A little over a year ago, we closed on this 1970s ranch style house and started a long (and sometimes painful) renovation. It was a crazy year full of stories I only tell when I'm drinking with friends. Haha! But we're on the other side now, and I can honestly say we LOVE this house. And we never want to leave. So I guess it was all worth it, right?
And as an added bonus, I now have dozens of progress reports to share with you guys!!!! Wooooo!
So let's start with our dark red and green den. First, a walk down memory lane…
This room had a very dark color scheme, dark wood shelves and a dark stone fireplace. You can see the before version of the whole room here. The fireplace was actually a deal breaker for me. I told my husband if he wouldn't let us paint it, that I didn't want to look at the house. He was definitely hesitant about painting the stone, but he agreed.
The bookshelves are BIG and they were very pretty. I fully expect at least a few of you to say you like the "before" better. It's cool. 🙂 However, as pretty as they were, they didn't fit my vibe and style at all, and I knew I wanted to paint them bright, fresh white. Sometimes you just know!
It was a big project and a risk, but I am SO happy with the result!
We did paint them ourselves, and my only tips are to use a stain-blocking primer (blocking 40 years of furniture polish is hard, you guys!!!), and get advice from a professional when choosing your paint.
We decided to contrast our mostly white room with a dark charcoal gray on the walls. The shelves, the white stone fireplace and one white shiplap wall take up most of the visual space, so a little pop of dark wall color seemed to fit. I could write a book about how much I hate choosing gray paint. This one is pretty, but it comes off as navy in some photos, and I still think I might change it in the future (and this is the second gray color we've had up!). Uhhhhh! It's pretty for now, though.
My bullet planter is from Hip Haven, by the way. The "factory irregular" ones are the way to go. You can save, like, fifty bucks for the teeniest little scratch!
Here's a pulled back view! Fresh, clean, bright.
I am really happy we chose to go white!
For the hardware, I went with our favorite Schoolhouse Electric hexagon knobs. We have them in about 3-4 different rooms in our home.
One of the things we discovered after closing on the house was this AMAZING 1970s feature – a built-in record cabinet. I LOVE it. I spent a night recently alphabetizing all our records like a huge dork. SO FUN.
Credits// Author and Photography: Elsie Larson, Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.