I mentioned in my last post about our family room that Roland and I were “in talks” about what to do about the fireplace. I wanted to change it, and he didn’t want to have anything to do with it.

After living with the fireplace in the newly painted room I’ve found that the brick isn’t burning my eyeballs and making me want to pull my hair out as much as it did before. But, I did think that we could improve the look of the fireplace without doing anything too costly or time-consuming.

So on Tuesday night after Harrison had gone to bed I pulled out my painting supplies and the test pot of Mink paint that I had left over from the test swatches and painted the mantlepiece. The hardest part was getting into the little grooves, and avoiding getting any on the walls. I gave it a second coat on Wednesday while Harrison had his morning nap. Thank goodness that kid is a good sleeper!

It’s a small change but I think it makes a big difference.

Before:

After:

In other family room progress news, a couple of weeks ago we finally bit the bullet and ordered a media console from Costco. I was a bit hesitant to order online since we couldn’t see it in the flesh wood? beforehand. It arrived on Thursday and we put it together that night. No more glass coffee table holding up our tv! In case you can’t tell I’m doing a happy dance over here. Another small change that’s made a big difference in the room.

Embarrassing before:

Sorry about the picture quality. Had to snap a quick picture before we did away with this disaster.

Much better after:

That ticks off a couple more items on our family room to-do list. So now it looks like this:

  • Source and buy new couch.
  • Wait 8-10 weeks for delivery
  • Purchase new or “rediscover” secondhand arm chairs for more seating in the room
  • Paint
  • Find shelving units or display storage for either side of the fireplace
  • Get a media storage unit for tv, speakers and receiver to replace the old coffee table that we are currently using to hold up our tv — yup we’re using a glass coffee table and the receiver and speakers are on the floor
  • DIY a coffee table
  • New ceiling fixtures
  • Change the look of the fireplace without painting it. (I’ve got something up my sleeve)  Okay, so this wasn’t a complete overhaul but it’s definitely a change.
  • Art for the room. DIY?
  • Window treatments
  • Accessories – cushions, throws, baskets, objets d’art etc.
  • Find some side tables and maybe ottomans for the club chairs
  • Add a rug to define the space (I’m not sure if I like the rug on carpet idea, so it’s just a thought right now)
The walls are looking mighty bare so I’ll probably work on getting something up on the walls next. The swanky “new” mantlepiece needs some accessories too, but I’ll probably decorate for the holidays first and work on the everyday decor some time in the new year.
What do you think? Can you see the difference in the mantlepiece? Anyone else have a make-shift media console or a coffee table not being used as a coffee table?
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5 thoughts on “

  1. My goodness Heather, such a busy girl!! Good thing Harrison is a good sleeper! What you have done to the mantle brings the room ‘together’, very good intuitive idea. As for the new TV console, again great choice even if it was purchased sight unseen and on faith. You have done so well. This house is certainly well on its way to being HOME! Love you!

  2. The mantle being painted the same colour as part of the walls (it is right?) really ties everything together. Looks awesome! I can see some lite garland on that mantle already. Ho ho ho!

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