Dec 29

Touring Our 1950’s Ranch :: The Living Room

Visiting someone’s house can give you some major insight about a person. You can realize their passions, their priorities and it’s a glimpse into how they live. Style, favorite colors, personal tastes, preferences other and hidden secrets can all be discovered, even if it’s in a subtle, subconscious way. It’s not just a house but a home.

I’ve always had this vision of sharing a home tour on this little blogging space. We bought a 1950’s ranch from a sweet little lady who had lived here for over 40 + years. She raised her babies, watched them graduate and move on to have families of her own. She was only the second owner of the house. It soon became time for her to move on to a new piece of her life as well and share what was once her home with someone else. I can still remember her pointing out how lovely the rose colored wallpaper in the kitchen was and telling how she admired her 1980’s drapes. I certainly did not have the heart to tell her that these things she cherished didn’t hold the same sentiment to me. While I would surely take care of her house, it was to become something that would now tell our story and reflect who we are.

Over the past 6 years we have poured so much time, energy and savings into the space making it our own. While from the beginning I realized how interesting it would be to see the before and afters, I’ve never come to the point where I thought it was finished. There’s always something to tweak, rearrange or redecorate. The updating and remodeling seems never ending and there’s forever been a project sitting on deck. However, seeing as our house is officially on the market and we’ve even accepted an offer, it seems like my remodeling story of 123 Ivanhoe may be finally reaching its end.

Today’s tour will begin with the living room which each December hosts a large Christmas tree with as many gaps in it as I can possibly find. Those tree farmers have yet to realize that people like me exist – those of us who want trees that looks airy and spacious, as though they had just been trimmed from the side of the highway or plucked straight out of the woods – but that’ a story for another time. When we moved in, the living room boasted worn blue carpet and white walls. There was nothing particularly special about the living space and in fact, I scarcely remembered what it looked like then until digging out these old photos.

Before | 1950's Ranch | The Day's Design

Before Photos | 1950's Ranch | The Day's Design

We removed the beams between the two rooms, lifted the carpet to reveal the original hardwood floors and added our own furniture to the space.

I quickly realized how strange the lighting in my house was. For the walls, I wanted a very soft and neutral green hue which would play off of the sage of my sofa. But every paint swatch seemed to glow as soon as the color hit the wall. It was as if I was choosing a florescent colors, even though the swatch itself was a pale and muted tone. After countless trips to the hardware store, I finally settled on a color with a bit more intensity than I had originally envisioned but at least it would have enough depth and not glow.

I soon realized this green too had a neon radiance around 4:00pm each afternoon when the sun shone though the picture window just right. But I really didn’t have the energy to change it so that’s how it stayed for the first couple of years.

You may recall the story of the giant ice hole in my ceiling and if not, you can relive it all here and here. It was a blessing and a curse all at the same time and allowed us to revamp the space even more and I finally got the paint I love and brand new windows to match.

My accessories and décor are switched throughout the year, my furniture is often rearranged and the artwork and family photos ever changing on my walls. I have winter and summer throw pillows and more seasonal décor than I care to admit. But right now, it feels like home and I’m so glad Kellie was able to capture it during my favorite holiday of the year.

Living Room | Grand Rapids Home Tour | The Day's Design | Hetler Phtoography

Christmas Tree | The Day's Design | Hetler Photography

Suticase End Table | Violin | The Day's Design | Hetler Photography

Grey Living Room | Home Tour | The Day's Design | Hetler Photography

I’m not going to bombard you with lots of details and pictures of the space as I am hardly an interior designer.  However, this is just a small glimpse of what my world looks like {when the house is clean and the toys are all put away}.


Professional photos are courtesy of Hetler Photography, the icky “befores” are my handy work and the reason that I strongly recommend hiring the pros.

  1. […] case you missed the first part of my home tour, you can see the living room here.  And that little tidbit from Monday’s post about putting an offer in on a house, our offer […]

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