02 November 2011

Blog crush: Jen's living room at Rambling Renovators

I’mma be honest with you: because I knew I’d be in dissertation-writing crunch time, I planned what to write about on this blaahhhg in advance. (I’m writing it in real time though! Mostly! Within a few days! Promise!) So the rooms I picked for the “blog crush” series were picked, like, months ago. And today’s is from Jen at Rambling Renovators! But if you didn’t see it here first... you’d see it soon in an upcoming issue of Style at Home magazine. That’s right. Recently I learned that I’m not the only one in love with Jen and her husband’s handiwork! If you visit her blog, you’ll see the latest posts are about the Style at Home shoot in her home.

So rather than being bummed that I couldn’t be far ahead of the curve, I’ll just be glad that I have the same taste as Style at Home editors. Yay! And now you can feast your eyes on Jen’s amazing room a little early.

Once again: all the photos belong to Rambling Renovators, and you can click the photos to see a blog post about that step in the renovation!

Here’s what she and her husband, the Handyman, started with:

They began by tearing off that faded 1980s wallpaper... and digging into that bump-out in the wall to see if there was a fireplace in there! But no such luck. Still, I’m amazed that they just dug in – and could tidy up the walls afterwards. (If you click the photo below, it leads to a post with a video shot as they first started digging into the wall. I'm so envious of their bravery. Then again, I guess I'd be brave too, if I knew I had the skills to patch it back up.)

Because there was no fireplace in the bump-out, they remodeled the existing fireplace in the corner, in gorgeous marble. Oh yeah, and I mean they remodeled it, themselves. I have yet to learn how to tile so I am incredibly impressed.

Jen accessorized the room with color and pattern like I wish I could mix. One of my favorites in the room is this hutch that she refinished in this amazing turquoise. Not too bright, but enough to have ka-pow! But, a gentle ka-pow. Like in your shoulder, not your jaw. And with a friendly grin.

And here's the finished product, similar to how you’ll see it on the magazine stands:

Goodness gracious I adore this room. I’m so wedded to my neutrals, but a room like this makes me feel like moving out of my comfort zone. And this room is an object lesson in how to do that – there’s chairs in a punchy patterned fabric, furniture in subdued turquoise (different shades even, but that relate so well), and eye-catching art. The rest is a totally neutral canvas (gray walls, taupe sofa, beige rug) – but they have enough pattern and texture to keep the bright pieces from sticking out. How amazing is that? Jen: I heart your style.

Go visit Jen’s blog to see the rest of her incredible living room – and their jaw-dropping master bedroom. I had a hard time deciding whether to feature the living room or bedroom. Why? Hint: MOULDED PANELING in the master bedroom. Love, love, love. And their bathroom, and their kitchen, and their nursery... all crush-worthy rooms. Enjoy!