Makeover By Monday | Living Room Before & After with DIY Plaster Fireplace
This weekend’s makeover project was close to my heart as we transformed the living room of my nephew, Kyle, and his wife, Alyssa’s, first home. This adorable space posed a challenge—they were struggling to find their style. Alyssa had experimented with BoHo and Farmhouse style, but the room felt disjointed and lacked the homey feeling they wanted. So, they asked me for help! My goal was clear: cut through the trends and create a classic design with timeless pieces.
A Cozy, Focal Point Living Room
How sweet is this living room now?! We began by establishing a focal point: a DIY fireplace that brought the warmth and coziness they wanted into the room. We framed out a faux fireplace, drywalled it, and applied a faux plaster treatment similar to what we did at our Loft house (tutorial coming!). The fireplace not only added aesthetic charm but also cleverly concealed the Frame TV, disguised as a piece of art. This way, they could enjoy TV without compromising the room’s ambiance. Win win!
I had to get rid of that orange wood railing! In the past, I’ve painted railings to give them a fresh look (read here). It’s an easy and affordable way to transform outdated stairs into contemporary ones. The carpet had to go too, so we removed it, painted the stairs black, and added a plush runner. People often ask if I have every element of the design set, and if I make last-minute changes. Typically, my design is pretty set because of the limited time for the makeover. However, after opening the runner I ordered, I did not like the color AT ALL. A last-minute pivot led us to an in-stock runner from Home Depot that perfectly complemented the room’s design. Thank goodness it worked!
I also introduced classic elements: like the Ticking Tulip Striped wallpaper from my collection with Chasing Paper! And a vintage marble top table, creating a really special corner for their record player and vinyl collection.
To add color and character into the room, we installed chair rail and crown molding, painting them a soft blue hue. Trim my go-to DIY-friendly way to add visual interest to a boxy room!
Gallery Wall with a Twist
I absolutely love gallery walls! This time, I added a brass rail to a large empty wall and used chains with hooks to display family photos and the DIY artwork that Little Yolo and my nephew’s daughter created at Little Village Play Cafe. I love that this setup allows them to change out art frequently without leaving a ton of holes in their walls!
Closet and Built-in
We tackled a challenging corner with a half closet and built-in, transforming it into a cohesive space. By opening up the closet, adding a proper door, and trimming it out, the corner became a closet that actually functioned for them! We also added trim to the built-in to look intentional, which gave me a chance to do my favorite thing: style it up with a bunch of tchotchkes.
DIY Marble-Top Coffee Table
My DIY project was a marble-top coffee table crafted with marbling spray paint. It’s not only durable for a growing family but also way more cost-effective! I will share the steps for this DIY later this week.
This was such a fun space to makeover, and it was such a gift to get to do this for my nephew and his family! So happy we could give them a classic-looking living room that’s cozy and works for their growing family! They can live, grow, and create memories together here, and that’s just the BEST feeling!
- Upper Wall Color: Behr Swiss Coffee
- Lower Wall Color: Pittsburgh Paint Nautical Star
- Wallpaper: Ticking Tulip Strip in Charcoal|Dark Tan with Chasing Paper
- Upholstered Sectional
- Jute Area Rug
- Frame TV
- Fiddle Fig Tree (we used a real one, faux option linked)
- Wooden Train
- Wooden Elephant
- Remote Operated Candles
- Woven Baskets
- Gold Capiz Drum Flush Mount Ceiling Light from World Market
- “String of Bananas” Plant (we used a real one, faux option linked)
- Pear Blossoms (we used a real one, faux option linked)
- Hanging Frame Gallery custom from Pepe & Carols
- Stair Runner
Vintage Items (Links to similar item)
- Upholstered Wingback Chair
- Standing Lamp
- Amber Jar
- Faux Marble Taper Candlesticks
- Large Crock
- Side Table
- Record Table/Storage
- Table Lamp
- Small Turkish Rug
- Wooden Plant Stand|Stool
- Wall Mirror
Did you miss the last makeover, a 50’s diner style kitchen makeover with a modern touch on episode 3 of Makeover by Monday? Read about the makeover here.