Portfolio : a "Feng Shui-ed" living-room (1/2)

Monday, August 25, 2014

Some of you already know that I was about to launch a small decorating business back in France before we heard about our upcoming move to England (last December). I'd already done a few projects to start a portfolio.

But when my friend Christine asked me to help her redecorating her living-room, she didn't expect a whole "from floor to ceiling" renovation ! She initially asked me if I could paint some of her furniture and move a few frames ... Since she'd hired a Feng-Shui specialist a few months before that to study her house, it became quickly obvious that the makeover would be much bigger than she thought. So I answered with a complete redesign plan that led to this radical transformation.

Please, allow me to spread this post over two days, because I have A LOT of pictures to share! So first thing first, here's how her living-room looked before :
Dark walls, dark floors, poor lighting, heavy furniture and the layout wasn't ideal. The whole room was a bit sad and not at all representative of my "client's" bright and happy personality.  
So a lot of potential, but also a lot of work.

But first, we needed a blank state to create a more modern and elegant interior and basically: light, light, light !! She was ok to sell most of the furniture, but the sofa and the armchairs had to stay. Then our priority was to remove the dated (and very colorful) wallpaper.
And to replace it with a very light, slightly shimmery, grey one. We also gave the ceiling a fresh coat of paint.
The fireplace's tranformation played a great role in the project. It was quite a heavy and obvious element, but not in an interesting way, and Christine asked me to find a way to minimize its impact in the room. So I had a mirror cut to size and it virtually made it disappear ! It was a good solution to bring in more light as well. I also decided to paint the bricks in a black/grey combo.
She will probably get hardwood floors in the future but they weren't quite fitting the budget at the time, so I suggested painting the tiles ... and I had some stripes in mind, like in this gorgeous living-room:
When I first told my vision to my friend, she was a bit sceptical, but she got on board eventually. She agreed that it would give a lot of personality to the room. We used a paint designed especially for tiles, and just in case you were wondering, after a few months it is still holding great.
It was a small budget project so we did all the work ourselves. I am not a painter, nor a wallpaper profesionnal, and let me tell you : it's been quite an adventure! Thankfully, our hard work has often been rewarded at the end of the day with great wine and good food, and since the kids were away during the works, it felt like a vacation... (a special thanks to my in-laws for that and to my husband who gave us a hand !)
We changed most of the furniture and the layout as well. It took us about a month to get everything done and we both loved those few weeks. More importantly, she's now thrilled with her brighter and more inviting living-room. Reveal to come tomorrow !


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