Lounge Makeover: Dark & Dramatic

Well what a busy couple of weeks it’s been! I have been away to Cuba (blog coming soon) and immediately before that I was so poorly/ feeling sorry for myself after an allergic reaction to some new mouthwash which burned the inside of my mouth (very painful but did put me on an enforced pre-holiday soup diet!).

However I digress as what I am supposed to be telling you about is my mini makeover of Dave’s lounge. After 3 and a half years of bullying him about his choice of red and fine gold striped feature wallpaper, which I dubbed ‘Chinese take away’, i felt it was time to make a change. My idea was to go for a dark dramatic wall behind the sofa, adorned with big prints to lighten the wall and add a further dramatic element. I also decided to make use of some dead space by moving the dining table upstairs to create a dining zone to the other side of the lounge.



So, with a vision in mind and a modest budget of £200 agreed with Dave, I did what I do best – grabbing a teapot and my laptop to start the google marathon. I found multiple ideas for prints, but a lot of them were the wrong size for the frames I had in mind, or were simply images that you download and print your own! Whilst a good idea if your just looking for a quick and inexpensive way to freshen up a wall,  whenever I have gone down this route in the past I’ve found myself having to edit the sizes or prints in Photoshop to fit the frames. However, it was when I was on the Ikea website looking for frames that I stumbled across their selection of blue and white fabric. It reminded me of a tartan print my mother and I made years ago simply by framing some fabric.

Three days later and with Dave in tow we headed to Ikea with my mental list of items. It was here I got everything we needed, fabric, frames, cushions, dinner service and new cutlery. (see my shop this look at the end of the post). Our next stop was to B&Q for the paint. As you know from past blogs, I am a BIG fan of Farrow & Ball however, for this project, to tie the colours in I had to use the B&Q colour match service to pick out a blue tone from the fabric – eventually settling on the Valspar ‘Night’s blue arch’.


If you’ve never tried it before, framing fabric is so easy and highly effective at creating a great texture too. All you need is your frames, the fabric, an iron, some masking tape and some double sided tape. First up you take the back off the frames, apply the double sided tape about all the edges of the fabric then lay them on the fabric. You then cut the fabric to size leaving a margin on all sides to pull the fabric tight around the board and once done, add masking tape to the back for extra support. As an alternative to the tapes you can use spray mount for this, but from past experience I have found that the spray mount can sometimes either seep through and discolour the fabric or leave greasy marks.

Print Making
Print Making

For the actual print designs I bought 2m by 1m of the “square” design fabric and 1m square of the “lines” fabric for a total cost of £18 – with most prints of this size being at least £35-45 each this was a real bargain and an approach i’d highly recommend. Whats more, I still have enough of the fabrics left to make some matching scatter cushions and napkins for the newly moved table.

I dressed the dark table with a grey runner, gold cutlery and a mix of the new blue dinner service with our existing white plates. I love gold cutlery as it makes something very mundane instantly more decadent as well as adding warmth to the table. I really like the mix of metallic colours gold cutlery, copper floor lamp and chrome candelabra. We have had the candelabra and a lamp a while but they have never quite worked however I feel they tie in perfectly with my new vision for this room.

At the other side of the room where the sofa and TV sit I kept the layout with the original lamp, footstool, rug and furniture staying in place – I absolutely love the lamp by the way! Ideally I would have liked to introduce a new rug to the room , but a budget is a budget and I feel its always best to let a room evolve by collecting bits and making small changes over time. So with the rug staying put I opted to change the scatter cushions on the sofa by keeping them simple and tonal to the upholstery.

Ok so maybe I didn’t quite come in under budget for this one – I may of gone over budget by £14 BUT in my defence I didn’t budget for the £18 dinner service as this was a extra that Dave wanted! I mean how could I say no especially since he was paying and he threw my own line of ‘BUT it will finish the room” back at me haha!


shop the look

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