Since this month marks the 6-month anniversary for Décorography, I thought I’d share with you an inside peek at what my members are doing in their homes.
When I was thinking about what stories from Décorography I wanted the whole world to know about, I kept coming back to Bonnie’s makeover. I’ll be honest when she first posted her living room, I didn’t love her orange sectional. But she had recently recovered it and wanted to make it work. And we did—you won’t believe how well an orange sectional can “fit in” with the right color scheme. (I am also totally in love with it now.)
When I first talked to Bonnie about her living room in the Décorography forums, she said she was looking for a more modern look. The first thing I pointed out was her almost monochromatic color palette. She had focal walls and a pretty loud color on the sectional, but really all the colors were just different shades of the same thing, so nothing stood out. I recommended trying a complementary palette with blue that would let the focal wall in the dining room and the orange sectional be the focal points.
What I love most about Bonnie’s makeover is how simple the changes were, but they made an incredible impact—one that is now trickling into all the other rooms in Bonnie’s home.
I recently interviewed Bonnie about her makeover. Sprinkled in with a heavy dose of inspiring before and after pictures, here’s what she had to say:
Let’s go back in time. Describe your living room before joining Décorography? What did it look like and how did it feel?
My living area basically consists of an L-shaped sofa, tv/entertainment set, shoe cabinet and a buffet table. The neutral walls were light yellow and the focal wall was yellow-gold. Generally the place felt clean and organised.
2. What decorating challenges did you face in this room?
I wasn’t sure whether I should keep the focal wall by the door yellow-gold as I’ve another matching focal wall in the dining area exactly opposite. Though I had already changed a couple of things, the whole area still didn’t seem put together. I had changed the main door, shoe cabinet, replaced the television entertainment set and even upholstered the sofa. With the new replacements it was slightly more modern, but still didn’t have the wow factor I wanted.
3. What made you decide to join Décorography? What were you looking for?
I joined Décorography because I wanted to learn more about interior design and see if I could improve my home.
4. In the last few months your living room underwent a big transformation. How did Décorography help you during this makeover?
With the tricks I learned in 7 Simple Styling Secrets, I restyled the top of my buffet table, shoe cabinet & more recently the tray on the ottoman.
I went through the video on Color Choice and learned about complementary color. Then I watched Creating a Cohesive Home with Color. I really wanted to figure out how to use color in my living room.
After that I went into the forum to write in my decorating diary and posted a couple of color questions. I received feedbacks from Jackie and other members. Their comments & suggestions made me want to try out a new Blue-Gray color on the wall in my living room. The complementary color palette that I first learned about in Color Choice sounded like the key to making my space feel more modern and getting the wow factor.
Jackie also suggested changing the focal yellow-gold wall near the door to Blue-Gray too. She said it would make the space feel more open and let the focal wall in the dining area at the far end of the room be the star.
In December, I watched the video on How to Mix & Match Patterns. This was really the icing on the cake for me as I learned how to pick the right pillows to match the whole new look and wall color.
6. What was your biggest ah-ha moment during this makeover?
After changing the focal wall by the door to Blue-Gray too, the whole place looks so serene and cosy with just one wall color.
7. What did you do when you ran into a snag or self-doubt with your project? Tell us about one of those snags or doubts and how you got the help or assurance you needed to move forward.
I had some trouble with the initial Blue-Gray paint, called Lake Stone, that I bought for the space. After painting just one wall, it felt too dark. I trusted Jackie’s recommendation and knew Blue-Gray is the color I wanted to complement my existing furnishings; the problem was just choosing the right Blue-Gray. So immediately I went out to get a lighter version of Blue-Gray called Blue Bash. It was perfect.
8. It’s a big myth that decorating has to be expensive. You made a dramatic change without a huge investment. Do you mind sharing how much money you spent on this makeover and what you spent it on? How much did it really cost you to go from the before to the after?
Note: Bonnie reported the cost in Singapore $. The grand total is converted to US dollars in parenthesis.
- Paint/brushes – $200 (including dining area)
- Turquoise table lamp – $40
- Fake plant, tray – $20
- Pillows, throws, fabric – $135
- Ottoman – $105
TOTAL $500 (about $400 US)
9. How did your space feel before the changes? How does it feel now?
I’ve always wanted a cosy feel in my living area. Before it felt neat and organised, but now it’s relaxing and inviting.
10. How have your family and guests reacted to the change?
Guests compliment the new look and family members feel it is more comfortable and relaxing now, too.
11. What’s your favorite feature of Décorography and how has it helped you in your home?
I enjoy watching all the videos as they are very informative. I also like the Décorography forum where I can post questions and get suggestions and feedback from Jackie and other Décorography members.
As you can see, Bonnie was already making progress in her home. But she still wasn’t achieving the modern feeling she wanted. In just three months since joining Décorography, Bonnie’s living room has undergone a complete transformation. Bonnie implemented what she learned in Color Choice, Creating a Cohesive Color Palette, 7 Simple Styling Secrets, and How to Mix and Match Patterns.
It’s been so fun to watch Bonnie’s living room progress and to support her along the way.
P.S. Download the Whole House Color Palette worksheet below to start working out the right colors to give your home a cohesive feel.
Free Step by Step Guide to Your Whole House Color Palette
Choosing color doesn't have to be complicated. Use this simple seven step system to plan your whole house color palette. Just tell me where to send your worksheet.