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Trying NOT to Visually Decorate our {Possible} New House is REALLY DIFFICULT, especially because that’s all I want to do

color palette

We are apparently in phase two of our loan process and in escrow on our house in Lake Arrowhead. Everything is looking good and technically, monetarily speaking, we should have no problems getting this house. However, in this market, with the ever-careful banks, who only a few years back were giving loans to deceased people but now want an actual limb before giving anyone a loan, we don’t want to get our hopes up and get excited only to be told at the very last minute, never mind.

That said, I find it very difficult in any moment of free time, not to visually decorate our new house. Color schemes and flooring and bed frames go whizzing through my head while I try to lock down just what I’m going to do with my new large office space, the main living room and kitchen area, and the 5 bedrooms upstairs. It’s very exciting and very fun… and then I somehow have to squelch the whole thing as if erasing it from a chalkboard or shaking an Etch A Sketch and remind myself that everything will be great if we just stay where we are at as well {though far less exciting}.

When we moved from our dark and tiny condo into the house we are renting now, we vowed to get a new sofa or sectional couch immediately, but we never did. Why? Because the one we have now “works” and since we were still renting, I didn’t want to invest in a piece that may not work in a future house that we owned. NO, it’s not very comfortable and NO, it’s not very pretty, and YES I cover it with throws and pillows to liven it up and YES, it was the first piece of furniture we bought together in 2004 when we moved into the condo and had very little to speak of. It cost us about $1000. It somehow has a bit of sentimental value now, but we are leaving it behind and finally investing in a new couch.

We have a thing for sectionals for a number of reasons… A. The new house will not have a formal living room AND a den or family room {one of the things I’m actually less happy about – but really, we don’t need both} B. We like to be together on the same couch rather than on two separate ones. C. We can both lay on a sectional with our heads at the same end if we so decide to watch a movie and have a living room sleep-over, as we often do. However, sectionals often look less formal in general and since the main room will be the only room, I don’t want it to feel sloppy.

I’ve been in love with Restoration Hardwares sectionals and sofas for quite some time but they are quite expensive as well. Once you have all three pieces, it ads up to over 10K and really, while we’re willing to spend more than 1K, I’m not sure I’d be happy spending 10K and worrying every time someone ever got near it. Leather seems to be an option that I would fear spills on less, but I worry that leather would be too cold in snowy winters. But that maybe you can help me with? Any thoughts on leather couches in cold snowy living conditions?

I tend to let a house sort of tell me how it needs to be decorated, room by room. Otherwise, spaces look contrived and end up being uncomfortable. While I don’t necessarily love the countertop in the kitchen and I wouldn’t choose the brown walnut cupboards, I don’t think we’ll be renovating anything just yet, because really, it’s not horrendous. So rather than reject it, I’m going to work with it. I thought that since it already has a lot of warm browns with some cognac tones and a gray stone fireplace, I thought various shades of blue – from navy to cobalt, would complement the room. The photo above is my color inspiration palette. I love repurposing the things I already have in my house in new ways so I’m thinking all the blue accents that are in our master bedroom now, will find a new home in the main living space.

So here’s my first inspiration board of sorts for our possible new living room/kitchen/dining room areas…

restoration hardware sectional

color palette

color palette

blue drapes

restoration hardware

knitted pillows

restoration hardware

restoration hardware

printed drapes

restoration hardware

velvet initial pillows

Image sources: all couches and sectionals are Restoration Hardware as are the blue drapes photo | The color swatches I created myself in Photoshop | mushroom photo | west elm sweater knit pillows | west elm dishes | west elm curtain panel | west elm twig mirror | west elm pillows

* I’ve started a Lake House Ideas & Decor board at Pinterest, if you’d like to follow along.


Maegan Tintari

LA native & lifestyle blogger Maegan Tintari writes daily at sharing beauty & style secrets, including fashion DIYs, how-to nail art manicures, hair tutorials, recipes & home decorating ideas, as well as a look into her personal life, her journey & battle with infertility & recent relocation to the mountains by a lake in search of a better life with her adorable French Bulldog brothers, Trevor and Randy.

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