Living Room Design Dilemmas

Last night Jeff and I took a trip to target and picked up three prospective roman shades..(cause, you know, I can’t be expected to make an actual decision!)

Here’s a pic I snapped this morning (sorry its so dark, overcast skies today):

three roman shades from target

I definitely think I like the middle one best even though the color is much lighter (its almost an ivory) compared to the other two. The one on the right is bamboo rather than paper like the others and it just looks too reedy for my tastes.

Mrs. Limestone commented that she liked the windows better without shades because the shades cover up the window grills. Keeping that in mind, I wonder if it wouldn’t be better to get a roller shade? Roller shades are more compact in their “up” state than roman shades which seem to cover up at least 1/4 of the window even when up.. which also cuts down considerably on the natural light coming into the room.

What do you think of these, currently on sale at JC Penney?

JC Penney Roller Shades

JC Penney Roller Shades

The same shade also comes in Roman shade form (not shown in the”blonde sisal” color that I want though.)

So design dilemma #1 is should I get shades at all? If so, rollers or Roman?

I think taken by themselves roman shades are more elegant but I really like the idea of not seeing so much of the shades when they’re not in use. What do you think?

While at Target, I picked up the current issue of BH&G and was happy to see some really nice beachy cottage pics. The first spread seemed particularly relevant because they talked about how to get a beachy feel without an overload of starfish etc:

I really like the natural Sisal Rug in this picture as I was thinking about getting one before I saw this and now I’m even more convinced.

Notice the branches in the left corner!

I love the blue and tan and the glass accents.

Speaking of accents, I have one bit of wall space right above the TV that definitely needs some decoration:

TV corner

TV Corner, needs Art – Design Dilemma #2

I had been considering graphic beach themed prints, or branch type prints like the one in the first BH&G pic.. .. then I started thinking about how weird this whole beach theme is when I’m not really a beach lover per se.. which got me thinking how the situation reminds me of how we got married on the beach when we aren’t particularly huge beach people.. and then it hit me… our wedding pics are on the beach!

So now I’m thinking of maybe putting one of our wedding pics there. They are originally in color, but I think Black and white will look better in the room, maybe one of these:

I sort of like the last one because you can’t see our faces which makes it seem more abstract and because we’re walking its less posed and “portrait-like.”

To match the walls better, I might photoshop them to be black and ivory/cream vs. black and white like so:

Decorating-wise I think I’d like a branch print better, but it would be nice to have at least one wedding picture SOMEWHERE… those wedding photographers aren’t exactly cheap, so it would be comforting to actually get some use out of the photos (particularly because its becoming apparent that I’m never going to get around to doing an actual wedding album!)

And now, for our final design dilemma..

I found this totally adorable french country side table on craigslist:

country french side table

I’m not sure exactly where is a good place for it, but for $75 and right around the corner is it too cute to pass up?

Not a design dilemma per se, but while I’m soliciting advice from you all, what is your favorite source for throw pillows? I still haven’t found the right ones…


26 Responses to “Living Room Design Dilemmas”

  1. You guys are too cute!


  2. What about the old fashioned roller blings that have the cute little ribbon/strings that hang down so you can roll them up down. I miss those. My Mom had them everywhere in our house.


  3. blinDS not blinGs. Dang…


  4. Thanks Priscilla :)

    LOL @ Blings.. I’m not sure which kind you mean though, like these?


  5. I think you should try the roller blinds. My friend bought similar ones at Ikea, and they cut the light a little when closed (probably as much as the paper romans would) and disappear when raised. They have a very clean look to them.

    Your wedding photos are too beautiful to keep stored away! I vote for the “carry” one or the last “holding hands” one—all three are lovely. Have you considered one of the Ikea corner cabinets for your tv? Or are you waiting for an Ebay find that looks more shabby?

    Marshalls and TJ Maxx are good for pillows, but I have spent more at Crate and Barrel and been so impressed with the quality that I did not regret the price—and many of their pillows go on sale as they bring in new styles.

    I was looking back at your other posts, and as I am considering grey paint in my bathroom, wondered “what grey is that in the guest room?” I had to laugh when I looked further and discovered you were having the same problem with grey never being grey…I want a “silvery” grey and am considering BM “Marilyn’s Dress” (love the name) but am pretty sure it will be lavender (which can be pretty, just not what I want right now). Do you like the guest room now that everything is back in? The paint did look more grey to me in the photo with curtains up. Either way it is pretty!


  6. Hi Jane,
    I troll TJ Maxx and Marshalls weekly! I like C&B cushions too, but they rarely have prints.. I’m not sure I want solid color really. Will check them out again though.

    I do like the guest room color now that the black and white stuff is in there it sort of neutralizes it. It appears more lavender in person because in the pics I often have to lighten them up in photoshop and lose some of the saturation in the process. But its a decent color, it just kind of stands out as the one color in the house that doesn’t really fit in the palette! I’ll have to look up Marilyn’s Dress in my fan deck when I get home, I agree- great name!

    As far as the TV cabinet goes.. yeah, we’ve thought about replacing it. I don’t really mind the shape (it fits great) so much but the dark finish isn’t working so well. Jeff wants to shabby chic paint it but I’m avoiding having to choose the color! White, cream, blue, turquoise? Too many choices..


  7. Firstly… you might consider one large shade for all three windows? If you get one that rolls and installs directly onto the wall under your curtain rod, you could roll it all the way up and still see all the windows unobtructed? I dont know if I’m explaining that very well, but basically you could treat them as one large window. I bought my indoor/outdoor shade at Lowes in a darker color though, but I love being able to roll it almost completly up.
    Secondly, you HAVE to use your beach wedding prints somewhere in your room. They are perfect perfect perfect. Your house is just gorgeous!


  8. PS.. you can look at pictures of my shade in my archives, June ‘Not the Usual’ The pictures dont really do it justice, b/c the shades are much lighter than this. They also came in a very light shade that your wanting. I treated my large windows with one shade vs. three. Just an idea.


  9. like this…only you’d have to find a US seller (believe you can get them at Lowes, Ikea, etc.)

    http://www.roseblinds.co.uk/?i=16


  10. Smith and Noble is expensive but I love their inventory, I was considering roller shades for my front bedroom (for the same reason to block light, I have only sheers in there). I vote for photograph #1 above your television. That is a stunning picture and needs to be displayed. Also, I love your husband’s interest in shabby chic’ing things. I still remember my husband saying “it’s depressed,” when I first introduced him to the art of distressing. I think my husband would still prefer everything to be dark wood.


  11. I do really like the ones that Liz suggested from Lowes but they don’t come in 27″.. at least on the website, the smallest is 30″. Do you think they have more at the store?

    The only reason I don’t one one huge one is because we have a huge ac window unit in one of the windows and sometimes open just one of the three windows. I think its nice to be able to pull just one down, but maybe I need to rethink that.

    ILoveUpstate, I LOVE those blinds, I’ve never seen them before. The scallops are so cute.


  12. Hey, no one posted about the craigslist french table.. yay or nay?

    That’s what I get for cramming way too much into one post. Either that or y’all really hate it :)


  13. Hmmm… I remember they had a pretty big selection, but dont remember the exact sizes. Mine arent exactly on the nose, but my curtains on the sides hide the tiny gaps. But if your a perfectionist, it might drive you crazy. I didnt think about the air conditioner, that might throw a wrench in it. I love the scalloped roller shades too, those were adorable.

    I like the french table… by the way. It would look good with your new coffee table.


  14. I think I would like the roller shades better provided they were made of a natural material (the only rollers Ive seen are plastic). They arent as pretty as the pull ups but they let a lot more light in and have a smaller profile when closed. Perhaps you can paint the metal end bits white?

    I think a wedding photo up there would look wonderful. Not so much because its set on the beach really but b/c it personalizes the space and the photos are beautiful. I’d suggest keeping the photo small, and the matte large so its more of an art piece rather than a huge wedding portrait style hanging.

    My fav source for pillows is definitely Home Goods but Ive seen some nice ones at Kohls as well.


  15. I agree w/ Mrs. Limestone re: the picture. You should definitely do it, but keep the size of the picture small. My friend Amy has a massive (bigger than 11 x 14) wedding picture over her fireplace and it makes me giggle (and not in a very nice way…) everytime I come to their house. It sort of screams “look at me – I got married”. If it’s smallish with large matting…it would look beautiful.


  16. Liz, the size is too big not too small..so I wouldn’t have gaps but would have to cut them down.. which strikes me as a big PITA! Thanks for commenting on the coffee table :)

    Mrs. Limestone,
    Fantastic point about the large matte, that’s a great way to make it look good rather than cheesy so thanks for the suggestion! I didn’t see any that I liked last time I was in Home Goods, but I was looking with a different overall scheme in mind so maybe its worth another trip. We don’t have a kohls round here anymore :(


  17. Ariana, My response was already so long, I left out the table—which I love! :) lol at “too many choices…” I know! Because as soon as you mentioned turquoise, I thought, “Well then you could double mat the wedding photo with the inside mat showing a tiny accent of turquoise…”! Or try to bring in the pretty color from the coffee table… So now I am not really helping, just adding to your project list.


  18. I have a set of the lighter color Roman shades in the middle of the first picture. Unless they have changed the design recently, I wouldn’t buy them. I have had nothing but problems with the little plastic loops that the string runs through on the shade. The loops either split open or pull all the way through the shade. They have also gotten a little yellowed over time too. Just thought you might want to know.


  19. I just love your wedding pictures, especially the 1st one. You look so beautiful. WOW.
    The last one with your backs to the camera is a “walking off into the sunset..happily ever after” pic. Ahhh!!! You two look so much in love!!!
    Definitely put the pics in your room. You are newlyweds. Enjoy that special time.!!!

    anyway back to decorating
    I too had thought of the single shade but had noticed the air unit..humm decision.
    I vote for the middle shade…the color is so soothing.
    However I like the JC Pennys shade best!
    I too like roman shade better than roller but the roller are MUCH more compact and cleaner looking.
    As for the TV stand…paint it! Start with white you can always change to seafoam green!
    good luck. You go girl you rock!!!


  20. I don’t know how big you’re planning on going with the wedding picture (which I think you should TOTALLY DO).. but be sure to print a proof first lest the photoshop tweaking not look as good in person as it did on monitor.

    You probably already know this, but just thought I’d toss that out there :)


  21. I vote for the middle shade, but I like the JC Pennys shade best! The photo of you being carried is just great!!!


  22. Like the table, definitely go for roller blinds. I have double hung windows in my living room and the top half is french window style. I contemplated it for a long time, and roller blinds are the way to go. I haven’t done it yet mind you, but that’ll be the way to go when I do.

    I looked into top-down, bottom-up blinds as well. It might be an option – but they’re not cheap…I’ve only been able to find them done custom.


  23. off topic, but who did your wedding photography?


  24. […] don’t know if you remember that I decided I wanted roller shades as undertreatments in the living room because they have a smaller profile when in the […]


  25. love the table and would definitely go with roller shades. but i think the bigger issue is the photos!! hello? you too are way too adorable to not have your faces showing!


  26. Aw, thanks andy, I guess I picked the photo I did because its seemed more “arty” and less “posed wedding pic” to use the one where we’re walking away.. at least for this big picture. I have tons of other frames around the house that need to be filled and will use some of these other pics for sure :)


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