Laura's Front/Dining Room (Before + After!)
The front room or entryway of a house is actually one of the most important spaces in your whole home. You want it to be inviting and comfortable for guests as you welcome them into your home, as well as set the tone of your personal design aesthetic. Basically, that first space is your chance to immediately let people know who you are and what you are all about. Before moving to Nashville, I had never heard of a "sitting room" and couldn't figure out what we were supposed to do with half of the space in this long front room. I mean, I get the dining area and how that works, but what do you do in a sitting room? Just sit?? Apparently – YEAH!
Since this extra long room was going to serve double duty, I wanted to make sure it felt like there were two separate, yet totally cohesive spaces. I knew in this house I really wanted to do a blush pink room, so I thought that would be perfect for the dining area to divide and warm up the space. It's one of my favorite rooms for sure (and a great setup for entertaining), but it didn't always look this way!
Sooo, if you ask me, I think we've accomplished a pretty good transformation of this space! You can see what the original floor color was before we had them refinished with a custom stain color
I mixed up. I really like the modern feel and contrast that dark floors can bring. Painting the walls a pure white (no tint added) in the sitting area and a light blush pink (Baby Blush by Valspar) in the dining room helps separate the two spaces a bit without making them feel disjointed. I love the big windows that look out to the front. So we took the valences off the top and added some long curtains to update the room.
This sideboard actually came about when Josh was making a record player station for Elsie but made it too skinny to fit her record player – whoops! I got the mess-up version, which is perfect for holding glassware by the dining table. One man's trash...
Always adding to my vintage glass collection, but I think I have to stop soon – I'm running out of room!!
We also switched out the stock light in the dining room and replaced it with the sputnik
that hung in my art room
at our last house. A little bit of gold spray paint made it look like a whole new light! This table is also the table that we had in our last dining space
(it's a smaller version of the one Elsie made
a few years back), but I painted the table white before we moved and gave the legs a gold makeover too (do you see a theme here?). I really like how clean the white mod dining chairs
look with the table as well.
The oversized square frame above the buffet was made with this easy technique, and using super affordable engineer prints is still one of my favorite ways to decorate and make a big statement.
I wanted to add some greenery along this back wall, so I made these cute wall planters
out of wooden jewelry boxes and some gold chain. I usually like to use faux plants on wall planters so I don't risk getting the walls wet every time I water them. They are making some awesome plants these days!
I have a few of these hanging planters
(made from gold bowls) in my office as well, but I love them so much that I made another one to hang in the front room. How cute is that plant guy with the crazy hair?!
What's a 60s ranch house without a bar cart, AMIRIGHT
? This is a thrifted one from a vintage store a few years back, and I like all the gold accents with the wild at heart
print hung right above it. The white furry stool
on the right is usually in front of the window so the kitties can watch all the birds in the front yard – they love it!
We love our super comfy Hopson sleeper sofa
from Joybird. There were so many colors to choose from, but we chose a soft grey called District Mineral, and I think it works really well with the room. It's a cozy place to curl up in the morning and watch the kitties lay in the sunbeams that come through the big front windows. That giant pink phone is one of my favorite vintage finds since we moved for sure
. I think it was an advertisement for something in the 70s, but it's just too adorable for words. I added in those amazing marbled pillows
recently, and I like that they compliment the existing color palette but add that really bright salmony pink color as well.
The sleeper sofa option is perfect for us because we both work out of the house and don't really have a dedicated guest room at the moment, but we can offer guests the whole front room since both doors to the rest of the house can be shut and curtains drawn for privacy at night. It's the best of both worlds because we can still make the most of our space the rest of the time and just have a comfy extra bed when we need it!
I just love this Brielle cocktail table
and how the gold details compliment the rest of the gold accents in the room. It's nice and large so we can gather around at parties and still have a spot to place drinks and what not (although I usually end up sitting next to it on the floor when we have company – I'm a floor-sitter!). We had this West Elm rug
at our last house for only a few months before we moved, but thankfully it works really well in this house too and helps add some lightness to the dark floors.
While Todd has a studio of his own that we are working on (we are converting our one-car garage for him), we like to keep this Wurlitzer in the house so we can do a bit of live music as needed. Also, it's just pretty darn cute, so he gets points for that too. We still have the oversized tiled Paris photo
to remind us of our sweet trip there last year. I believe we were in line for the Musée d'Orsay, and I had just eaten a butter and sugar crepe when I took that photo. TAKE ME BACK!
This skinny pink planter
is just what this open wall space needed! Some plants, a little pink and gold... what's not to love? Also, I found that authentic 70s movie poster here at a vintage shop this fall, and the colors were just what I was looking for, and it's just a plain hilarious poster. I actually have a Master's Degree in Theology, so I think it's extra fitting...
I really like having this small circle chain mirror
by the door. Mirrors are a nice alternative to a print or hanging plant. They make the room feel bigger, and they give you an extra chance to see if you have something in your teeth before you answer the door. A win all around!
And just in case you're wondering what my husband thinks of all the pink... he loves it! He's really the best when it comes to decorating because he knows how much I enjoy it and that he'll end up loving it when it's done. So I pretty much have carte blanche to do whatever I think would be cool. And besides, pink used to be viewed as a masculine color
until only recently, so I don't think colors should be limited to certain genders only. I'll take pink and
baby blue thankyouverymuch!
Anyway, thanks for sharing in more of our house progress! It's definitely starting to feel like the finished areas of the house are slowly slipping into the majority of the space, and that's a good feeling to have almost 9 months into the renovation process. Onto the next! xo. Laura
Credits // Author: Laura Gummerman. Photography: Laura Gummerman and Elsie Larson. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.