I am so excited to finally share my Spring 2018 One Room Challenge! For those of you who don't know me, I'm Natasha Habermann. I am a full-time interior designer and blogger living in North Salem, NY. Last Fall, I participated as a guest in the Fall 2017 ORC and was selected by Sophie Dow, editor in chief of House Beautiful to participate as a featured designer in the Spring 2018 ORC. I've religiously followed the ORC for years, so being selected as a featured designer was a tremendous honor.
For this seasons' challenge, I took on my living room and connected foyer. You can take a walk down memory lane to review the before photos. There was nothing wrong with these rooms, but I hadn't paid any attention to them.
So, without further ado, I present my modern Swedish living room, and 1920s inspired foyer.
Couch: We purchased the sofa less than a year ago, and we love it, so I didn't plan to replace it. A very happy accident occurred during our endless furniture rearranging. We realized we could split the couch in two to make one large sofa and one half-armless sofa. This arrangement completely changed the feel of the room, and in my opinion, it is more functional. We have a huge TV and the couch now revolves around the fireplace rather than the giant black hole
I'd been dying to add panel molding to this room, and I am thrilled with the way it turned out! Metrie is one of the generous sponsors, and they provided me with all of the panel molding, baseboards, and casing for the living room doors. Panel molding adds dimension and interest to the walls. Replacing the baseboards made these rooms look like a million bucks and the new casing around the doors made them feel much more substantial.
Rug: Old New House has been my go-to source for vintage rugs. They have the most incredible vintage rug selection and are a local business that I love to support. To all of you who weighed in on the rug decision, I hope I didn't disappoint you! Most everyone wanted me to pick the pink vintage rug (more in my week five post), but I didn't like the way it jived with the couch. I wanted to keep the living room calming and neutral.
Fireplace: This was the most significant transformation in the living room, and it was a relatively easy DIY! I have the handiest, of handy fathers who was at my house nearly every weekend for the past six weeks! I would NOT be able to participate in this challenge without him as the labor expense would be exorbitant. But, I digress. Back to the fireplace...
I got a quote to have the brick surround plastered over, but it came in at $1,500. With a little bit of research, my dad's solution was to apply cement board with adhesive to the brick, and cover the board with Venetian plaster. The result looks like plaster but in a much more cost-effective way. I'll be posting our video DIY soon!
Media Unit: Initially, I intended to use a more modern unit, but I'm happy it didn't work out. I found this piece at auction for $100. At the time of purchase, it was brutally ugly. We painted it, removed one of the drawers to make space to store the components, and added new hardware. Now it looks like a Swedish credenza and works perfectly with the hutch I have in the kitchen.
Paint: Farrow & Ball is a long time sponsor of the ORC, and I was so excited to work with them because I'm a bit of a fangirl. For the living room, we went with Strong White on the walls in modern emulsion and All White on the trim in modern eggshell
Mirror: I once called my mom "the finder" in front of a client, and she'll never let me live it down. But, that's what she does best! The mirror was a last minute find. In a desperate, last-ditch effort, she found this fantastic gold, Louis mirror at a thrift store.
Glass Doors: The glass bifold doors were a fortuitous last-minute addition, not so fortuitous for my father as the thing he hates most is hanging doors. When we bought the house, there were bi-fold doors in this doorway, but they were solid. I had been looking for glass doors, but they're difficult to find in narrow widths. While the width of the doors was perfect, they were too short, so we had to extend them.
Lighting: The original plan was to add sconces on either side of the mirror, but that wasn't in the cards. I purchased a pair of sconces from eBay, which still haven't shown up. I then proceeded to buy another pair at auction. The dog ended up breaking them, and I kind of hated them. Instead, I went with two stand up lamps. The brass head task lamp is from Bellacor, another generous ORC sponsor. I had the black modern lamp, and the table lamp and shade are from Target.
Textiles: To give the couch a more inviting feel, I used a variety of neutral linen pillows from Pom Pom At Home (sponsored) as well as one of their sumptuous linen throws. I used the Montauk and the Newport pillow. The quality of their products is divine, and they provide the exact relaxed look I wanted. I also used a silk watercolor pillow from Bellacor that echoes may of the colors in the room.
Art: Minted (sponsored) provided the abstract print in the living room, the large print in the kitchen, as well as the small blue and white watercolor. Nearly all of the other art used in this project is by my incredibly talented mom. If you'd like to see more of her work, head to her Etsy shop, or contact me for custom pieces.
Coffee table: Another last minute add! Every room needs a little Ikea in it, right? It is a "vintage" piece that's lived in three of my family members homes. I love the look of it, and that it allows me to appreciate more of the rug.
Odds + Ends:
I purchased the teal benches on Chairish. I planned on putting them on either side of the fireplace but didn't like the way it looked. I bought the gray side table at an auction for $5, and the wood side chair was an estate sale find.
Staircase: This was the biggest job. After flipping back and forth between painting and staining the stairs, I decided staining was the better option. Before staining, you must sand the stairs and that is NOT a fun job. My SAINT of a father did it for me when I was away for the weekend. I stained them ebony and painted the risers and spindles All White by Farrow & Ball.
Newel Posts: I mentioned a few times that the newel posts always bothered me. They're the first thing you see when you walk in, and I wanted something more substantial. Once again, dad to the rescue...Instead of replacing the newel posts, he encased them. Video coming soon! We painted them Black Blue, the same color as the interior doors, and topped them off with ornate brass finials from eBay. I can't tell you how OBSSESED I am.
Art: My mom made the FANTASTIC collage for the massive wall in the foyer. She used painted wood board with paper cutouts. Having a mother that's an artist to help you with your projects is a definite bonus!
Doors: All of the doors went from white to Black Blue by Farrow & Ball. I then switched out all of the hardware to brass knobs from Emtek which make the doors look extra fancy. Changing the door color and knobs has made the most dramatic impact and has made the standard doors look much more expensive than they are.
Wall color: I complimented the living room color with Farrow & Ball's Borrowed Light, a soft blue that pairs beautifully with the dark doors.
The floor: If you saw the before photos, or if you follow me on IG stories, you know the green tile was once orange brick. I painted the tiles using floor and patio paint, in Chrome Green and I am so pleased with the result. The floor will wear over time so the orange brick will peek through, but I like that look!
At the top of the stairs, eSale rugs (sponsored) provided me with a carpet from their Hamedan collection. If you're looking for affordable vintage rugs, give their massive selection a look!
Lighting: I purchased the large globe pendant about eight months ago, and it's finally hung. The sconces on either side of the door were supposed to be replaced, but alas, there was lighting drama! We also added the cutest french sconce in the hallway near the kitchen entrance which "the finder" found it on Etsy
Hooks: Nostalgic hardware (sponsored) has a beautiful selection of antique-inspired hardware. I used their polished brass hooks on two of the doors in the foyer, and on the interior of the coat closet. In a small entry, you need all the storage space you can get.
Thank you to all of the generous sponsors who have supported this fantastic event! A HUGE thank you to Linda Weinstein for creating and organizing the ORC. It is an incredible event that I look forward to participating in and getting inspired by. Please be sure to check out all of the talented featured designers' final rooms (linked below) and the guest participants who will reveal their rooms tomorrow!
Lastly, To my squad, Mom, Dad, and Aunt JJ, THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING. You deserve just as much credit for this room as I do. It would not be possible without your help, nor would it have turned out as beautifully as it did without your input!
All of my love and gratitude!!!