It turns out taking photos of the space is a little trickier now, as it's really easy to blow out the wall color (and then it looks crazy and bright blue, instead of luscious and dark). The color is still a little too bright in most of these photos (unless maybe your computer screen is darker than mine), but that's as good as it's going to get for now! I spent over an hour taking the photos for this post, then Chris and I spent several hours each last night editing them. Oof. Plus I'm still dying for a wide angle lens, but at least I'm getting better at stitching multiple photos together? And we have Photoshop again! Yay! I still use pixlr sometimes since the Photoshop is on Chris's computer, and it's ok and definitely helpful, but Photoshop really is so much better.
Mmm, mmm, blue. We cleared out a bunch of the extra glassware and stuff that was cluttering up the pass-through window between the kitchen and the living room, and now it's Bella's favorite spot to sit and survey her territory. I have to say though, now that the living room is all beautiful and blue, looking into the still peachy-pink kitchen next door is killing me! We've already starting plotting about paint colors and other little upgrades to bring the kitchen up to speed. Painting the kitchen is going to be a bitch compared with this one little wall, but I definitely learned a lot from my first wall-painting endeavor...
Here's a little gif of how it all went down:
Having painted only this one wall, I am by no means an expert, so if you're looking for a good step-by-step guide, check out this post from Making it Lovely, which I found rather helpful, though I should have read it more thoroughly and prepared accordingly before I jumped in! I ended up having to do FIVE coats of paint to get it right. Holy moly, was I frustrated when it turned into a full two-day process involving a second trip to the paint store.
1. Painting a light wall a dark color? Use primer, for goodness sake.
2. Get a roller cover with the right nap thickness. Borrowing an old roller cover from my landlord (along with the roller and paint tray) sounded like a good money saving tactic, but not only would a new roller cover have worked better just in general, this old one had like no thickness at all and thus was not putting nearly enough paint on my wall. I realized this when I went out and bought a 3/8" nap roller cover for day two. 1/2" might have even been better.
3. Overestimate how much paint you'll need, and buy enough the first time.
BUT it was all totally worth it, as now the living room is baller. You heard me. Baller.
I love the credenza against the blue (which is not nearly that bright... need to work on that), and I really love not having the tv on the credenza! Not only do I get to enjoy that gorgeous piece of furniture all on its own without any black holes on top of it, but I also don't have to look up to watch movies anymore. It was only a slight angle, but my neck feels so much happier now. We took one of our lawyer bookcases from the office/storage room to use as the tv stand, and it holds some Etsy items and some other random decor stuff.
That little strip of blue on the left is probably the closest to the actual color of the blue on the wall. We have a little library corner now, complete with our blue Eames chair, which makes me quite happy. I just realized there's one tiny random globe on top of one of the bookshelves... weird. We were planning to put things up there, but I don't know what happened to that. The next thing I want to do in this space is get new window treatments, because our current crappy beige blinds are really, well crappy... and warped, and just ugly. Unfortunately that will cost a little more money than I really want to spend so it will have to wait.
This is looking through the pass-through window from the kitchen for more library corner/Eames chair happiness. The books are definitely a busy area of the room to look at, but if you recall, they are organized first by category and then by color, in an attempt to make the books more searchable (category) and easy to look at (rainbow! ... kind of).
Oh hey crazy pillow couple. These throw pillows are weirdly hard and a little awkward as pillows, but so very good to look at. The lady is my favorite, and things would probably be a little classier in here if we just kept her and mixed her in with some simpler (and hopefully comfier) pillows, but I'm not sure I could bear to separate these two.
We're still loving our little mid century sofa, and we're happy to have finally found a good spot for our brass trash can. Not that I throw much garbage in there since I can't bring myself to put a liner in it... but it's so shiny and brassy and lovely! Plus it reflects the rug in a cool way in this picture.
Behind the sofa, you can see a little update we made to the living room closet (which is actually my clothes closet). We switched out the ugly pulls for these beauties from Anthropologie. They are the Lulu Knob in multi, and they made those boring white closet doors so much more interesting. I love that they are porcelain and look handmade--they have a cool geometric shape, but they aren't perfect, and the glaze is slightly different on each one. They were $8 each, which is on the low end for Anthro pulls, and I think they go a long way towards making this space feel more modern and fresh.
That is the new living room! What do you think? Thoughts on the new layout? Any other painting lessons you have learned? Tips for dark wall photo taking? Ideas for the kitchen? Cheaper window treatments?