Mid-Century Modern(ization)

Redefining modern for a family-friendly home

Finally, a Living Room for …Living


Monday’s post made me realize that I never debuted our living room after the couch arrived and we made it all cozy with cute pillows and throws.  Let’s quickly travel back through the last six months, shall we?

When we first toured the home, the living room/dining room looked pretty rough.  Too  much (oversized) furniture, heavy drapes, and a partition that really broke up the space in an odd way.


Clear of all that furniture it was certainly looking larger, if not dirtier.

The day we got the keys I ripped out all the carpet.

And on Day Two we scrapped the curtains and laid new flooring.IMG_0550


For months, we saved our pennies for a couch large enough to fit the space and in the meantime the living room served as a play room more than anything.  I did paint that cool bicycle canvas for the dining room though.  Love that thing!
We even became proud owners of a huge triceratops, but even Cera couldn’t fill this giant space!

On Thanksgiving we pulled in the furniture from the den just so our guests would have a place to sit.  It was fun to see the space actually looking like a living room! New curtains also helped immensely.
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A few weeks later our couch finally arrived and here it is today.  It’s comprised of six reconfigurable pieces which is neat because we can switch up the layout if it gets old.


We have a coffee table that’s in storage.  It’s an old factory cart that needs refinishing.  I can’t wait to bring it in here, but the weather needs to warm up so I have space to work on it.

I went with a navy/teal/yellow color scheme for the couch.  I thought it was bold and fun without getting too crazy.  I want the room to be playful and mature at the same time.  …Is that even possible?



Behind the couch we turned our old Ikea shelves on their sides.  The are the perfect height for setting down drinks and work great for hiding toy bins and Logan’s books!


On the list of things we still need to do:

1) Paint the walls.  Especially the wall where the previous owner painted around an enormous cabinet! (EDIT: Done!)
2) Scrap the brass fireplace insert (EDIT: we painted it matte black instead. Read about that here!)
3) Do away with the dated track lighting in the dining room
4) Hem and line those embarrassingly long curtains!
5) Paint the beams and the window trim (ugh! not looking forward to this AT ALL)
6) Find a couple cute mid-century chairs to bring some color onto that wood paneled wall. Or maybe just a bench?
7) Figure out the space above the fireplace.  Maybe paint the wall a contrasting color? Hang some new art? Embrace the existing art? (EDIT: we painted a Bermuda Blue feature wall surrounding the fireplace all the way up to the ceiling.  You can check it out here!)


I’ve been trying to research this metal sculpture we inherited.  I’m not sure if it’s worth anything, but it might be.  The signature says “Levitt” but I’ve not been able to find anything on him using the Google machine.  Might paint it, donate it…not sure.

Now, here’s something I’m really proud of.  I wanted to make sure we didn’t buy this awesome couch and never sit on it (since we also have a den right next door where we’ve happily snuggled and watched TV for the last 6 months), so I made a simple change that would ensure we would use this room to the max: I swapped the cable boxes.  It sounds silly, but I think this might have been my most ingenious idea to date!

See, we have standard cable in the master and the den, but with the main cable box in here this room now gets about triple the channels than the others.  It also is the only room with the ability to record programs and, since we watch most of our TV after it airs (so that we can fast forward through commercials) this works like a charm!

Also, I’m loving the light that comes in these windows — even with the curtains closed they are thin enough to keep the room nice and bright while still maintaining a warm and cozy feel.  Check out this light we get in the late afternoon.

Swoon.  (also, Cera still resides here…can you spot her?)

So, I’m excited to report that we’re now spending a lot of time in this room which makes me really happy.  Nothing worse than buying a house with rooms you never use, right?

Ok, one more before and after for posterity.





Still a ways to go, but so much progress is happening here! YAY!


Author: Olivia @ Mid-Century Modern(ization)

I am a wife, mother, and writer. I am also a crafting, furniture-refinishing, home-designing nut.

7 thoughts on “Finally, a Living Room for …Living

  1. It looks fantastic. My color palette for our new living room is grey, yellow and blue, but more of a lighter blue/green. You said you’re planning on painting the beams? Is there wood under there? Can you scrape paint instead? Or is it just me that loves exposed ceiling beams? Xx! É

    • There IS wood under there! In fact, all the windows are framed out nicely in what should be a nice wood tone too. I think I have some photos from some similar homes that have it au natural! I should do a post on that. But yes, we have considered stripping the existing paint … we’re just not sure that’s the look we’re going for which is why we’re choosing to live with it for a while. Who knows what we’ll end up doing!

  2. Pingback: Wood Trim: To Paint or Not to Paint? | Mid-Century Modern(ization)

  3. I followed your link from Centsational girl. I have to say, wow! I love your home and the changes you made. Very nice :)

  4. Pingback: How Do You Measure, Measure a Year? | Mid-Century Modern(ization)

  5. Thanks for this post! We just purchased this sectional. While very excited about it, I’m nervous about how it’ll hold up over time. Since the cushions aren’t removable, I worry they’ll get lumpy since they can’t be flipped. How is your sofa holding up? And did you happen to purchase the Macy’s warranty? Thanks!

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