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Question
I just purchased a ranch style house built in 1976. It has dark brown, almost
black carpets and some dark wood paneling typical of the era in the dining room and kitchen. It is a perfect "grandma" house, and I want to keep it in the era it was meant to be.  I want to decorate the living room in 1970's style--but not the trashy faux fur and psychadelic wallpaper. I also don't want the green and tacky gold of my mother's 1970's
style. I am at a loss to start. I have a rust, camel, and brown sofa with a camel chair.


Answer
You can respect the style and keep it, while brightening things up a bit.  I'd suggest that you start by replacing the carpets.  To maintain 70's style, purchase a plush carpet in a neutral color.  Something between a camel and a brown would be a great base to start.  

In the dining room and perhaps even the kitchen, paint the paneling.  Again, stay neutral in your color selection.  Avoid stark whites, and add "color" with the paint selection.  You may want to consider a medium hue of "gold" - not the tacky gold, but a paler version.  Both kitchen and dining can be painted the same color OR you may want to brighten up the kitchen by adding a stronger color.  If your cabinets are dark - they can be lightly sanded and distressed rather than painted, thus "updating" but maintaining the character.

Hope this helps you.

Regards,
Jenny

PS:  If you opt to paint paneled walls, lightly sand first, wipe with a soft cloth and then apply a coat of non-pourous primer like Kilz.  Allow that to dry overnight (important step) and then paint your top color coat.

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Jennifer Taylor Wojcik

Expertise

Visit my web site at: http://www.jennifertaylorwojcik.com Decor: I've written about it, planned it, designed it and colored it, and I've never stopped loving it. It's not what you spend, or who made it, it's how it makes you feel.

Experience

College, advertising, public relations, marketing, free-lance writing and a plethora of creative endeavors have led me here. As an entrepreneur in decorative product design, I learned the hard way how tough it can be to be in business for yourself. A stint at a law firm taught me humility too. Some three thousand questions ago, I wondered if I could really help. Obviously, I'm still here and still taking your questions. God Bless You!

Publications
"From Day One" and "Day After Day" available nationwide via bookstores and Amazon.com. HTTP://www.seasoned.com (HomeStyle articles beginning in 1998) Visit me at http://www.jennifertaylorwojcik.com

Education/Credentials
BA, Psychology

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