Last week, I showed you the amazing inspiration image (above) from Sarah at Life on Virginia Street that captured my attention and had me yearning for a brighter and more casual space for my family gatherings. This week, I want to walk you through the planning process so you can understand the reasoning behind the decisions I've made. You can also use my process as a guideline for planning your own rooms. Oh! And here's where we're starting -
WHAT STAYS / WHAT GOES
Since this room was just decorated last Fall, there are a lot of decisions to make about what to keep and what to replace. We've already spent money here, so it's hard to imagine completely starting from scratch. Plus, how many people reading a blog about budget home design and renovation actually have the funds to scrap everything they've already invested in? So I knew going into this plan that a lot of the existing furnishings would need to be repurposed or incorporated into the room. To decide which ones could stay, I made a list of all the large items in the room.
4. Curtain Rods
6. Bar / Server
7. Watercolor Art
8. Bar Mirror
Then I made a list of the items I've really like to replace or add.
3. Curtain Rods
Looking at this list, I realized that everything on it was purchased specifically for this space when we moved in. Let this be a lesson to you - don't redecorate until you've lived in a home for at least six months. Spend some time getting to know your life in that home before you make large purchases.
Then I wanted to decide if any of these items could be repurposed in other areas in the home. Afterall, we still have every. other. room. in this house to complete! The chandelier is beautiful and I really do love it. I just don't love it in this space. It's too small. But it would be perfect in our Master Bathroom! So I can replace that item without feeling too much guilt.
Every other item on the list didn't pass the "Is this still me?" test. They all felt too stuffy and formal, which is exactly the look I'm trying to avoid replicating throughout this house. So I did what any thrifty decorator would do - I searched each item on their original source websites to determine their current prices. Are they higher or lower than what I paid? Since I typically wait for an item to go on sale before I buy, I'm usually lucky to find that I won't lose any money if I resell them on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. With the curtains, I actually will end up taking a $25 hit because I try to offer better savings to people. I actually made everything back on the chairs. I never charge more (though I definitely could have, based on their current price). I just hope to get my original investment back.
So now I have a list of items I need to buy - curtains, curtain rods, and chairs. But I also need to determine what items I want to add that were lacking before. I knew I wanted to lighten up the space but I still wanted to give navy blue a big presence. No one does navy blue better than Serena & Lily. Their designs are so cheery and simple, yet sophisticated and timeless. My heart immediately fell for this wallpaper.
I love the subtle and sweet pattern and, in person, it's even more amazing. It has a texture that feels like it's been painted on! At $88 a roll, however, it's far from budget. So I knew that if I were going to use this wallpaper, I'd have to keep basically all of the other items as they are. I really wanted to remove the faux wainscoting and replace it with a horizontal shadow gap shiplap to modernize the space. Shiplap is also expensive. Altogether, the wallpaper would cost $600 and the shiplap would be another $600, blowing my entire budget. No new curtains. No new chairs. And I'd really had my heart set on a new set of navy blue bamboo Chippendale chairs.
Then the clouds parted and the Heavens opened to reveal A SPRING SALE at Serena & Lily! The wallpaper I wanted was still pretty expensive, but I found an amazing alternative that felt so much more like me and took the design to a higher level. This green stripe was on sale for $18 a roll! And I started seeing all of these wonderful images of blue and green all over the place. Plus, the pattern feels more geometric and modern, which is the perfect counterbalance to the table and sideboard.
What do you think? Is it too far? Have I finally pushed too far to save a buck?
I'll be back next week with progress updates and some tutorials on how to DIY. In the interim, keep up with my colleagues and co-One Room Challenge™ participants here. You definitely want to check them out. I've seen some absolutely lovely designs and I can't wait to see how these rooms evolve!
For additional ORC™ updates, remember to follow me on Instagram, @tmoorehome, where I update my stories with deals I find, random thoughts of the day, and my very cute daughter.