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Decorating & Furniture/Plank ceiling, merlot furniture-need light?


Living room before puchase
Living room before puc  
Hi Jenny:

Thank you for this service to those of us damsels in distress! I am purchasing a 1970's house with  "potential". That translates to lots of work and ideas after closing in 2 weeks!  I'm a green, gold, red sort of gal. We're planning on redoing the all white kitchen with the copper/green shades tiles to an antiqued softer green cabinet to match (like on the BH & G Kitchen ideas magazine). The dining room is currently pale yellow with teal green carpet and then runs into the living room. Don't have a clue here yet, other than I need new flooring. The long living room has gorgeous medium stained (maybe cherry?)planked and beamed ceiling (low), a full length grey stone fireplace (the stone extends along a wall and on the floor also. There are several full length windows and a french door onto a screened porch. I want to replace the teal green carpet with laminate, paint the white walls and trim, and add pulled back curtains to the sides of the windows. Hopefully, I can assist this to flow into the other rooms, too. My newer loveseat and sofa are merlot colored ultrasuade. How do I make it inviting, and not so dark?

Thank you so much!


Good morning Kimberly,

Thanks for including the photo of the living room.  While I certainly agree that the room (and I'm sure the entire house) has potential, you have a special challenge with the living room.  

The ceiling beams are beautiful.  My concern is that if you put more wood (i.e., laminate flooring) in here, the walls will appear to be closing in.  The purests out there are going to hate me suggesting this, but I would most likely use a dark wood flooring (laminate or solid wood) for the floor and I would "paint" out the wood on the ceiling.  

While interesting and beautiful, the problem with the room is the "heaviness" the wood ceiling projects.  That combined with a "low" ceiling makes for double trouble.  

Painted out in a beautiful taupe (Toasty Grey by Glidden) or dark tan, the beams and planks will be visible and still beautiful. Trims would go to white.  That combined with a dark wood floor the room will feel grounded and more spacious.

Probably not the answer you wanted, but it's my recommendation to you.  


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Jennifer Taylor Wojcik


Visit my web site at: 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.


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!

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BA, Psychology

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