Hello! I'm Suzannah, a serious DIYer. Follow along with my DIY fixer upper house renovations, sewing and crafty projects, real food recipes, and de-stressing goals.
I co-host the Your Home Story podcast and believe you can love your home just the way it is, AND have the power to design and make big changes to make it better.
I'm also the author of DIY Wardrobe Makeovers!
Mom to Otto born April 2018 and Lucy born August 2020!

Beautiful Tudor home living room refresh

I recently started offering e-design services, but one of my first clients was actually in-person! A blog reader, this fellow Portlander just purchased her first home with her husband and two small children in a great neighborhood in Portland. It's a beautiful Tudor revival-style home built in 1926 and very well-maintained, but it doesn't fit her style yet and she wanted some help with the living room, library/sunroom, kitchen, and general updates throughout like lighting.

Living Room

Room and goals

The living room is long, with a fireplace on one end and the front door in the middle. The walls are and will remain a pale color, and the original woodwork is painted ivory. Some inspirations for this space included this living room by Joanna Goddard:

And these vintage chairs in a listing photo from another Portland home: the Ingmar Relling Westnofa Siesta Chair.

She also said that she really loved this vintage look rug I had in my dining room and wanted a similar vibe, though a more neutral color, for her space.


Key pieces this homeowner is planning to purchase for the living room are the rug and leather chairs.

For the chairs, I contacted a few vintage stores and two said they get them in occasionally and will let me know next time they do. But in the interest of time, and definitely finding two matching ones at once, I rounded up a few (most under $500) that are not a super similar look, but she might also like.

I also found quite a few affordable rugs, 8x10, and most come in 9x12 as well. (Generally, the ones about $300 or more are wool and the others are polyester, though nicer looking poly ones. The first and third are the ones I have.)

Mood board!

I put together a mood board using this client's existing elements (photo of a similar fireplace with TV above, art, floor lamp, and sofa). She also wanted another floor lamp, so I found one that wasn't too similar to the brass and black one she already has but also works well with the look.

I honestly love all of the rugs above and think any of them would look great with the modern grey sectional the client already owns, but I just picked one because I know it's so helpful for me to get a sense of how everything will look together.

I also love this leather chair if she doesn't want to wait for the vintage ones!

The sectional will go below the windows, and the client was also interested in bamboo blinds like the ones I did at our last house. See more on that below.

Blinds and Windows

I made some suggestions for colors of bamboo blinds; these are all available in this blind which I recommend because of the options it has. I gave some tips about ordering/settings for that one as well. I always recommend ordering samples--here are some ones that will get the look.

I also suggested looking at other rooms (dining, kitchen at least) and considering updating the blinds in those spaces as well to be consistent with the living room.

There are two small windows on either side of the fireplace, and right now they have curtain rods mounted on the window trim. I suggested replacing those with just blinds, and doing blinds plus curtains on the big window by the sectional. So I also gave some inspirations of a mix of blinds and blinds + curtains in the same room.
Source: Amber Interiors
Source: Emily Henderson

I think the blinds-only look works especially well on small windows like she has flanking the fireplace.
Source: Amber Interiors

That's all for the living room! I know choosing big pieces like rugs can be really hard, so I think the mood board is such a helpful tool. And I hope she finds some chairs she loves!

Need some decor help in a space in your home? Visit my e-design services page for more info!

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