Friday, March 9, 2012

What We Did: Family Room Progress

We seem to be drawn to in some weird we hate them and yet we buy them way to yellow houses.  Our house in Calgary was originally a combination of yellow, pink and blue walls, and this home was also a wash in yellow when we moved in.  (Here's what the family room looked like when we first came to view the house) 

Our first priority was a paint job, knowing there was more we wanted to do to make the family room our own, but we wanted to we waited.  (I also invested $8 in a some high heat safe spray paint to spray out that lovely brass accent on the fireplace - and ripped those damn vertical blinds down)

I thought I was committed to expensive built-ins in our family room.   I had this picture in my mind as inspiration.

But as time went on, and money was directed at other fun things, I decided that if we were ever going to have a family room we didn't hate, it might be time to compromise.  At the same time, PB was waging his own internal battle.  You see for years we had been the brunt of harsh jokes and criticism over our (PB's) resistance to buying a tv bigger than 18inches.  People (we won't name names) even communicated their dislike of coming to our house due to the small tv situation.  We tried to hold strong.  We maintained our disdain for large tvs.  Even tried to convince people we didn't need a larger tv because we were above tv watching.  Who needs to be able to actually read the sub titles or the score of the game?

We broke. 

Turns out, Coronation Street IS SO MUCH BETTER on a 42inch screen.  And when PB was able to secure a roll back on an already low price...(plus a discount...please of course) a tv was purchased. 

My one rule, my absolute rule, was I would not allow for wires to show by hanging the tv and letting wires dangle. As much as I hate a tv being a center point of a room, I hate seeing media wires even more.  So while I was willing to compromise for the sake of Coronation Street, I absolutely would not allow wires to hang. 

Lucky for PB, G-Dad Bowman was visiting at the time, and while I argued that we would need to hire someone to properly hang and install the tv, Allan would hear nothing of it.  Why pay someone else for something they could easily do on their own?

I had my doubts. I sternly reminded them the dangers of dealing with a wall where a propane gas fire place sat.  I reminded them what a waste the cost of the tv would be if they inadequately hung the tv and it crashed, possibly killing one of our beloved pets.  I reminded them over and over again that I would call a professional in the second I saw wires. Many G&T's were consumed, the project was discussed at length, voices may have been raised more than once, but two weeks later....

I ate my words. 

 They did a brilliant job.  Using two  HEMNES cabinets from Ikea to flank the fireplace, we were able to conceal the media boxes (although we did need to cut a hole the size of the cable box in the back of the cabinet because the box was just slightly too deep to fit, but no bother) , and the wires are adequately hidden.  And before you object to the obvious height of the television and how that must be a strain on the family room is large enough that the seating is far enough back that I assure you, you don't even need to tilt your heads.  We're pleased.  Obviously if money was no object I'd have spent $20K on custom built ins and found some way to conceal the television when not in use, but since money is much more enjoyably spent on wine and trips to Italy...we found a $2200 solution.  And every evening as we settle down to watch our beloved Corie, we appreciate G-Dad's work.

I give you a before and after:

Now we just need some crown molding (another G-Dad job?) and we'll be all set.

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