Making A Rental Feel Like Home: Living Room

As you all know, we moved to Denver in June of 2017 and started renting our 1,000 sq ft 2 bedroom 1 bathroom home just 15 minutes from downtown Denver. You can check out more of our entire process here from when we first moved to the area and picked a home.

Now, since then, we've been fortunate enough to be able to work on different elements of the home to make it more "homey" and somewhere we feel like we could be awhile. We already talked about the kitchen and dining areathe master bedroom and lone bathroom, and if you've been following along with the blog we are currently working on converting the second bedroom that was once the guest room and office to the nursery (with tiny corner office area!) through the One Room Challenge. So far it's going well! Check out the week one progress week two, and week three!

The only place we haven't talked about much is the living room space. Here is a reminder of what it looked like when we walked through it the first time last May:




A pretty great space with room for larger sized furniture and to have a bunch of people over. Something that we definitely enjoy being able to do!

Let's talk about what we did to take this peanut butter living room and transform it into something more cozy and that reflected our style. Thank goodness for our amazing landlord who has a lot of faith and trust in us!


When we moved in we continued the paint color from the hallway, dining, and kitchen into the living room to make sure it all felt like one big space. We used a lot of the art and things that we'd had from our first house so that we didn't have to purchase anything else.

Here's our first home's living room space- goodness do I miss the wood floors... sigh:




As you can see we decluttered and downsized A LOT. As I look at those photos I just think about how much we took to the thrift store or sold at our yard sale.

We used to have a love seat and a sofa that were slip covered but we upgraded to a sectional when we arrived in Denver. The other set was old and I was totally over the slipcover life. This sectional works well in this house and in the future could be great in a family room space. We picked him up at American Furniture Warehouse and it was a pretty budget friendly selection. The website shows it in the beige tone but we decided to go with the gray because our dogs are gray. And it felt more "NEW" after 10 years with the beige slipcovers.

Here is one angle of the room:


We added our white rug from our old house to lighten up the sea of brown carpet (I am not a carpet fan. I've already killed one vacuum.) and the light from the big front window and screen door is awesome! Carl loves to lay in that spot on the couch. And Sebastian. Mostly they just lay on the couch. Sometimes I wish I had their life.

We also raised the curtain rod up to the ceiling since the ceiling is a bit lower in here than in our former house. We also added the privacy sheers to tone down some of the intense lightening that can come in that window during the day. It's very bright but also can get VERY hot in the Colorado summer.

This is Brennan's gigantic TV. I am not super into the black hole nature of it, but it is awesome to have HGTV on there all gigantic. Relationships are all about compromise, right?


We tried to style this weird wall but I think it still needs some work. I would like to fix the small frames on either side of the map and maybe check that everything is still centered. I'm not sure what it needs but definitely something! Brennan's record player lives right there so there aren't many other places to go with my vintage table. We added a lamp for some mood lighting because sometimes the ceiling fan light is a bit much. When my parents were visiting they referred to it as "the sun" when we were in the living room one evening. haha.


There are a few more things I would like to update or change again now that we've been here awhile:

  • Move occasional chair to Lincoln's room to make more space
  • Do something with the TV area
  • Adjust the art above record player
  • Make a new spring wreath!
  • Update/replace pillows
  • Find new large art work for above the couch. Keep mirror and Colorado frame but replace the other with something different. Map of Denver? Other vintage poster from Colorado?
  • Declutter bookcase/ find a better home for the DVDs. 
So, our cozy living room is making progress and we love it- but there's still a few adjustments that need to be made to it, I think!

If you have any suggestions, drop them in the comments below! I could use all tips. :)



1 comment

  1. I LOVE your new sectional! Gray sectionals are the best! I love the idea of adding a fun wreath to the door where the plain grapevine one is now. I'm excited to see what else you end up doing in there!

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