Living Room and Dining Room: A Softer Color Palette

I look at my ever-present "to do" list much like I look at my shopping list at Target - it's not an exhaustive list of what I will get or do, but more of a reminder of the things I actually need so that I don't forget.  Every year, I share my resolutions for the next year, and that list basically serves as my "to do" list for the following year.  Every year, I add new projects as I go along.  Today's project is one of them.

I really liked my living room/dining room and how it evolved.  Here's the space awhile ago:

I've enjoyed the color palette for the past two and a half years ... but lately, I've been itching to change it up a little.  Maybe it's the change in seasons and the cooler temps.  Maybe it's the gold and soft peachy art that I made.  Whatever it is, I decided to take the plunge and make some changes.  The good thing is, all of these changes are easy and pretty inexpensive: just new pillows and pillow covers.  

The first step was a new rug.  I blogged about that before the holidays.  That alone has made a big difference!  It's so soft!  Like the softest lambs and kittens.  

The pillows were next.  I've noticed in the rooms that I've been loving on blogs and Pinterest that the colors are much more subdued and subtle, and there's a lot more texture.  My current coral-pink-yellow-seaglass blue color combo was lovely, but I was due for a change.  So I measured my pillows and went searching for new pillow covers.  I wanted lots of gold, pale pink/peach, creams and whites and lots and lots of cozy textures.

First, all I needed to do was remove the patterned covers on my large sofa pillows.  I bought the champagne and white striped covers at IKEA years ago and I've brought those suckers back.  Perfect.  Next, I bought these pale pink pillow covers from Bead and Reel on Etsy.  They replaced the old pink and white chain link print pillows.  I absolutely love them.  I found the gold and white patterned pillows at Target, which conveniently came in a set of two.  Finally, the silver and cream linen covers are clearance buys from Ballard Designs. 

On the sofa, I used some of the same pillows.  I also kept my cream textured pillow from Target.  The oversized pillow on the right is from Ballard Designs and is a soft wool.  It, too, was a clearance buy. 

I am loving the new look. It's a subtle change, but has a huge impact.

Of course, as is often the case, this snowballed into more unexpected projects ... this softer palette made me look at my dining room with a kind of critical eye.  So, I took care of the shelves and the buffet top in the dining room.

I love my dining room shelves.  They were a much needed addition to the side of the room and are both pretty ...

and functional!  Check out all of that storage.

When I bought the shelves a few years ago, I painted the backs coral. And now I painted them back to their original cream.  Funny, too, because before I did this, Bill asked "what unsuspecting piece of furniture will you paint white this weekend?"  The answer, Bill and internet, is the shelves.  I realize how insane it was that I painted them back to their original color ... but it's my house and I'll paint if I want to.

Once the backs were returned to their original white (color is Cream Delight by Valspar - a close match to the Ikea white), I had to fill them.  Some of the things stayed, while I added new or different things.  The only thing I purchased was the rope & glass lantern in the top shelf.  Everything else I had in my decor stash.  Look at how beautiful and neutral and white!

The buffet was next.  Another "unsuspecting piece of furniture" was about to get a whole bunch of white!  Before, I had a turquoise runner with a coral urn.  It worked with the former color palate.

But not so much with the current one.  I took those off and added some frames and decor.  As with the shelves, I had everything on hand except the cream/gold/glitter! vase in the middle.

That vase was a $7 clearance find at TJ Maxx.  I wish I could say I acted completely normally when I found it, but this is what happened.

And here's some final shots!

So what's left?  I bought fabric to recover my cane back dining chairs - this lovely neutral (read: LOTS OF WHITE) floral fabric.

I want to recover the chairs, get a new pillow cover to replace the yellow one, get a rug for under the table and figure out something fun and new for the top of the table.  And then ... at long last I can cross the dining room and living room off my list!  For now! Until it's time to change things up again! 

See you swoon,

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