Made to Create: A Living Room Make-Over
Cozy Minimalist is the name of an online decorating course, by Myquillin Smith (also known as The Nester). You may already know her from her blog and/or book called, The Nesting Place. After being on the waiting list for the months, anxiously waiting for her class to re-open, I finally had the privilege of taking her course- and now I'm happy to welcome you into my home, to share some before and after photos and tell you some of what I learned.
Because who doesn't love a good before and after!
I know, decorating is a different topic for this space- so I hope you don't mind if I mix it up today, a little break from the deeper topics. Next week, in our doctrine series, the topic will be, creation. So consider this a lead in, because....
@@All of us, being made in the image of Creator God, are made to create.@@
There's a myriad of beautiful ways we can do this, but @@one way I create, that brings me particular joy, is through decorating@@. This living room make-over is somewhat of a follow-up to a post I wrote earlier this month, called, How To Invite Hygge into Your Life: The Danish Practice of Cozy Contentment. Since I wrote that piece, I've been doing my best to add even more hygge to my life. And my living room make-over was one way I chose to do this.
My desire has always been to create an environment that was cozy. I also appreciate a more minimalist look. I knew I could use some help figuring out how I could both those attributes in my home. So the title of the course, alone, Cozy Minimalist, drew me in. Plus, I absolutely live by her tagline, it doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful.
So what were my biggest takeaways from the course?
First: I had to "quiet the room". This meant that I needed to take out everything except the biggest pieces of furniture.
My husband is such a minimalist that he told me he would have been happy to stop right there.
I had to let the room sit, empty, so that when I put things back in, it would be with intentionality and purpose- and so that I could see what was really needed.
This wasn't easy for me, since this is a small house and almost everything that's out are things that we use on a regular basis- but it ended up being an important step. It made it easier for me to imagine what I could do with the room. Also, it made it much easier to move furniture around. Confession, I only made it for a day with a "quieted" room before I started adding things back in.
Second: Following the guideline of adding bigger rather than smaller items to the space helped get over my fear of a cluttered look.
Third: Making sure I had plenty of different textures in the room really helped make the room feel more cozy. I'll point out the ways I tried to do that in the pictures below.
You can learn about all these things (an much more) if you take the Cozy Minimalist course. It's not open for enrollment all the time, but you can put your name on a waiting list in order to be notified when it's open. I'm telling you because I honestly found this class to be of value to me and I want to share good things with you. I'm not an affiliate. Also, I paid full price for the class and I was never asked to write about my experience.
My dog, Genevieve, insisted on being in as many pictures as she could. Finding her in the "before" picture is like playing, Where's Waldo?
The rug brightens the room and makes everything feel cozy. This was a rug I had put in storage during an earlier stage of life, one that wasn't as conducive to white rugs. Now that my kids are older and we've finally gotten into the habit of taking our shoes off in the house, it finally works!
A much larger picture was placed on the fireplace wall. It's one of my favorite changes!
As you can see in the "before" photo, anyone who wanted to sit on the couch and watch t.v. had to look at it sideways instead of straight on. The new arrangement with the t.v. on the fireplace wall is now more comfortable. With such a long narrow room, it has been tricky to find the right furniture arrangement.
My desk used to be right next to the t.v. Now it's on the opposite wall with my back facing away from the t.v. as I work. It's much easier to focus on my work when I'm at my desk and someone else is watching t.v with this change. If I put on a pair of headphones, it's almost like I have my own office.
Some of my favorite ways to add texture to the room have been through my baskets, the white lambskin, and the big plant.
This gallery wall is something I love! Most of these pictures had been in storage because I was afraid of adding too much to the walls and making it look cluttered. But I think it works because there are some common threads that connect them. I also added some dimensional hangings for texture.
Though my husband joked about leaving the room "as is" after I quieted the room, he now says he's happy with the results. I am too. This entire project took me a few days and only cost $150. The only new things I bought were the lamps, the plant, and the large canvas over the fireplace. Everything else, I shopped from around the house or had in storage. I'm looking forward to doing some more make-overs on other rooms in the house. This was fun!
I hope that you enjoyed this little visit to my home.
Joining the Home Sweet Home link-up.