being a traffic way. I would simplify and go for a Greek Island look...everything slightly off white including stair case, new wood but single narrow shutters so you can mix and match open spaces. And the TV? OMG not above the fireplace and pics and diamond decorations need to go as well. Then purchase one large painting to go above the fireplace or a huge mirror.
Leave the furniture alone until you see how it looks in white room. I suspect it will look good.
And the TV? OMG again. Movable white console? Ceiling projection onto pull down screen.
Anywhere really away from the fireplace.
March 30, 2014 at 1:53AM        Thanked by Ruth
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patricia sarnataro
Hi,
This room has a lot of potential and great windows! First, do you like color or neutrals?
Even painted white would be great. I would get rid of the couch by the stairs and get a modern sectional , and yes move the tv. Could go mounted on the stair wall if you have the room. Than I would suggest solar shades.
March 30, 2014 at 2:51AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Luci Haerle
Hello
I would go for interior wood shutters, which are great for blocking out the sun, yet you can enjoy natural light . The place for the TV over the fireplace is good, the TV has to be placed much lower though. to be able to place the TV lower, I would suggest to remove the wood framing around the fireplace and just leave the marble framing. It will give the fireplace an instantly neater and more sophisticated look. With regards to wall colour, if you have white indoor shutters, a fresh green colour (timson green by Benajmin Moore for example) would look great, combined with a chocolate brown and white (either stripes or patterns) upholstery fabric (take the hue from the frieplace marble frame). Good luck.
March 30, 2014 at 3:47AM      Thanked by Ruth
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judygilpin
I would take down all drapery panels and get white Plantation shutters. This way you can tilt them to control the sunlight. They are expensive, but well worth it. We have them in every room of our home in Arizona where, believe me, sun shining into the house is a big problem.

It doesn't look like the TV would fit on the staircase wall....have you measured? And you probably don't have another bare wall opposite the fireplace, as somebody else suggested to place it, so leave it where it is. I'd remove the pictures you have on the mantel, as they are distracting. How about an L shaped sofa with a large ottoman and two chairs, one flanking each side of the fireplace. Since the room is so long, you could place a small desk w/ chair behind the sofa back with a lamp for a source of lighting.

Before you do anything, draw out your room on drafting paper. Cut out shapes and sizes of furniture to scale and move them around to see how everything works before buying any furniture. It's easier to move small paper pieces around than return furniture.
March 30, 2014 at 4:38AM        Thanked by Ruth
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marshall
We recently put a solar covering on the inside of a bow window on the south side of our kitchen as well as all of the windows on the west side of our house. The kitchen was a recent addition to our house and we installed tinted windows but we still received a lot of sun and heat from the outside. We had a glass company come put on a solar film on the inside of the windows and it helps immensely with the amount of heat and sun that is let into the room. We are in a rural area and it was available so I am sure that it is available in other areas as well. You can stand in front of the window and there is no glare and there is no heat coming in. It makes the room a little darker but it is not really noticeable from the inside. It is something you just get used to. However, sometimes I go outside thinking it is getting late and that the sun is about to go down and surprisingly, it is still pretty bright out. As of yet, we have not put up any window treatments. I would highly recommend that you look into this for your wall of windows. It would also help with the fading of your furniture, curtains, etc., and with the glare of the sun on the placement of your television.
March 30, 2014 at 8:03AM        Thanked by Ruth
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jolieblue
I personally would not like a sofa placed across the room, as it would block your traffic walking through the room. Also it would put the people sitting on the sofa with their backs to the people in kitchen. Not very conducive to conversation and flow.

The plantation shutters are a great option if they are within your budget. I would still place a soft neutral lightweight canvas or linen drape between the windows, placed high on the wall. They would serve to soften the look of all the wood.

I also agree that simplification is needed here. Many of the photos in frames could be moved to albums, leaving just a few on display. Change or paint the frames of the remaining ones in a light color such as silver or white to lighten the look.
March 30, 2014 at 8:25AM      Thanked by Ruth
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jolieblue
Regarding the sofa placement, I would leave it on the window wall as I said previously. But perhaps you have room between the sofa and your kitchen for a low-backed swivel chair? This chair could face the fireplace, the tv or the kitchen, as desired.

Swivel chairs are a lifesaver in open floor plans, especially a narrow one like this. Low back is key, as you don't want to block the sight line from the kitchen to the fireplace, at least I wouldn't.
March 30, 2014 at 8:29AM      Thanked by Ruth
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Robin Lechner Designs
For a contemporary look, use solar shades (remote) for the clerestory windows with a self-valence so they would almost 'disappear' when not needed. Remove the drapes between the windows. Use the same solar shades that can be raised when not needed. There are some great patterns and colors available. Just don't get shades that strongly contrast your wall color. With solar shades, you can see out, but the sun and no one can see in! (first photo shows shades drapes, but don't use drapes in between windows)

Get tone on tone stripe or monochromatic panels that match the wall color for windows flanking the fireplace with the fan window. Hang the drapes from above the fan windows to just brushing the floor. Inverted pleats would give the lightest feel.

Hang the TV over the mantle, and place one of the sofas opposite the fireplace. Place a console table behind the sofa to separate the entertainment space from your kitchen area. Get comfortable arm chairs (small scale) to flank the fireplace (you might have room for 4 - two on each side) so you'll have plenty of seating.

Don't forget lighting! Place a lamp on the console table; place a small table between each pair of arm chairs with a table lamp. Get a pair of great torchieres (second photo - antiques would be great!) to place in front of the fan windows flanking the fireplace.
March 30, 2014 at 11:05AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Pacific Coast Drapery Manufacturing
Interesting comments on your windows. First off shutters or wood blinds would work fine if you don't have a view or in the case of wood blinds are only interested in tilting them as they do not lift easily especially on the big window and have a large stack.

A Hunter Douglas Silhouette is much more versatile for a treatment like this however they are one of the more expensive shades. Their motorization works well for under $500 per shade retail and you could treat the upper window as well.

One way to cut light, preserve view and minimize the stack at a good price would be a solar shade installed on the window with either a valance or a cassette. This works like sunglasses for your window. A little sterile but a functional, low cost approach to managing the light and heat.

Regarding the drapes I hate cutting the window in two like was done on your small arched windows. There really isn't a way to address that except to remake them with new fabric or band in fabric on the existing treatment. Not easy or inexpensive. However if you did you could just use them for light control with the existing hardware etc. Purchasing the same fabric or a complementary color and moving the rod up will be a lot cheaper than an arched shutter or a new blind. Two widths of fabric would easily stack off the side of that window and cover it when the sun is too hot.
March 30, 2014 at 11:12AM        Thanked by Ruth
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roserunner48
I am not a decorator but here goes. I agree with melbourne1944 in that it needs simplification. Because the room is long and narrow and right now the eye is drawn up/down/up/down all around the room, something balanced, light and serene would be the goal.

I would choose a nice light color you could live with. A cool color would be nice if the room is always bright and would be a good compliment with your floors (beautiful by the way) and also with your countertops in the kitchen. A nice super light gray (my preference) would go nicely with the cream area rug you want. I would keep any furniture neutral (white or cream might be nice) and add color interest with pillows, drapes and other accessories. (I would bring some color and pattern in with a soft area rug to pull the colors for the drapes and pillows. However, if you have your heart set on a cream rug, you could add pattern and color with the drapes and pillows and leave the rug solid.

Because of the current up/down effect, I would put one long curtain rod on the window wall and raise the rods on the windows adjoining the fireplace to match the height of the window wall rods; this would give the eye one seamless line of sight . Definitely have the curtains span that window wall so you can close them to block the sun (or, if you can afford plantation shutters, they look great and would certainly solve the sun problem.

Streamline the mantel and put the pictures in another spot (lighten frames and go up stair wall with them).

In my opinion, the dark/heavy cabinet at the base of the staircase together with the dark fireplace surround makes the room unbalanced and heavy on that end. I would get rid of that cabinet in favor of a) an open glass shelved bookcase for your pictures (something similar to the vittsjo from Ikea painted gold or silver or b) a small table (i.e., a demilune table or drop-leaf occasional) and hang the pictures wrapped around the corner to match those on the stair wall (I'd continue all the way up the stairs for continuity) or, c) just paint the cabinet the same white as your other woodwork to lighten that end of the room.

Also, I would paint the stair risers white; leave the railing wood. I might also paint the fireplace surround, but that's always a matter of personal choice and I think with the rest of the changes that's not a necessity.

I hope you will share your decisions with us and happy renovating!
March 30, 2014 at 11:18AM        Thanked by Ruth
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duffy2009
I'm not much good at advising moving the furniture but if you do only 1 thing - remove that piece that runs across your windows! It's a nice room but complicated to arrange. Another comment is to please don't put the t.v. on the fireplace. I would paint the room - white or gray have always been my preferred colors. Everything needs to be lightened up. Have fun with it & good luck on the outcome.
March 30, 2014 at 12:10PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Uppercase Living Heather Ganssle Ind Demonstrator
I think this would look great above your pictures
You can order it in a variety of colors here: http://heatherswiers.uppercaseliving.net/DesignItems.m?CategoryId=338&DesignId=2883&ItemId=&Keyword=Together&CurrentPage=1
March 30, 2014 at 12:28PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
WOW, what great ideas everyone has suggested. THANK YOU SO MUCH!
Please note: the furniture in the room is not staying (looking for ideas just need to find the right size and color for the room) The cabinet at the end of the stairs is a built in unit that was very costly and we can't move it - it has been stained to match the fireplace and staircase so that would involve work for change. The kitchen opens right into the living room, so putting a couch facing the fireplace doesn't allow for an open floor plan. There is only 13 feet from wall to wall entering the living room so if I get a sectional that turns it really can't be more than 60 and 70 inches is pushing it into the walk area. I'd have to push down any chair that would go on the staircase wall down towards the fireplace. Lots of sectionals are over 100 inches.

The colors suggested are beautiful and I'll look more into that.
I love the idea of taking our photos down and putting them into books and just keep a few changing the frames.

Our drapes were custom made and I do not want to go through that expense again. They are approx. 116 inches long. So if I can purchase on line, that would be great. I love the idea of solar shades. HOW can I balance out those 4 large window? Is there anyway? Or do I just focus on the two below and the ones around the fireplace? Or just do solar shades (color?) Then a pattern or neutral for around the fireplace?

Other problem is when I paint, this carries all upstairs and into the foyer, I'll post photos. Its a lot of wall color. Wondering if I can break it up and change color somewhere in between.

And if we do take the TV and put it against the fireplace we thought of a long unit it would sit on low to the floor. The wall measures: Approx. 9 1/2 feet long

This is exciting, please keep all the ideas coming.
March 30, 2014 at 1:18PM   
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Ruth
PLEASE excuse the mess in our home we are making closet improvements upstairs (as you see cardboard). But these photos will give you the all around view from our living room so you can have a better idea of the flow from the kitchen and foyer. The kitchen wall color is SW Browse Brown and we used SW Torchlight and Gold Coast for living room.. This week I can take down the drapes and photos if need be and send those photos.
March 30, 2014 at 1:37PM   
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Ruth
Please note as well: I need to see our backyard, we have a pool that I can see from my windows corner left of the fireplace. So I love the idea of the solar shades that has been suggested. The wood blinds or plantation shutters are great ideas as well. I just like the idea of those solar shades because I can have them drawn and still see outside. Just need a color idea or pattern any suggestions?
March 30, 2014 at 1:43PM   
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
With 13' of space across the room, I would leave a 3' traffic path on the stairway side of the room. Then I would place a 7' sofa crosswise in the middle of the 13' space, facing the fireplace and TV. That will leave you with the last 3' of space next to the windows for a couple of comfy chairs.

There would be a sofa table behind the sofa. The reason to do this is that it will make the room seem wider. Placing everything lengthwise in the room just emphasizes that narrowness.

I will need to know how much space is left between the sofa table and the kitchen in order to suggest an arrangement there.
March 30, 2014 at 2:14PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Pacific Coast Drapery Manufacturing
The easy way to do the shades is inside mount them underneath your draperies. The only part that would not be easily covered is the arch. You might look at the Phifer Sheerweave 5000 series that has a woven wood effect in a solar shade.
http://www.phifer.com/suncontrol/interior/product/28/5000

If you were in Southern California it would be no problem to handle. Contact the designer who did your custom drapes they should be able to source this from their workroom or on their own. Darker shades are easier to see through, lighter reflect the light better. You could of course match your molding color to oyster or bone in one of the other fabrics.
March 30, 2014 at 2:46PM      Thanked by Ruth
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judygilpin
I agree with Carolyn Albert-Kincl. I suggested a similar lay out with a small scale L shaped sofa facing the fireplace with a desk, not a sofa table, behind it....but both would work. The arrangement now makes the room look longer and narrower....like a bowling alley.

Ruth, you mentioned that this arrangement would cut off the open floor plan to your kitchen. After seeing the additional photos you posted, you don't really have an "open floor plan" you just see part of the kitchen. Try this by just moving your smaller sofa/loveseat in the way Carolyn and I suggested. I'm also an interior designer and know this arrangement would make your room much more comfortable and attractive.
March 30, 2014 at 2:54PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
I would be tempted to treat those windows that flank the fireplace differently from the others. I would select shutters with a half arch for each of those two. Make sure the louvers are all horizontal, not fan shaped.
March 30, 2014 at 2:57PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Carolyn, in your floor plan - would I put any furniture against the stairs? What do you think about the tv going there on a low stand instead of having it over the fireplace? My husbands thoughts were to put a sectional against the windows facing the stairs and put the TV there. Over the fireplace place a large mirror? Thank you for all of your suggestions and ideas.
March 30, 2014 at 7:14PM   
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Belinda Arbon


I don't think your sofas will work in this space. The tv is too high above the fireplace and believe it will work better in front of the stairwell. I agree the light colours will look great. Love the built in cabinetry and the colour of the timbers
March 30, 2014 at 7:20PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
My plan has an empty pathway beside the stairs, no furniture. Early on I asked for a measurement of what size TV you could place on the stairway wall, as did someone else. I think we both believed there was insufficient space for a TV there. So I wish you would assure us that a good sized TV would fit there.

If you do at some time remove the TV from above the fireplace, a large painting would be preferable to a mirror. There would not be much of interest for a mirror to reflect at that height while a painting could offer color and interest.

I am eager to see you try a new furniture arrangement. If there is actually enough space for the TV on the stairway wall, why not move the furniture there and give it a try. You could tape paper to the wall the size of the TV.
March 30, 2014 at 7:32PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Carolyn, I will arrange the furniture (pretend TV) Our TV is a 60 inch!
March 30, 2014 at 7:37PM   
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
Bravo, Ruth! I suggest you start with the paper TV to make sure it will fit.
March 30, 2014 at 7:41PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Denise Marchand
Hi Ruth! Well, you get the prize for the most difficult room to design! There is so much going on that there isn't a place for visual "rest".

1) Let's start with the color of the walls. Because it is so sunny, the room should be a soothing, cool color, in the blue or green family. If you show me a pic of the window fabric up close, I will be able to suggest something. Treat the fireplace wall only with a medium to dark taupe from edge to edge including up to the cabinet at the bottom of the stairs. A nice huge painting (not a mirror you already have the length) over the fireplace would look fab.

2) Window treatments: Two story windows should read as two story. Purchase more fabric and have it go from the top upper windows to the floor to create simplicity. Solar shades are my choice also, and you can get them light sensitive so that they automatically go up and down according to the sun. Treat the windows on the sides of the fireplace differently with shutters the same color as the fireplace mantle. Again, this will clean up all the lines.

3) This is such a beautiful room, it should be used to the hilt! A nice huge sectional with durable fabric will fit in fine. No rolled arms on the sofa, just very simple, and lots of pillows. The tv is in front of the window. I know most designers would not think of doing this, but it drives me crazy when the outdoor light hits the tv screen: can't see it. And I would not want to be looking at all that staircase, front door and kitchen, when relaxing. Since you said you have a beautiful backyard, take advantage of it. There is a reading corner with a lounge chair and ottoman and a game table in front of the fireplace. These are all low pieces (not towers) so the room will still feel open. I like the pic Belinda Arbon posted for the color of the sofa and a darkish area rug.

Here are some pics and a floor plan. Best wishes.
March 31, 2014 at 1:01AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Denise Marchand
More pics for inspiration
March 31, 2014 at 1:03AM   
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Denise Marchand
Think of using a color for the tv stand to get away from the wood. That tv stand/cabinet is also a perfect place for the kids toys, games and videos. Another reason I don't like the tv on the staircase wall is that I feel it will looked forced. That wall is a perfect place for blackboard paint and a cork ledge (you can find it at the Container Store) for the kids to hang art work and notes.
March 31, 2014 at 1:11AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Denise Marchand
You can find the cork strip at Staples: Quartet 48" Cork Message Bar with Aluminum Frame for $20.99 : it's so neat and keeps the art in one place. The chalkboard paint doesn't have to be the entire wall, it can be 30" from the ground with a chair rail molding, Just an idea.
March 31, 2014 at 1:38AM      Thanked by Ruth
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cinderellaslipper
To give an airy feel which will seem 'Degrees' cooler than the current claustrophobic colour schems, I would choose a Ralph Lauren inspired Hamptons, beach house look, using white,denim blue and turquoise blue, use cotton stripes for drapes and pillows, and white curtain poles, repositioned in one large one the same height as the hoop windows..a pale grey on the fireplace, and a cotton rug, also put the big sofa to face the telly with a lamp table behind it, and the small sofa between the windows, with a large potted palm, as a flourish by the front door...
March 31, 2014 at 4:51AM      Thanked by Ruth
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judygilpin
Denise Marchand, Your floor plan looks good on paper, BUT, why would anyone place a 60" TV in front of large window ? They have a pool outside and nothing would be less attractive than a big black object being seen through the window when outside. Also, Ruth mentioned that the sun shines in through those windows. How do you watch TV looking straight into that....only after dark?

Also, why clutter up the area in front of the fireplace with a game table? I don't care if it's a "low" object, it will still hide the fireplace and basically deem it worthless. It's a pretty fireplace, why hide it?
March 31, 2014 at 5:14AM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Thank you all for the great ideas - keep them coming! I'm going to play around with movement of the furniture and some test samples of paint color and send more images! The window treatments have been unhappiness since we got them. It took several designers to give ideas and we went with what we have, which I always felt wasn't a complement to the room - but we've been living with it for 7 yrs. All designers suggested the curtains low to keep the eye attention in the room, rather than feeling like you were in a large space. I want simple and balanced with a tasteful display. This is why the entire room is going to be made over. Love the photos for ideas. Does anyone like this furniture for room? Just a few we saw in the store and wondered if it would work.
March 31, 2014 at 10:43AM   
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Ruth
my husband loves that oversized chair and that sectional might be short enough on the one end for the "L" shape if we went that route along the window side. Obviously would not go with those pillows
March 31, 2014 at 10:45AM     
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
Here's a drawing of a 13 x 1`7' room with the furniture arranged about as I described above.
In drawing it I decided that you really need an end table instead of a sofa table, but then I added a small table behind the sofa for a second lamp. Alternately you could use a floor lamp in that location. This arrangement calls for the TV remaining over the FP. Have you measured yet to see if a 60" TV would fit on the staircase wall? It sure looks doubtful to me.
March 31, 2014 at 11:09AM        Thanked by Ruth
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jolieblue
I like the sofa with the chaise on each end shown in Belinda Arbon's comment. It would give you a comfy relaxing place on each end without taking up as much room as a typical sectional would. Also it wouldn't put anyone sitting with their back to the kitchen. Alternately, you could use one with a chaise just on one end (near the kitchen), leaving you with room for another chair on the fireplace wall.

In your pictures I don't see an ideal spot for you to change wall colors. I think painting the entire area in a unifying light color would be best in the long run. If you are looking for contrast, perhaps a coordinating color could be used in the kitchen?

Overall I think the goal would be to pare down, simplify and lighten up the look. A cool, light color on the walls, simplified window treatments that unify the windows and fewer dark accessories which stop your eye as it travels around the room. I would select a solid color fabric for the curtains which isn't too far from the chosen wall color, which would fall softly straight down, giving a calming effect to the window wall. Then your eyes could move across the window wall without the distraction of so many separate distractions.
March 31, 2014 at 11:11AM      Thanked by Ruth
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jolieblue
Or maybe the distraction of so many separate items. Or so many separate distractions? Lol. I think I may have a few too many of those going on here at the moment...
March 31, 2014 at 11:15AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
I think that the sectional with the double chaises might work well for TV viewing if that's all that the room is used for. But line a group of adults up in a straight row on that sectional and they'll have a hard time talking to each other. Then hand them each a glass of wine and a plate of appetizers and they may also have a hard time dealing with those items.
March 31, 2014 at 11:36AM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Carolyn,
54 1/2 inches the TV measures. The staircase wall right below the last photos measures 58 1/2 inches and that is only wall, not the staircase. It's narrows as you go up and gets wider as you go down. I have a heat vent along that wall, as I do along the window wall as well. So furniture can't butt close to the wall or the heat all goes into it.
March 31, 2014 at 12:40PM   
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Old English Fireplace Benches
For the end wall fireplace consider an Old English Fireplace Bench a.k.a. 'Club Fender'. It'll add seating (there is no room for chairs) and create a cozy conversation area of its own. Chose a leather to complemenent the overall decor. www.clubfenders.us
March 31, 2014 at 12:46PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
The living room is mostly the 4 of us. We love to watch movies with the kids so my goal is to try to keep us close and not separated on one side of the room. I get stuck on the loveseat alone and my husband gets the couch with the boys. When I entertain, most people stay in the kitchen and our dining room which join (you can't see the dining room in any of my photos, but it connects to the kitchen) It's not often we have a ton of people at our house where we need comfort, so I'm not too worried about it being functional for large groups. With out pool this year, we will worry about functional space outside. Thank you again for all your comments, I'm real excited to make these changes.
March 31, 2014 at 12:46PM   
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jolieblue
Given the function of the room for your family, my choice for the sofa would be the most comfortable and accommodating one possible, facing the staircase wall which will have the tv on it! One with chaises on each end or built in recliners on each end. Sofas can be custom designed these days to meet your requirements. Check the Lazyboy website for some of their options.
Get one that calls you out of the kitchen to come jump in with the whole family and snuggle up. In a supremely soft microfiber fabric that holds up to kids and popcorn. And perhaps a long ottoman centered in front of it for extra comfort, which can hold a tray for drinks.
If you've already decided to change over to cool colors on the walls and drapes, simplify the accessories and lighten up the frames.......I would let comfort and function dictate the rest of the design. If you get a giant family sofa with chaises or recliners and ottomans you'll have the seating covered. Then focus on making sure you have everything that can make your family comfortable during family times. Little tables to hold drinks or books within reach. Lamps comfortably accessible (use floor ones if there isn't table space).

Most importantly, make sure every single change is something you absolutely love! If you don't love it, don't let it in! That means love to look at it and love to touch it and love to see your kids sit on it or touch it too.
March 31, 2014 at 1:55PM        Thanked by Ruth
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judygilpin
I'm signing off! Can't even deal with giant oversized sofas & recliners. Good Luck Ruth. Hope you love what you end up with.
March 31, 2014 at 2:01PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
Heat is not good for TVs. You should check with a TV expert before exposing your TV to the heat from a heat vent.
March 31, 2014 at 2:24PM        Thanked by Ruth
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jolieblue
I believe there are deflectors that you can install to direct the heat in the direction you want
March 31, 2014 at 2:29PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Denise Marchand
I had a feeling from Ruth's comments to discussions that this was a family room to cuddle up with the boys, not to have snazzy cocktail parties. The nice thing about furniture is that you can move it around.

Since there is a curtain in the center of the windows, I thought the tv would not be too intrusive and tvs are so thin it would definately not obstruct the view. Enjoy your backyard, not the staircase. I guess I am just used to designing NYC apartments and townhouses where space is at a premium and I am always thinking outside the box and tricking the eye. Design is form and function, a cliche, but the truth. Using furniture and space in unconventional and unexpected ways keeps the space current and not forced (like putting the tv on the staircase wall, as you can tell, I am against that).

A small game table will not "cover" the fireplace, especially since the focus of the room is not the fireplace. At least it becomes a fun functional area.

Please consider a sofa without rolled arms, as your space is at a premium in this room and the rolled arms take away valuable space, visually as well as in inches. I love the chevron fabric for the sofa. (please no microfiber or recliners) If you are sold on rolled arms, the one with your adorable guys has arms that are not too large. Believe it or not, a large sectional will again unify the room with all of the architectural elements in the room. Simplify the rest.

Take a look at this style sofa for inspiration: http://www.restorationhardware.com/catalog/category/products.jsp?link=BelgianSlopeArm&categoryId=cat80006
March 31, 2014 at 3:30PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Thank you Denise for understanding that I'm all about family time - sent a huge smile my way! I am loving all the ideas sent my way, really has me thinking about what will work for our family.
March 31, 2014 at 3:54PM     
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hebatalla1987
Don't change the color of this beautiful sunny room just add aqua blue color to some of your furniture to make a balance.
April 1, 2014 at 6:58AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Dar Eckert
Have you considered some outside solutions for the sun like a pergola between the sets of windows or trees etc?
April 1, 2014 at 7:36AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Dar Eckert
I love yellow but don't think it goes real well with the tan sofas. Hard to tell the color as they look gray in one photo and greenish in another. I would place the sofas in an L shape with the back of one sofa facing the dining area and the other floating in front of the stairs. You leave a walkway behind the sofa.

Then I would get a new rug, something that contrasts a little with the sofas. It could be a lighter or darker shade than the sofas or an alternate color.

Do you have film on the windows? The films help tremendously with heat and light transmission. I would also have a difficult time living in a house with all the blinds drawn shut.
April 1, 2014 at 8:02AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Very slow process. I haven't decided on color, but the sample on the wall by the fireplace is: SW-"Latte". It's hard for me to see the change from the yellow we have lived with for 10 years. I'm still searching for furniture and we are definitely either moving the TV (lower or against the stairs) haven't confirmed yet and it will make sense when we find our furniture. Still struggling with curtains. I really want to do Solar Shades, I just don't know what color. (Any Ideas?) I believe 5% will allow me to see outside. I removed the drapes we had on the window wall and around the fireplace - I'm still deciding on curtains by the fireplace. I have put up the ones in the photo so far. Nate Berkus Black/Natural Textured Weave. I have picked out an area rug and I know I need to get smaller side tables and get rid of the heavy marble ones shown. Please continue with suggestions for my windows and paint color. SW-Blonde was another color. I feel like I'm losing the warmth and not sure the colors are working with our cherry floors and fireplace/stairs. Those will not be changing in this makeover. Thank you in advance with all your comments and suggestions.
May 19, 2014 at 11:40AM   
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Ruth
As you can see we have those light filtering honeycomb shades in white.
May 19, 2014 at 11:44AM   
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jolieblue
Ruth, I think the Latte looks very nice, and definitely not too cold feeling for the room. You get lots of warmth from the wood tones and the sun coming in. Wasn't your objective in the beginning to cut down on the heat and the "hot feeling" in the room?

Unfortunately, I never get a true feel for a new color in a room until the whole room is painted. That Latte won't look nearly so cold to you once it isn't sitting next to the extremely warm gold color. Try painting one whole section of the room and then putting "blinders" on when looking at it to get the all of the old gold out of your range of vision.
I'm familiar with the Blonde color, I believe it would be too close to the existing gold to give you the change you seek.

The dark curtains look nice. I would like to see you try removing the curtains altogether from the fireplace wall. That wall is lovely and has a lot to look at already. Removing the curtains would let the lovely windows and fireplace be the focus.
May 19, 2014 at 12:50PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Thank you, I will remove and send pic. I really want to get rid of those honeycomb shades. Yes, it does get hot in our home without a/c (we just put in a pool, so the a/c is on hold for now).
However, I really want our family room to be warm and inviting to those that visit and our family. We spend a lot of time in this room as a family, so it has to be functional for us and our two boys.
I will paint more of the "Latte" thank you for that suggestion. I also saw BM-"Interlude" AF-135 and that has red undertones. Not sure about it though.
May 19, 2014 at 12:57PM   
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groveraxle
I love the latte!
May 19, 2014 at 1:27PM   
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groveraxle
Oh look, I finished painting for you, AND I lowered the TV!
May 19, 2014 at 1:45PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
You are amazing! THANK YOU SO MUCH! I wondered how low the TV should go. Would I put anything on the mantel or just use some plants and décor on the floor area?
May 19, 2014 at 1:48PM     
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epmlassie
I don't know if this is any help, but I have a VERY similar living room. You have windows on either side of the fireplace, and my front door is at the bottom of the stairs, but otherwise we have the same difficult space to decorate. here is what I did. The furniture isn't as family-friendly as you need, but you can see furniture placement. Because of traffic flow, I couldn't center the rug on the fireplace as all decorators want! My TV is on the unit to the left of the fireplace. I'll post more photos later if you're interested.
May 19, 2014 at 1:53PM        Thanked by Ruth
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epmlassie
I have 2-storey windows also, and lots of morning sun because I live in Dallas and the windows face east!
May 19, 2014 at 1:54PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Thank you for showing me what you have done. It helps a lot. I can't put a couch facing the fireplace because that opens into our kitchen and it would block the walkway into the family room to the upstairs. I do love your space, it's beautiful!
May 19, 2014 at 2:00PM     
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epmlassie
My kitchen is behind the sofa also. You have to walk behind my 2 chairs to get to the bottom of the stairs from the kitchen.
May 19, 2014 at 2:06PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Cocoweb
awesome
May 19, 2014 at 2:45PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Two more paint choices? Any thoughts? SW -7037 Balanced Beige or SW-7038 Tony Taupe or stick with the SW- Latte
May 19, 2014 at 5:15PM   
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
You know, don't you, that solar shades do not offer privacy at night?

I think you are considering colors that are too dark. While I'm fond of Balanced Beige, I feel that at night you may find it too dark, and that you should try a shade lighter, Accessible Beige SW7036. I have used them both in our house and in clients' homes. Accessible Beige is exceedingly easy to live with! You've lived with yellow for long enough and should definitely not use Blonde or Ivoire.
May 19, 2014 at 5:45PM        Thanked by Ruth
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epmlassie
A few more photos, showing my similar layout. Good luck!
May 19, 2014 at 5:54PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Carolyn, I did NOT know that solar shades do not give privacy at night. I may have to rethink that, although we do live on 7 acres with no neighbors, however it could be a little creepy when home alone.
May 19, 2014 at 6:05PM   
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Ruth
epmlassie - thank you for the photos. I see what you mean about bumping into the kitchen and with the walkway. Beautiful home by the way!
May 19, 2014 at 6:08PM     
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Ruth
epmlassie, do you have a pull down shade on those windows? Or is that just molding, its hard to see in the photo
May 19, 2014 at 6:17PM   
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epmlassie
There are roman blinds on the lower windows, but I rarely close them. Nobody could look in unless they were climbing over my back fence. I took the blinds down from the upper windows because they were pretty dirty (previous owner installed them).
May 19, 2014 at 6:38PM      Thanked by Ruth
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groveraxle
Ruth, you CAN put a couch facing the fireplace if you follow Carolyn's plan. I also think, since it appears the TV will have to stay over the mantel, that you lower it to within about 2" or so. As low as you can get it for comfort's sake.
May 19, 2014 at 8:24PM        Thanked by Ruth
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groveraxle
Accessible beige:
May 19, 2014 at 8:37PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
Thanks, Grover, for the paint job! Maybe Ruth needs more than one color in the room. I'm wondering if the wall opposite the windows could be in one of the darker shades that Ruth liked, such as Tony Taupe, while keeping the other walls Accessible Beige?
May 20, 2014 at 7:10AM        Thanked by Ruth
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jolieblue
I like the Accessible Beige even better than the Latte, it seems like a wonderful contrast to all of the darker woodwork. But the two colors need to be tested in the room; all that natural light from the windows might wash out the lighter one.

I still would rather see the tv moved to the stair wall, leaving a place for a beautiful painting above the fireplace and giving you the ability to decorate your mantle. It seems a shame to have to leave the mantle bare. Two lovely chairs flanking the fireplace would complete the picture at that end of the room and create a conversation area.
May 20, 2014 at 12:41PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Okay we are getting close! I really want to use two paint shades, one in the foyer (front door) leading into the family room. Which it would be that high wall over the entrance of the kitchen. The family room, up the stairs all one color. Unless you think I should do my fireplace wall one color then I have that crazy bump out (closet from upstairs room).
So I need to choose color, this is driving me nuts! Please note: EVERYTHING fades in my house because of all the sunlight and the paint is the first to show it within a short period of time. So I'm not going to pick accessible beige, before too long, it will be white. So I went and got swatches from BM today. I like BM Shaker Beige and BM Lenox. And I like the Latte too!
May 20, 2014 at 2:20PM   
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Ruth
Jolieblue, per your request, I took down the curtains. I also took a photo walking into my house (foyer) from outside. This area I was thinking another color. I also need to buy something for the hot sun in that foyer window. Paint first, I want to start soon.
May 20, 2014 at 4:08PM   
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judygilpin
Thank goodness the draperies and decorative rods are down. Still think plantation shutters are the cleanest and best option. Simplify !!!! that's the best way for spaces to look bigger & better.
May 20, 2014 at 4:44PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
You could also consider motorized metal sun blocking shades mounted on the exterior of the house. They are quite expensive but seem to solve the problem with afternoon sun here in Texas.
May 20, 2014 at 5:14PM      Thanked by Ruth
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jolieblue
I'm not familiar with those two. With all that light flooding in, you have a perfect opportunity to use a darker color than some other rooms can handle. One of the other commenters mentioned that you should put the new wall color sample against your current white woodwork to be sure they coordinate well. Be sure to do that, your white woodwork will be gorgeous against the colors you are considering, as long as they work together.

If you do an accent wall around the fireplace, I would stop the accent color before the bump-out, confining it to just the tall fireplace wall. It would be very dramatic to have a darker color there, with the light from the windows flooding in across it. But be sure the color complements the wood of the fireplace very well. People forget that wood is not "neutral", it's always a color. It either pulls towards red, gold or even orange. Sometimes that's why a color seems all wrong in a room and you can't figure out why: it's because the wood tones don't complement the wall color. Shades of blues and greens usually complement all of the wood tones. But when using a neutral shade wall color, you need to make sure the undertones of both work together. Using a color wheel can make it clearer...
May 20, 2014 at 5:16PM        Thanked by Ruth
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jolieblue
Wow! You do have light coming in from all directions. I think either wall would look fine in a contrasting color. If you decide to use lighter/darker versions off the same color card, go at least two shades up or down the color card. If you only use one shade variation it won't even show up as being different.

I love the fireplace wall without the drapes! Do you?
Looking at your photo I can just envision it with a large bright painting above the fireplace and minimal but impressive accessories on the mantle. In my opinion, a tall painting would be striking. I would only use plantation shutters, roman shades, or some sort of blinds inside the window frames-no drapes to distract from the beautiful design you already have going on. If you didn't need the light control or privacy there, I think they look fine with nothing at all on them.

I don't want to complicate your game plan, but have you thought of picking out your furniture before the paint? If you find the perfect sofa and chairs, it's a simple matter to select a neutral paint that blends perfectly. There are a million paint shades but only a few furniture sets that you love. You can easily match a paint color to a rug or sofa. Just a thought.
May 20, 2014 at 5:38PM        Thanked by Ruth
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licksch
The windows on either side of the fireplace look great without the curtains on them; the TV lowered as Grover has pictured blends in architecturally with the fireplace and looks fine. I wouldn't put the television on the staircase wall; I think previous comments are correct; it's not going to blend well with the architecture of the room. It will look awkward and forced. Doesn't matter whether it fits in terms of inches.

If you were thinking about getting air conditioning in a year or two then obviously you will want to think about not spending a fortune on blocking out the sun.

An L-shaped sectional could work well in this room if you could find one that still left you space by the staircase to walk by. Sometimes you can get sectionals that are designed for condos and they are not quite so large. It would also mean that everybody in the family could all sit together on the same piece of furniture.

I think it would be worth trying having a part of the sectional or sofa run across the room. Someone suggested a sofa table or desk behind the sofa or sectional that runs across. I think that's also a good idea and would create a natural division in the space.
May 20, 2014 at 5:43PM        Thanked by Ruth
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licksch
You can also do all kinds of things with televisions these days. If you want to make your television more part of the decor when you are not watching it. I have seen all kinds of clever solutions.
May 20, 2014 at 5:46PM      Thanked by Ruth
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licksch



Tips on hiding the TV. And there's lots more online if you Google that. Personally I would leave the TV over the fireplace as it's the natural place for it and find ways to deal with the aesthetics.
May 20, 2014 at 5:49PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
If I were to do shutters? What color? Would I stay with white? And do I have to put shutters on the top as well for that fan look? If I do shutters on those windows, would I dress up the wall of windows facing our backyard? I'm working on the furniture and I hope to find a small sectional that will allow for a pathway. I'm leaning towards a grey color. I would really like to get away from the browns. Light colors are risky with our kids at this time, but I would consider maybe a light taupe. We do not have food in our family room (with the exception of popcorn and that can be an issue) ...when we have guests, we can't always monitor either.
The TV placement - back and forth Fireplace or Staircase. I think once I get the new sofa and chair, it will determine if that TV can fit against the staircase, since that will ad another piece of furniture and I don't want to feel cramped in the room.
Accent Wall - that is what is done now and I used the same color where the TV is on the small piece going up the stairs. As much as I love BM - Shaker Beige, we were thinking how quickly our paint fades (and I'm not kidding) that we are leaning towards SW - Latte or the BM-Lenox Tan and know it will fade out lighter within a summer. The Shaker Beige can be used in my foyer as long as I either do a window film or shade for that large window in my foyer. I would love to paint my ceiling a beige, but this job is going to take me a couple of weeks tackling it myself and I don't think I can pull off the ceiling as well.
May 20, 2014 at 7:41PM   
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Ruth
licksch: very cool ideas with the TV - thanks for sharing!
May 20, 2014 at 7:45PM   
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PRO
Old English Fireplace Benches
Consider a fireplace bench (a 'dip' or 'full' model). Club fenders add seats and a safety element with little children. Framing (or set upon) the hearth, a club fender favors an open floor plan and a three sided conversation arrangement. It will not obstruct the passage from stair landing to rest of house. The added seats will make furniture choices and placement easier.
May 21, 2014 at 2:41AM   
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jolieblue
Ruth I'm so glad you want a gray shade rather than beige-it's popular now and will do much more to combat the bright light in the room. There are so many beautiful warm gray paint shades. Are you on Pinterest? (Can I say that here?). I have a board with paint shades (picked out by designers) and names shown: in warm grays, gray-beiges, etc., that you can check out.

I would keep the shutters white, unless you want to paint them the same color you choose for the walls. They could be a shade or two lighter or darker. Darker might be very nice.
I wouldn't put anything in the arches, unless it's necessary for light control. As far as the large window wall, I wouldn't decide anything about that until you have your furniture and walls are painted. Then you will be able to see whether the room needs more fabric, more color, more softness, etc.
I do think it would be advantageous to select a sofa before you paint. You may have a limited selection of fabric choices for it, but paint colors come in an unlimited selection. Even if you don't buy it now, get it picked out and possibly you can borrow a fabric swatch to compare to the paint. Or bring your paint samples to the store. (Paint a poster board or something with the paint, not those puny store samples!)

You can ask for a performance fabric on the sofa-they are very durable. Lazyboy fabric protection comes with a warranty that will replace the piece if it gets stained! (You have to pay for the fabric to be treated, well worth the $)

The sectional is a great idea for you, and they can be custom designed to suit your room. Check out the apartment or condo sized furniture-they come in more manageable sizes. If you bring it across the room between the living room and kitchen, its important to stick with a low-backed style. That would keep your view open across the windows too.
You might want to select long sofa with a chaise lounge at the kitchen end, rather than a sectional. It wouldn't obstruct the room as much and could be approached from either side. I really like that idea!

Girl, you don't want to paint those ceilings! I've painted enough houses to say no no no! Ceilings are hard even when they are lower. That two-story one should be left to a professional painter. When you get your new wall color, the ceiling will look just fine. You are going to see a major transformation just by changing the walls.

One tip I just thought of, I think most paint companies rank their paint colors by LRV, Light Reflective Value. It's a numbered scale that lets you know how much light the color is going to reflect back at you, versus how much it's going to absorb. You can certainly afford to have some of your absorbed.

As my husband likes to say; don't you love it when a plan comes together!
May 21, 2014 at 4:47AM        Thanked by Ruth
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judygilpin
Ruth, DO NOT PAINT PLANTATION SHUTTERS !!!!!!! Get white and don't get the fan tops. Fan tops are non-movable and look overdone. Also, do all windows with the same treatment. Your window wall needs light control and Plantation shutters are the best thing to do that as they tilt. Draperies are either opened or closed. Blinds also tilt but are horrible to clean. I think you should just get things going. You've had way too many suggestions and I might add, two or three of us gave you suggestions way back in March that are being repeated over and over again.
May 21, 2014 at 5:25AM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
jolieblue: THANK YOU! Yes, our plans are finally coming together! Great ideas with the sofa and I was thinking of the chaise lounge as well...same location too! I think some nice end tables (smaller) will help as well! If I do go with shutters, I'll stick to white, just because I don't want to paint them. Ok on the ceilings, I won't touch them. And we can't afford a professional right now, we have a pool that we are finishing up right now, so I have to keep things on a budget! Good news is, my husband said A/C will happen, just not this year. So for now i'll buy some window or floor units. I will wait on the large windows. THANK YOU again for all your help! I'll keep you posted as I paint!
May 21, 2014 at 5:29AM     
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jolieblue
I wouldn't want to paint them either! You are are on the right track, and by doing all this thinking and sorting out ideas, you are saving yourself from costly mistakes. I'd rather run 100 ideas through my mind than jump on the first one. That's what this forum is all about, isn't it? ;)
May 21, 2014 at 5:34AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
judygilpin: Thank you...I'm on it! : )
May 21, 2014 at 5:36AM     
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PRO
Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
Shutters should be ordered in the same white paint color as your trim. On the arch top windows, I would use arch top shutters with horizontal slats, not the fan shape!
May 21, 2014 at 5:38AM        Thanked by Ruth
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PRO
SOLARIS
For a room like this with a wall of windows, window film will give you control over the heat, protect your furnishings from fading AND allow you to keep your view. The newest window film technology stops heat from entering while letting in more light than older tech window films.

We do work with solar shades as well but find that room temperature control is better with window film. In many cases we do both for maximum control. Shades and blinds still allow heat to enter into the space between the glass and covering causing a radiant heat effect where window film stops it before it enters your home. Visit www.enerlogicfilm.com to learn more and find a professional near you.

The first image below shows the Enerlogic film next to a standard film. These films block the same amount of heat but the Enerlogic is much clearer. The second image is Enerlogic installed on a wall of windows similar to yours. Good luck!
May 21, 2014 at 1:57PM        Thanked by Ruth
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licksch
Solaris... That is very very very impressive! I always thought it was the light itself carrying the heat. But you say you can block the heat from coming through the glass. Very interesting.
May 23, 2014 at 4:52PM   
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PRO
SOLARIS
Yes! Typical films needed to be darker and more reflective to block heat. The Enerlogic films are selectively stopping the infrared (heat) wavelengths while letting more of the visible light wavelengths through. Some of the heat does come from the visible spectrum and a small part of the heat we feel from the UV spectrum but the majority is part of the spectrum we cannot see.

As much as 40% of your HVAC load is directly related to your windows (depending upon the type of glass and the window/wall ratio of your home). After installing this film we have clients see as much as an 8-10 degree temperature swing in problem rooms. Now your HVAC system can keep up.

Please let me know if you have any additional questions or need help finding a professional in your area. - Kevin
May 23, 2014 at 5:08PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Do you have anyone in the Ballston Lake, NY area?
May 27, 2014 at 8:10AM   
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SOLARIS
There are a few Vista dealers in your neck of the woods but I do not know any of them personally. Visit http://vista-films.com/en/find-a-window-film-dealer.aspx to find one near you. Good luck!
May 27, 2014 at 8:36AM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
OK It's FINALLY Painted! I custom adjusted Sherwin Williams "Latte" and named it: "Java Latte". To me it looked like coffee ice cream out of the can! It took me 38 hours to repair and paint this area, but its done! Now for decorating and window treatments! Here are a few pics!
June 24, 2014 at 3:20PM     
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Ruth
as you can see we lowered the TV and I'm wondering what to do on the little bit of mantle or around the fire place. Would it be too much to hang a decorative light from the wall on a wall hanger? One that you would put a votive candle in. I was thinking of something with a pop of color. I really like teal blues. And the shade of color changes with the amount of light that comes into our home. It's the perfect color in the evening, I'm still trying to get use to the tone in the morning, but I think that will look much better once I decorate.
June 24, 2014 at 3:26PM   
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decoenthusiaste
Nice color! Since the top of the TV is higher than the window frames on the large bank of windows, be sure curtains, if any, hang higher than the TV, even on the arched windows to keep things balanced. Couldn't find pix of windows like your arched ones, but here is the idea visually. If you do shades or blinds it won't be an issue.
Charles River Country House
Lakeside Residence-Main Level
June 24, 2014 at 3:37PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Dar Eckert
Much more relaxing color.
June 24, 2014 at 5:18PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
I would do plantation shutters on the rectangular portion of the windows flanking the fireplace, with probably nothing above, or if it can be done as a single shutter on each side, then I would include the arch with horizontal louvers all the way up. I would put nothing on the mantel. If you fall in love with an enormous piece of art, you could place it over the TV, but otherwise I wouldn't worry about that space.
June 24, 2014 at 5:23PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
The paint color looks wonderful!
June 24, 2014 at 5:49PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Debbie McMahon Carr
Love the paint color.
June 24, 2014 at 6:46PM      Thanked by Ruth
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aileenplan
Hi! As far as decorating your wall I recommend considering iron work to hang on the upper quadrant of your 17' wall- this looks especially nice on high walls like yours.
June 24, 2014 at 7:03PM        Thanked by Ruth
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aileenplan
Here is a link of iron work art on high ceiling wall:


June 24, 2014 at 7:05PM        Thanked by Ruth
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aileenplan
Here is another example:
June 24, 2014 at 7:07PM      Thanked by Ruth
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aileenplan
one more picture of iron work ideas for high ceiling great rooms:


I hope this gives you some ideas!!:)
June 24, 2014 at 7:09PM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
yes it does, thank you very much!
June 25, 2014 at 4:44AM   
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McNichols Company
Since we don't know what the exterior of the house looks like, we don't know if this will work, but you could always put a sun shade on the outside, like we did at Margarido House in CA, in the place of drapes, etc that might block the scenery outside. The sunshade has also been great with reducing solar heat gain, since you said you have no ac. http://www.mcnichols.com/case-studies/margarido-house.pdf Good luck!
June 25, 2014 at 5:38AM        Thanked by Ruth
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aileenplan
Hi Ruth, I have one more suggestion for your consideration- see this link for a 'double-sided' couch concept that you can use to set up sitting areas when you have multiple views- not sure if you have a pool or other view from your window where you can do this. Alternatively, you can also place a bench behind your couch to create this concept. Hope this gives you some ideas!

June 25, 2014 at 6:18AM      Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
That's neat!!
June 25, 2014 at 6:49PM   
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Ruth
As you can see in one of my new photos, we just installed a pool in our yard.
June 25, 2014 at 6:50PM   
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groveraxle
The color is beautiful, and so are the pool and the yard. Much as I dislike TVs over fireplaces, I think that may be the best solution here. I would keep decoration to a minimum and arrange your seating so you have a direct view of the TV and the yard.

Window coverings, your plants, some lamps, and art are all you need here. Let the view and architectural details of the space shine.
June 26, 2014 at 8:41AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
Thank you ...I feel so free of clutter on my walls right now. It's wonderful!
June 26, 2014 at 10:31AM     
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jolieblue
Ruth, I think your new color looks great! The lack of visual clutter allows your architecture and the backyard pool to shine. I agree you should keep accessories and decorations to a minimum, and fuss-free. One sneaky way to do that is to select accessories which are large in scale and only have a minimal number of them. They will make a big impact but not busy-up the room.

I also agree that a large stunning piece of art over the tv would be great. But it needs to be truly beautiful and truly large. Lamps can become art if you select something large and pleasing to your eye.

Beautiful cozy throws and pillows add depth and color, and can be changed out in summer/winter for a whole new look. Pale, lightweight cottons and linens in the summer and cozy, warm ones with rich tones in winter go a long way to creating a pleasant ambience. I think it's important that they not only look good, but feel soft and appealing for your family to use. I like pillows that can really be used! Throw 'em out when they get shabby, it's fun to select new ones.

I'm not sure about the wall sconces by the tv. Have you considered tall, weighty candlesticks on the mantle on each side of the tv? Something about 2 feet tall. Mercury glass would be stunning, but black ones would also be nice. Ballard Designs has one that would work beautifully, the mercury glass would stand out beside the black tv. Picture attached.

If you concentrate now on acquiring furniture and lamps in a pleasing arrangement, that will give you time to look at the room without clutter. You might find that the minimal look grows on you! And then you can add decor very slowly and be sure not to go overboard.
June 26, 2014 at 12:11PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Debbie McMahon Carr
I thought of your room when I seen this picture. This is the first time Im trying to attach a picture I hope it works. Lol
June 26, 2014 at 4:57PM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
I love the blue color tones, so soft and inviting
Thank you for sharing!!
July 3, 2014 at 6:08AM   
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Ruth
I truly love all the ideas coming in!! So excited to try new things! Thank you all for your inspirational ideas!
July 3, 2014 at 6:10AM   
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jolieblue
Debbie McMahon Carr, that picture is perfection. The colors, the textures and the wonderful laid-back vibe. Love the bamboo shades, and when those type of shades are lowered, the light filters through beautifully.

For winter, pictures the shells and beachy items packed away, replaced with fall/wintery items such as pine cones and darker toned metals. The pillows and throws could be replaced with a beautiful rich pear green (think cotton velvets). Or deeper orangey bronzes which would look great with the blue. So much potential there
July 3, 2014 at 7:04AM        Thanked by Ruth
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Ruth
yes Jolieblue....sounds so beautiful! Love it too!
July 3, 2014 at 10:00AM   
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