Refresh Your Rooms – The Family Room, Part 2

Yesterday, I talked about creating zones for different activities in a family room.

Today, I’d like to show you how I freshened up our family room for very little money.

Rearrange the furniture

As with the living room, an easy and free way to freshen up the family room is to rearrange your existing furniture. The TV used to be on the shorter wall. When we moved the TV, we had to split the sectional up because it wouldn’t fit along the wall. No big deal. Trial and error reigns supreme. Move it around until it feels right. If you don’t like it, you can always move it back.

Add pillows

OK. If you’ve read my blog for any length of time, you know I love pillows.

You can’t tell in this picture, but these pillows are actually a very light green silk with just a touch of sheen. I bought three of them at Goodwill for $3 each. Can I just tell you what a good deal these were? Not only are they like new, they have a zipper so they can be laundered. Always a plus in a household with kids.

(In case anyone is wondering about the bed bug scare, I did leave them in our garage for a week before I brought them inside:)

Then I added in a comfy throw that was a Christmas present from my sister-in-law with two of my new pillows. Here is the couch now:

On the other part of the sectional, I used the other new-to-me pillow from Goodwill and paired it with a new $15 pillow from Target.

I just love the texture and colors in this crewel fabric:

The two brown pillows I already had. Total cost for four new pillows: $24.

Give your furniture the slip

The ottoman was bought new with the sectional. However, it was showing some signs of wear after almost seven years of abuse very active twin boys.

What to do? Sew a slipcover.

Now before you stop reading, hear me out. I am not a seamstress. I can only sew a straight line on a good day with my bottom-of-the-line sewing machine.

I didn’t have a pattern. I just googled “how to sew a slipcover” and used a very vague tutorial on e-how.

OK, so it was a little more involved than I thought. And if you come over, please don’t look too closely because you will see all my mistakes. However, for $10 worth of cotton duck from Walmart, it works for us.

Why white? One word. Bleach.

But now that the ottoman was sporting a new white slipcover, it looked bare.

I found a solution and it only cost $5 – a thrifted woven tray. It not only adds functionality to the space (hello snacks), but it adds some much needed texture in this neutral room.

Shop the house for accessories

The top of this pie safe had become a catch-all for all sorts of stuff. I returned the wayward items to their homes and then gathered up some different accessories I already had on hand.

When I get bored with the new look, I can always shop the house again. To me, that is part of the fun.

Money spent: $0.

Add some texture

Fabric isn’t the only way to bring a bit of texture to the room.

To go along with the subtle coastal vibe that’s already going on in the space (pale blue walls, white slipcovered ottoman, enlarged photo of a canoe), I took some twine and my trusty hot glue gun and set about wrapping this plain lampshade to give it a brand new look.

Total cost: $3 for a spool of twine from Walmart.

Use old things in a new way

See the stand that the lamp is sitting on? It’s not really a stand. The “stand” is really just two speaker stands, one on top of the other. This was Tom’s idea and I think it’s pure genius:) (Honey are you reading?)

I do tease him, though, because the speakers that set on these stands are seriously taller than our seven-year-olds!

And yes, he still has them. They are stored in our basement. They only materialize when he busts out his turntable and kicks it old school style. I’m not exaggerating…

Fresh air

My last tip for breathing new life into your family room, is just that.

Open up the windows for about 10 minutes and let your rooms breathe in some fresh new air.

Chasing out any stale air will do wonders for your room — and give you a nice little lift, too.

Have you enjoyed this series so far?

In the next couple of days, I’ll share with you ways to refresh the bathroom, laundry room and maybe, just maybe, my office. It’s still a work in process, but that is part of the fun.

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Published in: on January 11, 2011 at 12:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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