Thursday, October 6, 2011

Chiang Mai to the Rescue

The other week I shared the many updates I want to make to the kitchen/living/dining room area of our home.  I'm happy to say, update #1 has been completed. 

Our condo's main area is a long rectangular shape with a floor to ceiling window at the far end.  With so much wallspace, I wanted to create areas that serve different purposes, so the room doesn't seem so rectangular.  An example of this is the bench that's located in between the dining and living room that serves as a bridge between to the two areas.  This bench also provides extra seating around the dining room table when we're hosting a larger dinner party or holiday get together.

When we first bought the bench from West Elm (which is now on sale), it was easier to get the cushion that was already made for this bench. I always knew I wanted to update this I just wasn't sure what I wanted to do so decided the terra cushion would do until I figured out the right look.

Between the jute material of the cushion and the straight, solid, and heavy silhouette of the bench it had a rather hard look so in December I stumbled across this super-cheap fabric that I thought would add a little more glamour to balance the heavy edges of the bench.

But I still wasn't ready to commit to the leopard.  We have an orange chevron rug in our dining room that is right next to this bench (for dinner parties, this bench is on the rug) and the leopard print seemed to mimic the chevron pattern a little too much.  There was also way too much brown and I wanted something with more color and larger patterns.  Since I wasn't ready to commit, if you look closely, you can see how I've cheated these past 10 months with this fabric tucked under the jute cushion from West Elm.
Yes, totally busted.  Short term solutions can sometimes lead to tacky looking designs...

I finally decided I was ready to do something else with this fabric and perhaps in it's next life, we'll turn it into a pillow.  In the meantime, it's settled into my fabric closet quite nicely because that's a whole 'lotta brown on that couch.

I'm certainly in the majority when I say I've been obsessed with Schumacher's Chiang Mai fabric for quite some time.  Beyond just it's general gorgeousness, it also had the color story and the right sized pattern that was needed.  I finally decided it was a no-brainer to go this direction and the impact it would have was well worth the investment.  With the help of Katie from, Pop O' Color, she made this new addition to our home...

Katie also used extra Dwell Studio fabric I had to make these pillows.  I think these will be moving over to the couch soon, but the bench has been begging for pillows since the day we got it.

Let's take a moment to compare.  While going the Chiang Mai direction is probably a safe choice and certainly can't be described as a creative breakthrough for this room, without a doubt, it adds that color, character and interest that was desperately needed.

Ahh, this whole look just puts me in a happy place.

If you recall from the list of updates, #4 includes new artwork above this bench.  The scale is completely off and the colors just don't work anymore with what we currently have up there. Stay tuned for an update on the new art that will be arriving in a couple short weeks.

So, back to the list of updates for this room...1 down, 16 more to go.

#1: Update the bench with new pillows and bench cushion#2: Wallpaper the hallway
#3: Change the coffee table
#4: New Artwork above the bench
#5: Change the shape and add extra mirrors above the couch
#6: Seperate seating area in living room
#7: New Curtains
#8: Wallpaper Nook
#9: Ottomans
#10: Shelving/Divider
#11: Update Centerpiece
#12: Plants
#13: New Artwork
#14: End Chairs
#15: New Bar Stools
#16: Backsplash & Lighting
#17: Media Area



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