Whenever I work on a room, no matter the budget, I always go through a selection process. It can take a little time and is especially challenging when it’s your own space – mainly because you lose objectivity. My struggle with this room was choosing the pillows and art. I like too many fabrics. It’s really a problem. Our walls and main upholstered pieces were so neutral that I knew the pillows and art would bring in some much needed punch. I also had to take into account how much the pillows would be
totally abused enjoyed by our kids and pets.
Budget was slim, but I knew we needed big, squishy pillows in magical fabrics. So I went shopping at Tracery. Oh man, there were so many good ones – choosing was difficult. I narrowed it down to three main styles: zebra, navy, or zig zag.
LOOK ONE: Navy zig zag pillows with collage wall. I took out the cream side chair so you could see the art wall better.
I loved the richness of the navy. But I was concerned about the velvet showing disasters from the kids – and I do mean disasters. It can get a little nuts around here. I also liked the eclectic feel of hanging my favorite art pieces in a grouping. They’re all sentimental paintings – from the abstract small piece by our youngest when he was five, to the beautiful horse painting that was Peter’s first piece of art he bought on his own. It was before I entered his life- ironic it was a horse.
LOOK TWO: Zebra with acid green accents and bird prints. Both of my daughters liked this look best.
Loved this grey ottoman from Tracery, it adds a wonderful layer of texture and is super practical. The owl vase is from T.J. Maxx and the turquoise throw is from Target, both from a while ago. Sorry, this pic seems a little blurry…either that or my eyes are just really tired.
These prints are taken from a Cavallini calendar - soooo easy to pop them in frames and hang. I love the classic look and how comforting an organized grouping like this is. It really directs the eye toward the focal point, which is the view. Best of all it’s super affordable if you’re on a slim budget.
Design note: When decorating a rental, try to keep your investment in staple items you can take with you to your next space (a well made sofa, rug, lamps, custom window treatment panels that can be hemmed or taken out), versus investing in upgrades that stay with the rental. It’s very tempting to upgrade moulding, doors, hardware, lighting fixtures, etc. in a rental property, but keep in mind you will not get your money back in those investments.
I thought carefully about the different looks. As you might expect, I went with a combo of these looks which was the final result I posted here. Zebra with pale blue accents and the gallery wall. What can I say, I love any accent piece that has a wild flair. As far as art goes, I couldn’t resist seeing our sentimental pieces every morning and night – I spend the most time in the kitchen. I ended up transferring the Cavallini prints to our family room above a sectional.
Thanks to my two little helpers that day. They assisted in moving things around and offered their (sometimes quirky) opinions, although they tended to like all the looks. You can see we worked until dark ; ) Herringbone throw on the back of our sofa from Pizitz - my favorite.
Share which look you liked best – or feel free ask any rental design questions in the comments below in case I missed something. I’ll do my best to answer back in the comments.
Room sources are listed in this previous post.
Additional sources: Floor lamp and pillows- Tracery; small bench under pictures – Scott’s ; frames – IKEA; bird prints - Cavallini calendar; white trophies and metal side table – oldies from Target; picnic basket – vintage.