Mid-century modern meets rustic farmhouse in this little living room of a renovated Texas ranch house. It may be small on space, but it’s big on charm and modern convenience!
Despite my former job as an English teacher and my current job as a designer, I am apparently not actually very good at describing spaces – ha! I say this because when I finally shared a walk-through tour of the ranch house recently over on Instagram, I had multiple people say, “Oh… that’s not at all what I was imagining!”
But that’s ok with me. I can always fall back on the old saying: A picture is worth a thousand words.
You can catch up on the story of this little ranch house and our renovation plans here… And you can see the full kitchen reveal here. Now that the major construction is done, though, we get the fun job of decorating each new space.
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Modern Farmhouse Living Room
I have been dreaming of this space for a long time, and my deep desire has been to create a coziness and charm that fits the rustic landscape but a feeling of modern convenience and comfort. I love how we found that balance in the kitchen, but I was excited to attempt a similar effect in the living room.
As you can see, it’s completely open to the kitchen now (the beam used to be a full wall). It’s not a large room – probably ~15’x15′ with at least 3′ that have to stay clear for walkway. It was important to me that we provide significant seating (remember, we want this little vacation home to house as many friends and family as possible!) without making the room feel too crowded.
Disclosure: Article and Wovenly provided products for this space. Opinions are entirely my own.
I started by partnering with Article on this gorgeous leather sectional and two leather armchairs. Much more to come about this soon, but suffice it to say now that leather furniture was important to me because I want low-maintenance, high-quality pieces that can withstand lots of visitors.
I’ve written in the past about using a huge sectional in a small living space (you can see that post here if you’re interested), and I took a similar approach to this space: one large sectional and two small-scale lounge chairs. The Sven leather sectional in charme tan has the mid-century modern vibe with the perfect color to complement all our wood tones in this space. And the Lento lounge chairs are remarkably roomy and comfortable without being bulky. Between these three pieces, we can easily seat 6 adults.
And I think the open lines of the chairs help even more to keep the space from feeling too crowded.
I also added some additional seating and function by repurposing an old dining bench. Since the front door opens right into the living room, I wanted a spot where people could set things down (a spot that’s not the kitchen counter since I know its proximity will make that tempting!).
It also serves to tuck shoes under and as a seat for putting them back on before leaving.
This was actually an espresso brown dining bench we bought 15 years ago, but the espresso color felt a little dated and the finish had taken a beating from my kids, so I stripped it down to the raw wood. I actually haven’t decided if or how I’m going to protect it… for now, I’m just loving the rustic feel it brings.
Simple Wall Art
I’ve been dreaming up memory walls ever since we purchased this property. If you’ve read the story, you know that five generations of our family have been coming to this part of the hill country for almost 75 years… I can’t think of a better place to capture and celebrate memories. I’ve considered giant galleries, pressed flowers, shadow boxes, and more. But down in the big, open living/kitchen/dining, I decided simplicity was best. A 4×4 grid that mimicked the beautiful black windows seemed like the way to go.
I made this inexpensive gallery wall for ~$60 using these IKEA frames, and my kids begged me to use pictures of them. While I may yet find old family photos for at least some of these, I couldn’t resist starting by acquiescing to my kiddos’ request. And when my one year old saw the wall for the first time and spent 10 minutes pointing at each picture and saying her and her siblings’ names, I knew I’d made the right decision. 😉
For the only other wall space, I opted for a remarkably simple 42″ mirror. The giant mirror reflects the beautiful views (almost giving us three walls of windows) and feels like the perfect echo to the black kitchen accents.
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To balance out the more modern leather furniture and wall art, I knew I wanted some traditional, cozy textiles… and I also needed a little color to balance out all the black, white, and neutrals. I started with this vintage-y, geometric rug provided by Wovenly.
This rug is so soft underfoot, and I think it’s a perfect complement to the vintage Turkish runner I have in the kitchen. Sometimes it’s hard to take the plunge and purchase rugs online, but the fact that everything on Wovenly has free shipping and returns with 60 day trials in home makes that a lot easier.
I layered it with a basket full of blankets and mixed throw pillows (this vintage rug-look one is my favorite) for a cozy, eclectic feel.
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Rustic Cedar Tables
I’ve been on the look out for wood top tables with black hairpin legs because I thought they’d be the perfect combo of rustic and modern. Plus, I knew rustic wood tops would be perfect with our raw cedar beams… I found a tiny one on clearance at HomeGoods, which I put between the two armchairs, but I was having trouble finding any big enough for a sectional of this size. So I took the top of another clearance table I found and added my own hairpin legs. Super easy!
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If you’ve followed for any length of time, you know that I’m becoming a crazy plant lady. Fred and Wilma (my two giant fiddle leaf fig trees) are practically my 5th and 6th children (larger, but quieter than the other four 😉 )… but I’m afraid I won’t necessarily be at the ranch regularly enough to properly care for real plants. So I started hunting for some good faux ones.
I’m loving this agave plant (the property is covered in real ones, so it felt appropriate). It looks so very real, and it’s big enough for impact without covering the view. I also brought my faux olive tree in here for that charming, farmhouse feel.
And a few real succulents (who are especially hardy) will be my little experiment.
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Rustic Modern Decor
As I said, my ultimate goal in this space is to do justice to the beautiful Texas hill country while also providing a clean, modern, comfortable feel… What do you think? Did I manage it?
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