Archive for the ‘Family Room’ Category

We have really big news around Guin’s Yard this summer:  we are officially jewel-tone-carpet free!  That’s right!  All this:

 DSC_0089 DSC_0068 DSC_0062 

is GONE.  We’ll have to show you what’s here instead in installments, though, because most of the rooms aren’t very “finished” looking yet.  When you replace the flooring in this many rooms (plus the family room), there’s a lot of moving STUFF from one room to another, and some of the rooms have emerged from their awkward mid-project adolescence more gracefully than others.  So we’ll start with some works in progress and some finished shots of the rooms that are well on their way.

So the process.

First we chose the carpet.  We used the same color in all of:  the family room, stairs, upstairs hall, and all 4 bedrooms.  We chose it using the guiding principal of “what will match my dogs the best?”


The final choice was “Treasure,” 2nd from top, right most column.  Shown here against our living room carpet which we like very much, but was discontinued since we put it in.  Otherwise we’d have just continued the same color.IMG_0780


We had the house measured, and the carpet ordered.  While we waited for the carpet to come in, we got the first two rooms ready for install, including:

  • emptying out the rooms,
  • ripping out the old carpet and padding,
  • removing the sliding closet doors and the doors’ track in the floor, and
  • de-glossing, priming, and painting (3 coats!) the baseboard trim.

We established a pattern over the course of about a month, where we’d prep two rooms on a weekend, and the installers would come during the week.  Week 1:  family room and green guest room.  Week 2:  Master bedroom, stairs, and upstairs hall.  Week 3:  Yellow guest room and office bedroom.  Week 4:  master bedroom closet, because the piece didn’t fit in week 3.  These were some mammoth work weekends, so we tucked the project into my couple of weeks of down time after my first half ironman of the season, and before I ramped back up (too much) training for the second one.

By the end of it, if neither of us ever saw another gallon of Sherwin Williams Pro Classic semi-gloss paint, it would’ve been fine with us.  Unfortunately that will not be the case:  we still have doors (lots of doors) and the trim around the windows to do.  Those will be projects for another day.  In the meantime, here’s a few pictures of the slog:

Green bedroom progression:

(Mostly) empty:


Green carpet removed:


Trim primed:DSC_0077and, sorry for the teaser, but that’s as far as I’ve got pictures of this one!  Since it was the first bedroom done, it was (and is) stuffed to the gills with stuff from all the other rooms while they were underway.

Master bedroom:  Before carpet was fully removed (edges cut away), white trim paint finished.


and down to the subfloor:


Hall and stairs:  carpet edges cut away for painting.  Note, this was a real problem when doing the hall and stairs, because we had to spend a few days like this with the carpet tacks exposed, and couldn’t close it off well from the dogs.  We ended up baby gating them in another part of the house, and at bedtime, we walked them straight up the carpeted middle on tight leashes.  Not fun.  At least it was short lived.


More painting:


And down to the sub floor for install day #2:


DSC_0111Obviously we didn’t take complete pics in every room, but you get the idea:  tedium!  Anyway, I am pleased to show off the first and most-put-together room after this whole adventure.  The family room:

DSC_0153This room admittedly looks the least different, since the old carpet was cream colored.  But it was not, I don’t think, particularly good quality carpet, and it didn’t look very good up close.  It was showing serious wear patterns, and Marcy sealed the deal as a puppy when she chewed 2 or 3 holes in it.  We are hoping this darker, more tan, more flecked color will do better.


DSC_0156Marcy asks you not to believe a word about this alleged chewing of carpet.  See this face?  This face doesn’t chew.

The family room is probably also the room where the newly white trim is least noticeable, because there’s so much furniture along the walls.  The door frames are noticeable, though, especially the glass exterior doors.  White trim blends into the door much better, which I like.  The trim is not substantial enough to warrant attention being called thereto.

Hopefully I’ll have pictures of some of the other rooms soon!




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It occurred to me that it’s been a while since I’ve posted any pictures of our family room. Although none of the updates are brand new, I figured it’s time to get around to showing them off!

1.  Media cabinet

The biggest change happened in December, when our media cabinet was delivered.  Ta-da!

For all the furniture in our house, it’s the first piece we’ve picked out and bought because it was exactly what we wanted.  Exciting.

We’ve intended to buy a media cabinet to house the receiver, cable set top box, Blu-Ray player, etc. since we bought our current TV and wall-mounted it.  That was, ahem, almost 3 years ago.  We finally decided to start seriously looking when we knew Marcy would be joining the family.  All those accessible wires under the sofa table seemed like a puppy dream – and a puppy parent nightmare.

We shopped pretty extensively, online and in store, across a variety of price points.  We ended up splurging a little on the piece we chose.  It is an Ethan Allen piece, the Jason buffet with glass on 2 doors (it’s also available with 4 wood panel doors) in the caraway finish.  It came about 2 weeks sooner than promised when we ordered.  In an ideal world, we might have found a piece that sat flush with the floor rather than on legs, so tennis balls (and paws) wouldn’t find their way under.  But such a piece was not to be found.  The legs on this piece are removable, but there’s a support piece under the rear middle that prevents it from sitting flat on the floor.  Unless we have as yet unforseen trouble with the legs, we’ll leave it as is.

2.  Pillow covers

I used leftover fabric from re-covering the dining room chairs to cover the throw pillows on the couch, two each in hounds tooth and paisley.

3.  Table runner for the media cabinet

I found enough of the hounds tooth fabric still at Joanne Fabrics (on sale, woot!) to sew a table runner for the top of the media cabinet.

4.  The puppy gate

The gate was a custom made birthday present from my dad.  We’d been keeping a baby gate leaning in that corner for the occasions on which we needed to keep Guin in one room – because we were brewing beer, moving groceries in/out, painting, trick or treaters were at the door, etc.  That gate became a full time thing when Marcy came home, until she gets a little older and a little more reliable with the house training.  I thought a permanent gate would be a useful thing to have, but I didn’t want anything that would restrict the width of the doorway.  Dad made the sliding gate out of cherry, and mounted it to the studs under the cutout.  Permanent puppy (and little kid) boundary!

5.  Recessed lighting and surround sound wiring/speaker installation

These were actually two separate projects, that happened a couple years ago.  I started a post on the project a long time ago, but I never got around to finishing it.  So, white flag.  In brief, since there is attic space above the family room, we were able to go up and relatively easily run the wiring for 5 recessed lighting cans, and rear and overhead speakers.  The 5 lights are on 3 switches – one for the row over the TV/media cabinet, one for the row nearest the exterior glass door, and one for the one spotlighting the fireplace.  The lights are all on dimmers, which makes for great “movie theater lighting.”

Eventually, we’re looking forward to a new sofa (brown leather?) and coffee table.  The ones we have are serviceable, but they were hand-me-downs and are showing their age a bit.

We’re going to hold on new leather furniture, though, until Miss Marcy outgrows some of the fiendish puppy chewing.

I’m also feeling a little undecided about whether the walls need something.  Looking at most of the photos above, I think they do.  But I like keeping the fireplace the center of the room, so we’ll see.

So there you have it, that’s our family room these days!  To wrap up, since today is Sunday,

Happy Sundogs!


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That’s all 🙂

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I’ve been meaning to post pictures of our rearranged family room for a few weeks now…

Uncle Sam owed us a refund this year, and we used it to treat ourselves to an upgrade from our old 21″ CRT TV, and MDF TV stand (as drenched in awesome sauce as they were).  Around the same time, we had the opportunity to adopt a sectional sofa from friends who had moved, and didn’t have a room the right shape/size for it anymore, as well as a coffee table from my great grandmother’s house by way of my grandfather’s.  Put it all together, and our family room now looks like this:

Guinness’ crate is tall enough to make a comfortable height end table next to the sofa:

We still have a ways to go to finish it off, of course, but it’s SUCH an improvement from here:

Fall 2008

Seating for so many more people by the fire, and comparatively speaking, this feels like our own personal movie theater.  The couch is more comfortable (and more attractive) too!

Still on the to-do list, eventually we’d like to find a credenza to hold the media equipment a little more gracefully than the sofa table, something along the lines of this one:

Bassett - Guilford Credenza

But we have a piece that does what needs doing, so that affords us plenty of time to find the right piece at a reasonable price.  I’ve trolled Craig’s List for something to paint or refinish, but haven’t found anything close to the right size and shape, we’ll hold for a bit.

Also on the functional side, we’d like to install recessed lighting in the ceiling, because there isn’t a ton of room for end tables and lamps (the standing lamp is where it is – next to the TV – only because that is the outlet that is controlled by the wall switch).

In the meantime, though, this is one of our favorite rooms – and now one of the most “done” in the house!

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(The fireplace didn’t see much use back then…)

Photo taken from the kitchen, through the half wall


and… After!:

The fireplace is now open for business! (Wood carrier behind the TV.)

Mom! You're my blocking my water bowl!


The family room was one of our bigger changes, color-wise.  Most of the rest of the downstairs is Creamy, but since the family room is a step down from the kitchen, it feels like a separate space.  I had wanted to have a blue room, so this was it! We’ve been really happy with how it turned out.  As an aside, in the corner you can see Guinness’ crate, which is doubling as an end table.  Yay, double duty!



Sleepy Blue SW6225

Sleepy Blue SW6225



For us, Sherwin-Williams’ Sleepy Blue (SW6225) was the right balance of watery-without-feeling-cold.  We used SW’s Duration Home paint, in washable matte, to withstand the rigors of fetch balls bouncing off of them and general shenanigans.


Garlands and stems up for the holidays - from Michael's


With such a long mantle, it was hard to find what would fill the space, and feel balanced enough — but not too symmetrical — I like what’s up there now, but I’m not sure whether the stems can stay up year-round.  They’ve been great with the gold and cream decorations we put up for Christmas, though.


We took the heavy valence and drapes down to paint, and decided not to put them back up.  They didn’t really further the beachy feel we were going for, and worked better with the old cream paint than with our new blue.  More importantly, though, the drapes didn’t open widely enough to allow the door to actually open — so they were completely impractical.  The valence also hung down in the way.  I’m thinking of putting up sheer panel window treatments mounted on the door itself — nothing that will block too much light.


With the possible exception of the kitchen, this is where we probably spend the most time.  On the “eventually” list:  upgrading to a bigger (flat screen) TV, probably mounted over where the beanbag chair is, and replacing the entertainment center with something a little smaller, sleeker, more compact.  So far, though, we’re really happy with the changes we’ve made!

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