Serene Sojourners Cottage

How do you design two adjoining living rooms and reflect the two opposite personalities of a world traveler and a cottage-loving homebody? You make a peaceful travelers destination. The plan was to incorporate two ideas: home & travel into one flowing living space. I affectionately call this most recent project the “Serene Sojourners Cottage.”


In the original spaces, there was a dark and heavy appearance to both rooms to the extent that the homeowners had even considered adding extra windows to bring in more light. As you can see in the after shots, the first step was a change of wall and trim color. By going from a terra cotta to a bluish gray color, the room brightened and took on a more open feel. The built in bookshelves were also transformed by painting them white and saying goodbye to the dark wood. No need for new windows now!

Keeping with the travelers theme, we implemented several pieces the couple had acquired on their travel adventures. These souvenirs bring several cultures into the room. An heirloom Japanese robe is also featured in the space. Textiles in the throw pillows represent different cultures from around the world.

Staging the shelves with dry brushed frames incorporates yellow, coral, and aqua giving focus to specific pieces. The clients’ previously purchased floral canvas above the mantle set the color scheme.



Purchasing two swivel chairs to add to the center of the adjoining rooms, there is now the flexibility of two separate focal points. The chairs can face the fireplace or the television.

Distressed rugs anchor the seating areas in muted, yet rich colors. Adding an upholstered gray-blue round ottoman softens the angles in the room. And speaking of soft finishes, reupholstering the fireplace cushion incorporates all of the colors in the space. That same fabric was also used to recover the cushion on the custom finished gossip bench. The bench went from a dark wood with crème fabric to a vibrant distressed blue with this coordinating upholstery. Above this bench, we brought a bit of greenery into the room by hanging this simple wreath in one of the family’s heirloom frames. A complimentary distressed blue finish give new life to the side tables.

Custom Gossip Bench


Finally, two custom signs piece both of these rooms together. This map sign was placed in front of a matting to create a more substantial statement in the room.

The other sign was created as a reminder of the couple’s significant adventures either together or individually. FYI: the miles listed are actual distances from where this family calls home.

I’m thankful for this family and their sweet home. Here’s to many peaceful memories in this serene sojourner’s cottage!

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