House Calls: Size-appropriate living room

August 20, 2014
THE CHALLENGE

The solution. (Leah L. Jones/For The Washington Post)

Laurie and John Klein, along with their dog, Bandit, just moved into a 30-year-old townhouse in Columbia, with furniture too large for their new living room. The couple is looking for size-appropriate furniture, fabrics that can withstand a pet and a cozy place to put their feet up and watch television.

THE SOLUTION

The solution. (Illustration By Julius Goyanko For The Washington Post)

Designer Fran Temme chooses small-space-friendly furniture and an earthy palette of reds, browns and blacks, with durable fabrics that can stand up to Bandit’s abuse. Temme, of Modest Proposals Design (703-965-6476, www.modestproposalsdesign.com), is based in Falls Church

Woven stools can serve as ottomans when the couple is relaxing in front of the TV, or as side tables for drinks and books.

Wall sconces offer additional light and save floor space.

A mirror above the fireplace reflects the light from the opposite window and opens up the small room.

A sofa in a textured, heavy-duty fabric and an indoor/outdoor rug can withstand stains and spills from pets.

Off-white walls let brown, black and red accents stand out. Try Benjamin Moore’s French Canvas.

SHOPPING GUIDE

Furniture: Roadhouse leather chair ($249), 1938 leather butterfly chair ($399) and Mill C table ($129), all from www.cb2.com; small rustic storage media console ($599, www.westelm.com).

Accessories: Oxford stripe indoor-outdoor rug ($249 for 5-by-8-foot rug, www.potterybarn.com); Dish wall mirror ($269), Galang floor vase/umbrella stand ($60) and Assemblage print ($600), all from www.crateandbarrel.com; hand-woven seagrass pouf ($79, www.wisteria.com); square lacquered wood tray in gold ($34) and crewel key pillow in Cayenne ($39), both from www.westelm.com.

SPLURGE . . .

Sorensen six-foot sofa in Sand Perennials textured-linen weave ($2,355, www.restorationhardware.com).

Charlton wall light in black ($420, www.circalighting.com).

. . . OR SAVE

Paidge sofa in Stone performance velvet with cone pecan legs ($1,099, www.westelm.com).

Lens sconce ($99, www.westelm.com).

More from The Washington Post

See past room makeovers by local designers here

Tell us about your design challenge: Send photos, room dimensions and contact information to makeover@washpost.com.

Margaret Ely is a digital editor for Lifestyle. Previously, she was an intern for the Post’s Metro section.
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