Khandi’s Living Room Makeover

Khandi and I have been friends and neighbors for almost twenty years. We taught together for a long time, and we’re both the same age and both grew up in East Texas. Two years ago when she asked me to decorate her living room, a friend also became a client.

Here are some photos of the before. 

This is what we determined needed to be done:

*Re-paint the living room in a more neutral color.

*Remove wallpaper from entry, texture, and paint.

*Find a table for behind the sofa.

*Add custom window treatments.

*Have an existing wing chair recovered.


And here is the room when we were finished. 

We tested several paint colors and discovered that greiges just didn’t work. Benjamin Moore’s wildly popular Revere Pewter, for example, looked lavender in her room. Several other colors that we tried took on undertones we didn’t like either. ( You can click HERE to see my tips for choosing paint.)

Pavilion Beige by Sherwin Williams turned out to be the perfect choice.  It’s soft and warm, not too dark, not too light.  It reminds me of coffee with a big splash of cream in it.  


Her wing chair looks brand new with a textured neutral fabric.  The chalkboard from Hobby Lobby is large enough that nothing else was needed on the wall above the chair.  I chalked the “H” and the detailing around it.  Since then Khandi has added her own artwork to the chalkboard.  

I definitely knew she is one of the best cooks I’ve ever met because I have enjoyed her meals for years. I also knew she was   tech savvy and an excellent furniture painter.  I just didn’t know she was such a whiz at chalkboard art.  I’m impressed. 

I have always loved Khandi’s fireplace with its traditional mill work and raised hearth.  The built-in to the right was intended for the television back in 1992 when the house was built.  She painted it herself years ago and was still happy with the green, so we left it. With the new wall color, it stands out more now.  

We kept the mantle simple with some ceramic urns and faux ferms from Hobby Lobby along with a few other items she already owned.  The family photo still takes center stage, but the addition of the iron scroll above it adds some height.

This slim library table from World Market was the perfect size for the wall behind the sofa.  Anything wider would have cut into the walkway too much. 

One of my favorite accessories in the room is this section of porch railing from a 1911 Waco home that was torn down.  When I saw it, I knew it was piece of history that I had to have.  I originally bought it for myself but could never find the right spot for it in my house.  

A collection of tattered family Bibles fills a new metal tray below the porch railing-turned-wall-art.

Once the wallpaper was gone and the walls were textured, new paint really transformed the entry.  We chose Underseas by Sherwin Williams.  

The only furniture needed was Khandi’s primitive desk from the 1800’s.  I added three simple pots of greenery, some sconces, and a scroll over her existing family photo.  All these accessories were purchased from Hobby Lobby.

The strong paint color in the entry balances out the custom drapes in the living room.  They are made from a heavily textured fabric  and finished with some decorative trim.  

Khandi’s living room turned out exactly the way we envisioned it. It’s homey, comfortable, and reflects her traditional style and love of color.  The best part is that I get to keep enjoying the finished project–and her good cooking–when I pop in for a visit just one block over.  















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