Before & After: Shopping Your Own Home

Before & After: Shopping Your Own Home

Leah Moss
Feb 18, 2011

After a month of seeing so many dramatic before and afters, I have officially caught the redo bug. However, since neither time nor budget will allow for the million things I'd like to improve, this weekend I plan on following the lead of Marya & Rick, of House Tour fame, who know how to shake up the look of a room by shopping their own home.

If you're like me, when a redo impulse strikes, your first thought is about what you should buy. While sometimes that's a legitimate response, often it's more satisfying — both for your psyche and your bank account — to scour your house for pieces that may be the perfect solution when given a coat of paint or a new location. After all, the satisfaction of resourcefulness is hard to beat!

Between my visits to Marya & Rick's Layered and Luminous Arlington Retreat, some rooms had a noticeably different feel although the layout and the majority of pieces themselves had remained unchanged. It struck me how swapping just one piece of furniture for another, or changing even the trim color of a piece, had the ability to give the room just enough of a shake up that it could feel fresh and new without necessitating an full-fledged makeover. It's also a doable course of action for those of us suffering from what fellow DC blogger, Colleen, dubs DIY envy.

Often, altering one spot sparks a wave of smaller redos in other rooms, thus lending a fresh sense to almost the whole room since when one thing goes out, something else usually comes in from another room to replace it. Such seems to be the case in Rick and Marya's home, specifically in their bedroom.

Let's take a look at their little home shopping spree and shake up:

Picture 1. Marya borrowed the bureau originally found in her son's room (picture 4). She painted the trim from green to cream to fit in with the airy whites and ivories of her bedroom.
Picture 2. Originally, the spot in picture 1 had been occupied by an old Ikea dresser. While it lent a strong visual presence, it also distracted from the light, airy vibe of the room. The switch allowed the rug to really shine.
Picture 3. Marya used another dresser to replace the one from her son's room that now graces her bedroom.
Picture 4. The original dresser that now sits in Marya and Rick's bedroom once served as baby James' changing table.
Picture 5. Originally the snuggery housed one of the lamps now found on their bedroom bureau.
Picture 6. Marya borrowed the lamp from their entry console to warm up the snuggery. The ceramic lamp has a cozier feel than the acrylic one now gracing the bedroom bureau (picture 1).
Picture 7. The foo dog lamps originally found on the blue bedroom dresser (picture 2), found a new spot in their in-progress basement, lending the cozy spot a shot of color.

In case you missed their house tour, be sure to check out Marya & Rick's Layered and Luminous Arlington Retreat for the full effect.

When I left Marya's I was inspired to see what things in my own home could be swapped in order to give whole rooms a new feel. I've found it's the perfect antidote to chronic decorating redo impulses, which seems to be fairly common in blogland!

What are your most successful home shopping spree purchases?

Images: Leah Moss

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