Lily

Lily
Lily Mae

Photography

Photography
Photography

Archer

Archer
Archer Leo

Mini Make over series: Living Room before & after




It can be hard to achieve your own style when it comes to rented accommodation. I know I've certainly struggled anyway.

When we first started moved into our house it was hard to see an end vision of what it was going to look like. There was plenty of space to put our stamp on the place, but because it wasn't our house and because we weren't entirely sure of how long we were planning on staying I couldn't find the creativity nor the motivation needed to mold it to how I wanted it to look.

We've been in this house coming up to 4 years now and it's only in the last 6 months that I've got in the mind set of yeah, we're going to be here a while, let make it more 'us.'

Of course when it comes to rented accommodation there's loads of rules and restrictions as to what you can and can't do in the home. Making many holes in the wall is often a no no and some landlords are even so strict as to not letting the walls be painted or even blu tac be used (my old landlord, ahem.) As luck has it our landlord is quite literally the nicest most chill landlord you could ever have. He's nothing short of a ledge! and so we thankfully don't have those sort of restrictions.

Therefore my first port of call in what I'm going to call 'the mini make over series' (budget wont allow for anything bigger than a mini make over haha) had to be the living room.

The living room is the main room of any household. The room where the family come together and quite simply the room where the most amount of time is spent. Our living room is a lovely size, with french doors opening on to our garden which is my favourite part of the house. The only really down side to our living room actually is the fact that it's north facing and therefore despite having large windows and french doors it doesn't get much light. Not helped by the fact that we have very dark furniture too meaning the room can sometimes feel rather dark. But it's not a major issue, it's more than live-able in and it can actually feel really cosy come winter time.

Our living room has always been quite blandly decorated. I used to be very into beige and creams and so when we moved over from our old flat all our beige and cream living room decor came with. I wish I'd put it all in the loft from the beginning, starting afresh from day 1 but with an 11 month old baby Lily in tow time was not on our side for anything so for ease more than anything else our old living room decor stayed the same in our current home too.

However like I said in the last 6 months I've started branching out a bit into styles that are more 'me.' Despite our landlord being very chilled there's still a lot we cant do as it's rented accommodation. The carpets for example, would be the first thing to go if we were to own the property and would be replaced with wooden flooring (my dream!) and the sofas (which are the landlords) would be replaced too. But I've managed to change the things that I do have some control over - things such as replacing old canvases, putting up new wall decor and giving the kids their own little area. 

Before



Very bland neutral decor with very dated canvas

After



Wall Decor


I'm very pleased with the result. The addition of the over-sized house plant (Ikea) freshens up the room as does the splash of white in a lot of the wall decor. The macrame wall hanging is from BobellaCo and I adore it - I've wanted one for ages! The prints are from various places. Pumpkin & Posey, Etsy, La Redoute Home and a few I made myself to save the pennies.

Play Corner - Before


Again very bland and un-imaginative use of space. The TV stand I absolutely hated, mainly because you could see all the wires behind the stand and so we replaced it with this Hemnes one from Ikea to match our Hemnes bookshelf, which I much much prefer. 

After



I much prefer this side of the room now. Although there is only a small amount of space the kids now have their own corner for all their toys rather than them being constantly spread around the room. The toy storage unit is this one from IKEA and is so handy, I would definitely recommend, it's so handy. The teepee is from BangarangBaby on Etsy and the panda rug is this one from Sass and Belle. 
There's still a few things I would change to this corner. Although the brown wooden boxes match our TV stand and bookshelf they don't look right above the play corner and so I'd like to move these around eventually. I also made the mistake of buying see through coloured storage boxes from Ikea which makes the area look cluttered (lets ignore the fact that the boxes are over flowing anyway!) and so I'd like to get some different ones. Maybe yellow to add a pop of colour. 

Decorative pieces


Decorative pieces are so important in any home. I'm a big fan of house plants and believe greenery can massively freshen up any home. Most of our plants are from Ikea although the cactus' pictured are all from our local garden centre and the mini faux plant sat on the fireplace is from Primark Home. The golden bulb string lights strung across our fireplace are also from Primark home and I love them! Framed pictures add a great touch of personalization to the living room and my favourite is this photo Lily drew of us all after Archer was born. The perfect family picture, I had to frame it!
And so that is my new and improved living room. It's not magnificant by any stretch of the imagination and there's lots of room for improvement but for a rented accomodation I'm pleased we finally managed to put our own stamp on it. 
Have you recently had a living room make over? Have you struggled to decorate rented space? I'd love to hear about it in the comments below! 


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14 comments

  1. Loving this transformation! The wigwam kids area is delightful, but it is great how the design of the adult living room set up is all modern.

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    1. Thankyou it really makes a difference having the children area and 'adult area' sort of seperate x

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  2. It's great how you've made your mark on your home, without going against any landlord's rules. Your decorative additions are great and can be moved as the mood takes you and the play area is fab 😀

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  3. It looks amazing, I'm rather jealous. I have too much stuff so unless I can bring myself to get rid of a huge amount of it I'm going to have to accept the chaos and lack of style.

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    1. Storage! storage is the way forward to hide everything i'm telling ya! x

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  4. Oooh I love this transformation! Your hairpin table is gorgeous.

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    1. Thankyou my partner made it himself, he's dead chuffed with your comment haha x

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  5. Oh wow! Looks absolutely amazing. I love every single thing you have! Stunning x

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  6. Such a difference with a few lovely touches! The art and greenery makes all the difference, and the kiddie area looks very organised! Love the teepee :-) #HomeEtc

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  7. Ah it looks great, what a transformation! I love the prints and the coffee table in particular x #HomeEtc

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  8. I love how you have made the space so multi functional and I love the whole look it looks so great x

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  9. It looks AMAZING!! What a fabulous transformation!! You say that you'd change the sofas but actually, in that setting with all your gorgeous prints on the wall, they look so cool!! Such a difference between the before and after shots — I'd be thrilled if I were you Abbie, it looks fantastic :) Thanks so much for sharing! xx #HomeEtc

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  10. What a beautiful room! It's amazing what you can achieve with even just a few small changes, and especially when you're renting. It looks gorgeous and homely and like it was always meant to be that way X #HomeEtc

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