Sunday, October 18, 2009

Opinions, please

Still in the dreaming phase
of a family room makeover,
I'm scouring the internet
for inspiration. I like the fireplace, huge clock and all.
(I'm a clock afficionado. Doesn't guarantee I'm punctual; it's merely something I've always liked. Tick tock.)

On the hunt for a fireplace
to be built in our family room, I know I want stones in this color palette. What do you all think of these fireplaces overall?

I am really wanting to do something similar with the built-ins (but stained wood, not white). I'm digging that leather wing chair, too.


Jessi said...

I personally love pretty much everything about the second pic, except for the fact that the fireplace has no mantle. Just this week I was wishing for a mantle...I mean, I'd love a fireplace, but ESPECIALLY a mantle... I'd love to even just get one of those gas fireplaces that you can just put up against a wall... I'm in a dreaming phase too right now, and have lots of fun trying to come up with cheap and thrifty ways to do some mini-home makeovers!

Zoanna said...

Right, that is one thing I don't like about the second fp. Gotta have a mantle. I just like stone fireplaces.

Vicki said...

I couldn't resist posting when you said, "Opinions Please..."

I have a million opinions...

I love the second fireplace (the stonework is great.) the built-ins are great too...(I agree, wood is better than white.)

The first coffee table, if you are going to have one would be better. My family all have square and rectangular coffee tables and every time anyone walks past it we gouge our leg... That doesn't happen with a round one. I got a round ottoman and put a nice antique tray on top of it and turn it into a coffee table. I love the extra space of not having a coffee table and the ottoman is one of my faves. I love the chair and a half in the second pic... I could curl up there right now and take a nap.

I have a clock addition as well. Love the big wall clocks... that would be a great addition.

The second picture is less cluttered... less is more.

One of my favorite houses to visit has a similar set up and they have shag carpet in their room that looks like sand (all different colors) and I feel like I am walking on the beach. It is a brown/black/gray mixture and it is just wonderful... if their couches weren't so comfy, I would lay on their floor.

If you absolutely need a table, consider end tables instead of a coffee table... again, my room feels SO much bigger without a coffee table... and I don't have bruised legs anymore either...

Well, that was way more than two cents worth... I am a 10 cent kinda girl...
have fun... what an exciting project.

Vicki said...

Oh, and I have a clock addiction, not a clock addition... but I am sure you figured that out...

zo said...

Vicki! Where have you been? I thought you gave up reading my blog, but so glad you chimed in!

I so agree w/ you about coffee tables with corners. My legs would look like a topographical map of Hawaii, with islands of grey bruises. That's why we don't have one. We had an oval one till I sold it to raise $ for our Russia missions trip, and have never missed it. Our dimensions are awkward (16 x 11'9) in the family room, but I am bound and determined to make it a cozier space. To me a fireplace is the ultimate in coziness.

Anonymous said...

Overall, I love the fireplaces! We have had one with stone (some real and some "manufactured" but very realistic) and we've had brick. I love both! Are you going w/ a gas/log fireplace or wood burning?
As for leather if you're leaning that direction, it's also hard to beat. We've had leather and fabric. Leather wells and ages so well! The huge clock is awesome, but since I'm much like you, not always punctual, I may not want such a large reminder on my mantle!
I'd rather have time "behind me"!
I like both fireplaces a lot! I do like the smaller fire pit a bit better than a large one if you're going with actual wood burning. It is quite a task to keep the fire going in a large space. Mike and I discuss whether or not we'd go with a gas fireplace in the future (as we get older and if we ever downsize) since some gas burning fireplaces are actually remote controlled, very realistic and way less work and mess than wood.
And if you want warmth in your room from the fireplace, a blower may help? We've never had one, but I understand they are helpful to distribute heat. Wow! You did ask for opinions! I may not have stuck to the question, but you got some of my hopefully gentle opinions!

Laurie said...

Yeah. Me again. It's not always that opinions are sought, so I'm taking oportunity here! ;)
"Leather wears well" is what I meant to type. Yes, a mantle is a must and could be easily added to the second photo.
On coffee tables: They are great for propping feet on, for toddlers learning to walk around and for bumping in to. So yes, oval or round is a good choice. We have square though, so we just "deal with it". As far as coffee/end table finish? We had one w/ a tiled top (kids now have it) and it was a most forgiving table! So consider the finish and how much you want to or might feel you'd have to fuss with smudges/dust etc..
I like the looks of the second photo (I don't even mind the white painted woodwork.) The look of the second room leaves some "space to breathe" since there is less clutter. However I never mind comfy clutter!
Also, I'm not sure how your 16 x 11'9 is arranged, but you could always carve out a cozy family room corner or end, and have some open space for expanding when needed?

Laurie said...

Did you figure that Anon. was me too?

zz said...

Yeh, you're not very "anon" anymore:) And I didn't even catch your "leather wells" mistake. I read it as "wears well" which means you and must think alike. Having a huge clock on my fireplace would put quite a mantle of responsibility on me to be on time, now, wouldn't it?

Paul wants a gas burning FP, I want real wood (love the smell) but since he'll be responsible for its maintenance, I think his opinion will rule. Either one is great for romance and coziness. I'm just such a sucker for old-fashioned good smellin' wood smoke.

Our 16 feet run from the edge of kitchen to the far wall. The 11'9 is s the width, half of which is a sliding glass door. I don't want to face the sofa toward the kitchen, and a 90" sofa (which is the one we love--and need for our tall ppl to stretch out on) is too wide to put on the short end. That leaves us with *a* sofa wall that looks out thru the sliding doors, thankfully to a pretty view year-round. The trick is always to group the seating close enough together to encourage cozy conversations, but far enough apart to walk around/vacuum around.

I will post more pictures as I see ones I like and could possible tweak to fit our dimesnsions and style.

zz said...

I didn't say that right. Let me describe the layout. The kitchen /family room is one long apace (about 34 x 11/9). The family room is 16 x 11'9 the way we've divided things up. The sliding glass door is on the west wall and use up about 6 of that 16 . The sofa sits opposite the sliders, and takes up about 8 feet, so can ONLY fit well on a long wall. The fireplace has to go on an external wall, so it's gotta be the south wall. (The kitchen is on the north side.)

All said, it's a small space with few options that I can see (which is why I wanted a designer to help me see, which she didn't, really, and I parted ways w/ her). I haven't worked up a plan otherwise yet, but these pics are helping.

Danielle said...

I posted this on my blog, but wasn't sure you'd get it:

I changed it in early Sept, Zoanna. The main reason I changed it was because I bought the domain name, and "dance by the light" was already taken. I actually like "dancing" better now . . .

So my blog is now at with no "wordpress" as part of the address.

Danielle said...

And let me say that I LOVE built-ins! And fireplaces . . . and big cool clocks!

Laurie said...

Zo- Yes wood fireplace smell is nice, but the convenience of a gas fireplace is so smart and practical! (Get some "Fireside" spray or candles from Bath and Body Works for ambiance?)
I'm having a hard time visualizing your dilemma. Of course you need a way to get in and out of your seating "pit" and you want it cozy. Sometimes it helps to think in "passageways/throughways for movement around a room, so you may have to nix an end table or something for a way to get in/out. Pictures do help us see options when we're stuck! And remember, to design for your family, not for anyone else! You are gonna live there so you want to like it and be comfy. It's open for your "artistic interpretation" and as an artist you can work around obstacles!
Also "nothing is set in stone" (well, except maybe the fireplace) so you can play with options, not as easily as a doll house, but still! When we were designing our home, Mike made me some little 1/4 or 1/2 inch scale "furniture replica cut-outs" to arrange on our floor plan. You could do this maybe? Would it help? Scale out the room in 1/4" inch scale, then arrange cut-out square pieces to see how they fit. (Make sense?) Anyway it's an idea. It may be more frustrating, but sometimes it shows options.
I remember when we were going to begin homeschooling and I was so so concerned about doing it RIGHT and having everything in ORDER- a wise woman advised me to Jump In and it would all work together. I needed to hear that! I don't know if you are in that stage of decorating where you need to "just do it", but if so, don't be afraid to jump in! Also, if you don't have a fireplace and one has to be built, would a corner fireplace be a consideration? Like maybe the SW corner close to sliding door? (If you do a wood burning, it is very helpful to have a door close for bringing wood inside.) Also sometimes a corner one leaves more options for furniture arrangement.
We had a corner one when we lived in the country and it was nifty.
I probably just muddied the waters, but while I was considering, I thought I'd throw out some ideas! I'm going to see if I can find a pic of our corner fireplace...

Laurie said...

I posted a few fireplace pics. They may not show well, but one is stone. It was fun thumbing through photos that were much easier to find since they are sort of sorted into dated boxes!