Today’s post is gonna be pretty long, so grab yoself a cup of coffee or tea and settle in for a spell while we talk about my journey to decorate my living room on a budget. This room has been a long, slow process of trying a million different things until I got it “right.” I go through a lot of back and forth, trial and error, victories and losses before I get a room the way I want it, then it pretty much stays that way for the most part until something doesn’t work for my family and then I re-adjust things. Before we jump into what it looks like now, let’s look at how my living room looked just a few months ago, during the Summer Tour of Homes….
The new sofa! My daughter (Lala) moved out into her first house and she and her roommates had NO furniture, besides the things in their bedrooms. My old couch was still in great shape, but after buying some new chairs and playing with the arrangement, I was fairly sure that a sectional was the way to go. So I went on a quest for a new one so she could have my old one.
The mister and I took a day trip back to where we bought our old sofa nearly 4 years ago. The Pottery Barn outlet is kind of hit or miss, but if you go with a general idea of what you’re looking for, then you might be surprised at the deals you can find. I knew I wanted a sectional that you could buy a pre-made slipcover for. Yes, I can make them, but it seriously takes nearly 40 hours to do it for a regular sofa, so I knew a sectional would take me even longer (I’m a slow seamstress.)
With that in mind, we looked all around and found the two ends of the sofa in a different spot than the center. Originally we were going to buy the ends then order the center, and then we found one. But, it’s a different color. I looked online and to buy a new Cameron Sectional from Pottery Barn would be over $2100, plus an additional $800ish to buy a slipcover. I found all three pieces for a total of $900. I ordered the matching corner slipcover (with a coupon code) for under $200, so all total I’ve spent about $1100 for a $3000 sofa – not bad, huh? And I got to take it home that day (usual wait is 10-12 weeks).
The bad part? The new slipcover won’t be here until mid-January. Drats. I think I’m going to try to dye the center section gray to get it in the same ball part until it arrives, but I know it’s coming and I’m not super worried about it. And yes, a new slipcover isn’t cheap – but I can basically have the look of two different couches if I purchase the white slipcover from them (when my bank account recovers!)
Whew! That was a lot, huh? I moved the blue chairs (those beauties are from Urban Outfitters) to the other side of the room, and I was surprised that the whole area finally (FINALLY!!!) seemed “put together.” It’s a long, skinny room with lots of doors and walk throughs – so it literally took me 10 years of trying to get it right.
Now the room seems warm and inviting instead of too big and cold.
And I can never seem to stop myself from adding in cute junk that I love. Because if you’ve gotta have stuff, why not make it stuff you love?
And I love my superhero pillows. Amen.
Let’s talk a sec about the cheap stuff. See those pillows? The blue one with the triangles is from H&M and was $4. The gold one up front? That little rock star was $5 half price at Hobby Lobby.
Wonder how my living room looks so neat? It’s because I’ve added in a TON of hidden storage. These baskets hold everything from Brady’s toys to random socks awaiting their mates from laundry jail. Shhh… let’s keep that a secret.
The blue cabinet under the TV? A $13 Goodwill find that I gave a makeover. It holds all of our TV equipment.
And this is my newest piece – a huge industrial style cart we built for our living room. Tutorial on this baby coming soon!
The gold table between the chairs? It was $18 on clearance from Target. The rug? On sale at Homegoods. So many great bargains all packed into one room, but I feel like it doesn’t really look that way. It’s because the better quality furniture brings up the effect of the cheaper things we add to fill it all in. It’s like a really great dress with some Forever 21 jewelry, it looks great and no one knows the difference.
So that’s my fresh living room on a budget. And, as a last note, I just want to add, it took 3 years to cultivate all the stuff you see. It wasn’t put together in a day or even a month, it took years because that’s what makes the magic happen. And while I realize that my style isn’t for everyone – at least I feel like I’ve found something that truly reflects our family – our personalities, our needs, and that’s what home is all about.