…family room, fabric and fur


Umm, so it’s the New Year and after taking down the tree and sending the kids off to their busy days, I get an itch to move around all my furniture, clear off the table tops and re-decorate EVERYTHING. Unfortunately, I don’t have the budget to do this. But, I think I can sneak in a few changes without breaking the bank.

I guess I wormed my way into ordering some ottomans after returning a few Christmas presents from DH. I know there are those of us out there that return gifts from our husbands so we can get what we are eyeing. For me, most times, I end up returning clothing items for house items. For me, I think it’s more of a feeling of freshening up the house and creating an inspiring feeling….for myself. Yes, it’s for me. This homebody gets inspiration from her home and I want it the way I think it should be and there’s no shame in that. Sometimes Mama wins.

So, I’m starting with buying ottomans for my side chairs and because they no longer make the fabric for my roll armed chairs, I had to start from scratch and redo those. It’s a project. I’m not sure the fabric was working in their anyway because I changed out my turquoise pillows for more neutral over the last spring. Then, I started to feel like the room was so neutral. I’m working on a game plan. And yes, I’m going to try to do pictures with cats in them. Not too hard to do and I love it.


I want to keep a bit of blue because it makes me happy….and I get very distracted by pattern when looking at fabric.


Maybe I’ll change things on the large coffee table. Maybe only books on the coffee table. Maybe lanterns. Maybe brass lanterns because brass is definitely having a moment. This would be an easy way to include it. Hmmmm.


Yes, I like something like this I think. It’s just a touch of what is trending now with that sleek look. Yes, my rustic lovers, sleek is in and shabby not so much. But, we don’t have to give up what we love. We can just do a little here and there. I like to keep relevant so I’m giving it a go. And books never go out of style.


In my search for colors that work and renew, some of my favorite designer are using black. Hmmm. I never would have considered it, but it can actually work with neutrals. I’m not sold yet, but considering it. One of my favorite blogs has some beautiful designs. Yes, these are a bit more modern and West Coast, but I can appreciate the textures.



I am also planning on upholstering some wood chairs MYSELF with faux fur. I promise to show you as I am very, very excited about it! Fur is hot right now too and can go shabby or modern. Win.


And this fur below is timeless. Always en vogue, Boys.


If you have not started following my new lifestyle blog, join me! I’ve been discussing books I’ve read and the diet I’ve been doing the past few months (PS, I’ve lost 20 lbs in 2 months so it’s worth a look!)

Subscribe to Christen Bensten here. Connect here for social media.

…my christmas decor

Hi Guys!

I posted today on my new lifestlye blog this year’s Christmas Decor. I thought you may be interested. If you have not get subscribed to my new site and joined me, please do! You mean to much to me and I want to stay connected.

Here the link to the post.

Wishing peace and love this holiday season.

Christen Bensten 


Subscribe here. Connect here for social media.

…arhaus dream living room design challenge

I was recently challenged to create a post on my dream living room. I created a beautiful space with freedom to pull from Arhaus and any other products/brands I thought would work. This was an easy assignment, because I love Arhaus and I love design! The kids and I were recently at the mall and as we passed the shop large windows, Reid pointed out, “That’s mom’s favorite store!”

When designing a room, the first thing I do is my research. I pour over pictures, Pinterest, magazines and other people’s homes to see what I like and what I don’t like. I look at color, materials and the overall feel. A living room for me, is a bit more formal in feel. It is a place to use when entertaining or sit quietly with a friend with a steamy cup of tea. It is quiet and beautiful. It can hold more delicate treasures, fabrics and furniture. Very often the dog is not allowed in this space, but cats are a different story.


The rough layout for my living room design would be anchored with a fireplace and mantel on the far wall. There would be two upholstered couches opposite each other, two side chairs, a coffee table pulling the room together in the middle. I would have a large piece of art or a mirror over the mantel, formal curtain panels, a soft rug, and delicate accessories. Here is an idea of the overall layout of the space. Image via Pinterest.



When I am ready to start purchasing pieces, I always start with the sofa. I love a beautiful sofa, but more importantly, it has to be comfortable. No one wants to sit on an itchy or hard sofa. I would select something like this from the Arhaus collection.



I love this classic English roll arm design. If you start with a neutral, you can build your room easily from there without being constrained by a color or pattern. You color can come in the form of pillows and accessories.

Gilt Coffee Table

I love the idea of having a delicate, gold coffee table and side tables. This is the next item I would pick to shape my room. It is airy and light.


Chloe Coffee Table

Side Chairs

I would next pick upholstered side chairs to flank the fireplace. This is a place where I would do maybe a bit of pattern, but nothing that would take away from the luxury of the room. I am in love with these animal print chairs.


Old Hickory TanneryColleen Chair


At this point, I would start laying some of my essential accessories like a large painting or mirror for above the fireplace. I think I would choose a mirror to continue my bright design. A paned mirror like this from Arhaus gives an architectural look as well as the reflection, which will make the room look larger.



I want wood on the floor and an area rug. In an ideal world, I would find a FAUX sheepskin rug to layer in there too (I have yet to find a faux one that looks real and is beautiful.)

The curtains should be a more formal material like silk, linen, etc. I would not choose a cotton in this room because it will look too casual.

The coffee table is the perfect place to place special memorabilia and books about your favorite subjects. This is also the place to put a little flower bouquet or a plant for some green. I love accessories like this below:

W8702_02 (1)




For more living room inspiration check out my “Arhaus Living Room Board” on Pinterest found here. I have more inspiration and images to help if you are working on your own living room.