Hello, Gentle Readers! It’s taken seven years, but I believe I’ve finally cracked the code on my living room.
I mean, why rush?
Laugh if you must (guffaw, even), but I maintain that it’s infinitely easier to work on other people’s houses than your own. Especially when you’re getting paid to work for others and not for yourself. (Quite the opposite, in fact.)
Anyway, here’s the finished — you heard right, darling husband: I actually said, “finished!” — living room:
I was feeling good about everything, but as the day of the photo shoot grew near, I felt something was missing. Can you guess what the “finishing element” was? The very last thing I did to the room (except the flowers)?
Isn’t that crazy? But everything was matching a little too well….it was, Yellow! Pink! Blue! And again! Yellow! Pink! Blue! Which I love, but I needed that kind of unmatched color. I needed some green.
Sound familiar? This is kind of what happened with the powder room. Maybe it was a vitamin deficiency.
And the green does match, of course: it pulls out greens from the artwork. But it doesn’t match any of the furniture.
Here’s where everything is from:
**Paint color** (added 4/25): Benjamin Moore, 343 Sunrays
Rug: Safavieh Soho collection, from some horrible online source
Drapes: custom, yellow faux silk from Stroheim & Roman, blue silk stripe from a discount shop in VA. Drapery hardware is Robert Allen
Sofa: Craig’s list, reupholstered in Robert Allen velvet
Pink chairs: the chairs themselves were to the trade, upholstered in a fabric from an outlet in North Carolina (but I think I tracked down the manufacturer at some point…Brunschwig? Can’t remember)
Round table in corner: Family piece, English
Horse sculpture: it’s leather! Junk shop – sorry, “antique shop” - in Royal Oak, MD
White lamp: thrift shop, St. Michaels, MD (12! The shade was $60, of course)
Sideboard: Family piece, English
Small chair: Family piece – my grandmother did the needlepoint on the back, which you can’t see, and the front is in a python pleather from Kravet
Blue lamp: Home Goods!
Art wall: various artists, but the oil paintings are by Elizabeth Brown via her shop on Etsy (it’s called, “Dragon’s Appetite”), and the two silver-framed etchings/engravings/drypoints (how do I have a master’s degree in art history? I never mastered the difference) are by Christina Dixcy, who now concentrates on large-scale photography. She’s my husband’s cousin, and we have several of her pieces…these were gifts when our twins were born
Coffee table: Room & Board (the Ikea one we spray-painted was ok, but we needed some white, and the glass was bugging me)
Pillows: green from C&B, as I mentioned, zebra from Mi Casa Bella on Etsy, and the blue and yellow ones I had made with fabric I found somewhere. Gee, that’s not very helpful, is it?
What makes the room look the best, of course, is professional photography. All of these pictures were taken by bossy color’s favorite photographer, Michael K. Wilkinson. Frankly, he’s a genius.
So there you have it, Gentle Readers! Bossy color’s living room, finished. For now.
Quoted in publications from The New York Times to The Washington Post to Real Simple magazine, Annie Elliott is considered an expert in color, residential space planning, and telling people what to do in the nicest way possible.