In Design

A moodboard for the family room and the sofa that inspired it

sectional sofa with swatch

Earlier this year we bought this really awesome mid-century sofa from Atomic Furnishings for a steal at under $400. This sofa is a vintage Henredon two-piece sectional in great condition. I love it because 1) it has timeless modern lines, 2) it has casters so that it can be moved around into different seating arrangements, 3) it has original upholstery that is both neutral and durable, and 4) it can seat a lot of people. Though it is currently sitting in our living room, it is actually intended to go in the new family room once it’s finished.

This sofa is actually the only thing I already own for the space. Everything else will need to be purchased over time. To help guide my decision-making on what to buy, I like putting together moodboards for inspiration (Morpholio Board is a good free app if you want to make your own and need help). Here’s a board I put together for the family room using the sofa as inspiration for the look:



1.  Since this space has lots of windows, I definitely want to have plenty of plants in pretty pots like this one from Susan Simonini Ceramics.

2. Vintage kilim rug (similar rugs to one shown). I’d like a rug with some personality that offers good contrast with the sofa.

3. Pretty watercolor art like this one from Gardner Watercolors.

4. A pair of tables like this well-named “Tamara Hexagonal Table” from PureHome instead of one coffee table. (I’m kind of thinking this would be a great DIY project…hmmm.)

5. Steel arm bend chair in Charcoal from West Elm. This chair is modern, but has similar lines to my sofa so it works really well as an accent chair.

6. A couple of tibetan wool pillows of course (Mitchell Gold has one similar to the one shown here)

7. A vintage embroidered turkish pillow, like this one from Pillows Store on Etsy)

8. A mid-century modern dixie credenza like this one from At 1st Sight on Etsy)

9. “Highland Cows” from West Elm. Love this black-and-white print.

If you are looking to redecorate or design a living room, make sure you have these 3 things. These are the 3 things that helped me with putting together this moodboard.

1. Know your overall color palette. Having a set of guiding colors will really help you with making all sorts of decisions. Put together a color scheme of 4-5 colors for your whole home, but don’t feel like you are limited to just those colors. Use them as a reference as you put together each room to make sure you are creating a cohesive look and mood throughout home. Here’s my palette and tips for creating your own.

2. Buy a sofa that you love. The sofa is the main piece to a living room and is likely one of the most expensive. Once you know your color palette, find a sofa that you know you will enjoy for a long time. The sofa will inform the other pieces in the room, so it’s an important one. It can be hard to know where to start when decorating a room, but the sofa is a great piece to use for inspiration, and you’ll find the other pieces will fall in order after it.

3. Have a furniture plan. It’s pretty typical for a living room to only have one, maybe two, places to put a sofa. Usually it’s facing a fireplace or television wall, along a long wall, or under a main window. It’s helpful to sketch out a plan of your space so that you know what other pieces to buy and what dimensions they need to be. If you know where your sofa needs to go, it shouldn’t be too difficult to plan out the rest, like chairs, side tables, cabinets, and rugs. Here is the furniture plan I put together for the family room.

Lastly, give yourself time. It can be fun to make a quick transformation, but if you don’t need to rush, don’t. Having a vision will help you when you’re perusing flea markets, flipping through catalogs, or scrolling through Pinterest so that you know what to consider and what to skip. Give yourself time and you will increase your chances of finding the perfect piece without breaking the bank.

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  • Jen
    October 28, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    Thank you so much for featuring our credenza in your mood board! I love the whole collection!!

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