I am a Canadian with a holiday home in South Africa. It is beautifully located at the mouth of a river, looking out to the Indian Ocean. My husband and I spend three or four months here every year, and we hope to retire here soon. We’ve done a big renovation and the house provides a beautiful canvas for decorating. I’m very lucky, and, like many of your readers, I am afraid to mess it up!
My current decorating challenge is the TV room. Plan and photos attached. It’s such a large room that I am not sure how to furnish it. There is only one logical wall for the TV, but it means the couch turns its back to the beautiful view (opposing focal points!). I’m not sure what to do with that space behind the couch, in front of the sliding door. My other issue is that I am trying to achieve a “modern beach” look (not too themed, and a bit quirky) and I’m not sure how to do that with my chocolate leather sofa. It’s discouraging me a bit. The floors are original glossy pine. My colour palette through the house is green and blue, keyed on the backsplash tiles in the kitchen (and other utility rooms).
I’d really appreciate your suggestions in terms of furniture layout, TV wall, rug style, lighting, and how to keep the room feeling light and breezy.
In terms of furniture, the chocolate sofa (and the TV) are the the only things I have to keep. I love the wooden Morris chairs (re-upholstered both) but I can use them elsewhere. I’ve attached a couple of other photos to show you where I’m at. I am trying to use your advice to improve all my rooms, thanks for your great blog and also the webinars.
Thank you so much for your suggestions.
All the best,
What a beautiful property you have! I made a floorplan for you. Admittedly, I did not have dimensions, but it looks pretty close to me.
Let me tell you what I've done.
- Whenever you have a window like the window that Monica has, that is so high from the floor, (adjacent to the TV wall and the view wall) it is saying to you, "Put a piece of furniture under me." Frequently- I would make that a large piece, like a sofa. I added a sofa table to give you more light sources, and help to fill the space. The vertical space, that is the plant and lamp, that I put on the sofa table will come up high enough to overlap with the window, and make it look like it is in exactly the right spot. Whereas now, it looks like it is awkwardly high and out of place. Get a high enough table that this works. I would try to find one as tall as the back of the sofa, no taller, no shorter, nice and long, like my floorplan.
- Notice the size of the console under the TV- remember that this piece should have a size relationship with the size of the wall that it is on. I helped to fill the wall space, and add atmosphere, by adding two sconces to this wall.
- Whenever I have a focal point opposite another focal point, I immediately think, can I use two sofas opposite one another, or a balanced approach like this one, with the one sofa adjacent to the focal points, with two chairs balancing it out?
- Another thing I think of when I have two focal points opposite one another is, can I use a backless sofa, or ottomans that can be sat on in both directions? I picture this piece being used to gaze at the beautiful scenery, or view the television.(Marloew Daybed by Crate and Barrel)
- I put a desk at the top of the stairs. Really any case piece or bench that would suit your needs would work.
- I used a 9 x 13 rug. Make sure you don't go too small in such a large space.
- While the rug is simple, you can go bold on a blue coffee table.
- Just because the window is so high up, doesn't mean your drapery panels can't go to the floor. I would add two drapery panels here, and a large collection to the left of the view window that is all stacked off, and yet still available. This will add softness, pattern, texture, a vertical rhythm, and color to your space. So don't go tell me that you have privacy and don't need them. I don't care. ;-)
- (drapery fabric by Waverly)
- You mentioned that you wanted a "modern beach" look. The two things that invoke that atmosphere more than anything else are the seagrass rug, and adding grasscloth wallpaper. The atmosphere is created in the floors and walls so much more than it ever can be in just accessories. Trying to do it with accessories only is what makes things look "overly themed" rather than sophisticated.
Good-luck with your project in far away South Africa!
I am really excited about this week's webinar. I am going to share the "tricks of the trade' that make all the difference from a room or space looking "disjointed" and chaotic compared to unified and beautiful. I will give specific on everything from furnishings to the smallest accessories. Especially if you feel like you need help accessorizing, this workshop is for you. ;-)