Back in July, I told you how I teamed up with one of my all time favorite brands, IKEA, for what was truly one of my favorite blog projects of all time. My regular readers are well aware of my affinity for IKEA's aesthetic (minimal, neutral, a little boho, and modern), and know that I already own a lot of their home furnishings. I love how easy it is to modify IKEA's products to meet individual needs and/or taste, I appreciate that their products are affordable without sacrificing quality, and I'm a big fan of their efforts to be sustainable. They just rock all around. So obviously I was thrilled when they reached out to me about working with the IKEA Home Tour Squad to transform our living room seating situation for their Home Tour Series. And I'm even more excited to finally announce that (as you'll see below) our episode is now live!
In case you're not familiar with Home Tour Series, a team of experts from IKEA (all of whom first worked in actual IKEA stores throughout the country) travel from city to city to help people with design challenges by making over spaces in their homes. They then share short television show style videos of the transformations on their website and channel. I couldn't have been more excited to work with the team (every single one of them was so, so great, and we've stayed in touch ever since). From designing and assembling the new space to filming the show, every minute of the project was fun. I wish we could do it for every single room in our place.
Our biggest design challenge in our current home was the fact that our living room was not only what I considered to be visually awful (I cringed every single day when I looked at our sofa), it was also completely unpractical when it came to our seating situation. We had an old couch (in the most unappealing beige tone I've ever seen) that my husband and I bought on clearance when we first moved in together, a dated oversized chair that had clearly seen better days, a coffee table that, while lovely, took up most of the room, and accessories that were so bland they did little more than emphasize the flatness of the space. The way the furniture was arranged allowed for such minimal seating that when we had friends over, people ended up sitting on the floor. The room was also not conducive to having kids on any level. While we'd updated the rest of the house to accommodate our babes, for whatever reason, the living room was still in the same state it had been in for years. There was little room for them to play (to us, it's called a "living" room for a reason), and the toys they did have in the space caused clutter. It was time for a major overhaul.
I worked closely with the IKEA Home Tour Squad to redesign the space in a way that would vastly improve both its functionality and its visual appeal. We got rid of the couch (best day of my life), the chair, the table, and the overly neutral accessories. We left the pieces that worked (our IKEA entertainment center, an end table, the kids' toy baskets, our artwork, and a few other things), but for the most part, got to start with a blank slate.
The biggest (and my favorite) change to the space was the addition of the SODERHAMN modular sofa. Not only is it one gorgeous piece of furniture, it's incredibly comfortable (wide enough to sleep on!), and comes in different sections that can be configured in multiple ways. (And I mean multiple. As you'll see in the episode, we played around with it before the final set up and literally created three completely different looks to the room in the process.) We used one section of it for a chair in a corner as well, which gave the space visual balance and created even more seating. And the covers are removable, so we can change colors in the future, and can wash them when the kids spill.
To create some pops of color in the space, the SODERHAMN was paired with a variety of colorful pillows and covers, as well as a graphic black and white patterned rug (the LAPPLJUNG RUTA). To add even more bold the space, the team utilized two LACK side tables in bright yellow to create a coffee table, and painted a crate with yellow accents for a multi-use side table and book shelf. Various houseplants (because I'm addicted) were placed throughout the space along with a few other decorate accents, and the new room was complete.
As you can see from the before and after shots in the video (which you can also watch right here), the change was substantial. And we couldn't be happier. The room is now not only incredibly functional, it's an absolute joy to get to see everyday. I very rarely break out of my neutral, bohemian-tinged decor taste, but the bold colors in our new living room are so cheerful it's almost impossible not be in a good mood when you're hanging out in there. The kids have plenty of room to play in the space now without it looking like a disheveled play area. It's just perfect, really. We're so happy. The entire experience couldn't have been better, and the end result is just fantastic.
This was truly a dream gig for me. Thank you again to IKEA Home Tour Squad for being so awesome, and to IKEA for partnering with us on this project. I want to do it again!
This post is in partnership with IKEA. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible.
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