I still remember standing next to the fireplace, holding up my accumulated paint swatches that most people would simply call white. I flipped through the varying neutrals trying to find the perfect balance of cool and warm in an off-white taupe. That little chosen square, along with the flooring sample that I was also kicking to different corners of the room would set the tone for the rest of our farmhouse project. I wanted the simple, neutral contrast to flow through the entire house, and that started with the living room.

Here is our living room just as we started making a mess. The paint was peeling from the plaster walls and ceiling, so we scraped it away, washed the walls, and filled the cracks with joint compound.


While that process was underway, we also ripped out the old carpet and were left with this.


After the carpet was out and everything was scrubbed clean, I rolled on my meticulously chosen paint color, and watched the room transform into the bright, crisp neutral that I had dreamed about. To contrast the bright walls, we chose a dark flooring with a hint of red undertones to compliment the warm toned trim that we had decided to keep. We laid a laminate floor (the brand, Pergo, from Lowes) that snapped together to look like hardwood. We had quite a bit of square footage to cover, so we ultimately decided on this middle of the road product to stay within our budget. The pieces had the underlayment attached so that it could be installed more easily, huge plus. However, there are more durable versions of laminate available. After living on it for over a year, I will say that it holds up to our normal wear very well. Copper’s nails do not leave scratches, even though he frequently runs laps after his ball. haha!

The flooring installation was a long process that we basically learned along the way. We had a ton of help from one of our close friends. Seriously, can’t thank him enough for the number of late nights he spent working on our house. The three of us ran into a ton of road blocks that we resolved the best we could. Our biggest flooring issue was the bubble that eventually turned into a full blown hill in our living room. We tried cutting out more space beneath the closest baseboards with no luck. (We also discovered that you caNOT just screw it to the subfloor and call it a day. We were desperate. lol) We ultimately had to call someone in construction (who has to go home laughing at the DIY mistakes that we make). We knew that the floor would expand and contract, and left space for that expansion. But, our construction friend taught us that the floor expands longways, not across. So, more space needs to be left at the ends (not the sides, where we were cutting), especially when the run of flooring is as long as ours. He cut out more space, and that fixed our floor bubble!

And, it was all worth it for the AFTER!


We splurged on new couches, and all of the other furniture is either chalk painted pieces that were originally given to us or found items that I turned into tables. It all comes together to be our rustic, farmhouse, Netflix binging headquarters.

If you want to see more of Our Farmhouse Project, tap to the bathroom or kitchen remodels! The kitchen might be my favorite transformation yet! 

Chelsea LieferComment