When Designing My Room Took Four Years Too Long
We’ve all been in Christine Seeman’s shoes—she’d been thinking about redoing her living room for ages but never did. Here’s how we gave her the confidence to finally do it.
Homeowner: Christine Seeman, software engineer and mom extraordinaire
Location: Omaha, NE
Room: Awkwardly Shaped Living Room
Her Style: Mod Enthusiast
Hitting that “now or never” point with decorating
After four years of living with an awkward living room layout, I decided enough was enough! I had plenty of inspiration (four years’ worth, in fact) but knew I was going to need some help turning that inspiration into reality.
What was important for me in my home was for the living room to feel less awkward but be a good durable space where my family could spend a lot of time. Also, it’s an area that’s highly visible when guests come over, so I wanted it to look nice and needed space to hide a ton of toys. I wasn’t asking for too much!
The Design Dilemma
Finding ways to open up (and brighten up) the room
The biggest challenge for me was dealing with the awkward room layout. My house was built in the ’80s with this built-in cabinet on one side of the fireplace and a window on the other side. No matter where I placed my sofa, chairs, and T.V., the room just did not flow.
Additionally, the space can feel very dark because of two very large, mature maple trees in the backyard that block the natural sunlight. I knew lightening the room up would do it wonders, but I wanted some professional help to show me the best solution.
The Modsy Moment
When all the inspiring ideas and images still didn’t solve her dilemma
Previously, I’d designed another room in my house with help from the retailer Ethan Allen. This time though, I didn’t want to feel obligated to purchase their furniture, so I began exploring other resources.
This began my extensive internet search for ideas for how to change up my living room, specifically how to help with room design and furniture placement. I came across Modsy, and then went searching for reviews of the service. I liked the pictures I saw of the room renderings, and it seemed like exactly the help I needed so I went ahead and tried it out.
It was very easy to understand how to use Modsy, and I couldn’t wait to get home and take my room pictures after I had signed up. I wouldn’t say I was skeptical, but I did wonder if I could make the end result look as good as the rendering.
How Modsy’s Renderings Helped Christine:
Finishing a problem room once and for all (and staying under budget)
When I got my first two renderings back, my first thought was ‘I couldn’t believe I waited four years to do this!’ Modsy’s ideas totally opened up some new possibilities for the room, like midcentury style furniture and different color palettes. I made some tweaks and swapped a few pieces of furniture for my third rendering, but didn’t take size quite into account—the armchairs I selected looked somewhat ridiculous. For my fourth rendering, my Modsy style advisor was able to add a sofa and chairs I was eyeing into my first Modsy design. I loved this layout, and decided to use this rendering as the model for my living room. Finally!
I would’ve never thought of moving the furniture in the way that Modsy had suggested. It really took into account the pre-existing conditions of my space that I couldn’t change, such as the huge fireplace, the built-in cabinet, and the awkward little window.
This layout was essentially what influenced all my furniture choices, and I ended up buying some of the exact items shown in the rendering. But, most importantly, I kept the furniture dimensions and styles that Modsy had suggested in mind when making my purchases. Dimensions have such a huge impact on your room, and it can be so hard to visualize how a certain size sofa will work in your space. Getting to see the furniture in the room before committing to it made all the difference—that was what Modsy really helped me with the most.
I ended up with a combination of furniture and pieces from Nebraska Furniture Mart, West Elm, Wayfair and Target; I installed new carpeting (long past due) and then bought a new sofa, two armchairs, end tables, a T.V. stand, and other odds and ends. I also painted the room and the built-in cabinets (suggestions from my Modsy Style Advisor).
The room is finished now and I pretty much changed everything. I was able to do all of this for under the budget I gave Modsy at beginning of the project—I said $7,500, and it all came in right around $5,300 (not including the carpeting, but that was right at $1,000)!
Need a little design help?
Try a Modsy rendering for yourself!