Monday, March 25, 2013

Casual, Comfy, Craftsman Living Room

I L.O.V.E our living room. Which is a good thing considering we spend probably 80% of our waking time at home in this room. I set out to have a living room that felt relaxed, comfortable, inviting but still have some structure. I knew from the start of planning our home that I wanted the living room to have a "beachy feel". Actually that is a lie, I wanted my future living room to be "beachy" since I was 10 years old and designing my future home in the SIMS.
There are a few things we would still like to do with the space but it's well on its way. I have always felt a room, or a home for that matter is never "done". A home is always evolving to fit the needs of the family and needs to grow and change. I think this room wont be close to done until our children are older and not trying to rip everything off the shelves.
Here is the photo tour of our living room...
This is the view of the living room when you come down the stairs. Every morning I get the walk down the stairs and see this cheerful room. The fireplace is a great focal point and we love the built in shelves on either side.
As you walk in the front door entry way and turn slightly to the left you will see the living room. Beyond that towards the right is our apple green dining room.

This is one of my favorite photos of the living room. The sun light was perfect and because Nolan was down for a nap, the room the very clean. Also, my favorite daytime cooking show "The Chew" was on, it was a good day

A closer look of the fireplace. We have approximately 12 inches of space around the fireplace insert that is tiled. Having 12 inches around allowed for minimal waste with the tiles and I felt the scale was right. We picked a very inexpensive ($2 a sq ft) in green/blue glass squares.

You can see the moulding details around the fireplace surround. All the shelves and trim are white painted MDF. We of course stuck with the craftsman look for the fireplace.

Our couch is from a furniture company called Fenton Home furnishings in Frankenmuth and Fenton, MI. The brand is Palliser and the model is called "Jura". We love it. It has clean lines, is comfortable and one weird bonus, it has a ridge along the back the is the perfect size to set a drink on. I'm not sure if that is a wise place for a cup, but I do it anyway.

With a comfy couch, you need a place to put your feet up. We lucked into this glass and distressed wood coffee table at World Market for $199. Because of the distressed wood finish, it is very baby friendly and doesn't show chew marks!

The coffee table has a drawer inside that you can put anything you want! We chose to put our wedding album, Nolan's baby book and a birthday card for Kyle that I made when Nolan was a month old. Eventually we could have mementos from family vacations, photos and so much more! -I sound like an infomercial for this table.

My view while sitting on the couch. Pretty perfect if you ask me.
The right side shelf. A few wicker baskets with baby items and a large sturdy basket on the floor for baby toys

The bottom shelf has been striped of all fun, decorative items now that Mr. Nolan is crawling and on the move. We tried to keep all the items on the bookshelves meaningful. The trio of photos on the top are from the Red wood forest where my cousin was married. There is also a photo from the day Nolan was born and a photo book that guests signed at our wedding.  A few good books and 2 storage boxes from IKEA and done.

Another look at the fireplace. The fireplace has an electric insert (we are an electric only house, no propane or natural gas). We have been very glad this is electric with a crawling baby around, since it is not wood or gas, we don't have to worry about any parts or flames for him to be hurt by.
The logs are molded and can not come apart and the fireplace can only be turned on with a switch on the wall and is is not hot to the touch. We can enjoy the look of the fireplace and not have to worry about the baby, or gate it off.
These photos have a special place in our hearts. We purchased these 4 paintings on our honeymoon in Bermuda hoping that they would one day have a place in our home. We bought 4 RIBBA frames from IKEA and pop em' in. It took a little time to secure them to the wall and keep the same size around the frames. 

I feel like any art is great to hang in our home, but especially meaningful art. These paintings will be hanging up for many, many years
Mr. Nolan would like to demonstrate the baby friendly nature or the living room and more specifically the coffee table. Yes, someone is teething.


  1. Love the fireplace and shelving! Was all material MDF? Do you have any pictures of it being built to see it from start to finish? Thanks!

    1. Thanks Marco! I believe it is all MDF but to be honest with you, we had a carpenter build it in about one day here at the house. I was here that evening after work to check it out but did not get to see the building process. We have it painted with a high gloss white paint which gives it a hard, almost enameled look.

  2. Love your house! Have been enjoying looking through your blog.
    What electric fireplace did you go with? Are you happy with it? Trying to decide between electric and propane (we too were planning to be all electric, but then I decided I wanted a fireplace and am leaning towards propane, but did look at some electric.) Also, curious what kind of windows you put in (we are also planning on an SIP house, walls and roof.)

    1. Thank you so much Sara!! We went with an electric fireplace by Dimplex and it has been great. I has a setting to emit heat if you want or just the "glow" of the logs without any heat coming out. With a toddler at home it has been awesome having an electric fireplace that we don't have to worry about his with or gate off. We get the benefit of the look of the fireplace with out the dangers to our little curious kiddo. We also didn't want to pay for propane when the rest of the house is geothermal/ electric.

      We have been SO HAPPY that we went with SIPS. Our heating bills are low and the house feels so solid and it went together so fast. Glad you are doing SIPs too!

      For the windows we went with Jeld Wen prairie style windows. They look great but we did have to replace one this year due to faulty sealant that was letting ice in between the panes. They replaced it no problem.

  3. I love this couch. It looks awesome. Does that fabric have a name? I like the color grey you chose.