The Progression: The Living Room

I love progression posts. It’s really fun for me to see how much I have changed our house in the last 5 years. Sometimes I even forget that I did the things that I did! For those of you new to The Progression, I simply go back to when we first bought the house and show you pictures of how it has evolved over time. Today I am going to share the living room with you. As I got to picking out pictures, I realize I share bits and pieces of the room but not the room as a whole very often (until recently). So I actually don’t have photos for every change. Which is okay or you might get bored :) I hope you enjoy this little walk down memory lane!

Our journey starts in March of 2006. First up, here is a shot of the living room when we first looked at the house. We didn’t even own it yet but I think our offer had been accepted. The wall color isn’t very accurate, it was actually a beige color, not gray. When we bought the house, the whole interior had been painted this color and there was new carpet in all of the carpeted rooms. I have always loved the bank of windows and I’ve always wished there was another bank of them on the other wall as well. The more windows the better!

When we moved in (April 2006) I got to work immediately painting. The beige color didn’t last long in this room. This was the first room in the house I painted because our new furniture was going to be delivered and so I didn’t waste anytime getting it done before it arrived. If I remember correctly, I’m pretty certain I painted this room the first week we moved in. I didn’t even worry about unpacking first because we were already in the process of ripping apart the kitchen and getting it ready for a remodel (read about the kitchen here and here) so I just went straight to work. Those first couple of months living here were really busy :)

I love how in the picture you can see I put plastic down on the floors before I painted. That was the last time I did that. Now I don’t tape anything or put anything on the floors, I just go for it. I paint so often that I have learned how to keep things clean… for the most part. I won’t talk about an incident two weeks ago when I spilled bright pink on the carpet at church when I was painting the kids room. Yikes! First time I’ve ever done that, and hopefully the last. Okay, moving on…

Like I said, we had furniture being delivered which was why I had to get to work painting. Here I am furniture shopping with Jason when we found the coffee table and couch that we wanted. We searched all over this area before we found something I liked in our price range. I really wanted a light color and I wanted microfiber thinking it would be easy to keep clean. It’s funny now, I would choose something totally different!

Do you know what I notice the most when I look at these older photos. I look so much younger! Time has gone so fast since we lived here that I don’t feel older but I can tell it by the pictures that I am! So depressing… ha ha!

Here is a photo from right after the furniture was delivered. Our previous house was much smaller than this one and so we had virtually no furniture for this room. All we owned before was a loveseat which definitely wouldn’t fill this room. I also had nothing for the walls although part of that could have been that I hadn’t unpacked yet. For those of you who care, the color of the wall was a Sherwin Williams color called Backdrop. It was a really pretty gray/brown and I loved it!

And a shot from the other corner. The armoire we brought with us from Oregon was given to us by Jason’s parents. It’s a beast and it was nice to have something fill so much space and bring a little height to the room.

The next project I tackled was stenciling the back wall. I used left over paint from the kitchen. It was a metallic glaze and I loved the effect it gave. I ordered the damask stencil online (sorry, can’t remember where) and it was really easy to do. I had never stenciled a wall before so this was my first attempt. The directions said to measure and give yourself guidelines but, you know me, I didn’t want to take the time so I just went for it. Thankfully, the pattern lined up right the whole way and it was straight. This was the project that I got the most comments on through out our time living here from people visiting. I think it took me about 2 afternoons of working on it to finish.

Next up I made a piece of artwork for the damask wall. I had Jason make a wooden frame for me and I stretched a canvas drop cloth over it and painted the words on. It was a big piece, seven feet wide!

Next, I added some curtains that I made. I found these sheets that were a really pretty damask pattern to go with the wall. I cut the king sized flat sheet in half and then added some smocking detail to the top. My regret with these curtains, which I had from the moment I hung them, is that they appear green when the light shines through them. I really, really wish I had lined them. I just never thought about it since it was my first experience making curtains. I guess that’s how you learn though, right?! Trial and error :)

You can also (sort of) see that I added a floor lamp which I brought with me from Oregon, a side table which I found at a thrift store and painted black, and a table lamp. From the beginning, I wasn’t very crazy about the shade on the table lamp, it was too white. So, I worked at changing it which you will see in photos to come.

Here is the part where I added red to the room. I painted my entryway red (Benjamin Moore Million Dollar Red) in January of 2007. Because of that I wanted some red pops in the adjoining living room. I found the red damask velvet pillow and added the candle holder to the coffee table. Not much, but it’s something :) You can see here where I attempted to work on the lampshade. I used the damask wall stencil and stenciled black paint on it. I never liked it and it didn’t last for long!


I’m not sure why I took this photo above at night but you can still get the idea… I hope :) I added some more new pillows including the brown floral pillows which I felt tied all of the colors together. It had reds, blues, and greens and I was so excited to find them! I also got a new floor lamp and, haha, I changed the lampshade on the table lamp. I really couldn’t stand that white one :)

The next thing I did was rearrange. I grew tired of the layout and tried it this way for a while. You can see that this is at Christmastime. I also got a new end table and a plant which you can barely see peeking out from the armoire.

Next, I changed the room by moving the loveseat out. I put it in the family room and the leather chair came into this room. I also found the wooden chair at a thrift store and moved the armoire to the other side of the room. Moving the armoire meant the artwork had to go as well. I also got the new coffee table and a new white lamp.

Another Christmastime shot. I just wanted to show the pillows one last time and the red blanket that was added (and in the previous picture as well). This was from Christmas 2010 right before I changed everything!

I hadn’t planned on changing the living room so much but when I found this vintage couch for $65 I couldn’t help myself. Out went the couch and armoire. Out went the leather chair and I replaced it with a mid mod chair that used to be in the family room. In went the new old couch, a round table from my craft room, new curtains, and a new arrangement.

Not much changed in the two photos above except the paint color. I knew I needed to paint and lighten things up. It was a little sad to see the damask go because I had gotten so many compliments on it but I was ready for a change. It had been that way for almost 5 years and so it felt good to make it different. From there on, I kept making small changes, like adding the gallery wall, adding pillows and more pillows, adding a tray to the coffee table, and adding artwork. But you already know all of this stuff, because you have been on this journey with me since the beginning of this year. So that brings us up to date. With the exception of the recent switcheroo I just did. So, as you saw recently, here is how the living room looks today:

See all of the most recent living room photos here. And one more little change that I made just yesterday…

I finally finished putting stuff into all of my gallery frames! I added a star chart that I got from a vintage children’s book and a photo that used to be in the entryway and ta-da! I was done!!

This is still a work in progress as I would like to add more mats and have more photos. Some of them also need some glass but it’s getting there. Eventually, this whole wall will be filled with frames! I will keep you posted, of course :)

And that concludes The Progression for the living room. See other progression posts here. I hope you all have a happy Monday!