Decorating Dilemma

I have this innate ability to go absolutely boy decor crazy. I see a nicely put together room and my palms sweat, my heart palpitates and I get light headed. If I was in fourth grade, I would doodle on my trapper keeper with big hearts around it. Though I appreciate any well done decor, if it’s farmhouse chic or farmhouse contemporary I’m done for. I like mine a little more farmhouse than contemporary. Does that even make sense? What I’m trying to say is I like the clean rustic farmhouse look, not primitive.

I’m making no sense. It’s hot out. I’m actually sitting in AC, but I still hold my reasoning. So since I’m making no sense I’ll just show you photos instead. All photos are from A Life’s Design and Country Living.

Let me point one thing out about that last bathroom photo. I am an artisan soap maker, and the faucet which no one else would likely notice drives me nuts. I swoon over it. I’ve googled it (and ogled it), and I even had it on our wedding registry until Mr. A reminded me we don’t even have a sink yet for it. I didn’t care then, and I don’t care now.  I will build my entire bathroom around it. I’m a sucker for good plumbing fixtures. I am also on the hunt for a sink like that. It’s gorgeous.

Enough about that and back to what this post is about.

Despite knowing the exact style I love. I have no idea how to make it happen in my own home. If you need a refresher, I’ve been working on our livingroom to help get the equity in the house up, even though we plan on renovating the entire house eventually. To see how it’s come along so far, check out the posts here and here. To get you up to date even further, I have indeed picked out wall colors. I’ve been sitting on a post about it for weeks because I just had no idea where to go once I got the colors up.

So without photos, I will tell you that I realized my dream of crisp white livingroom was simply not a reality. I like color, a lot.I also live with two boys, two dogs and lots of dirt that gets tracked in. Nor am I someone who keeps my house spotless. I love the look in magazines, but it’s just not for our lifestyle. So I painted the wood paneling Copen Blue from Sherwin Williams, and the wall part a nice beautiful light gray tone, similar to this French Gray color, but a couple shades lighter and less blue. Oh hell, I need to find the name of it. I’ll get back to you. You get the gist though. We’re still deciding on a floor color.

What it comes down to is that I have no idea how to decorate with gray, and have it flow into the rest of the house which I don’t want gray. We have 30 yards of burlap from our wedding so Mr. A came up with the great idea to use it for curtains. Consider it done (it’s not done). I’ve been stalling hemming and hawing for weeks though when it comes to decor. I was in a rut.

I realized the other day the reason I absolutely couldn’t decorate was due to me trying to force the room to be something it’s not. This whole white/gray/blue thing just does not go with the rest of our house or our style. I need to work with what we have. What we have is a brown slipcover, two yellow dogs, lots of natural materials like burlap, baskets, etc in brown.  How could I tie it in though? Obviously gray and brown do not go together.


Yesterday as I was sitting outside getting inspired by nature I realized that brown and gray are everywhere together. It gave me the motivation to get my but back in gear. So that’s where we stand now.


Butt in gear.

Craft brain going nuts.

I have yet to finish a whole bunch of things off the livingroom list, but I’m happy to finally be out of my rut and to get going. I’m going to decorate the rest of the room. To tie in the light brown of the burlap with the gray, which seemingly do not match, I’ve decided to make some tan pillows with hand stitching in gray. More on those to come. The best part is in the end, if I still don’t like the gray I can simply paint over it. Oh the joy of paint.

To Do:

  • Prime the livingroom
  • Choose wall color(s)
  • Choose floor color
  • Paint walls (this is semi-done – I have one tiny little part under the stairs, to complete, which no one looks at anyway)
  • Paint floors
  • Buy an area rug, preferably a neutral color to help hide the dogs fur on those days I don’t want to vacuum (we all have them). Or, one with a big contemporary pattern on it
  • Make burlap curtains
  • Sew pillows to tie the brown of the burlap with the gray of the walls
  • Buy pillow forms from Marden’s
  • Cover couch
  • Find art for the walls, or take photos to make cheap art

Some of these things have been started, and I’ll get back to you as more happens. Sometimes all you need is to sit in nature to get over your “but they don’t match” rut and get going.

Happy Decorating,



2 thoughts on “Decorating Dilemma

    1. Thanks, Gina! I try to keep it as real as possible. Sometimes it’s so hard to translate your style into a room, especially on a budget!

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