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decorating

Mac01's picture

decorating (post #175873)

My husband and I just purchased a condo and have bpught new living room furniture. We purchased a couch, chair, ottoman, and chaise. The furniture group is very contemporary black leather. I desperately need decorating suggestions, and ideas for making the space more colorful, warm, and inviting. Any tips?
Thank you.

(post #175873, reply #1 of 15)

Ok, I'll reply just for kicks--I'm no decorator. From what I've seen in magazines and so on, throw pillows, shams (or Afghans or whatever) and rugs will add color. Are there windows?--drapes or other window treatments help. Lamps, tables. Paintings, sculpture. The little waterfall thingies.

(post #175873, reply #2 of 15)

Thanks for replying. I'll see what I can find.

(post #175873, reply #3 of 15)

Your welcome--I was kind of brief because, like I said, I'm not really a decorator, but I think if you pick one or two colors as a theme and use throws and pillows and rugs and swags in those colors and then pick an accent color (since your furniture is black) it could look real nice. What color(s) are your walls and floor? Unless you can or want to change those, those might be the major colors you work with and make the accessories harmonize with them and pick smaller things with the accent color (can be a complentary color. (If walls were red, then green would be the complementary accent color.)) Have fun! (Metalics can look very good with black too--chrome, bronze, brass, etc. and so can stone and ceramics.)

(post #175873, reply #5 of 15)

My walls are an off-white shade and the carpeting is a light/medium beige. Very boring colors! I like a lot of color and my husband is a bit more muted, so we compromised; however, the shape and style of this set we purchased doesn't look right with pillows, and I have to find artwork for the walls and other accent pieces which should inspire color ideas. I would like to paint the living room, but the floor plan is open and I wouldn't know what to do with the kitchen. I also thoght of putting hardwood flooring in, but my husband and I aren't very good with that stuff and we are concerned with expense.
I do like the suggestions you gave and will keep them in mind. Thank you so much!

(post #175873, reply #6 of 15)

Again, you're welcome. I guess you're right about pillows on (leather? think that's what your first post said) furniture. My church helped a woman in Biloxi after the hurricane and we figured $4000 to have a Pergo-type laminate floor installed in a dining room/living room about 16 x 14 (I'm sort of guessing at the size--may be a bit larger).


A nice area rug could add color though--and be easily removed if you get tired of it and want to change the color later.


Plants in decorative containers also just came to mind. There are also gas fireplaces that look real and don't need vents to the outside. That would add a warm look as well as really adding physical warmth. Lighting too can really make or break a room.


If you decide to paint, they now have samples in real small containers so you can paint a couple square feet to see what it looks like. (I would consider painting a movable panel and not right on the wall, so if you don't like the color you don't have to paint over it.)

(post #175873, reply #7 of 15)

You are correct, the furniture is black leather. To make sure I understand, you suggest placing a small rug on top of the carpet? That's interesting, I have never thought of that.

(post #175873, reply #8 of 15)

I'm not a decorator either, but here's a few ideas from another homeowner. In addition to the rug on the carpet, which can help define your seating area, as I understand it you have yet to buy accessory tables. These can be colored (if you are OK with painted wood), or you can place your color on them. For example an intensely colored vase or table lamp with a bright shade, or even a floor lamp with the same. While pillows might not look great to your eye, I've often seen colored throws (small blanket) draped over the back or the ends of leather sofas. Then there's art on the walls, drapes on the windows, and perhaps just one more chair that is upholstered (if there is space) with color.


I wouldn't go with the ventless gas fireplace that Danno suggested, I've read about problems with their safety.

(post #175873, reply #9 of 15)

Thank you very much. I will certainly keep your thoghts with me as we decorate.

(post #175873, reply #10 of 15)

To be honest, I forgot you said you had carpet, but yeah, as "aimless" said, you could put a rug on the carpet, and it would help define a grouping of furniture as a "space." Can also define areas with lighting and with lowered ceilings (or raised, but lowered would be easier in your case)--in another discussion someone wanted to define a dining area and the suggestion was to suspend a wooden framework with lattice or egg crate and lights from the exiting ceiling.


I didn't know there were problems with ventless fireplaces, in that case it's not a good idea. There are gas-log type fireplaces that vent to the outside with a PVC pipe, though, IIRC, and that would be fairly easy to do.


I guess from your description, your theme would be "modern" and in that case, simple and more high-tech things would fit the theme.


Edited 4/3/2006 7:53 am ET by Danno

(post #175873, reply #11 of 15)

Thank you.

(post #175873, reply #4 of 15)

There are 2 back issues of Inspired House which have articles on using color. The most recent was only a couple of issues ago and they talked about using color to dress up neutrals (like black) and ways to go about it. Not sure of the issue number, but if you do a search you should find it.

I'll refresh this old thread, (post #175873, reply #14 of 15)

I'll refresh this old thread, because I have a similar problem :)
I am looking for a cheap set of furniture for the nursery to the amount of £ 500. It's a pretty big room, it has 18m2. The walls in the room are green and the floor is wooden. My daughter is 8 years old. I looked on the internet sets of furniture and paid attention to "KARI - Children`s Room Set" of http://www.impactfurniture.co.uk/ for £ 478.00. Maybe some of you have those furniture? Do you think it's a good price for the set?

I recommend this gallery: (post #175873, reply #15 of 15)

I recommend this gallery: http://tinyurl.com/c37s9x6


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville