Before: Listless Living RoomSamantha and Greg Hubley have had a breeze with renovating and remodeling their home. However, everything came to a screeching halt when it came to their living/dining room combo. They want it to reflect their personal style but have become paralyzed with the fear that they'll mess it up. They look to designer and host Karen McAloon to help them face their biggest design challenge.
Samantha and Greg have a living room/dining room combo filled with furniture from different phases of their lives. They have a lot of contemporary furniture, like the matching couch and loveseat, but are venturing into modern territory with their latest furniture purchases. The new tables are traditional in line and style, but the finish on them is very modern. "That tells me you're trying to move in a new style direction, but you're a little scared. So you're choosing something that's safe in shape and you're trying to go out on a limb with the texture, which is modern," McAloon assesses. "It's not always easy to combine a living room and a dining room and that's where Samantha and Greg have gotten lost. Every room has style clues, you just need to know where to look."
After: Contemporary and ModernNow this room is a cohesive living area that truly represents Samantha and Greg. The cream-based rug complements the couch nicely, and the bold green graphic pulls it into the modern category. The once-bare windows now sport luxurious floor-to-ceiling silk curtains. McAloon doubled the fabric to create extra depth. The orange accent pillows add an extra pop of color for a perfect finishing touch. "My favorite thing is how open the room feels," Samantha said. "I can't wait sit on the couch and relax and watch movies together!"
Paint colors: Aura by Benjamin Moore
Walls: Whitall Brown
Before: Crowded Dining AreaThe dining room has a good feel and layout, but the wall of mirrors to the left of the table (not shown) are making the space seem smaller than it actually is. Add to that the large rectangular table and adjacent storage cabinet and you're at maximum capacity. "When you're in a confined space like this, with a lot of furniture and a busy rug, reflecting all that back just makes the room seem that much more crowded," McAloon says.
After: Spacious and Sleek"Before the dining room had oversized furniture, just didn't match and it was not working," Greg said. "Now the dining room is inviting and fun, and I can't wait to have people over for dinner parties," Samantha adds. The mirrors have been replaced with oak veneer squares in a grid pattern to create a very modern element. The rectangular table that was there before made the room appear shorter, while the new circular glass table allows light to pass through from the ceiling to the floor, which gives the room depth. Dark tableware placed between lighter place mats and napkins adds further depth, and the orange floral tablescape creates warmth and texture. A smaller storage unit between two of the windows and more floor-to-ceiling window treatments contribute to the new open feel.