You are here:

Decorating & Furniture/decorating a split-foyer home


We just bought a 1999 split-foyer home.

Everything is like a blank slate. Walls are light beige, carpet is beige, vinyl floors are beige, countertops are beige, etc. Maple cabinets. No decorating was done (which, I guess is a good thing being able to start with a blank slate).

I am having a hard time trying to decide what to do with our combo living,dining,kitchen room.

When you come in the front door and look up the stairs you can see the kitchen. At the top of the stairs to the right is a hallway going to the bedrooms. To the left is the dining area with white french doors leading to a deck, and living area (with balcony overlooking the steps). There is no dividing wall between the kitchen,dining,living room(s) is all just one big room ! You can see my sink/refrigerator from my couch . I really don't like that.

I would like to do something to make it feel like seperate living areas. Any suggestions ? Besides installing a wall ? That is out of our budget.

The house upstairs is apx 1400 sq. feet.

My furniture is hunter green, plum, and beige ...and I have a plum valance up in the living room.

I cannot put a couch or etc. against the balcony wall because I have a small child who likes to climb and look over. Currently my couch is on the far left wall and my chair is sitting on the balcony side with the back of it to the kitchen area.

Any ideas would be appreciated. I am overwhelmed with this blank slate and BIG room.



Before you do anything else, paint those walls.  I love your color combination (hunter, plum, beige) but the color is creating too much contrast between wall/floor and color.  

I understand that the area is really open and connected, so paint it all the same color; just not white, off-white or cream!  Try using a taupe or a camel brown.  Your furnishings will look great against that background, and it will all coordinate with your flooring.  

Separate your spaces with furniture placement, screen dividers (tri-folding screen) plants/trees and consider installing either a screen, a "drape", swinging or panel doors to enable you to close off your kitchen. (You may want to use a solid color drape on a rod over the exterior of the kitchen door -- hanging on a decorative rod -- and cover the adjacent wall with the same fabric.)  

Paint first, then re-evaluate your situation.  A warmer color will help immensely.


PS:  Plants/trees are great for separating spaces.  If you don't have a green thumb, purchase silk trees.

Decorating & Furniture

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


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!

"From Day One" and "Day After Day" available nationwide via bookstores and HTTP:// (HomeStyle articles beginning in 1998) Visit me at

BA, Psychology

©2017 All rights reserved.