Our 70s Split Redo Part II: The Family Room

{If you missed Part 1: The Living Room & Dining Room, you can check it out here.}
The lower level family room in our house started out as this part-lineoleum, part-carpet plus stage-and-fence fugly room.

The images above & below are of our realtors & my mom... wondering what in the world we were thinking... (You can see Dave tallying up the renovation projects in his head in the pic above.) BUT (and I think a lof of you are like me) I saw a HUGE kid-friendly, potentially-cozy space with a TON of light, especially considering it's the lower lever/ basement. (It's a split so it's mostly above-ground.) ...Definitely more light & space than we had in the basement we were moving from and I pictured my office in here... I was ecstatic!!! There was this strange step-up stage area with a surrounding fence (below) and a drop ceiling. Odd.

We knew that had to go, and the first day we moved in I started tearing down the drop ceiling & fence posts while Dave was at work and I was waiting for more boxes to unpack... Then he finished it. (He really is the best.) He ripped out the stage with the help of our friend Greg and also Dave's dad. Off came the paneling & a bunch of other stuff. My father-in-law recessed the vents into the ceiling, and they installed new installation, waterproofing yada yada and added some recessed lights to aim at our hutch that would be going in. (swiss cheese- I know!! But we needed the function & sometimes it trumps beauty!! :)

So bye-bye weird stage:

And hello family room/ play area!! We painted the paneling a bright & fresh aqua to lighten it up & add some energy. I wanted it to feel fun & really happy down here. We had wall-to-wall seagrass installed and its great for kids' scooters! ;)

Here's that huge comfy Restoration hardware slip-covered sofa. It's like a bed & we love it. I'm doing a hodgepodge of flea market ship paintings on the wall above the sofa. The globe finally found a home in our house. (I gave it to Dave years ago when we pictured one day having a "study")

This huge hutch (below) was a gift from my dad (found at Lucketts Design House) and is one of my favorite pieces of furniture EVER. It houses EVERYTHING!! Forgive the non-styled shelves (I'm running out of juice) but you can see how there's tons of display space and sotrage space. The TV fits in perfectly. When we had no spot for the surfboard, I remembered the one in the living room of the Giamnetti's house and thought we should give it a try. (It hides a water shut-off valve!) Thanks Brooke!! The teak lime-washed chair to the left is a Lucketts find covered in a linen damask. The rug (everyone seems to recognize it) is from Pottery Barn a few years ago.

I wasn't (and am still not) sure what to think of the wood-burning stove. (We'll try out this year but only when kids are asleep because it's hot to the touch- eek!) And I was oddly intrigued by the 70s stone surround and considered lots of painting, replastering, etc options before deciding to keep the stone. It actually matches the stone on the outside of our house and I've grown to love it.

Here is it now. (below) I took the orange from the stones and ran with it in accents throughout the space. I love sitting in the chair on the right curled up with a blanket and the ottoman. I picture a cozy fire & drinks for two when the kids are asleep. (does that ever really happen?!!)

And finally, my office is down here too.

I went with a huge work table from Ikea ($140!) which is great for spreading out and it doubles as a great movie-watching pizza-night-eating spot. My supplies, files, etc are in a large closet behind the table & also on the other side (which is not pretty yet so I didn't include pics yet) I have lots of empty baskets around for "quick" clean-up on weekends & nights so it can stop feeling like an office if I need it to.

I used a lot of what we already had in this space & then used Ikea to do the heavy-lifting: table, office chairs, arm chairs. I wanted it to feel light & fresh but also cozy down here. My dad lives near a lake and I've got lots of happy memories from there (as well as conquests from local antique-store shopping trips!) so the room has a bit of a coastal vibe, but I didn't want it to be too much, so I added in the oranges & browns from the stones to warm it up & "dirty it up" a bit more. Flea market finds, below:


{Massive lanterns from csnlighting.com}

{My old Gustavian desk... The colors weren't planned but I think when you buy & decorate with things you love, they just sort of have a way of working out...}


{That 70s Stone}


{Wool rug layered over wall-to-wall seagrass}


{Ikea chairs}

{Pillow cover pieced together from fabric remnants}


{Ikea ottoman base with custom washable slipcover}

{Inspiration fabric for room: The slipcover in a vintage-inspired pattern has hits of orange & exact same blue that's on the walls}


{Found this old blue lantern for $16 at Volo}


{Ball jar blue is perfect in here}

{Weeds from the yard- one advantage to having a black thumb!}


{My grandmother's oil painting in oranges}

(Wicker floor lamp from Palecek adds more texture & brown/ orange}


{A huge piece of driftwood- a cypress root- found by my dad while fishing in Georgia}

{Functional Details}

{White off-the-rack roman shades from Sears}

{White cotton curtains from ikea}

{Functional Details}

{A huge workspace}

{Functional Details}

{$25 wheely chairs from Ikea}

{Functional Details}

{Organized toy storage under hutch}


{More storage in ottoman... I prewashed & dried the fabric 3 times before giving it to my upholsterer.}

{Functional Details}

{$4 Vintage tool box to hold office supplies}

{Functional Details}

{That wal-mart fan for keeping cool... }

{Functional Details}

{A laid-back style means piles of books are just fine in here}

And that's pretty much it! We're loving having all this extra space & the room really works for us. There are definitely a few "upgrades" I'd like to make (aren't there always?) but I'm going to stop for a while. ;) Little Miss Ashby enjoys it too! (below)




*Paint Color* Fresh Aire Choice "Midwest Spring" - no VOC paint, carried by Home Depot- so far, so good & I've used tihs brand in a few rooms in my house. To be honest, when I see dirt on the wall, I'm more likely to grab the paint bucket and touch-up rather than wipe down. so odd, I know... So I'm not really sure about the washability, long-term of it yet.

*White Table* Ikea -- I can't find the name of it online but I think originally it's $400 and it's in the dining table section. (We got ours at the damaged items place)

*Seagrass brand* I'll have to give my store a call... I forgot the brand!! :)

*Lanterns* Mossoro Outdoor Hanging Lanterns from csnlighting ($140 and $80)


Jennifer said...

looks fantastic, OF COURSE! Love the blue and orange -- a fav combo that I haven't used. was going to have to ask about the lanterns, so thanks for sourcing them!

Cami said...

I love it! What is the brand/name of the paint? It is the perfect color!

Sarah's Fab Day said...

LOVE! Your basement is a beauty my dear. I can imagine all of the fun times you will all have down there.

Sally F. said...

The stone behind the wood fireplace just WORKS!

Leah Moss said...

Lauren, you are seriously inspiring! Thanks for sharing your beautiful home in so much detail. Your clients must adore you, as you definitely have a gift for unveiling a room's potential.

I am very curious about the sea grass floor covering, would you mind sharing its source? It is exactly what I'm looking for in our basement.


cotedetexas said...

Oh Lauren, It's fabulous! And Swiss Cheese and all! too funny. I love the lanterns and the seagrass and the table - the sofa, just everything!!! It looks so cozy with the fireplace and that lantern. Love it! you have made this a real showhouse!!!

Sarah said...

what a great transformation!! I love every detail. Thanks for all the info on where things came from. I really love the Sears roman shades!

MFAMB said...

looks great lauren!

Vanya Wilkinson said...

WOW Lauren, I'm so impressed you have made such a complete transformation in a very short space of time; good work!

Anonymous said...

LAUREN! I LOVE IT! You and Dave have done a FANTASTIC job!!! I lovelovelove the seagrass...the hutch...the lanterns...and especially your workspace. I want that workspace! You certainly have made a silk purse out of a sow's ear! :)

Tracy Watier said...

What a pretty space, Lauren! Bright and cheery but warm at the same time. Great work area too!

My Notting Hill said...

This looks terrific! Such a happy and cozy space. Love your work space too by the windows. Brava!

Erin {House of Turquoise} said...

I LOVE IT!!! Everything about it, I swear, it's just perfect. You are amazing Lauren!

Wendy said...

That is is a fabulous space! I love the lantern....

bagfashionista said...

i LOVE it!! I am SO installing seagrass for the upstairs when it comes time to replace the carpet!

High-Heeled Foot in the door said...

It looks beautiful Lauren. So happy that you kept the fireplace as is. It looks great. The colors in the stones go perfectly with the colors you picked.

Now go take a rest in that yummy sofa of yours!

LindsB said...

Ok, so I have to tell you that I was looking at the before pictures and then when I saw the first after picture the words "holy f*ck" just flew right out of my mouth. Seriously, I do not know how you do it, but you just work MAGIC with everything you put your fingers on. To say I am in love with your house is a complete understatement, it is just STUNNING!!!!

Sarah said...

Wow!!! Lauren, this is fabulous!!! Love the use of that awesome blue paint to brighten the space up. And those lanterns.....sigh! I've been wanting to use lanterns somewhere in our house forever:) Quick question: which ikea table is your desk? I love it and it would work perfectly in our office.

KatyO! said...

sears roman shades? who knew! the room looks so inviting and like a fun and relaxing space. great job!

Anonymous said...

I love woodstoves and am so happy you kept yours. They really, actually heat rooms! (Unlike wood-burning fireplaces)

Hopefully you'll be able to get some use out of it this winter.

Great space - love the wall-to-wall seagrass.

paula said...

I was waiting for part 2 and it's even better than I could have imagined. What a great place for the family and it still looks great.

Unknown said...

What a fantastic space on a budget. It's truly a challenge to decorate when funds are limited, but you have mastered it!!

red ticking said...

whew... you have been busy...looks sooo nice... enjoy... x pam

Wendy said...

Hi Lauren!
This is beautiful!

I was wondering if you could tell me what the lantern is called? I love it! Thanks!

Catherine said...

What an amazing transformation - you had wonderful vision! I love the wall-to-wall seagrass. And I'm very inspired by your ottoman - we're in need of something just like that for our den (TV room). Great job and congratulations on your beautiful new room! ; ) Trina

Romana said...

Lauren- no more petting zoo! lol
Gorgeous family room :)I'm usually not a fan of orange-brown, but you just may have changed my mind with the pairing with the blue and white combo, it looks fab! And I bet Christian loves sitting up at that big desk with mumy doing "work" too :)

HirondelleRustique said...

I love what you've done, your rooms are SO gorgeous! You have such a great eye for design!

Kristin Hughes Photography said...

Lauren - your home is absolutely beautiful. I LOVED part 1 and 2! You have an amazing gift!

Anne Lorys said...

That's a really stunning transfromation and a whole heckuva lot of hard work.
Great job!

Linda in AZ * said...

* I don't know who is LUCKIER~~~ you, your husband, your kids, your dog or your house... but Sweetie, "YOU'RE THE MA'AM!"~~~

"You're just... too mahhhvelous... too mahhhvelous for words......" (Ask yer Mom about this old song!). Your TALENTS, your SKILLS, your TERRIFFIC FLAIR & STYLE, and the JOYOUS WARMTH of your personality ALWAYS comes thru, and THAT's just one of the reasons I so love visiting here!!!

"WUNNNNNAFUL-A-WUNNNNAFUL" (ask yer Mom about THIS, too! (Grins!)~~~

Hugs n' thanks,
Linda in AZ *

Tricia said...

Amazing transformation! I love the colors that you chose, very laid back and casual.

Once again, I just love coming to your blog for some instant inspiration!

bluehydrangea said...

Lauren, I love a good before and after and this is amazing!! I wonder if the old owner put on farm plays in that corral/stage area....

Unknown said...

Looks great! I love seeing how you've used budget-friendly Ikea pieces to create such an appealing and fresh space. Seeing pictures of my favorite blogger's homes is definitely one of my favorite kinds of posts to read! Thanks for sharing with us.

Windlost said...

It looks amazing. I don't know how you pulled it together so fast. It takes me that long to decide on one accessory. You are awesome!

Hey, I wrote about the Eddie Ross party. I decided to be different and post all the pictures in B&W. You were the only one who looked tanned! haha. I think it is because you already have a tan and we are all pasty white. I will send you the colour pictures if you like!

Email me to remind me if I don't get around to it. I have it on my list to email them to everyone later this week or weekend.

Hope you are well and hello to Dave from us!

xo Terri

Maria Killam said...

Okay, if that isn't the best way to incorporate stone that doesn't relate to the wall colour in the space, I don't know what is. That is so so beautiful everything you did! I love the turquoise, it's my fav!
You are so so good!!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Julia @ Hooked on Houses said...

What an amazing makeover! It looks both beautiful and practical. Love it!

Rachel said...

I love love that hutch as well!! Great job on your home!

Tricia said...

Hi Lauren.
What a beautiful room(s). I love that you kept the stone wall and the free-standing stove. The whole space feels warm and comfy, but completely serence and calm.



Jenny B. said...

I'm curious about that Restoration Sofa. I think I have the same one (given to us MANY years ago secondhand), but ours has two huge uncomfy back pillows. Did you take those off and replace with other pillows? and by the way, I'm dying with jealousy from your space. This is your basement? If only my main floor could look like this...

Cristin // Simplified Bee said...

It looks great Lauren! The paint color is fabulous. Great workspace too.

cristin @ simplified bee

Design Actually said...

Wow, this space looks amazing! I would love to have a basement to transform into something like this. It has a very comfy yet stylish vibe, love it!

Things That Inspire said...

Love, love, love what you are doing! What a transformation.

The Blushing Hostess said...

Well done! I never would have guessed where that was going. Just fabulous.

Siiri said...

Loving it all!!!! What a dramatic transformation. Kudos to you for having foresight, vision and tanacity to follow through! The only suggestion for the stone would be if you took the trim off (which is painted white currently) and were able to find some matching stone (slate pieces or something? I know they come varigated) that you could use and make the stone wall straigh up and down. I think it'd bring more scale and height to the room, and create more of a backdrop that is modern. The shape now still feels a bit barn-ish, although a great improvement from before. I think the straight lines of stone all the way up the wall would help bring that part of the room more in line with all the other stuff you've done.

Katrina said...

Whoah whoah whoah! That's amazing! Well done. You should be very proud of that. It makes me want to rennovate again :)

{Bellamere Cottage} said...

Fresh and pretty...and ever so livable.


Rick said...

I love the hutch. That's a great piece. I appreciate the dog friendly slip covers too!

DesignTies said...

You've done amazing things with your basement!! I really like the stone wall behind the fireplace too -- aren't you happy you kept it?? :-)

Hope you have some time now to sit back and enjoy your new home :-)


for the love of a house said...

A wonderful transformation! Looks like a really happy place to hang!

I recently moved to the land of wood stoves and see them all over around here! And I'm with you, they are not pretty, but I 'can' imagine that they are functional. The part that has always really bothered me (design wise) is the 'round' vent pipe. I think getting a fabricator to make a squared covering for the round pipe (painted black like the stove) would really update it and carry through with the square lines of the stove itself. And instead of having the cover right angle out of the wall like the actual pipe have it continue straight up and would give more of a fireplace chimney 'feel'..... just a thought;)!

You have done a wonderul job of turning this house into a home!

Greet Lefèvre said...

Lauren, congratulations!!
All beautiful! Amazing!
I love the sofa from restoration hardware! And that blue of the jar!

You did it so well!


Maria Killam said...

Congratulations on being in the Blog Watch this week! You are the best!!

Together We Save said...

Beautiful, thanks for sharing all the details of the space. It is beautiful and you have done so much with it.

Victoria said...

How do you like the paint? I want to use no VOC in my boys rooms but wasn't sure about how washable or durable it is. I have always used Behr paint in the past and love it. Also, thanks for the post on rugs. We are contemplating seagrass for our hall and my husband had a ton of questions so I just made him read your blog! Thanks!

Unknown said...

Such a great makeover. The blue is a great idea to add some brightness and oomph to your lower level. Love all the details too.

Lylah Ledner said...

YOU'VE totally inspired me - that's the COLOR of blue I've been looking for to work with in a dark space...thanks! So glad I found you blog via Cote de....

I've added you - immediately - to my blog roll...

keep up the fun and awesome work!


Anonymous said...

OMG, Lauren, you are such a rock star! It amazes me how you're able to get so much done - and you're in your 2nd? 3rd trimester?! I might have to stop visiting you so I don't feel like such a slacker(!) I'm kidding of course. You are such an inspiration and your house just keeps getting better and better. xoxo, alek

Anonymous said...

Oops, hit the wrong button. That last comment was me.

Brooke @ Blueprint Bliss said...

Lauren- it looks fabulous. I love it. Thanks for sharing with us. I just love having a peek into people's houses!

Ashley said...

So inspirational! The details are stunning and in such a short time! I love the mixture of colours, materials and eras! They all flow together so well. You have given me hope that one day my room might look this put together!

Anonymous said...

I found that I was able to buy good family room furniture for a great price at the spacify.com. It was less costly than elsewhere.

Carmen @ Life with Sprinkles on Top said...

Wow! I am in LOVE with this room! Fantastic job! I would like to live here. :)

Jac said...

I do suggest using the wood-burning stove even when the kids are playing. Kids aren't stupid - if they don't know about heat already, they'll learn quickly.
I grew up with a wood stove in our basement/play area. With three siblings it wasn't a safety issue whatsoever.
It was actually a great place to dry out wet outerwear, plus it smells wonderful.

Unknown said...

I found your post when searching on google for a fellow blogger with a wood-burning stove. My husband and I are debating whether or not to move our old wood-burning stove up from the basement where it sits, no longer hooked up. We live in an old house in a suburb of Chicago, so I'm sure we'll get plenty of use out of it during the winter months.

If you have the time, have you had any issues with your kids and the hot stove? I have a 17 month old and a 3 month old and I think that is my biggest concern.

Thanks so much, love your blog! :)
-Ann Marie