Design advice for my living/dining room combo...please!

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I have a living/dining room combo. It is important to me to keep the dining table and chairs. I would like to bring some of the colors of the dining area into the living area (they seem very separate now). My taste is fairly traditional.
I would like to replace the area rug and drapes.
What color/type of area rug and what color/print should the drapes be? And what color throw pillows would work best. I am designed challenged and not sure how or if I should mix prints and color. I have attached a few photos. The chairs are fall colors - rust, orange, etc...
q design advice please, home decor, home decor dilemma
q design advice please, home decor, home decor dilemma
q design advice please, home decor, home decor dilemma
q design advice please, home decor, home decor dilemma
  36 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Feb 29, 2016
    I personally would use a rust low shag rug in your living area.To me that would compliment your dining area. Once you make a decision on that then I would maybe go with a bone color drape and then use a red-rust color pillow and a bright gold tone pillow with your couch.Finish off with the same color accents in other decorations through your rooms.

  • Jill863 Jill863 on Feb 29, 2016
    Thanks so much Janet!

  • KatAych KatAych on Feb 29, 2016
    I agree with Janet. Just pick a color and make sure it's in both areas to tie them together - maybe add a couple rust colored throw pillows for the sofa. You could even add a subtle rust stripe to the curtains, or do a wide band at the bottom in rust.

    • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Feb 29, 2016
      @KatAych Thanks for that .I happen to be obsessed with color and actually have that creative side being able to tie colors very well.Ive always been interested various creating with art of any kind.

  • MN Mom MN Mom on Feb 29, 2016
    I love the dark flooring with your patterned rug. In my opinion adding a darker color carpet or rug as suggested really would darken the room. Would you consider another complimentary color/patterned rug for under your dining room table? Definitely use the colors from your dining room upholstery as a jumping off point for pillows for your sofa and consider a neutral colored pattern for drapery or adding a trim to your drapes. Another thought is to treat each area as its own...maybe a sofa table or low bookcase behind that portion of your sectional that faces the dining room could act as a room divider making the two areas a little more defined.

  • Tara Lynn Tara Lynn on Feb 29, 2016
    YOu can add a darker but brighter red with low oranges that will pop. Try for a rug with all those colors then do the pillows and some accessories on coffee table, end tables etc. The curtains I would invest in ones that are the color of the sofa, but you can add a pop of color in the sheers. Oh wait I see you have very high windows and then lower ones with shutters? I would add colorful short curtains to the upper ones. I see no use in such long curtains you cannot close, they would cover the tv, am i seeing that right? Or keep the curtains and paint the wall with something out of the new rug, something bright but not screaming at you bright.

  • Barb Barb on Feb 29, 2016
    Use some brighter or printed drapes or curtains. I have many windows in my dining room/kitchen/family room and I put plain med green drapes and when they are drawn it looks too dark in there. This is a good place to put your color.

  • Jill863 Jill863 on Mar 01, 2016
    You are all so very helpful. I really have no eye for this at all! Based on your suggestions, how would this type of rug and one of these prints for the drapes look. I'm trying to use that rust color from the chairs in the living area as suggested.

  • Kaye Kaye on Mar 01, 2016
    Yellow throw pillows and yellow floral arrangement would tie both together,rust pillow works also. Choose 1 basic color,1 accent color and 1 pop of color (this use sparingly).

  • Ann4127121 Ann4127121 on Mar 01, 2016
    is the colour of the walls the same throughout? and what is the colour of your lounge carpet?

  • Jill863 Jill863 on Mar 01, 2016
    The family/dining walls are BM Bleeker Beige, The Kitchen is Lenox Tan. I would say the couch is a taupey/beige color

  • Jill863 Jill863 on Mar 01, 2016
    Kaye, would the basic color be the color of the walls/couch, the accent would be rust and the pop of color would be the yellow you suggested?

  • Lindy Lindy on Mar 01, 2016
    You have slowly seeped into the world of "beige" which is easy to do, but can become boring. I don't see any artwork on your walls. Find something with colors you are drawn to. Pick colors from the art to give you a palate for pillows and your area rug. Put a vase of colorful flowers on your dining room table or a nice silk arrangement-what you have on there now is lovely, but lost because of color. The drapes take up a HUGE amount of vertical space in your room. I don't think a busy pattern would work and would detract from all, especially with your color choices. Go neutral and work in color with a stripe of fabric on the bottom or along the side-think of them as a back drop to your stage, not the whole play. Sorry, got carried away. Hope it helped

  • Sbsb1005 Sbsb1005 on Mar 01, 2016
    The space is lovely. What popped for me is the 2 light fixtures are so different. I love the one in the living room. If its a budget issue spray paint the metal parts on the dining room table one with hammered spray paint to match the living room and maybe change the shades on it. The pic is far away and hard to tell. Pinterest has tons of ideas for this. Keeping with the rust pattern colored chairs carry that into the living room. Either paint the wall where the curtains are or swap out the curtains. Find a large pattern in the color that would compliment the chairs. Then add a simple patterned carpet by the couch. Add some throw pillows in an accent color. Accent colors that might look good are various shades of blue - but you would need to hold it to it. Last I would frame out your fireplace with a mantle; the tv appears to just be floating there.

    • Jill863 Jill863 on Mar 01, 2016
      @Thank You Sbsb1005! I definitely need to swap out those curtains, they just don't work with anything else in the room. That is great idea for the fireplace, I agree the tv appears to be floating but wasnt sure what to do about it.

  • Jill863 Jill863 on Mar 01, 2016
    Lindy...you are totally right! Because I have no sense of color, I try to match everything. What about a small print fabric like the samples in the photos below and an area rug with not too much going on like the photos below?

  • Le' Le' on Mar 01, 2016
    Your chairs are lovely. Pop in some turquoise throw pillows and a large floor run with some turquoise woven in. She's right about the light fixtures.

  • Le' Le' on Mar 01, 2016
    that's floor rug....not run

  • Lindy Lindy on Mar 01, 2016
    That would work because if you squint your eyes the pattern goes away-it's not a BAM! in your face. What does your original area rug look like? Hard to tell from your photo. That was a great idea someone had about the fireplace mantle. That TV is indeed floating in outer space! I actually have some of your colors in my home, but they are accent colors with a flower arrangement with maroon, pottery with color, wall art. etc. I've worked in teals, golds, and greens. Maybe painting your walls a different but still neutral color will bring more inspiration. Mine are Ben Moore Summerdale Gold at 50% . Painting the DR would give more definition if it is a coordinating color. They have an on line app (I think Sherwin Williams?) that will give you two paint colors that flow into each other; that will define each room. Your photo shows what looks like a wall coming down from the ceiling at your LR/DR border line. You could use this color on the wall with the TV/fireplace as an accent wall. Get some decor magazines that reflect your style and pull inspiration from them! I made my LR drapes after seeing the actress Patricia Heaton's LR drapes in an article about her-- OK I will end up with a book here, so that's about all of my knowledge in the short(er) version.

    • Jill863 Jill863 on Mar 01, 2016
      @Lindy - The rug is a taupe and ivory rug with dark red and greens, I dont think it matches. I will definitely check out the online App! I got a ton of magazines, I think I am just design challenged! Thanks so much for your feedback, it is very much appreciated!

  • Kayo Frazier Kayo Frazier on Mar 01, 2016
    Here's my 2 cents...I would paint the walls a light/medium grayfor both living/dining rooms. Current color washes out all the other colors in te room. Then the furniture will pop & bring out the colors even more. I would paint the shutters trim & windows a bright white I would remove the curtains only if you are blocking sunlight during the day. If you are tthen I would replace them w/ a light white linen that has a light texture in it. I would paint the hardware to a wite so it disappears.. I would add some cream faux fur, dark rust pillows. Then I would pick 1-2 colors from the rug & add smaller throw pillows in those colors as well. Agrees w/ others the light fixtures are easy to match w/ a dark hammered metal spray paint. Hope this helps.

    • See 1 previous
    • Kayo Frazier Kayo Frazier on Mar 01, 2016
      @Jill863 Here's the thing...Currently, the room is various shades of cream, tan & beige...Nothing is standing out except your dining chairs & oriental rug. They are the only colors you can see. You should go w/ a neutral darker grey color because it will make your furniture & other colors in room become distinctive & seen. It shouldn't affect the cream color of your curtains, shutters, trim or windows. Check out Platinum Gray PM-7, Rockport Grey, Revere Pewter, Stonington Grey all by Benjamin Moore. Check out the colors & see what happens.

  • Janet Friend Janet Friend on Mar 01, 2016
    the light could change it all with large DRUM shade to go over exsisting fixture,more ? ask @ lamp /shade store for help.What a easy difference tip.Good luck!

  • Barbara Parsons Barbara Parsons on Mar 01, 2016
    I might think about moving the living room rug into the dining room and then picking out a solid color from the print in the rug for a new floor covering for the living room. I think a printed or striped rug in a dining room always reduces the frustration of spilled food. The colors in thepatterned rug can than be pulled out for throw pillows on the sofa, thus mixing the colors from both spaces into a cohesive look. Unless you are really ambitious, I wouldn't think of repainting right now. Live with the smaller choices first--then go from there. And those are some window treatments you have. How high is that room -- twenty feet or more?

  • Barbara Barbara on Mar 01, 2016
    I'd try to purchase some throw pillows that reflect colors in your chairs in the dining room. Since you have the autumn color palette, I'd paint each room a slightly lighter shade of the other, i.e. if you go with say rust for the living room, give the dining room it's own stage by painting it in a softer shade of that color. I'd keep the shutters white, they are a nice focal point behind your sofa and give the room depth. Use the dining room chairs as color inspiration for both paint and drapery treatments. By painting both rooms varying shades, you keep an element of distinction, but blend the rooms. Go with a very subtle area rug (dining room?) and subtle drapes - bold patterns and bright colors will draw the eye away from the table and other furnishings and make the dining room feel smaller.

  • Diana Deiley Diana Deiley on Mar 01, 2016
    You are so funny, " designed challenged". It's a wonderful opportunity to express yourself. Make it YOU! Rearrange your furniture until you feel comfortable with it. Bring in colors and patterns with pillows, curtains, and accessories. Try your local thrift stores for budget items. You can always rearrange and change colors if you don't like it. Incorporate several shades of your favorite color and add a pop of color with several pillows or a table centerpiece. Just have fun!

  • Paulette Paulette on Mar 01, 2016
    I am sorry to say your dining room furniture looks to big for the area...by you having this couch sitting this way separates the rooms...I would pull the couch apart and have them flank the fireplace...paint fireplace wall a color from your dinning room upholstery and paint the trim another color from the dining room..good luck

  • Donna Mosscrop Donna Mosscrop on Mar 01, 2016
    I have a simple philosophy! Anything that is expensive to replace ( IE sofa, rug, dining chairs, high end curtains should be in the neutral pallet. Where you add pops of color is in the accessories to include pillows, affordable curtains, and decorative accessories. By just switching out these items you can take a space with blues, whites, greens in the spring/summer time to warm accessories for the cold months. Think, reds, tans, ect... Changing your whole look can be as easy as changing your accessories. The idea is to always have a neutral base to work with. You seem to have that in some of your photos. The dining chair upholstery can be changed by adding slipcovers. as far as how to pull the colors from the dining room into your living room, try matching the red shade to throw pillows, throws, and accessories. That will give your living room the added POP in order for it to feel cohesive! Good luck! Beautiful home you have! :)

  • Cynthia Nye Cynthia Nye on Mar 01, 2016
    Keep the drapes, they are custom! Maybe paint the lower dining area wall a light sage which will make the other colors pop. Accent color pillows in deep green? Silk plants etc but it is a great space

  • Johnchip Johnchip on Mar 01, 2016
    The oriental must go. Use a plain one color rug to match the base color of the dining room chairs. You may also think of trimming the drapes with a similar color trim stip (possibly a pattern swirl fabric strip with the color, not just solid) on the border on sides and/or bottom. with a couple throw pillows on sofas.

  • Lld3011230 Lld3011230 on Mar 01, 2016
    I love how teal goes with browns, and gold. I would find some big art that has lots of color including teal for the dingin room. The curtains are huge and draw your eye to the empty space above the TV. I suggest rehanging the curtains much lower and creat a horizontal lime to bring down the height. You can add a horizontal strip of teal on the curtains near the bottom to tie the rooms together. Pillow with colors from the art in the dinong room can be pattern or solid. Have fun!

  • Flossie Flossie on Mar 01, 2016
    Love your drapes by the way. If you look on Pintrest, there are lots of rooms with your colour scheme, take some ideas from there! Good Luck.

  • Trudy Trudy on Mar 01, 2016
    Your custom 2 story curtains are so unique, I love them! If you want to coordinate the colors you could stencil on a design in a color to go with whatever color throw pillows you decide for your pop of color. Maybe one of the rusts or oranges from your dining set.

  • Loretta Loretta on Mar 01, 2016
    Add another panel to the lr windows and same or contrasting in dr

  • Kathryn_now Kathryn_now on Mar 01, 2016
    First I would choose a color from the chairs and paint the walls. It should be a warm color. Don't worry about a dark color in a small space! It doesn't make the room look smaller, it makes it dramatic. Next, anchor the table with a warm color rug. The one in the living room is "blah" and should be a solid color. Also, consider painting an accent wall in the living room a shade one off the one in the dining room. That would tie them together while keeping them somewhat separate. And, no drapes!!!!! Just wrong and not needed. They are distracting and do not serve any purpose. Clean, simple, dramatic = classy.

  • Sherry Fram Sherry Fram on Mar 01, 2016
    Pull a color from your dining room chairs & use it in the living room. You could add a piece of fabric or ribbon to the edge in the color you pull from the dining room. That would be an easy fix without having to replace them. Your sectional is neutral do anything would go well there. Get the rug first then choose the pillows. Good luck! Don't forget to post the after!!

  • LD LD on Mar 02, 2016
    The color of your sectional couch is neutral in color, so bring the colors from those dining room chairs in your accessories, pillows and even art work. The living room rug is beautiful and goes well with the room, if you want to replace the rug, the best advice is to take close up pics of the rug, dining room chair, couch seat cushion, and your drapes with you so you can see how they look together, and maybe go with an oval or round rug. Your draperies are very nice and they were custom made because of the length, and it appears to have a muted geometric design to them already. Since you have such high vaulted ceiling in the living room area, I would say pull medium tone wall paint from the divining room chairs or from the rug if you should replace it for the wall paint, with decorator white for the trim and ceilings. I think that a glass coffee table would serve better, for it not only gives you the surface space, but it won't seem as heaving looking as your current coffee table.

  • Sue Sue on Mar 02, 2016
    I absolutely love your colors! I have them in my home. I'd do a few throw pillows in a white and navy blue pattern and maybe add rust to the mixture, too. Add a rug under the dining table in a navy and beige pattern. Then something on the dining table in the navy and rust colors. A large picture on the wall beside the table could carry out the same navy, white, and a few brighter colors like orange, yellow or red could tie every thing together. Just a suggestion... Just a few bright colors is all you need. You are using brown tones... I think about what colors are combined to make brown (red, yellow and blue). Then just add a few accessories in those colors, because you know these colors were mixed to make the brown tones.

  • Marion Nesbitt Marion Nesbitt on Mar 04, 2016
    Sofa is contemporary in style and colour as opposed to the dining room chairs which are traditional. I would either recover the chairs in a grey contemporay fabric or change out the sofa and area rug. I like darker, richer colours so would dye the sofa and get matching rich toned area rugs to help unify the areas.

  • Janie Janie on Mar 11, 2016
    I like most all the comments here and I'm sure your head is swimming! But, I'm going to throw out a few more. First of all, you may want to consider taking the seat off one of the chairs and making rounds to department, home furnishing and big box home improvement stores. Many of them have decorators who will give you suggestions for free and provide samples. Then you simply find and select the ones that draw you in. I like mixing patterns, not too much, but a little for interest. If you go big on one item, then make sure other decorator items have a much smaller print. For instance, the rug you choose for the LR can have a large impact if it has a large pattern with colors pulled from the chair upholstery. A floral for instance. Then the pillows for the couch in smaller patterns of checks, solids and perhaps one pow large pattern one. I think I would settle on the rug first and then work with it to choose the pillows, art, window coverings etc. Also, have you considered matching padded cornices or valance above all the shuttered windows instead of drapes? In a scallop or rounded shape. This will tie the two rooms. The softened window covering would also soften the rooms which are angular in shape. Which brings me to placing a round or oval coffee table in the LR for the same reason. I would keep the walls and sofa the same as they are neutrals and one day you may tire of the rusts and want to make a change. Your upholstery in the DR is beautiful. It is rich and therefore you will want to stay with the more medium to heavier looking fabrics. Once you have the rug, window dressings and pillows etc, you can look for some wall decor. I think you will have fun in discovering your likes and dislikes and pulling the rooms together. Post a pix once you do!