1.24.2012

The Front Room...

Our front room has undergone a transformation! This room has had a bit of an identity crisis ever since we moved in. It's the second largest room in our house and it has only served one function: eating. That would be fine and dandy if we had a large home, but in our cozy home, this room needed to pull its weight. Thus the transformation.

Now this room serves 4 purposes: dining room, living room, sewing space, and entry. Talk about a workhorse! The transformation started taking shape in my mind this past Thanksgiving. I was sitting at my Aunt Debbie's house nursing Charlie in her living room when I noticed her amazing tufted, green velvet couch. When I asked her about it, she said it was my Great-Grandma Bartel's couch and that she was actually looking to get rid of it, but wanted it to stay in the family. I totally wanted the couch, but I had no idea where I was going to put it. John (and everyone else in my family, I think ;) thought it was hilarious that I was even considering adding a full size couch to our house. I thought about it for a few weeks, and realized that it wasn't going to work. I was bummed.

Pretty amazing couch, right?...

Then, a few weeks after Thanksgiving, I was at my friend Shelly's house and I was lamenting to her the fact that my dining room and family room were so disconnected from each other. I was getting so frustrated by the fact that Henry wanted to eat a snack or color while I was nursing Charlie on the couch 2 rooms away. I wanted to be able to do both activities in one room. Then, Shelly gave me the best piece of advice ever (she's an expert on making small spaces work for a growing family)...she told me that instead of complaining that I needed to reorganize, rearrange, purge, whatever, but I had to figure out a way to make it work. She suggested moving my sideboard and bookcases. So, as soon as I left her house, I came home inspired and moved things around. And, wouldn't you know it, the rearranging allowed me to fit a living and dining space in this room, AND that living space necessitated the addition of a couch, which meant that I was now able to inherit Great-Grandma's couch! (I'm not going to lie, I seriously prayed about finding a place to put that couch...I love it THAT MUCH! :)

So anyways, here's the updated front room:

I rotated the bookshelves and sideboard 90 degrees and moved the table directly in front of the window rather than having it in the center of the room. This allowed enough space on the wall opposite the window for the new living area...

I also spiffed up our entry area in order to make it more functional for us. I added a mirror and hung an old tin tray from Grandma Net's shed to the wall. The tray is magnetic, so I'm going to use it to hang anything that needs to be remembered when we walk out the door. Beneath the mirror and tray I hung a piece of twine and am using mini clothespins to attach Henry's Sunday School and Bible Study papers. This is working out so well for us because it means that all of his paperwork has a place to go as soon as it comes in the door. It also means that when we eat meals together we can take his papers down and talk about them while we eat. PERFECT! (and yes, I still have my advent calendar up...I didn't get around to doing much with it during December, so I thought I'd use it during January. But don't worry, I'm not doing much with it this month either. I just need to put it away :)


View from the boys' rooms. I still have my Christmas cards up, but I love them, so I like to leave them up for awhile...

Right now at the dining table we are using this old bench that used to be in my Grandma Sue's house. I believe she told me that her 5 girls used to eat their meals on this bench, so it's a special piece of furniture to me (it could use a new coat of paint, but it's good for now)...

We are also using 2 bentwood chairs to eat on. These were handed down to me from Grandma Sue as well. I love them. I'd love to have a few more...

This is what you see when you walk in the front door...

Here's the couch again...

Over Christmas break, Denise came over and helped me hang my gallery wall. I love it so much! I'm finally feeling like this room is a reflection of me, and I couldn't be happier about it...

I still need to get an 8x10 picture that will fit in the bottom frame correctly, but everything else is working on this side...

The right side of the gallery wall...

Not quite sure what I'm going to do with the 3 frames above the mirror, so I'm kind of ignoring them for now and just have a piece of twine hanging across them. And that heart banner was a feeble attempt at getting Henry to be crafty with me. I had a vision of how I wanted that banner to look and all Henry wanted to do was chop up my perfectly shaped hearts with his scissors. It turned out well, but that's because I did it all myself :) Maybe next year...

Here are the bookcases and sideboard in their new home. So.much.better...

Just a fun picture of an old fan I found at a yard sale in Fresno for $3...

And the mini party bunting...

So there you have it. The current state of our front room. It's working out fabulously for us and I feel super happy when I walk in there. And really, the only thing I bought for this transformation was the rug. Not too shabby. I'll post pictures of my sewing space later, once it's actually cleaned up :)

2 comments:

toni said...

Love the couch! And love your commitment to making small spaces work :)

Stephanie Ann said...

That couch is fabulous!! I love it!