DIY Family Room Reveal!

Contemporary Family Room/Den Renovation by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}Y’all, I am SO excited to share with you our DIY family room reveal.  Now, let me preface this by saying that the colors and style of the room will not be for everyone.  It’s a fairly contemporary look that I feel is appropriate for our contemporary house, but it is not a look that will appeal to everyone.  That said, I hope that everyone will appreciate the dramatic transformation we have accomplished in this room, all through DIY projects!   Here are a couple of photos to wet your appetite.  Read on for details!

A dramatic DIY living room transformation by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}

Dramatic, contemporary family room transformation by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}Let me remind you how unfortunate this room looked like when we moved in, just 13 months ago.

Outdated family roomWHOA.  I still cringe when I look back at the old photos.  The army green walls, coupled with the beige trim, stone fireplace and carpet did not appeal to me AT ALL.  And then there was the fact that the other side of the family room had bamboo flooring.  Two types of flooring in the same room.  No thank you.

Den 2

Den 1Now that you have reviewed the “before” photos, let me share with you how we completed our DIY family room renovation and totally transformed this room.

First, we ripped out the carpet and bamboo flooring and put down gorgeous, dark laminate floors {the same ones that we used in our girls’ playroom, the detailed reveal of which can be found HERE}.  The new floor transformed the space immediately.  Our DIY family room renovation was off to a fantastic start.

We also painted the walls with a beautiful dark blue.  We chose a dark color because this is a “grown up” space that we use almost entirely at night after the girls go to bed, so we wanted it to have a cozy feel.  Since it is such a large room, I felt the best way to accomplish a cozy look would be to put a dark color on the walls.  I LOVE the paint color in here.

My FAVORITE part of this DIY family room transformation is the fireplace.  I am sure there are many people out there who will say, “WHY did you remove the stone from your fireplace?!”  This is why…I felt like it was a very “traditional” look that felt out of place to me in such a contemporary home.  I felt that the fireplace needed a contemporary look.  I was obsessed with concrete fireplaces that I was seeing all over Pinterest and I was willing to hire the job out.  But, professionals told us it either could not be done or it would cost us $2,000 to $3,000 and that they “thought” it would work.  Ummmm, no thanks.  Long story short {the long story will be the subject of an upcoming post}, I researched a ton and found a phenomenal concrete product called Ardex Feather Finish, which allowed us to transform the fireplace totally on our own for $100.  That’s right–a DIY concrete fireplace!  No, I’m not kidding.  Take a look at that transformation.  You can find the detailed tutorial for our DIY concrete fireplace here!

DIY Concrete Fireplace by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}We were a little unsure about how to use “the stage” {the raised portion of the family room} when we moved in, but as it turns out, it is the PERFECT area for our office.  We absolutely love it and it’s so nice that Joe and I can still spend time together even if one of us is working at the desk paying bills {or blogging} while the other one is watching TV.   We already had the desk and chair and purchased the awesome floating shelves at Ikea.

Contemporary Family Room transformation by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}As you can see, we chose a blue color scheme with pops of orange for our family room.  I love blue and orange together and wanted Joe {who is the only man in a house full of women, unless you count our sweet dog, Titan} to have a “manly” room.  I think blue and orange is a manly color combination, so we went with it.

Our family room makeover was my first real experiment with mixing lots of patterns.  We purchased a chevron rug from Rugs USA {70% off–amazing deal}, squiggly curtain panels from West Elm and a herringbone throw from Target and mixed them with some old and new throw pillows.  I think mixing patterns can be fun and successful when you stick with the same colors {in our case, blue with touches of orange}.

Mixing patterns by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}I found the orange lamps that sit atop our Ikea console table {not pictured} at Target.  The large prints behind the couch and console table were ordered from Etsy {before I learned how to make my own printables} and feature all the states Joe and I have lived together and before we met {New York, North Carolina, Florida and Texas}.  I paid $4.50 for the digital files and had them printed at Costco for around $5.00 each.  The large frames are from Ikea and were around $20.00 each.  In short, for around $120, I filled a gigantic wall with custom art.  Not too shabby.

Contemporary Family Room by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}

Contemporary Family Room by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}The gallery wall was put together with frames and frames ledges from Ikea {yes, yes, I LOVE Ikea}.  I know some people feel it is not appropriate to display so many family photos, but I personally love to display quality family photos and have them all over our house.

Ikea Ribba frames and ledges

Ikea Ribba frames and picture ledgesOur DIY family room renovation is not entirely complete yet.  The lighting in this room is still a work in progress.  It probably has not escaped your attention that the same light fixture is hanging above the couch.  No, that is not because I like that light fixture. It’s because we CANNOT find something that we love to replace it with.  UPDATE!  We have replaced this light fixture with an amazing, DIY knock-off West Elm Bentwood Pendant light that you can check out here!

We have, however, greatly improved upon the sconces that were located in what is now our office area.  Here is what they looked like when we moved in.

IMG_0960 IMG_0963NOOOOOOOO!  What are those?!  Why????  We replaced them with these sconces that I am head over heels in love with from West Elm.

West Elm Lens Sconce used in contemporary family room by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}There are still many things I would like to do in this room.  The biggest future change will be removing a wall {as well as a corresponding wall in the kitchen, which is just across the hallway from our family room} to make the first floor more open.  THAT is why we have made no efforts to do anything with this sad little corner.  It is home to a tote full of Titan’s toys, Joe’s rarely used guitar and an Ikea canvas.  Sad, I know, but I can’t bring myself to invest any time and money into an area that will change in a few years.

Family room sad cornerI would also like to update the couch {which is 12 years old–an amazing Pottery Barn purchase that has held up exceptionally well, but I do not love the camel color upholstery in this room, and think it looks pretty outdated at this point} and the ottoman {about 10 years old}, but our current pieces will have to do for now for budgetary reasons :)

Our DIY family room renovation took about four weekends and lots of late week nights after work of blood, sweat and tears to complete, but it was well worth it.  I owe my mom and stepdad a HUGE thanks for helping us with our girls several days so we could get lots of work done.  Here are a few more shots of the space for you, including this shot which was taken from our girls’ playroom.

DIY Concrete Fireplace by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}

Contemporary Family Room by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}

Contemporary Family Room by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}Before I sign off, I have to give my sweet dog, Titan, a shout out.  He is the BEST dog.  You can see him sleeping on his dog bed in a few of these photos.  He was not at all bothered by my snapping photos all around him :)

So, what do you think of the transformation?  Any ideas for a ceiling light fixture for us?

PS- If you are new here and want to see more room reveals, click on “My Project Gallery” at the top of this page.

DIY Family Room Renovation by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}

Dramatic Family Room Renovation by Designer Trapped in a Lawyer's Body {}

Sharing with:  East Coast Creative Blog

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  1. says

    I absolutely love this room! The details are fantastic and I would love something similar in my house, but with a lighter colour on the wall because dark colours intimidate me. I especially love the photo ledges and agree that a lot of photos make a house more homey.

    • says

      Hi Al! Thank you so much! Dark colors used to intimidate me, too. But I once painted a sun room DARK navy blue and it is one of my favorite rooms of all time. I am glad I am not the only one that likes to display family photos :)

  2. abedabun dawn says

    I see you put your tv over the fireplace. How is that working out for you? We had to take ours down, because it was very difficult on our necks to watch. It looked nice, just wasnt functional for us.

    • says

      Hi! It is working out well for us, because we hung it at eye level. Did you hang it above a mantel? I hear that often makes it too high and difficult to watch. I think because we do not have a mantel and were able to hang it lower it is very comfortable to watch.

  3. says

    Wow! I LOVE the gallery wall. I love IKEA and you are a perfect example of using their stuff a modern classy way (I hate when people say Ikea should only be reserved for a dorm room!)

    I also adore how you transformed the raised platform into an office. It makes the space totally make sense now. Genius!

  4. says

    Tasha, your makeover is fantastic! I love all the pattern mixing and the color scheme. Using the same flooring for the elevated and “regular” part of the room was a must – you nailed it! Also, the family photo gallery wall looks awesome. Great job! Enjoy your room!

    • says

      Hi Bre! Thanks so much for coming by and for your sweet comment! I really appreciate it. As soon as I get my girls to bed, I plan on enjoying the room tonight :)

    • says

      Hi Kelly! I am beyond flattered that you take time out of your day to check out my little blog. It means the world to me–thank you! And thank you for the compliment on the family room. It was about a month of hard work, but I love it now!

    • says

      Hi Jessica! I wish I could come to Texas {my birth state and where lots of my family still lives} to help you! I love DIY projects :) Thanks for stopping by and for taking the time to comment.

  5. says

    Love, love, love and freaking love your fireplace!!! We are going to attempt to use the feather finish on countertops so now I’m so eager for more info on your fireplace makeover! Awesome!!!! Love the color of the walls too! Great job!

    Amber @ Averie Lane

    • says

      Hi Amber! THANKS! So happy to hear that other people are loving the fireplace, because I am TOTALLY in love with it. I hope to have the fireplace tutorial up by the end of the month. Ardex Feather Finish is a pretty easy project to work with, but I do have some tips that were learned along the way! Thanks so much for stopping by!

  6. Amber says

    So happy to finally see this! The fireplace is wonderful. Love the whole thing, especially the office area and gallery. It’s lovely.

  7. says

    As someone with a coastal/country I won’t lie – I loved the fireplace before! But I can appreciate a contemporary look and you have done a BEAUTIFUL job. You’ve completely transformed this space and it’s very up-to-date. :) You must be so proud!

    • says

      Hi Brandi! Thank you! I should post photos of the exterior of our house so that people can see just how contemporary the architecture is, so the stone fireplace just felt so out of place. I think the previous owners had a very traditional style and tried to make a very contemporary house a traditional/rustic one. We are working slowly but surely to transition it back to its roots, if you will :) I am glad that you appreciate the transformation even though you liked the fireplace before! Thanks so much for stopping by and for taking the time to comment! I love your blog!

  8. andrea says

    Love the room! I am a huge fan of blue! I would have never thought to use orange! you’re absolutely right about those scones, they looked like huge moths swatted on the wall!!!! For your lighting issue I would use resessed lightning(general) on dimmer switches(ambient). You could use some drop penant lighting (brushed chrome) for the areas that need (task) lighting. Keep up the great work! if you wanted to flip flop the office with the play room… i am sure the girl’s would love to use the stage for family plays!… food for thought!

    • says

      Hi Andrea! Thanks so much for stopping by and for your thoughtful comment and lighting suggestions. We do have some recessed lighting in the room already, but we could definitely use more. Weren’t the old sconces total eye sores?! Yuck! LOL, I am sure our girls would love using the stage area for plays :)

  9. says

    I think it looks amazing Tasha! How could anyone not like it!! I love it the blue and orange, the fun lights, all the floating shelves, it is beautiful!

  10. says

    Wow! Amazing transformation Tasha- I love the fireplace makeover and the drapes and sconces… what a huge space!! So great that it opens right onto the playroom as well, cool layout. Your house must be enormous!! All the more spaces to decorate:) Have a great weekend!

  11. says

    Oh my goodness! It’s so hard to pick a favorite part of your family room reveal! You said it wouldn’t be for everyone, so I wanted to let you know that I am one of the people who “gets” it PERFECTLY! I adore the way you turned that stone fireplace into an amazing modern concrete one! Love the wall color, LOVE those sconces… Awesome job!

    • says

      Thank you, Brynne! I am glad you get it :) Some of the folks at Apartment Therapy today definitely did not get it! So, thank you! I really appreciate your sweet comment.

  12. says

    HI Tasha! I love your transformations. The fireplace is incredible! Your title caught my eye to because my hubby is a lawyer…but def. not a designer :) I’m going to feature your family room on my FB page in a couple minutes with a link back to your site. Hope you can stop by. Thanks for linking up to “Inspiration Monday Party”! ~ Julie

    • says

      Hi Julie! Thank you SO much for stopping by and for sharing my family room makeover on your Facebook page today. I really, really appreciate it. And it’s my pleasure to link up to your fabulous party every week!

  13. Don Gilmartin says

    Wow! Great looking room, but the fireplace treatment puts it way over the top for me! I flip tons of homes and often have these awful fireplaces i want concrete on, but wont do it because of cost. I have a mid-century modern in Palm Springs right now screaming for it! Thanks for the great tip…you make over looks great!

    • says

      Hi Don! Thank you so much! I hope to have the full tutorial on how we did it up on my blog sometime in the next two weeks. I hope you will come check it out.

  14. Andrea says

    This room looks so good. I love everything. This is definitely my style. The blue walls are fab along with the pops of color.

  15. Laura says

    Hi-we have the same rock wall and I’ve wanted to get rid of it for years! Have you posted the instructions on how you did that yet? We are so excited to try this-thanks so much-your wall looks wonderful!

    • says

      Hi Laura! I have not posted that tutorial, but it should be up sometime in the next two weeks! Thanks so much for stopping by and for your sweet comment :)

  16. Kim says

    I love this makeover. I came over from the AT site. So beautiful. And I love the paint color but couldn’t find where it was listed the brand/color name. Unless I missed it.

    Does anyone know this paint color?

  17. Jennifer says

    It’s a beautiful transformation! Fantastic job! I have the EXACT same ugly stone fireplace, only that mine is slightly rounded and situated in a corner of the family room. You have answered so many questions for me and I look forward to your posts dedicated to the fireplace.

    • says

      Thank you so much, Jennifer! People at Apartment Therapy had some harsh words about my fireplace makeover today. It seems many liked the old version better. So, it’s nice to hear I am not the only person who did not love the stone! Thank you!

  18. MrsMusick says

    Can’t wait to read how you DIY’d the fireplace on the cheap. Our fireplace is ugly and I am so ready to change it but don’t have a lot of $$ to do so.

  19. Jackie says

    Tasha, your makeover is FABULOUS! I saw it on AT yesterday and was blown away…especially knowing that it was a DIY!!!! I’m looking forward to the fireplace tutorial (in a couple weeks)!!!! Thx so much for the inspiration!!!!!

    • says

      Hi Jackie! I really appreciate you stopping by from AT and taking the time to comment. Can’t wait to have you back for the concrete fireplace tutorial. You are so sweet!

  20. says

    Tasha, you did a fabulous job on the makeover! I am swooning over your fireplace! It is amazing how functional and seamless you made the room with the two areas. Great work. xxoo – Tina

    • says

      Hi Michelle. Thank you! Of course–the paint color is Philipsburg Blue (Hc-159) by Benjamin Moore. Sometimes I do rub the fireplace just to feel how smooth it is :)

  21. Kara says

    Love your blog… Your room looks fantastic – good you share where you got your digital map prints from?

    Thank you….

    • says

      Hi Kara! Thank you so much :) The digital map prints came from an Etsy shop called Olive and Birch. I may be partnering with it soon for an upcoming giveaway for these digital prints since so many people have asked me where I got them. Stay tuned!

    • says

      Thank you so much for the feature, Rachel! I was so thrilled when I saw it along with the other fabulous features on your blog today! That painted staircase before and after that you featured blows my mind! Thanks again!

  22. Stephanie says

    Love it, love it, love it. I have one question for you. Do you close the curtains? If so, does the large pattern get visually overwhelming? I have two huge windows in my living room about the same size as those doors in your room. I want to go bold with the drapes but I’m afraid that once I close them it will be too much area covered by such a large pattern. What are your thoughts?

    • says

      Hi Stephanie! That’s a great question. We actually keep the curtains in our family room closed most of the time and I do not find that the pattern is overwhelming at all. It is a very large room (25 x 16 feet), but I genuinely don’t feel like they would overwhelm a smaller space either. I hope that helps!

      • Stepha says

        Thanks! Our family room is 20×15 with two 96″ windows on one wall, so the dimensions are fairly similar. I can never seem to find photos of large print drapes that are closed so it was very helpful to hear your response.

        I was telling my husband about the state artwork and he thought that was really creative.

  23. Brittany says

    Hey I love your living room. I will be painting mine a similar blue soon. I haven’t picked out a couch yet and noticed you said you don’t prefer the tan colored one you have now. If you were to replace it what color would you consider? Thanks


      • Brittany says

        Yes this helps a lot! I was going between tan, grey or white but figured white would be a lot of up keeping. I’m looking at a rug that has some yellow in it (plus my fireplace will have white and not the grey like yours) so I will have to see what the best option is, I might go with blues and yellows vs the blue and oranges..Still your couch doesn’t look bad in your room! I love the herringbone blanket btw (:

  24. says

    Hi there! I am stopping by from Thrifty Decor Chick. I wanted to say that I am one of those people who love a stone fireplace! But, at the same time, I can appreciate many different decorating styles, and although I may not choose the same for myself, I think you guys did a great job with that fireplace and the whole room! I love those West Elm lights, and the state art is a really cute idea. Kudos to you!

    • says

      Hi Nicki! Thanks so much for stopping by and I appreciate your compliment on the fireplace even though its not your style. I am the same way–I love ALL kinds of decorating styles. In the past, we have always lived old, traditional homes and my decorating style was quite different in those homes.

  25. says

    I love the room – and especially those digital state prints! I have a large, blank wall as well that I haven’t known what to do with and think those state prints would look great on it! I was wondering though… what size prints did you order and what size are your frames?

    • says

      Thanks so much, Windham! I am actually going to be offering a giveaway later this month for some free digital prints from the Etsy shop that I ordered them from. I hope you will check back and enter to win some of your own! The prints are 20 x 30 inches and the frames are 29 x 40 inches. I hope that helps!

  26. Shauna K says

    what a beautiful room transformation!!! Can I ask what paint color that is?? I’ve been trying to find a color that will work in our new rental home, and your color is exactly what I’ve been looking for! We have the same reddish floors, white trim, so it’s great to see a color up on the walls in real life (so hard to envision a room painted when all you have is a paint swatch!!). :)

  27. Kate says

    I kind of like the “before” fireplace, but that’s just me. :) I’m glad you found a (cheap!) solution that works better for your tastes, the “after” looks great!

    I also love the desk. I know you said that you already had it, but do you remember where you got it from? I’d be interested in looking into something similar.

  28. Shabree says

    I just came across your blog on pinterest and am in love with your room! Love the color combo!! Do you happen to remember where the striped pillows are from? Love how they pull all the colors together!

  29. Amy says

    I love your house and the tranformation of the living room. What ETSY shop did you buy those prints from? Also…the IKEA print on the wall in the living room…if you ever want to get rid of it…I will buy it!! We bought our house a year ago and that same print was hanging in the model home…that was the only item my husband has truly wanted. After a long search I found out it was sold at IKEA…but it is no longer available. Again, love your house and can’t wait to see the rest of your house tranformed…from one Texan to another, great job!!

    • says

      Hi Amy! The Etsy shop that I purchased the prints from is called Olive+Birch. It’s fantastic and the prints are totally customizable. I can’t believe Ikea stopped selling those prints! That’s a shame. I do love it, but if I ever get rid of it, I will let you know :) Thanks so much for reading my blog!

    • says

      Thank you, Eileen! I will add you to my subscription list. You will receive an email asking you to confirm your subscription at the email address you provided. Thanks for reading my blog!


  1. […] As I explain a bit on the Tour My Home page, we are not a family that has a need or a desire for a “fancy room,” which is what this room is intended to be.  But, we are a family that had a strong desire for a dedicated playroom.  When we viewed the house, I knew this room would be perfect for our twin girls’ playroom.  It has FABULOUSLY large casement windows and tons of wonderful natural light, which I feel is ideal for a playroom.  I also love that it has glass french doors that open to our family room.  LOVE that layout.  (Note that ugly, outdated fireplace you can see in the family room is now GONE.  Stay tuned for the family room reveal :)  I purposely avoided any “after” shots of the playroom that revealed part of the family room.  You’ll just have to wait!) UPDATE: THE FAMILY ROOM REVEAL IS COMPLETE.  CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS! […]

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