Friday, September 14, 2012

A Transformation In Our Den

Hi everyone!  I love Thursday evenings because that means tomorrow is Friday -- WooHoo!    My friends at work used to call Thursday "Friday's Eve."  I always got a real kick out of that.  :)

Tonight I'm showing you a space in our den that was always deemed "The Problem Spot."  You're familiar with those, yes?  Unfortunately, we were so excited to get this all switched up, we forgot to take before pictures.  What were we thinking?  Anyway,  I'll try to describe "The Before" to you.  As you enter our den from the kitchen, there's a space on the right that's about five feet wide along the wall by two and a half feet deep.  We have chair rail molding in our den, and a print hangs above the molding.  We used to have an extra chair from our kitchen dinette set under the print and a brass floor lamp in the corner.

The dinette chair is nice -- a solid oak Windsor chair, but it didn't fill the space properly.  There are thick black cords running from a cable outlet to my husband's computer desk, and that chair didn't begin to hide those cords.  Also, our brass floor lamp had definitely seen better days.  It was at least 20 years old.  In addition, this was where our daily mail and paper clutter always seemed to end up.  That really made this a problem spot.

Back in January of this year, I spotted this piece of furniture at our local Big Lots.  (See the lovely cable sticking out on the right?)  Sorry for the blurry picture.

I probably shouldn't be telling everyone that we got this piece at Big Lots; it's not where we normally shop for furniture.  Practically everything else in our house was made in North Carolina furniture factories (back when North Carolina was still making furniture in a big way.)

These pictures are so blurry; they were taken back in January and I have to use them to show you how we changed things up.  I promise the piece looks much better than this.

I wasn't looking for furniture that day, but a piece just like this was sitting out in front of the store.  It had been damaged, so the price was reduced.  The damage was pretty bad, and I went inside to see if they had any that weren't damaged.  They did, but the price wasn't reduced.  I brought my husband back, and we decided to buy it with some of our leftover Christmas money.

I really liked the shape and size of it, and the finish almost exactly matches that of our entertainment center that we bought at a nice furniture store.  We've never bought furniture at Big Lots, but I have to tell you, this piece is sturdy.  It seems to be well made for what it is.  And it fits the spot perfectly.

When we looked at the cabinet, hubby and I both agreed that the drawer knobs had to go.  Here's a close-up.

 They're not our style, and they didn't look right with anything else in the room.  So we went to Lowe's and got these...

Much better.

Once we switched out the hardware, it was time to decorate the top of the chest.  I brought back a lamp that used to sit somewhere else in the den, until it got replaced and moved to the basement.  Back upstairs it came.  Then I placed my French Country engagement calendar in the center, and since it was January, I added a snowman.  Here's a picture with the original hardware.  More blurriness...

I've always liked this lamp, but I decided the patterned shade was too busy for this spot.

  The colors matched the print on the wall, but it was all just too much busyness.  So I switched the lampshade out for a new ivory one -- big improvement.

My husband's grandmother gave us the print; it has historical significance for our home town.  I love the warm fall colors in the picture.

In addition, I changed up the other items on top of the chest.  And ta-da, no more ugly black cable for everyone to see.  By the way, the chest comes in really handy for storing extra DVDs and Cd's, as well as other odds and ends.

I stacked some books, something we have an abundance of here at Forest Manor.

 The fleur-de-lys used to sit on our original entertainment center.

The pottery mugs were a wedding gift and are part of a set of four.  I love the salt glaze and the colorful flowers.  These mugs have traveled with us everywhere we've lived in our 25 years of marriage.

So essentially, we went from having a chair with no storage space and a sad-looking floor lamp, to this...

...then to this (new hardware, old lampshade)

and finally, this.

We couldn't be happier with our transformation.  What areas in your home do you wish you could improve on?

Thanks to everyone who read my blog this week and left such nice comments.  I'm honored that you continue to visit.


I'm joining:

Home and Garden Thursday at A Delightsome Life

Home Sweet Home at The Charm of Home
Potpourri Friday at 2805
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage
Seasonal Sundays at The Tablescaper
Sunny Simple Sundays at Sunny Simple Life
Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch


  1. I love it. I'm all about the shape and style of things, and that style (mission style maybe?) is one of my favorites. Loved the transformation with the hardware, too. Simple yet makes a huge difference.

  2. You found a great little chest, and I love how you styled it. The print above it is especially nice, since it has historical significance to your home town. Love that.
    Have a great weekend,

  3. You did a fabulous job! Everything looks so warm and cozy!!!! Thank you for sharing! Great inspiration!!! I am a new follower of your blog and invite you to join mine as well, would love to see you there!

  4. It looks very nice . I LOVE that painting !!

    I started chuckling when I read 'these knobs have to go ' ...I have a table that has a missing knob from my grandson's last visit and I have yet to find it! : )

  5. I am in love with that print and that lamp base. Isn't it amazing how much just a few changes will transform a space. It looks great! Wanna come help me with my house? I have a ton of problem areas.

  6. Denise, those handles you chose? They look exactly like the ones on my kitchen cabinets!! My carpenter told me they were called "Bird cage", figured that was why they caught my eye. Everything looks beautiful. xo

  7. I adore the historical framed art! What a treasure. Amazing how changing out the hardware made such a difference.

  8. Great transformation. I like your lamp and the new lampshade just makes it. The subtle changes and new vignette looks great.

  9. Very nice transformation! Thank you for sharing at Potpourri Friday!

  10. Great job! Wonderful to have you be a part of Seasonal Sundays.

    - The Tablescaper

  11. You can certainly turn-around a problem area Denise! What a great make-over.
    Rose H

  12. So pretty! Thank you for joining Home Sweet Home!

  13. Oh I love your choice of hardware!

  14. Wow-turned out lovely! I love how the photo and dresser compliment each other.

  15. I do like your picture and the corner that it is in.



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