My Favorite Spot, The Living Room

I don't normally do room tours of my home.  There are a few reasons I don't do this.  First, this is a rental so the home is not really what I want it to be.  There are a lot of things that bother me that I can't change.  For example the flooring in a few of the rooms, the kitchen, the bathrooms etc.  Second reason, the lighting is awful!  If I don't get the timing perfectly right the pictures don't not turn out.  This means all the conditions have to be perfect to get good pictures or I'm just a terrible photographer (it might be the last reason!).  Third and last reason, I'm constantly changing things around our home so I never really think a room is 'finished' and ready to photograph.  However, with the fact we are moving changed my mind.  I thought it might be time to take some pictures of my favorite room in our home while I still had the time and the packers hadn't started their job. 

My favorite room in the house is our living room.  When I walk into this room I feel a sense of calm, peace and relaxation.  Out of every room in the house I feel this room really reflects me, my sense of style and the 'things' I love and collect.  It's always a work in progress for me as things move in and out, but it always feels comfortable and cozy to me. 

Recently I changed up the mantel in the living room.  I've written before about how my decor style and tastes are always evolving.  Lately I've had a real affinity for anything industrial, school related or mid-century modern.   I think the mantel showcases a bit of all of these styles.  I love how the mantel turned out!

Here it is

The window I purchased last summer at a Flea Market and it sat in the garage for a few months, then spent time in other parts of the house before I placed it on the mantel.  I love to layer the mantel to give it depth and interest and rarely hang anything, but prefer to lean the items instead.  I'm not a formal person and I like how leaning pictures, windows, etc gives the mantel a more casual look.

The chalkboard I purchased for $5 at an estate sale this spring.  The best part about it is the chalkboard is an actual old school chalkboard and is a piece of slate.  It has such depth and character that isn't found in the new chalkboards.  

The clock is my favorite piece on the mantel.  I have lots of 'collections' and clocks are one of the things I love to collect.  The clocks play tricks with people when they're over for a visit.   I have three clocks in the living room and none of them work so they all say different times.  It's fun to see my guests reactions when they ask, "Is that time right?!"   I bought this particular clock at a tag sale for $15.   It was originally from a high school.

The toy blocks I bought recently at the flea market.  I got a big bag full of blocks for $10.  I decided to have fun with them by spelling out our names on the mantel.   I still have tons of blocks leftover that are sitting in an old wood tool box on my dining room table.   Hunter definitely got a kick of the blocks spelling out our names.

The sconces on either side of the fire place are one thing I did change in the room, other than the paint color on the walls.  They were brass, which I wasn't really loving, so one day I decided to paint them.  I took them off and gave them a few coats of oil rubbed bronze spray paint by Rustoleum.  Then I hung them back up and put on new black shades.  This little change of color and shades made a huge difference and really updated the look of the family room.  Such a quick, easy and inexpensive fix!

The only non-vintage pieces on the mantel are the Orchid, vase and the black and white graphic canisters.  The canisters I found at Target.  I'd been stalking them at Target since the day they came out and finally they put them on clearance and I scooped them up!  Who doesn't love Target clearance bargains?!

One of my favorite pieces I've ever purchased is my little Hudson Coaster Wagon.  I bought this last year at an estate sale.  When I saw it sitting by itself at the sale I had to have it!  The wagon sits in front of the fireplace which is a perfect sport because we never use the fireplace.  We tried a few times to use it when we first moved in, but it didn't give off any heat.  Also thee fact we couldn't even see the fire because the doors had to be closed made it pointless to have a fire.  If I have a fire, I want to see it and feel the warmth!  

One other item I love to collect is old lanterns, especially if they're colorful and a bit beat up and rusty.  

The elephant on the mantel I purchased at another estate sale for $2.  It's solid and made of some sort of metal and it's really heavy.  The paint is black and red and chippy,  which gives it a bit more interest and charm.  I love how unexpected it is to see an elephant on the mantel!  

Here's a better picture of my little wagon. 

Finally on to the rest of the room!  I have to warn you there are lots of pictures!  I had to take advantage of some decent light.  

I love, love, love my couch.  This couch has been around for along time now.  It's from IKEA and it's called the Ekeskog.  They no longer sell this couch.  We've had it for about 12 years and it's still solid and just as comfy as the day we bought it.  The cushions have memory foam in them, which adds to the comfort.  We've had many slipcovers on the couch, but this slipcover is my favorite.  I bought it from Bemz.  They make slipcovers for all upholstered IKEA furniture.  I purchased the slipcover first then the ottoman cover a few years later.  It's held up so well and it was a great purchase.  It's machine washable and this pattern hides any dirt.  

This is the view toward the back window as you enter the room.

I should have taken a better picture of my trunk!  I bought this old trunk from another estate sale for $5.  I brought it home, cleaned it up and put some legs from Home Depot on it.  I stained the legs in a dark walnut stain and attached them to the bottom of the trunk.   It's a great coffee table and conversation piece now.  I won't show you the inside of the trunk because it's full of encyclopedias I bought.  They come in handy for projects.  The room is very long so it needed two coffee tables.  There's one for the couch and one for the leather arm chairs.  

This is the view from the couch to the front of the house.  This room holds a lot of furniture and is rather large.  The leather chairs are also from IKEA and we've had these for a long time as well.  They're from the Ektorp line.  They've held up for the last 10 or 11 years and are still in perfect condition.  This is saying a lot since we've moved many times in their lives.   The ottoman is also IKEA and it's from the Ektorp line as well.  Again another piece we've had for about 11 years.   The top comes off and there's storage inside.

I adore the sign above the china cabinet.  I bought this from Restore for $30 last summer.  It was a bit too 'new' looking so I roughed it up a bit and added some dark wax to give it some rustic character.

The French bull dog book ends on the round black table are from Target.  These were another item I stalked until they went on clearance.  

This is behind the couch and in front of the back window.  This is actually a coffee table made of reclaimed wood we purchased in Canada from a furniture store we love.  I have too many coffee tables in the house so I decided to use this as a bench instead.  Hunter likes to sit here and look out the window or read a book.

Right next to the bench/coffee table is another favorite piece of mine.  I purchased this stacking library card, filing cabinet from an estate sale last summer.  It's another one of those I have to have that pieces.  I fell instantly in love with it when I saw it.  So much so that I wouldn't walk away from it until they'd written SOLD on it.  The cabinet now houses all of Hunter's craft supplies.  All of his pencils, markers, paper, scissors and such are stored in the drawers.   Hunter and I labelled each of the drawers so he knows exactly what's in each one.  It works great for him and keeps him organized, which is tough for anyone, but especially an 8 year old boy!

The framed etchings I purchased for a steal at an estate sale last summer.  When I looked them up online I found out they're worth a lot more than I paid for them.  That always makes my day!

Something else I love to collect is old silver or silver plated trophies, candlesticks, etc.  There's something about them that just makes me happy.  I like the tarnished and aged look of them.  I have one  trophy in a drawer somewhere from a skeet shooting competition.  

I wrote a post last year about this china cabinet.  I purchased it on Craigslist for $30 and it was in rough shape.  It was dirty, disgusting and had been stored in a barn for many years.  I stripped it down, cleaned it up and painted it in Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan in Paris Grey with dark wax on top.  (You can read about the process here Battered Craigslist Hutch)

On the right you can see the dining room.  I might try and do a tour of that room before we move as well, but it gets even worse light and it's difficult to get good pictures of the room because of the layout.  

A few other favorite things in this room are my mid-century modern cabinet and part of my globe collection.  I wrote a post about the cabinet and my globe obsession/collection earlier this year you can check those posts out here Globe Collection and Mid-Century Cabinet.  I purchased the mid-century cabinet at Restore for $100 and the globes I've been collecting for the last few years.  I haven't purchased anymore globes for awhile though.  I promised the hubby I wouldn't buy anymore unless I sold one first.  Funny story, when we went to the flea market recently Hunter was walking around talking to all the vendors and getting his negotiation on.  He saw a few globes at different stalls and told each one of the vendors, "My Mom isn't allowed to buy anymore globes because she already has 28 globes at home."  Wow, thanks for telling everyone I'm a globe hoarder!  The vendors thought it was funny, but I didn't :-)

I hope you enjoyed this long, photo packed tour of my favorite room in our house.  I did this partly for me so.  I figure when I move I will have pictures of how I had the room set up and I can attempt to recreate this in our new home!  I usually do this before we move anyway.  Although because I don't like doing the same thing twice, I usually end up arranging things differently anyway.  

In case you've missed some of my posts recently, we've been renting this home for a little over 18 months while the hubby was on a work visa with his company.  The company transferred him here on a 3 year work visa with the understanding we'd move back to Canada after the visa was up.  We honestly thought we'd be moving back to Canada this year, but the hubby was given have the amazing opportunity to stay here with his company and live in the US permanently.   This meant we could finally buy a home here and set down some roots.   We've purchased a home in a town close to where we are currently living.  After putting in three offers on three different houses, that didn't work out for one reason or another, we're so thrilled to finally find a home we all love. didn't have a million problems, need a new roof, siding or a new outbuilding for me to work in!  We close on the house and move in the middle of August.  This can't come soon enough for us!
Hunter can't wait to live in his own home again!  It's been three years of renting and not feeling settled since selling our home in Canada so it's time.  Hunter's excited to start at his new school in a few weeks too.  There are lots of  exciting changes on the way for us....and possibly a puppy!

Here's the front of our new home.

I'm excited for the next chapter in our journey as a family to begin.  I'm ready to make new and lasting memories as a family in our new home.  Hunter can't wait to explore the 3.5 acres of yard, forest and creek.   What 8 year old boy wouldn't think it's cool to have their own creek with a fire pit and lots of room to put up a tent?   He's already planning his first camp out with his Daddy by the creek.  

I'm off to the Haven conference next week, so stay tuned to Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.  If you don't already follow me on any of these you can click the icons on the side bar and start following me.  I'll be posting lots of pictures and updates from Haven.  This is my first blog conference and it's kind of a big deal for me!  I still consider myself a rookie in the blogosphere even after 19 months of blogging because I still have so much to learn!  I'll have the amazing opportunity to take some workshops and learn from some talented and experienced bloggers.  I'll get to meet some of my blogging favorites like Marian from Miss Mustardseed, Rhoda from Southern Hospitality, Roeshel from DIY Showoff and many others, too many others to list here!  Now I just hope I don't go and make a fool out of myself or act like a crazy blog stalker!  Fingers crossed!  :-)

We're going early to Haven which is in Atlanta, GA.  We decided to make a family vacation out of the trip and explore the area together.  It couldn't come at a better time.  With everything that's been going on over the last few months with moving, finding a home, etc Hunter has two mysterious lumps on his body.   Please keep my little man in your thoughts.  We took him to see our doctor and he wasn't sure what the lumps were, but he was concerned about the way they felt.  So he has referred us to a surgeon at Yale University Hospital.  Our appointment is scheduled for when we return from Atlanta.  This Mommy is worried and a bit overwhelmed by life right now, but all I care about is making sure my little monkey is healthy and safe.  Positive thoughts and prayers are much appreciated. 

Well,  I sure covered tons of ground in this post!   A lot is going on right now and I'm not the best at doing anything the easy, short or condensed way.   Thank you for your patience!  As always, thank you for reading my posts and being a part of my 'life'.  Your comments and emails mean the world to me.  I love getting emails from readers who are inspired by what I do and start their own DIY and painting projects.  It makes my day and inspires me when I get pictures from a reader sharing pictures of their projects they've worked so hard to create.  Keep your comments and emails coming!

Thank you and take care,



  1. You're a collector after my own heart! 28 globes has me beat (and I thought I had too many)!

    That library cabinet is fabulous and love your old chalkboard (I have a few old ones too and know what you mean about the character).

    Good luck in your new home - with all those fabulous collections, it will feel like home in no time.

  2. I'm going to share this on my FB page today!

  3. I very much enjoyed the tour of some of your beautiful home. Wishing you a fun time at Haven and with your family in Atlanta, good luck with the move (stressful, ugh), but mostly....praying for a good doctor's report for Hunter upon your return.

  4. Melody-What a nice tour of your home. It looks warm and cozy and comfortable. Love your mantle and the way you tied things together. Good luck moving and praying for Hunter. Blessings- xo Diana

  5. You have a beautiful home and wonderful collections. Your living room is a delight to visit. Thanks for sharing.

  6. I LOVE LOVE LOVE your style, of course you know that already. I know you're gonna love your new home. I sure hope that lil' 8yr old gets his puppy. I can just seem him and the pup playing in the back yard : ) Have a safe trip to Haven, talk to ya when ya get back ~
    {HUGS} ~

  7. I spy so many amazing vintage accents! Love your mix of old and new!

  8. Love your home and all your collections and I'm SO SO jealous of your new home! It looks dreamy! Hunter's in our prayers... hopefully the lumps are nothing serious! Have fun at Haven! I'm gonna start following you on Insta too! :)

  9. I so much enjoyed touring your living room. I love your style and share your love of vintage. I am so glad that we met at Haven! I hope all goes well with Hunter's appointment.

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