Furniture Makeovers Home decor

Eclectic Traditional Great Room Makeover | ORC Week 1

Eclectic Traditional Great Room Makeover | ORC Week 1

Hello Friends,

After all the weeks of planning, it such a joy to finally fling open the doors to the One Room Challenge.

The One Room Challenge is a giant blogger gathering where 20 featured designers and 100+ guest bloggers come together to share how one room in their home is completely remade in just six weeks.  Each week, hundreds of innovative DIY and home decor ideas will post and link-up for all to enjoy. And yes, you will be able to access all of the links through my blog. At Week 6, all of the bloggers will post a full reveal of their completed rooms.

To get the ball rolling, here’s a little sneak peek of my oddly shaped den with 18-foot ceilings and only two walls. 

Now you know why this is called a challenge. 🙁

Eclectic Traditional Great Room Makeover:

Week 1

What Is a Great Room, Anyway?

A great room is a space in a traditional home that combines several rooms into one. In this case, we are converting the formal living, which is a space NOBODY uses, into an office and shifting all of the family living space into this area. Yes, it is a little small for combined living, but, in full disclosure, there is a sunroom (AKA she-cave) off of the kitchen and a man-cave in the basement. Plus, we are now empty nesters so realigning room usage is practical and long overdue.

So let’s get started.

The Problems

Before I could figure out how to pull this room together, I had to get a grip on the problems. And honestly, I wasn’t exactly sure where to start. Admittedly, the problems had been ignored for 20 years, so finally facing the music was a blessed combination of torture and relief.

Worth noting:

  • The space measures 16-feet by 15-feet, but requires furniture to float around two very-wide entrances and a fireplace.

  • The room faces north and can, despite having four big windows, struggle to get good natural light.

  • Because of the 18-foot ceilings, furniture has to be scaled up in size so that it doesn’t look like it’s in Barbie’s Dream House.

  • And my personal favorite —the entire room can be seen from the front door. Got family junk 24/7? If the answer is yes, then I know you feel my pain.

Before photo of the Great Room | One Room Challenge #ORC | The Chelsea Project |

The Disaster

Then, just when you think it can’t get any worse, lo and behold, it totally gets worse.

We had a storm and in the South, we don’t have just ordinary rain storms, we have gully washers. And on this fateful night, high winds lifted up some roof shingles and a huge branch was caught up under them. This allowed water to flood the attic, run down between the drywall in this room and the office, pour out onto the hardwoods, and fill buckets in the basement.

Oh goodie, now the drywall on my one good wall is rippled from top to bottom.

And with this, I may or may not have shed a few tears. 🙁

Repairs and painting underway for the One Room Challenge | #ORC | The Chelsea Project |

But in the end, it truly was an “oh goodie moment” because all of the mess literally forced me to get this room repaired and refreshed once and for all. And I cannot tell you how exciting it is to be on the way.

The Canvas

The day the painters finished, I couldn’t help but marvel at the room’s new personality. Everything was so fresh and clean. Suddenly, trying to decorate such a vast, open space didn’t seem so overwhelming.

And, in that moment, I actually found myself thankful for that little storm —and the leaks —and even the rippled drywall. This is because all of it came together to create the perfect motivation I needed to get. this. done.

The canvas created by the painters | Eclectic traditional great room makeover | One Room Challenge #ORC | The Chelsea Project |

The Plan

So like any good do-it-yourselfer, I opened my laptop and silently whispered, “Pinterest, don’t fail me now.”

In addition to the structural challenges, the room will retain the big armoire, the tufted leather chair, the outdated hardwood floors, and the light fixture (all seen in the above photo). Like them or not, these are items that simply could not be changed at this time.

So an eclectic mood board came together that represents the basic colors and sizes of pieces that will be brought into the space, but as it turns out, will really just serve as guide. This is because I am shopping the house, buying on a budget, and refinishing accessories to create a traditional eclectic room. I already know that the end product will look more vintage and less global, but at Week 1, all of the details aren’t sorted out just yet.

Mood board created to help guide purchasing and/or refinishing furniture and accessories | Eclectic traditional great room makeover | One Room Challenge #ORC | The Chelsea Project |

The Progress

But here’s what I can share. Similar prints to the ones on the mood board have been located at the discount fabric store. This means that ten yards of fabric will unite with about a dozen different paint products (yes! a dozen!) to center the room with an array of greige furnishings and pops of blushy pink, black, and white. A mix of different metals in the accessories may show up, too. 

Fabrics and paint selected for the Eclectic Traditional Great Room Makeover | One Room Challenge #ORC | The Chelsea Project |

For our math people, a Venn diagram (remember this from waaaay back?) would show traditional decor at around 70%  and the eclectic group (contemporary/modern, glam, vintage, and farmhouse) clocking in at a combined 30%. But what will surprise you is how much each of these eclectic elements overlap. Let me just say, you’ll have to see it to believe it.

Eclectic traditional decor is a combination of styles added to a basic traditional plan | #eclectic #traditional | #ORC #oneroomchallenge | The Chelsea Project |

The To-Do List

As for the To-Do list, it is long and grueling as I will be completing every single one of these tasks by my little lonesome. Thank goodness the Hubs is traveling this time of year and pizza delivery is on speed dial. Otherwise, I’d be in a Southern-fried pickle, for sure.

But there’s even more good news. Even though the list is long, in general, I tend to do extremely easy DIYs so that both newbies and veterans can use the ideas for their spaces.

Here’s the list so far:

  • Refinish three small side tables

  • Refinish the frame on an over-sized vintage mirror to hang over the mantel

  • Refinish three pieces of vintage luggage

  • Refinish two pieces of over-sized wall art (I will hand paint new colors over the actual artwork. Yes! It’s a little bit crazy.)

  • Refinish picture frames, a flower pot, a large tray, and a footstool

  • Make tall flower arrangements (36 inches plus) to place on the tray

  • Shop for a rug, a small gold side table, a lamp for the sofa console, accessories for the mantel, a throw for the leather chair, large containers for the flower arrangements, and maybe two small side tables

  • Rebuild, repaint, and install the muntins for four windows (Muntins are the wood pieces that lie vertical and horizontal over the glass in a window. I’ll explain what happened and how to repair these in a later post.)

Progress Weeks and Room Reveal

Week 1 – You are here 

Link here for Week 2 – How to Make a Discount Rug Work Like A Boss

Click here for Week 3 – 4 Easy Ways to Make Elegant Wall Art

Link here for Week 4 – Mirror Makeover in 3 Easy Steps

Click here for Week 5 – How to Make Custom-Sized Pillow Covers

Click here for Week 6 – Great Room Makeover Reveal


Many thanks to Linda from Calling It Home for hosting this event on her blog. Thanks also to the ORC media partner, House Beautiful and to all of the wonderful sponsors. We are thrilled to share this journey with you! #oneroomchallenge #housebeautiful

But –for now–thanks so much for stopping by!

Great Room Makeover in Eclectic Tradtional with dashes of contemporary/modern, glam, farmhouse, and vintage | #ORC #OneRoomChallenge | The Chelsea Project |









  • Reply charlestoncrafted April 5, 2017 at 11:05 am

    I am so excited to follow along. We currently have an unused formal living room that I’d love to make more useful.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 12:42 pm

      I totally understand. I’m clearing out the formal living room now so I can start planning the office. So happy to have you following along.

  • Reply April 5, 2017 at 11:22 am

    Isn’t it amazing how His plan is so much bigger than our own? I love that you took an unfortunate situation and spun it into something positive! The design looks wonderful, and I can’t wait to see it come to life!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 12:44 pm

      Thanks Iris. Well, sometimes disasters are really nothing more than a trigger for great beginnings. You won’t recognize this room. I promise. So happy to have you following the journey.

  • Reply Sue April 5, 2017 at 11:29 am

    Wow Susie I am so inspired with what you have done already let alone what is to come. I can’t wait to see the different pieces you add and how this room turns out. I am also intrigued by the idea of adding your office into this room as I may need to do the same.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 12:47 pm

      Thanks Sue. I’m so honored to have you following this journey. Your words are always so encouraging. Thank you.

  • Reply diypassion April 5, 2017 at 12:32 pm

    Oh! The ceilings and the light in that room!! It’s going to be lovely 😀

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 12:47 pm

      LOL. Yep. They are really creating some drama. Thanks for stopping by!

  • Reply Carolann April 5, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    Everything is shaping up great! I can’t wait to see what you do next. I love the textures and patterns you are going with. An office sounds great as an addition too!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 12:49 pm

      Thanks Carolann. You are such a great encouraging presence. Thanks so much for stopping by.

  • Reply Marie|The Interior Frugalista April 5, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    Looks to be a room filled with texture, patterns and personality that will draw visitors from the front door in to see more. Can’t wait to follow the transformation, Susie!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 5:33 pm

      Thanks Marie. Having this room pulled together has been a long time coming. I can’t express the joy in my little exhausted heart. 🙂 Thanks so much for stopping by and being my sweet Canadian cheerleader.

  • Reply Debrashoppeno5 April 5, 2017 at 4:38 pm

    This is going to be a fun journey to watch the transformation of the great room. I like what you have shown us.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 5:34 pm

      Thanks Debra. I feel like I have finally found my decor groove. It’s taken a long time. Thanks so much for stopping by! Having your kind words spur me on means the world.

  • Reply Lisa Scibilia April 5, 2017 at 5:02 pm

    I’m so excited for you Susie!!! Your plan sounds beautiful and I’m looking forward to seeing all that you do in here!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 5:38 pm

      Hi Lisa! Thanks so much. I’m so excited to share what some fabric and paint can do. My heart’s desire is to inspire others who have also felt overwhelmed. Thank you for stopping by!

  • Reply Lindi April 5, 2017 at 5:59 pm

    LOVE your plans and your fabrics! Can’t wait to see it all come together!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 6:03 pm

      Hi Lindi and thanks! I’m so excited to find these fabrics and have just sewed my little heart out. Thanks for following along with me.

  • Reply Jolena April 5, 2017 at 8:38 pm

    Wow! Can’t wait to see how this one turns out!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 9:02 pm

      Hi Jolena! Thanks so much! I’m super stoked! LOL..

  • Reply Little House of Four April 5, 2017 at 8:48 pm

    I can’t wait to see how this space comes together! Those fabrics are gorgeous and the light in this space is amazing!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 9:10 pm

      Thanks so much! It surely is a good feeling to have this room underway!

  • Reply Happily Ever After Etc. April 5, 2017 at 10:02 pm

    Oh my gosh Susie, that blush color is amazing! I can’t wait to see how it comes to play in the overall space. You definitely have a lot of work ahead of you but a big blank canvas never hurt anyone. (Well maybe it did, I’m not exactly google) either way it’s going to be wonderful when it’s done!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 5, 2017 at 10:21 pm

      Thanks so much! I totally love that blush color, too. It was a must-have! And yes, I agree. I have a boatload of work, but I have 4 painting stations and a sewing station set up on the main floor. With Hubs traveling, I really use every bit of floor space for painted pieces. Looking forward to following all of the progress aloang with you. Thanks so much for stopping by!

  • Reply Nancy @ Slightly Coastal April 6, 2017 at 8:10 am

    Oh I love the fresh look with the white paint! I love all of the fabrics you have chosen and the farmhouse console table? Fabulous! I can’t wait to see how it all comes together in the end. I bet it is going to be gorgeous.


  • Reply Brittany Goldwyn April 6, 2017 at 8:21 am

    LOL, love the venn diagram! What lovely light in this room, too.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 6, 2017 at 8:49 am

      Ha! I know. Right? What can I say? Blogger by day, nerd by night. Thanks for stopping by!

  • Reply thecrownedgoat April 6, 2017 at 10:02 am

    Susie, this is going to be such an exciting space! I love the items on the mood board you’ve selected and the Venn diagram is priceless. Ha ha a total throw back! I can’t wait to see what you do in this space and how you give this room a fresh new feel. Can’t wait to follow your progress, hugs, CoCo

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 6, 2017 at 12:41 pm

      LOL… I know! That Venn diagram is hilarious, but my point —and I do have one— is to create a simple visual as to what eclectic is AND have something totally unexpected so hopefully people laugh and decide to follow. Cuz —you know— eclectic traditional is super fun! 🙂 🙂

  • Reply Deborah April 6, 2017 at 11:52 am

    Oh girl, we had a storm blow over an entire section of our fencing. It wasn’t nearly as bad as your situation but it was a huge chunk of fence. We ended up using it for shelving in our pantry. I can not wait to see what you do.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 6, 2017 at 12:42 pm

      Hi Deb! Thanks so much for stopping by! So glad you could recycle the wood from your fence. #badstorm 🙁

  • Reply Maureen April 6, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    What a fantastic space! All that light pouring in! I love where you are going with this space in terms of colour. I am so looking forward to reveal day!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 6, 2017 at 12:43 pm

      Hi Maureen and thanks! When I started this journney, I would have never guessed these would be the colors. It is amazing how the room just kinda knows what it wants. So happy to have you following!

  • Reply paloma April 6, 2017 at 6:42 pm

    love the space and can’t wait to see the transformation. so many good spaces this season

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 6, 2017 at 7:43 pm

      Yes, so many good spaces! I want to visit every single entry. Thanks so much for your kind words and for stopping by.

  • Reply apurdylittlehouse April 6, 2017 at 7:27 pm

    I LOVE your bright and airy space already, and I can’t wait to see it all come together in the coming weeks. That soft pink paired with the animal prints is just perfect. Love your style.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 6, 2017 at 7:46 pm

      Hi Sue! Thanks so much. It’s always a treat to have you stop by. I truly hope the combination of fabrics and color unite the space. It’s really been fun to choose a palette that’s completely different from my usual. #goingtothewildside LOL….

  • Reply Toni | Small Home Soul April 10, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    Oh how exciting that you’re doing a One Room Challenge, so many great rooms have come out of these challenges and yours is going to be gorgeous! That lighter paint color already makes the room look so much more inviting. I can’t wait to see the end product! And I love your inspiration board and the colors and fabrics you’ve chosen, it will come together so lovely, all the heart eyes already sweet friend.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 10, 2017 at 10:31 pm

      Thanks Toni! It’s been a labor of love, for sure. Thanks for your kind and encouraging words. Sometimes putting it out there is scary. It’s good to have a friend nearby! XOXO Susie

  • Reply Karen House April 10, 2017 at 7:28 pm

    Wow, what a beautiful space! I can’t wait to see your continued progress.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 10, 2017 at 10:28 pm

      Thanks Karen! We will have to have some spinach and artichoke dip to celebrate the May 11 reveal. LOL… You are such a blessing! Thanks so much for stopping by! XOXO Susie from The Chelsea Project

  • Reply Nancy Hamilton April 10, 2017 at 7:30 pm

    It came together so beautifully! So proud of you, your energy and style! Keep doing what you’re doing! Your blog will be like one of your expressions… feed it and it will grow!!!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 10, 2017 at 10:26 pm

      Thanks Nancy!. I had totally forgotten to think and apply my favorite little saying to this blog. What is the matter with me??? I’m so grateful for your comment and blessed by your constant encouragement. Thanks so much for stopping by! XO Susie

  • Reply Debbie April 10, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    I’m so excited to see how you mix styles and make it work. You are so talented! Excited to follow your journey and learn from you along the way.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 10, 2017 at 10:27 pm

      Thanks Debbie! You are a dear and I don’t know what I’d do without you. Bless you for your kind words and encouragement. XOXO Susie

  • Reply How to Make A Discount Rug Work Like A Boss | ORC Week 2 - The Chelsea Project April 12, 2017 at 6:33 pm

    […] Next week begins the layering of small furniture pieces and accessories. For Week 3, the post will feature ways of buying, making, and upcycling wall art. Among the ideas is this piece that was actually hand painted to new colors. If you’d like to check out Week 1 and the Project To-Do List, please click here. […]

  • Reply Cristina Garay April 15, 2017 at 1:00 am

    omg it’s already a gorgeous room, but I can’t wait to see how you make it even more beautiful! I like your plan, the pink, the console… and hey that Venn diagram is so me! More traditional than anything else. 🙂

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 15, 2017 at 9:37 pm

      Hi Cristina and thanks! I agree, I see alot of traditional in your home decor. In fact, any of your rooms could be dropped into my home at any time. Just let me know… **wink, wink*** Appreciate the visit. Have a Happy Easter!

  • Reply Mirror Makeover in 3 Easy Steps | ORC Week 4 - The Chelsea Project April 26, 2017 at 6:10 pm

    […] Click here for Week 1 […]

  • Reply How to Make Custom-Sized Pillow Covers | ORC Week 5 - The Chelsea Project May 3, 2017 at 5:14 pm

    […] Click here for Week 1 – Eclectic Traditional Great Room Makeover Plans […]

  • Reply 4 Easy Ways to Make Elegant Wall Art | ORC Week 3 - The Chelsea Project May 4, 2017 at 11:49 am

    […] Click here for Week 1 […]

  • Reply Great Room Makeover Reveal | ORC Week 6 - The Chelsea Project May 10, 2017 at 6:18 am

    […] Click here for Week 1 – Eclectic Traditional Great Room Makeover Plans […]

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