Last week we had the opportunity to meet with an adorable couple—Sarah & Joe—who just recently moved to Grand Rapids from Duluth, MN. Our new Designed in a Day service was a perfect fit for their needs since, being a fairly hands-on and DIY oriented couple, taking charge of the ordering and installation was appealing to them.
When Sarah & Joe sold their Minnesota house, the purchaser also bought all their furniture, so they were starting completely from scratch (love that!!)! That said, they'd been in their house two weeks with nothing but a craigslist sofa and a temporary table from their parents, and so needed a plan to get their house in order quickly.
We advertise our Designed in a Day (DIAD) service as being adequate to design and source for a single room, however, our couple's space wasn't incredibly large, so we decided to try and tackle the entry, living, and dining—the spaces were adjacent to one another and fairly open, so it made sense to go this route.
As it goes with our DIAD service, we started with a style discovery conversation. Prior to our appointment, I had Sarah & Joe pull a handful of images that represented their style, so we walked through those images and talked about what they resonated with in each one (or what they didn't like in any given space). See a few of their inspiration images below! (Images pulled from Pinterest).
Joe and Sarah described their style as follows:
Mid century modern. Simple. Clean. Comfortable. Clutter free. Some bright pops of color but a lot of neutral tones and light brown leather.
When designing for a couple, it's important to get a good understanding of the values of each person, and come to a good middle ground. Joe & Sarah both loved mid century modern, however Joe liked spaces more clean and clutter free, whereas Sarah enjoyed lots of cozy decor, and leaned a little more toward a bohemian style. Both, however, loved rugs with Turkish or tribal patterns, so we knew we'd incorporate those into the space.
Image: West Elm
Image: West Elm
We also took some time to talk about how they needed the space to function; it was very important to the two of them that each of the rooms flowed together, and that the space felt like a cohesive whole. When you're working with smaller spaces, it's important to carry your colors, textures, and styles through each of the rooms, rather than start an entirely new theme. This helps the space feel like one large room rather than feeling chopped into separate spaces.
You can see our plan for layout below. We made sure to keep a comfortable walkway from the entry door to the dining room while still having enough seating in the living room for up to six people:
In the entry (below), we wanted a bench with storage to make the smaller space more functional—one, for sitting to put on/take of shoes, and two, for storing winter gear and shoes to keep the entry clean. We also added a simple secretary desk, which would allow them to store mail and other do-dads that typically collect in an entry, but with the option to close up the desk to make the space feel clutter-free for Joe.
In the living room (below), we started with a light leather sofa with chaise as our base, an Eames inspired recliner, and built out our pieces from there. Joe & Sarah have a large collection of records, so we wanted lots of storage in our credenza (this credenza is something like 72" long, so plenty of storage there!)
We also went with a toned down rug in neutral colors so we could go with something a little more colorful in the dining room.
In addition to the below items, we planned for a grid gallery wall on the wall to adjacent to the TV, and (of course!) lots of plants to bring pops of color into what is a mainly neutral space.
In the dining room, we did a blend of midcentury modern and rustic industrial. Our table leaned a little more on the rustic side, and we paired that with modern upholstered chairs and a funky colorful bench with gold accents. We tied in the gold with a large drum pendant light in gold. We also added in a funky bar cart with a giant iron mirror to hang above and store all their favorite whiskeys (on the "top shelf"...pun intended!).
We wrapped up our project with about five minutes to spare, and which point I put the finishing touches on our layout, mood board, and source list (complete with links to all items), and sent the final documents over to Joe & Sarah so they had everything they needed to begin sourcing furniture for their space and creating their new home.
We're excited to see the completed project!
Does our Designed in a Day service sound like the perfect fit for you?
Let's get it on the calendar! Since we focus mainly on full-service design, we offer just two of these appointments per month.
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