Big, New, and Blue in the Living Room

April 3, 2014  —  Written by Julia Marcum 

We believe we should all love where we live.

We’re a couple of homebodies, working to uncover the home our home wants to be. And we’re so happy to have you here. 




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Befores, afters, mood boards, plans, failures, wins. We’ve done a lot of projects, and they’re all here. 

We have a long-standing relationship with DIY, and love rolling our sleeves up and making it happen. 

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Earlier this week, the new area rug for our living room arrived. You can read more about our decision making process here, but ultimately we went with the 10×14 Baxter area rug from Crate and Barrel in Indigo. And, whew, it has made a really big difference. Here’s how things were looking right before we started renovating the floors a couple months ago:

Chris Loves Julia | A Neutral Bold Area Rug Transforms the Living Room

And here’s our (still very much in-progress) living room today:

Chris Loves Julia | A Neutral Bold Area Rug Transforms the Living Roomopt1

I can only describe it as suddenly feeling alive and energized! It feels so much more like us, too. Going from an 8×10 to a 10×14 made the biggest difference, but also opting for a bold neutral color (like a good pair of blue jeans, I say) helped pave the way for us to inject more color into the room. Any color we want. Which could be why I finally broke out our Pendleton blanket that was gifted to us at Christmas (thanks Victoria and Jenn!) and whipped up a gallery wall.

Chris Loves Julia | A Neutral Bold Area Rug Transforms the Living Room

To back-track, after the area rug arrived I was so anxious to unroll it just to see if I loved it as much as I hoped I would after ordering it online (I do!), but before we could even do that, we exercised some patience to prep and place the rug pad down. I am a recent rug pad convert and I can assure you, if you haven’t felt they were worth it or do anything–give them a try. They really do make a big difference! Some help with cushioning, keeping things straight and/or preventing movement, but they all extend the life of your rug. Since the Baxter was already super cushy, we went for the keeping-things-in-place option and ordered this 10×14 ultra non-skid rug pad from Amazon for relatively cheap. Your rug pad should be a couple inches smaller than your area rug on every side. I actually trimmed the length when it was still folded up so it went really fast, and then I spread it out and trimmed the ends:

Chris Loves Julia | A Neutral Bold Area Rug Transforms the Living Room

Chris Loves Julia | A Neutral Bold Area Rug Transforms the Living Room

And then, at last, we were able to roll out our new blue beauty.

Chris Loves Julia | A Neutral Bold Area Rug Transforms the Living Room

The couch sits completely on the area rug, which adds to the luxe feeling under our feet. Even when I’m walking past the living room en route to somewhere else, I find myself side-stepping just to walk on it. It’s so soft and thick and although it is big and a bold color, the heathered effect tones it down while adding a comfortable/casual vibe and, bonus!–helps camouflage dog hair.

Chris Loves Julia | A Neutral Bold Area Rug Transforms the Living Room

Chris Loves Julia | A Neutral Bold Area Rug Transforms the Living Room

Obviously we’re still in the honeymoon stage over here, so I’ll have to write another review down the road to update you on how it is wearing and if we still love it as much as we do right now. It was not a cheap rug, but as of today, we feel it was worth every penny not only for how it looks and feels underfoot–but for the way it has transformed our home. Magic carpet, I tell ya.

What do you think?

  1. Cara Lowrimore says:

    Hi – Another question about your rug! I’ve been threatening for some time to get the Baxter rug (my son’s name is Baxter so there’s a built-in affinity for it!) in indigo blue for our Dining Room. Do you think the pile is too high for a dining room? We eat in there a few times a week, so I don’t want to get something that’s a nightmare for cleanup or for moving chairs along it.

    • Julia says:

      Ooo, I would actually say it is probably too cushy for a dining room. But I would highly recommend it for a living space or bedroom!

  2. Joni says:

    I know this post is more than a year old, but do you still love your rug? We’re thinking of getting the same one from C&B. Much thanks!

    • Julia says:

      We LOVE IT!!! The only time I don’t is during our 160lb dog’s shedding season–which lasts about 2 weeks twice a year. But really, it’s soft, cushy, amazing quality. Still looks brand new and everyone comments on it. It absolutely made our living room.

  3. […] good: We are so happy we upgraded our jute rug to this spacious, cush one. The color is beautiful and adds a big punch to our great room. There’s lots of room for the […]

  4. nancys says:

    Beautiful – I waaaaannnnnt.

    Also – just read that you went into labor yesterday – congratulations!!!!

  5. Eve says:

    Love that huge rug! Wow, it really pulls the room together. Great choice!

    Just curious, have you been happy with that coffee table? It reads a little cheap in these pictures. Kind of sticks out from everything else. Do you still like it, as the rest of the room has evolved? (And I don’t mean this comment to be rude at all! Just honestly curious if it fits in real life.)

  6. Steph Nelson says:

    LOVE IT! I love jewel tones so this rug knocks it out for me. Good job on the wall as well. Would love a post on it. :)

  7. Linda says:

    Charley – ever the faithful supervisor!

  8. Kerri @ Building a Charmed Life says:

    Oh that rug. Be still my beating heart! Gorgeous!

  9. Heather says:

    Really beautiful rug and the gallery wall is great! Your whole living room looks much bigger.

  10. Kara says:

    As Allison said, and as I mentioned on FB: “Passed” is a verb. “Past” is an adverb. You walked past the living room. You passed the sofa.

  11. Allison says:

    You need grammar lessons. You walk “past” something. Time “passed”.

    • Robin Grey says:

      After reading this, my first instinct was to let you know that you need etiquette lessons. But then, I wouldn’t be much better than you. For it’s terribly impolite to correct someone in public. But, oops, I guess I just did. Perhaps you’ll forgive me my terrible manners?

  12. caroline [the diy nurse] says:

    Wow. That room came together so quickly! Nesting?!?

    Love that gallery wall. And the black trim on the porch doors make such a fancy and chic difference!

  13. emily says:

    the rug is definitely amazing. and i love, love your gallery wall…such an amazing use of that wall space! lovely.

  14. Meg says:

    Yeah! Awesome for you guys. Just started following your blog and I’m really enjoying it. Progress on the home front is so rewarding. We bought an ugly beast, and I was beginning to doubt if I would ever be able to love it, but step by step, I’m headed in that direction.

    Can’t wait to see things continue to evolve.

  15. Amelia @ House Pretty Blog says:

    I love it. And it makes your living room look HUGE compared to the before shot.

  16. Ruth says:

    That rug is superb! I love the rich colour. Seriously good choice.

    And great job on the gallery wall. Makes me wish I wasn’t a renter – too many holes for the landlord. :)

  17. Jennifer @ Brave New Home says:

    Wow, that is kinda amazing! You kept all the same furniture but with the blue rug the furniture just looks bigger and more in place. Great call!

  18. Robin Grey says:

    Love it SO much! I’m seriously in the market for a super large rug and this one looks amazing! I must know more about that large soldier portrait on the wall however. I’m in love!

  19. Megan says:

    Wow! I love it. The whole room is awesome! I love the picture collage.

  20. gemma@thesweetestdigs says:

    Love, love, love. That space is coming together, beautifully! Keep it up, girl :)

  21. Meagan Briggs says:

    Now THAT is a rug!!

  22. Laura @ Rather Square says:

    It’s big and bold, but the darker color keeps it from visually taking over the room. I like how it grounds and complements the furniture, and it looks so nice with your new floor! And of course, how it feels on your feet is the best part. :)

  23. Victoria says:

    I love that the blanket made this shot! The gallery wall looks eclectic and warm. And you’ve got me wanting to upgrade my living room rug to something larger. Total luxury factor.

  24. K says:

    It looks great. I’m a sucker for navy blue.

  25. Katie says:

    It totally changes the look of the room! I love your style and can’t wait to see how the rest of the house progresses.

  26. Monica says:

    OK, if you were going for WOW, you got it!! WOW!!! I love it!! I’ve been looking for a new rug and I think you just sold me on this one. And the new gallery wall, again WOW!!!! I just love it! This is definitely more you guys! Love it!

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We believe we should all love where we live.

We’re a couple of homebodies, working to uncover the home our home wants to be. And we’re so happy to have you here. 

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Yesterday was the launch of our new Polly rug collection with Loloi! The support has been overwhelming and we’re so excited to finally share this labor of love with you all. The collection was inspired from a need in the market–something to mix and match with vintage rugs, or vintage-inspired rugs like our first collections […]

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