This is not a sponsored post. Brought to you in partnership with Minted, Lulu & Georgia, Kaekoo Shop and Brightsides Home Interiors.
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Decorating our new living room has not been easy for me. Like many of you, I don’t have a lot of free time, but I like to take my time with big projects like this. It’s not like an outfit where you just put a new one on the next day. And of course, budgeting appropriately for furniture and other items is important because it all adds up pretty quickly.
Here are 5 tips I learned in the process of decorating our small space…
1.Find a unique statement rug.
In our living room, the rug is a focal point that really sets the tone for everything around it. When we moved in last December, Benji was still crawling so I wanted a rug that would be soft for him to roll around on and the shag style was perfect for us. I purposefully picked a light ivory to contrast the brown hardwoods, but made sure it had a pattern to help disguise any wear and tear. We could have chosen a million other unique rugs from Lulu and Georgia (see their tips on how to choose a rug) that would have also looked great, but we’ve been really happy with this one.
2. Get help from a stylist, not a designer.
Our house is open concept so I wanted to make everything flow, but didn’t exactly know how. I researched interior design services and I was quoted a minimum of $10k per room because they typically require you to purchase all-new furniture. We had just purchased a couch and accent chair (and we weren’t looking to invest that much in home decor) so I reached out to my amazingly talented friend Amelia, an interior stylist over at Brightsides Home Interiors, and she began putting together a design board for me. I love her style and was so impressed by how quickly she found pieces that fit my budget and style. Plus, she’s the nicest and introduced me to the darling Kaeley over at Kaekoo Shop and we’re all teaming up for a giveaway on my Instagram today that you won’t want to miss!
3. Less is more. Add accent pillows.
I have a tendency to brainstorm decorations for every bare spot in the house. But when you’re dealing with smaller rooms, less is always more. Too many decorations too close together can look cluttered and distracting, instead of clean and comfortable. These fun, handmade pillows from Kaekoo were the perfect alternative to putting more stuff on the walls. They bring so much personality to the room, while still letting us maintain the clean, simple vibe we have going. It feels more balanced and minimalistic (the perfect backdrop for the messes Benji makes with his toys everyday).
4. White gives the illusion of space.
I have been hunting for a white media console for months. They’re hard to find. I intentionally wanted to make the room feel bigger and knew that white would be the best way to do that. The TV stand we purchased is actually a sideboard, so we drilled holes in the back for our cords and moved the shelves to allow the far left compartment to fit a bin of Benji’s toys. That’s another tip! If you have kiddos, find furniture that doubles as storage. Amelia also recommended our white linen drapes and I love how they extend the windows and augment the natural light.
5. Create a custom gallery wall.
Lastly, when it came to the walls, I was stumped. The wall behind our TV is fairly big but I didn’t want to put gaping holes in it without a professional’s help. Then I saw a post on Instagram about Minted’s personal art styling service. I’ve worked with them in the past on Benji’s birth announcements and a custom piece for his nursery and they do not disappoint. You guys, this was one of the best personalized experiences I’ve had in a long time. You basically answer some questions about your style preferences and you’re paired with a stylist who puts together mock-ups of wall designs using Minted‘s unique art selections (my stylist even helped me find a NYC print and beachy print to represent Matt’s and my favorite destinations) and they’ll go through revisions until you’re completely happy with it. I was the most nervous about this part because I knew it make or break our whole space and I’m so happy I did it. If you have a wall in your house that needs some love, definitely go the Minted route. The styling service starts at $79, plus the cost of your art prints.
Why not test your luck first and enter our GIVEAWAY* for a chance to WIN $150 to Minted (which you could use toward the art styling and prints)? Follow the steps in the rafflecopter below and check back here next Friday to see if you won. (*Open to US residents only. One winner will be selected. Ends 7/20/17 at 8pm MDT.) Good luck!
All room decor info provided below.
SHOP THE POST
- Gray sectional sofa (fabric custom ordered; inspired by this style)
- Kaekoo accent pillows (Mertice + Harriet + Enid) | rosette accent pillow | Maewoven accent pillow
- Down pillow inserts
- Lulu & Georgia Ralee Rug c/o (7’10” x 9’10”)
- White linen drapes
- Curtain rod w/ ball finial
- Gray side table
- Geometric vase
- Tin candle
- Black picture frame
- Magnolia Journal
- Accent chair
- Letter board
- TV console (white sideboard)
- White planter (similar under $60 here w/ faux plant)
- Taipan Trading faux tree (similar + love this style + this style)
- Black tree planter
- Tote basket (similar)
- Knit throw blanket
- Pink planter
- Gold pineapple
- Gold candle
- Books: Domino + Life Hacks + You’re Saying it Wrong
- Minted art prints c/o: View from York Ave, Greyscale poppies, Guard chair Santa Monica, Weathered, Wake I, Visionary 2
- Bar stools
SHOP MY OUTFIT
- tunic dress
- anthro floral belt (old; love this style)
Photos by The High Pines.
Such a well designed living room! My whole home is just 300 sq ft (shared!), so this has given me a lot of inspiration on how I could redo my home. Thank you!
Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
Our sectional looks so similar to yours! I also have a very small living room and looking to re-design it. These tips are great! Also, does that one sign say “hoochie mama”? haha
Thanks lady! It does. Haha. We’re Seinfeld nuts over here. 🙂
Gallery wall in my guest room!
Birth announcements for our newest little!
Love your living room set up. Looking for black white and neutral insp for our new place!
I need that letter board! Great eye, your space looks lovely for raising a family in. I think I love Minted just as much as you. I’d love to add some giant children’s art to our playroom walls.
These are some great tips. I live in a pretty small apartment and am always looking for ways to make the most of the small space.
My walls are so boring, I would love to do a gallery wall in my living room! Love what you did! ♥ I would definitely get the greyscale poppies print.
Gorgeous space, lady! We moved into our new house a couple of months ago and I am struggling to fill the bare walls with pieces I love. Thanks for the inspiration!
I’d buy Christmas card thru them, super cute!
I’m hopefully getting engaged soon (ah!) So i would love the credit for some bridal shower invites!
I love how the framed prints are arranged around the TV! I wouldn’t have thought to do that!
Would love this for our first home!!!
I love the fabric options at Minted.
Invitations!! I LOVE Minted and use them for all my paper products! I am hosting a wedding shower for my bff soon and would love to use the gift card toward that! Xo
We are in the middle of a remodel in our home. I think a gallery wall in the formal living room would look great.
I would love some new prints for my house!!
Absolutely love the tips and links in your post! I had no idea Minted could help with gallery walls. I quickly entered the contest, and even though I think we’ll use the gallery services in our first home, the gift card will go towards beautiful wedding invites first 🙂
You have great style!!
Thanks so much, Denyne. xo
I would like to win the Minted giveaway so that I can purchase nursery art for my babies room.
Love you gallery wall! If I won the giveaway I would do a gallery wall in my living room as well!
I love Minted! I would love to get prints for a gallery wall.
Wow, that artwork is gorgeous! I would love to spend it on new stationary and notebooks. I love the designs! This is one of my favorites–https://www.minted.com/product/notebooks/MIN-XL4-NBK/tropical-leaves?ccId=1293255&color=A&org=photo&feature=Browse&event=sku_click&sku=MIN-XL4-NBK&pop_rank=15&source=image&t_api=1
Thanks for the chance to win!
wildorchid985 at gmail dot com
We just moved and our walls are empty-definitely could use some Minted help!
Buy a gift for my girlfriend!
I really want to add to my gallery wall in my bedroom!
I would use it on throw pillows- such cute prints!
Hoping to win to create a gallery wall in my living room! This is sooo cute!
I’d love to win $150 to Minted. I’d buy a few art prints for the walls in my new home. Thank you for the giveaway!
Love the saying on your letter board!
Thank you! 🙂
I would love to get a piece of art! Picking art is my biggest weakness in terms of styling my house…so our walls are almost bare! Thanks for the inspiration!
I would love the flamingo print for my daughter’s nursery:)
I would love to start a gallery wall for my entryway. Thanks!
I would like some pillows. So many fun prints!!
I would like to get a nice abstract print to hang above my dresser
I’d spend the $150 on items for my upcoming wedding.
I would love to make a gallery wall with family pictures for my living room.
Gifts for others! Stickers, journals and cards!
I would love to win because although I have lived in my house for several years, I barely have anything on the walls. I’d love to do a gallery or one large piece of artwork.
We need artwork throughout the house.. especially in the bedroom.
Your living room looks fantastic! I love Minted and would definitely use their design service.
What is the paint color you used? I love it! Such a cute room.
Thanks, Natalie! Our wall paint is Sherwin Williams “Agreeable Gray.” xo