Before and After: A $500 Living Room Redo Features a Bold Wall Color and Lots of Cozy Vibes

published Oct 18, 2021
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Credit: Ayesha Anwar

The most important aspect of any space at home is functionality — but it’s important to create a home that makes you feel good, too. Finding the balance was something that Ayesha Anwar (@playsonpatterns) and her husband Ozair Ibrahim had been working on since they moved into their new-build home in 2017.

Credit: Ayesha Anwar

“We did not add too many custom features through our builder,” Ayesha says. “Instead, my husband and I have been slowly chipping away adding custom design features to our home to make it our own and give it a fusion of mid-century modern and globally inspired design style.”

Credit: Ayesha Anwar

One area that particularly lacked charm was the living room. “The space worked well for us in that it serves as our hangout space, the play space for the kids, and it also opens up to our kitchen so is great for entertaining,” Ayesha says. But even though it was practical and comfortable, the design was lacking.

“There was nothing really special about the space other than it has a good layout for us and has lots of windows,” Ayesha says. “It did not feel inviting or fun for us.” She wanted to create a space the whole family would love since they all spent so much time there.

Credit: Ayesha Anwar

Ayesha and Ozair focused on small changes that would make the whole room feel cozier. They started by revamping the fireplace wall, adding white shiplap above the fireplace for some texture before mounting a new wood mantel. The couple also painted the fireplace surround black — rather than the gray it was before — to help lend some additional contrast. Now, it pops against the crisp white wall around it.

Credit: Ayesha Anwar

On the other side of the room, where the TV sits, Ayesha and Ozair created an accent wall painted rich black (Sherwin-Williams’s Greenblack). While the color is bold, it’s also classic — especially when paired with white and wood accents. New bookshelves and wall-mount shelves make the wall even more practical for storing and displaying favorite reads and toys. “The organization of the kids’ toys and learning supplies has been a plus and allows for a lot more independent play, a win for us all,” Ayesha says.

The transformation cost about $500 to complete, a price tag that includes all the wood, paint, decorative accessories, new shelves from IKEA, and the new Ruggable rug (a practical pick for a family with two young kids).

“After using it for six months the overall design and layout of the space have worked so well for our family,” Ayesha says. “It feels so much cozier and is so fun to be in.”

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