I received a really lovely message a while ago from one of my readers asking if I could help her come up with some ideas to redesign her living room. This message prompted an idea – why not ask my readers if they need any room design help and give them some tips and design a mood board for them? I LOVE designing mood boards and getting creative with rooms (and our house is almost out of rooms to do this with), so this is the perfect way for me to be helpful and have some fun too. Enter a new series here on The DIY Mommy: Reader Mood Boards. I’m going to keep all of my redesign suggestions DIY focused & inexpensive – things I strive for as I work on our own home. Ready for the first one?

My reader writes:

The main thing I’m looking for in this room is to be welcoming. I have a 3 yr old boy and toys are usually everywhere (hidden in the brown bench in front of window).

This living room has the front door walk- in that I’ve tried to do something with. Then we are also attached to a dining room. Not really sure what to there but it’s not working so well now. Unfortunately, we won’t be changing the carpet anytime soon.

I guess I want warm, fresh, welcoming, comfortable, child friendly, durable and functional. I want to paint the big wall that the dining room and living room share but have no clue where to start. I’ve been liking the turquoise colors lately but not sure if it’s too loud. (Trying to stay away from browns, last house had LOTS of brown.)

Here’s her living room as it is now:

Reader Living Room: Before

This is a great space with such a lovely large window! I like that it opens to the dining area too. Here are my suggestions for this space:

  • Anchor the living room with a rug that extends to at least under the first set of legs of the couch and chair. This will help define the living space, add a textural element to the room, and disguise the green carpet.
  • DIY some easy drapes (or buy some) that go from the top of the ceiling to the floor to hang on either side of that main window. This will make the ceiling seem taller and add some more texture and colour. Sew some cushions in complementary patterns to match the drapes.
  • Place a sofa table or console table beside the entry door (with baskets!) to create even more storage (for kid’s toys, accessories, shoes) and further define the entryway. You could even flip the sectional around to that side and put the sofa/console table behind the sofa to create a defined entry.
  • Move all of your artwork down a little so that the middle of your art & mirrors is about 56-60″ above the floor.
  • What about painting your entry door a nice, soft turquoise just for fun and to set off the white? You could paint the large wall the same colour. I absolutely love the soft grey-green-blue of Benjamin Moore’s Palladian Blue. Want a bit of a darker colour? Go one tone down to Wythe Blue. (You can colour match to your favourite brand of paint.)
  • I love the freshness and brightness that coastal colours and accessories have. Try adding in coastal design elements to the space, like colours of turquoise, sandy beige and white along with natural textures like wicker, cotton and linen. You could even consider painting your tables white or sand. You could also consider painting all of your picture frames white.
  • DIY or buy a white slipcover for the brown chair to lighten up the space (bonus: slip covers are easy to wash with kids in the house).
  • I personally like the dining room open to the living room – try adding an even bigger piece of artwork over the dining table to define the space.
  • If you can change the light fixtures, updating those would be a fun way to modernize the space.

Reader Mood Board: A Fresh Coastal Living Room with affordable pieces, easy-clean items for a kid-friendly space, and light and bright colours.

  1. Hemnes Sofa Table in White Stain
  2. Knipsa Basket
  3. Coastal Artwork
  4. Premier Prints Zig Zag Village Blue/Natural Fabric
  5. Morum Rug
  6. Adeco 12 Photo Collage Frame in White
  7. Premier Prints Fulton Village Blue/Natural
  8. Duck One Piece Relaxed Fit Slipcover
  9. Allium Blue and Grey Printed Cotton Curtain Panel
  10. La Pedriza Antique Bronze Finish Glass Chandelier

If you’d like me to make a mood board and a few suggestions for your space, please contact me here.

Want more detailed help with your space including floor plan ideas? Ask me about my virtual design services here.

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