Turning Termites Into Lemonade…

Okay, yeah… That’s not how the saying goes, and it sounds really gross, but I think you get the idea! 🙂  A few months ago, I mentioned we discovered termites in our living room.  The good news is, we got the house treated and the termites abated ASAP!  The bad news is, we’ve been living with a piece of drywall missing ever since (we removed a large chunk to see how bad the damage was – thankfully, it wasn’t too bad).  The best news: the termite tunneling was right next to our living room fireplace, where we wanted to eventually construct built-ins anyway – so this project got moved up to the top of our to-do list!  Woo hoo!!!

Our plan has always been to get a gas or electric insert for the fireplace, mount the TV above the fireplace, build a new mantel, and build cabinets/shelving to flank the fireplace to both: hide our TV components and display pretty things.  We already have a wood burning fireplace in our den, and since this room is right next to the den, it seemed redundant to have another wood burning fireplace.  I love the ambiance and coziness of the wood burning fireplace, but I’m excited to have a fire that I can turn on/off with the push of a button!  Unfortunately, there were a lot of things that had to get done before we could finally build our pretty new cabinets and shelving.  We’re getting really close to starting the built-in’s (at least theoretically, haha), so I thought I would share the current state of our living room.

But first – you might be asking yourself: “Ummm… how is 3 months later the ‘top‘ of your to-do list, Nikki?!”  And I would answer: “A RIDICULOUS amount of things had to be done to even think about getting to my pretty, still-theoretical, built-in’s!!!“.

First: we had to have some minor chimney repairs done.  Second: we chose our fireplace insert (bonus: they were on sale during the month of April!) – we went with a gas insert (with “firescreen” front), nearly identical to the image below:

This isn’t the exact model we chose, but it’s very similar!

Third: We had estimates for getting both a gas line and electric run to the fireplace, which both need to be done prior to getting the gas insert installed.  We’re currently in this stage, and our gas line will be installed this week – hopefully electric will be in by next week (but I’m sure it will happen by the end of the month).  Next: the gas insert can be installed.  FINALLY: construction of the built-in’s can begin… 🙂

Now that you’re caught up to where we are today, let me take you back to how the living room looked when we first moved in…  We started by painting the walls wedgewood gray (I like this color so much, I painted our guest room the same color)!

Next, we knocked the interior wall down – this opened the room up to our dining room, staircase, and foyer (you can see the den and kitchen, too).  When the interior wall was removed, we also had recessed lights installed (and now our light switch controls overhead lights instead of an outlet – YES!).

You’ll notice that our furniture layout also evolved in this room.  Once the interior wall was removed, we realized that the best layout for the flow was to have the back of the couch against the new column.

This allows the same entrance/exit points to the room as before the wall removal, but it also helps to define the living room, and it’s functional for watching TV.  It also made us realize we wanted to get a large sectional for the space.

We actually bought a Pottery Barn sectional back in October (the color is Wolf Gray), but due to manufacturing issues with the distributor, we just received it in June.  I will admit that I didn’t bother calling until May (when I was finally charged for the couch), and Pottery Barn’s customer service was great and credited us for the shipping charges.  But now that we finally have it in our room, we realized we want it to be slightly larger, so we ordered another armless loveseat to extend it.  So far we LOVE this couch (and our 3-year old has proclaimed it’s his favorite couch, hahaha).

We should be getting the last piece delivered around the same time that we are finishing up the built-in’s (let’s hope that’s in August and not 8 months from now – I could see either item causing that delay, haha)…

One more GIF to show the progression of this room (cannot wait to update it):

Hoping when I update it, the fireplace and built-ins will be looking very similar to my inspiration picture below:

via Max Crosby Construction on Instagram

We’ll see where we end up!  I’m hoping we can finish this project before the end of August, but at this point I know that’s quickly approaching…  Either way, I can see us watching football from our giant sectional, on our new TV, which is mounted over our new fireplace, by the fall… 🙂  (OHH – did I not mention that the hubs immediately bought a new TV AND speakers, as soon as it was decided this project was happening?!  Don’t worry – those giant boxes haven’t been taking up space in our den, kitchen, or pantry – or where ever I last moved them, because I’m sick of looking at them/tripping over them for past 3 months or anything…  Haha, at least he got them on sale?)

What do you guys think – should I go with a glass shade, or metal shade for the sconces above the built-ins?

I’m very torn about this because I love the idea of metal shades in the living room, and glass shades in our future, kitchen renovation (over the kitchen sink).  Would that be weird if you can see them both at the same time and they’re different?  I feel like it would look “off” if they don’t match…  Help! 🙂

9 thoughts on “Turning Termites Into Lemonade…

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