ORC WEEK 2: Color, Function & Floorplans


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Baby steps! It’s all about the baby steps when it comes to the One Room Challenge and I forget how everything starts off slowly and then snowballs towards the end. And this round is no different.  Last week, I introduced you to the space we’re redoing and this week I’m going to tell you all about why we chose the things we did. Because Lord knows, I’m nothing if not all about form AND function.

Today is exciting because most of our American Leather upholstery and a few Bungalow 5 casegoods are arriving, which means it’s time to move out some of the existing furniture to make room. I’ll be posting on Instagram Stories later, so don’t miss out on those updates!


The biggest problem to solve in my sister’s combination living/dining/kitchen was how to maximize what ultimately is an awkward arrangement to meet all their needs. As a family, they spend the majority of the time in this space, but it ended up feeling really blocky and disjointed.  See how the sofa is creating this weird hallway?

I drew probably a dozen different floor plans and we ended up rearranging their existing furniture to see how we felt about various configurations. The most important thing we did was reassess their primary lounging/TV watching space. First, we assessed how often they use their “formal” dining room.


See how the stairs from the entry and gallery hallway there open up onto what they’ve been using as their tv watching zone? It immediately does this weird thing to the overall traffic flow and it makes everything feel closed off and small, despite the overall airy feel of the room.

But when I measured everything, I realized that the space they’re using as their formal dining room would hold a 10×14 rug and become a sizeable living area. Almost double of the space they’re currently occupying. And with all the room to sit at the bar PLUS the table in front of the two pairs of French doors overlooking the patio, they were more than adequate when it comes to seating guests.

And that’s why open floor plans can be so tricky and also so great — there’s a ton of flexibility BUT it’s all about telling your room how you need it to function for you. It’s about designating zones in what is otherwise a space with otherwise relatively few boundaries.


  • Comfort
  • Transitional style
  • Flexibility (they rearrange frequently)
  • Neutral palette with pops of color so they can switch things up as the mood strikes
  • Life/kid/dogproof


They repainted not too long ago and it’s a pretty soothing neutral — Pashmina by Benjamin Moore. PRO TIP: do not be afraid to have your paint color de-intensified by having the overall value reduced. In other words, you like the overall tone of a color but worry it’s too dark? Have it cut by 50% or whatever amount floats your boat.

We’re also working on introducing a little more color — the base palette isn’t wrong or bad, it’s just super neutral. But that’s what allows color to really shine.

Ok, here’s what we’re planning roughly for the entryway — Thibaut’s Hayworth wallpaper from the Modern Resource collection and a pretty Jade flushmount fixture from Mitzi/Hudson Valley Lighting. The console is from Bernhardt and they already had it, but it was being used in the dining room, so we’re repurposing it in the entry. I’m wanting to bring in pops of green and fuchsia to compliment what we’re doing elsewhere — and again, no better place to play with color than through accessories.

Then! In the living area, we’re setting the boundaries with the Twiggy rug from Annie Selke — this is one of my FAVORITE rugs and I’ve used it for clients. It’s got an incredibly soft feel underfoot and I love the mix of textures. It’s a great way to introduce a jute texture while still having the polish of wool.  And I’m *super* excited to get in our American Leather Turin sofa  — just wait til you see all its special features. It’s modern motion furniture with next-generation technology.  And we also did a pair of Comfort Air chairs because Amy & Eric fell in love with how comfy our Comfort Air recliners are. We’re also introducing some other natural textures to mirror the wood used throughout the room with Bungalow 5 including those chic and functional papyrus H benches.


The One Room Challenge only happens with a ton of help from amazing sponsors who are willing to take a risk to provide items I’ve requested to help make my vision a reality. These are more than just brands – they’re a team of amazing people behind each line and I’m immensely grateful for their support. Do hop over and check them all out!


Likewise, thanks to Linda at Calling It Home for organizing the One Room Challenge  for yet another amazing year!


with love,

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