Living Room

Living Room Before and After Blog Hop


If you're coming over from Up to Date Interiors, WELCOME!!! Who doesn't love a good blog hop?  You get to be a voyeur into other people's homes and styles without being a total creeper and peeking in windows.  When Stephanie from Casa Watkins Living invited me to define my design style and show the evolution of it in a room of my home, I was 100% in!!!



It's easy to forget that for every perfectly curated pinterest-worthy or instagrammed room, there's a round-about path that lead to that place.

My style today is eclectic, modern vintage, but it didn't always shine through like it does today.  Let's take an awkward journey through my living room over the past almost 6 years.  I cringe so hard when I look at the first version of my living room.  Aside from a new tv stand, I tried to make the living room from my old apartment work in this new smaller space.  Spoiler alert: it didn't!!  To recreate this amazing space, mix undersized artwork with furniture way to bulky for a small room, and add a big splash of brown (please don't).




The next iteration of the room definitely had a bit more personality, but still had a waaaays to go.  The mistake I made for YEARS, and should have known better, was trying to make pieces that I previously owned (and they weren't great pieces to start with!) work in this space as opposed to assessing the space, THEN designing it.  Are you all impressed with my perfectly lit night shot?  Oh the things you learn through years of blogging....



After years of tweaking small things and still not loving the room, I went back to the drawing board and decided to do what I should have done from the beginning and designed the room from scratch.  I coerced Hubby into a new sofa (huzzah!!!), painted the coffee tables gold, built a DIY corner bookshelf to fill the awkward space, and upgraded the boxy apartment left-over side tables with eclectic antique finds.  While I enjoyed this version, being the first room that you walk into from our front door, it was a bit of design overload in a small space.



Which brings us happily to the end of our journey and what my living room looks like today.  It's a fun mix of modern shapes and patterns, vintage furniture and quirky finds: hence my label of "eclectic, modern, vintage."






How can you get this look?  I recommend keeping staple pieces like a sofa and tv stand timeless.  In this case, I used a mid-century-modern inspired sofa and a vintage mid-century hutch-turned-tv stand to ground the space.



Especially in a small room like this one, think big to small: the bigger the piece, the more classic/versatile it should be, the smaller, the quirkier it can be.  This keeps the crazy-factor down to an interesting and intriguing level as opposed to sending your guests running.  For example- a hand-shaped vase as a book end: quirky.  a hand-shaped chair in a tiny living room: a bit too eccentric.



Shop this look:

Disclaimer: some sources below may contain affiliate links.  Shopping through these links will be at no additional cost to you, however will help support my design addiction so I can keep blogging about it.

While many pieces are vintage, finds from years ago, or HomeGoods finds that I can't find sources for, here are some similar items to get you started:

Furniture: Sofa, tv stand, coffee tables (painted gold), pedestal side table, side table with drawers, antique chair (needs reupholstery)

Lighting: Tripod floor lamp, ceramic table lamp, schoolhouse ceiling fixture

Decor: Starburst mirror, yellow stripe pillow, ukulele wall hook, vintage teapot (planter), wooden shoe mold, textured cookie jar, hand vase (painted matte white)


Hop on over to the next home on the tour, Kimberly's eclectic, boho, glam style on Swoonworthy.  Be sure to check out all the amazing style evolutions the rest of this week!








Casa Watkins Living

Polished Habitat

Lovely Etc.

Blue i Style

Organize Nashville


Roots North and South

My Life From Home

Monica Wants It

The Striped House


Pocketful of Posies

Up To Date Interiors

Copper Dot Interiors


PMQ for Two


The DIY Mommy

Boxy Colonial

The Happy Housie

Domicile 37

Willow Street Interiors


Cassie Bustamante

House Full Of Sunshine

Farmhouse 40

Iris Nacole























Modern, Funky, Glam

Do you ever start a room and then just get stuck on how to complete it or make it really shine?  This is such a common problem- you are not alone!  That's why I'm here to help! Lauren reached out to me for a bit of help on her new living room.  She had a great start, getting a new coffee table, sofa, and rugs, but then froze not knowing what to do next or how to make the pieces that she loved all work in harmony.  Gray sofa, neutral walls, & neutral but textural rugs... we're off to a great start!



While the current space doesn't show it, Lauren is certainly not afraid of color or pattern, so I decided to make it my mission to help her realize the modern, funky, glam space that I could tell that she was going for (even if she hadn't realized that's what she was going for yet ;-) ).

I started by pulling together an inspiration board.  My plan would begin with moody neutrals and I would layer on metallics, pattern, and a few bold elements.

modern funky glam living room inspiration board - via Year of Serendipity

inspiration: My Domaine, Domino, Hunted Interior, Urban Outfitters, original source unknown

From there I started to look at the individual pieces.  Lauren's gray velvet sofa was staying and the hopes was for the other, slipcovered one to be replaced by 2 side chairs.  The sofa has good bones, but I would remove all of it's matching pillows, start fresh and inject some funky glamour in the space.

modern funky glam design plan- via Year of Serendipity

1. oversize abstract art- buy larger and frame partial //2. brass task lamp //3. sofa (sim to existing) //4. locust throw blanket //5. campaign accent table //6. gray linen-like curtains- wall to wall //7. kilim pillow //8. metallic pillow //9. kilim pillow //10. swoop arm side chair //11. coffee table (sim to existing) //12. natural fiber rug (sim to existing) //13. faux fur rug (sim to existing)

I might even throw a fiddle leaf fig tree in the corner near the TV for a bit of greenery too.  I'm dreading the day that fiddle leaf figs go out of style.  They're such a fun, graphic way to add greenery without being too fussy!  A few differently shaped mirrors around the tv will help to anchor that wall as well.

When it comes to the design, it's all about balance.  It's always about balance and I feel like such a broken record.  The magic way to mix styles is to make sure that everyone has a buddy.  A metallic pillow will feel very lonely if there's nothing else shiny around it.... But this is a much larger post for another day.

If you're looking for some decor help, don't hesitate to reach out!!  Send me some images and info about your space and I'll send over a quote for your very own e-design.

I'm off for the rest of the week to bake, cook, wrap, and most of all celebrate Christmas with my family.  I hope you have an awesome week and a Christmas that makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.  ~XO Karen


Pillow Fight!

I hope you're enjoying a nice relaxing long weekend.  Can someone please explain to me how September just happened??  I digress.... Pillows!

Along with a new sofa comes the need for some new pillows.  Yes, the need.  I've come to the conclusion that it must be in the female DNA because men just don't get pillows.  Every single time I say something about a new pillow, Hubby responds with "ya know, I was just thinking we didn't have enough pillows."  You are right, Hubby, one can never have enough pillows!  Who's with me???  Pillows are a relatively inexpensive and non-committal way to instantly switch up a room.


Exhibit A- our new sofa.  While I love the simplicity of just the single center pillow (a HomeGoods find that I still adore), functionality-wise, we need to add a pillow on each side.  I want something fun and colorful that won't compete with the adjacent ikat chair or the orange/coral pillow.  That's not too much to ask.




  1. Fanner Diamond Pillow Cover in Platinum from West Elm.  Simplicity with artistic flare in the form of texture
  2. British Bouquet pillow from Caitlin Wilson Textiles.  Color and fun.
  3. Embroidered Dot Pillow Cover in Blue Lagoon from West Elm.  So pretty and simple.  It would be rather simple to take this as an inspiration and create a custom version.
  4. Paint Palette Pillow via Tonic Living.  The fabric itself is also available from Tonic Living and I think is the current front-runner in my sofa race.  An artsy floral with enough color that it can hold up next to the existing pillow.
  5. Blue, Purple, and Green Linen Pillow Cover from Pillow Flight on etsy.  This shop has such great affordable options!  I'm also a sucker for paisley-inspired florals.  I think I need to veer out of the box, though.
  6. Cowhide Pillow Cover from Wisteria.  I'm not going to lie and tell you I love the cowhide... It would not be very comfortable to rest your head on during detective show binge-watching... BUT I love the style/idea here.  Creating a pattern with individual fabric pieces and leaving raw edges- beautiful.  With felt, jersey, or some other cozy material I'd be totally sold.

I could day dream about pillows all day if I wasn't careful.  So many options!  Such pretty fabrics!  Endless possibilities!  I bit pillow-crazy? maybe!