The Ultimate Room Makeover Challenge

In our search for a home, one thing we loved about the place we chose was the fact that it needed minimal work. It was, and is, livable. Nothing needed a major overhaul, except this one room…


These photos are untouched (besides the framed border) and where taken during the brightest time of day for this room.

Yeah, while you can live in this space, and nothing is damaged, it is an absolutely dreadful space. There are no overhead lights and the dark wood panelling just makes this space so depressing it hurts. Right now we just have a few boxes in it and our computer station.

The downside about this space is the wood panelling. It can’t be removed, there is no drywall behind it and the effort to finish off this space was too great.

So the challenge: Turn this dark dungeon into a bright, fresh library/family room.

Our first step will be to paint the panelling. My mother has a wall in her living room that is panelling, and painted, and it gives great character to the space. I knew it was possible to pull it off, just unsure how.

:: Spoiler Alert, we’ve already primed and started painting, but that post will come later ::

I’ve drawn up a few design concepts for the space. I am a visual learner and typically need to draw what’s in my head out in order to explain it best or just to see if what I am thinking will actually work. Joseph on the other hand doesn’t understand the concept. I draw up my designs, show him, and he will nitpick it until no end. I reassure him that it is only a concept, so when we do go shopping I have a visual to go off of to make sure what we pick flows with the overall design.

I want to make sure the patterns and textures we choose for the space won’t overpower each other and melt into one cohesive design. Seeing it all laid out gives me reassurance that when we do make a purchase I can feel confident in my choices. Because lets face it, I refuse to pay full price for something when I know I can find something just a great in the clearance section, it just takes patience, time and many trips.

And in any case, everything I’ve put together are real items for purchase, for those of you who still continue to question the process, or if you’ve fallen in love with something I can tell you exactly where to find it.


I put together 6 designs, 6,  and this is the only one Joseph sort of tolerated. The man always responds with ‘I don’t care’ when it comes to home decor, but when I show him my ideas, boy does he really have an opinion, and usually it’s ‘I don’t like it’ with no real direction as to where to go from there. Regardless I’m sure he will love the space in the end.

We chose a soft blue green color for the walls, which should go nicely with the red brick fireplace and oak wood trim. From there I wanted neutral tones in the furniture, with pops of color in the accents, making it easier to change whenever I was bored of the color scheme. Bonus, the blue green allows for the freedom to float around with various color pallets.

Along with the furnishings, Joseph plans on adding built-ins around the fireplace for books and a space for the computer (hidden away because I hate when it’s visible). The sun porch portion of the room (the space with all the windows) is slightly separated from the main room, in which I want an oversized lounge chair for reading and a quiet area from the rest of the house (concept on that space coming soon!).

I’m excited to turn this room into a space we will use and love over the years!

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