Sofa, So Good? Adventures in Living Room Decisions.

Image result for sofa so goodIt’s been almost six months since we closed on our house, which is unbelievable to me. The past few months have flown by, and while we’ve made a lot of progress making the home “ours,” we still have a long way to go!

pantheon-fabric-persimmon-dwl5943My mom finished up our living room drapes and I am in love with them! We got a great bargain on the fabric from this Robert Allen Pantheon fabric in Persimmon usually goes for $75/yard from vendors like DwellStudio, but with a little digging & a coupon or two, we ended up getting all eight yards of this fabric for $21.95/yard. (PS – if you like this fabric, they still have 13 yards left at that price point! Just click here.)

She made the drapes floor to ceiling with goblet pleats at the top: they look super luxe, but the fabric makes them a bit playful, too, which I love!


My club chairs, which were previously green & yellow striped, have also been reupholstered and are ready for pick-up (as soon as I get my car back – but that’s another story for another day…). I went with this fawn-like print I found at U-Fab’s new location on Broad Street. It’s a little lighter in person, so I can’t wait to get my chairs back home to share with you!unnamed

Now that we have the drapes and club chairs taken care of, there are only a few other things on our list for the living room until we can move on to the next project:

  • A larger TV that we’ll mount in the center of the built-ins
  • A new sofa
  • A statement piece of art to go above said sofa
  • An updated gas log system for the fireplace
  • Modernize the moulding on the built-ins
  • Conceal the radiator under the built-ins

The sofa is turning out to be the most difficult decision — and the hardest for us to come to a consensus on. Our living room is long and narrow, which makes things a bit challenging. Additionally, there isn’t a ton of natural light, which makes me lean towards lighter and brighter colors to cheer up the room a bit. My husband has his heart set on a sectional – and I feel “meh” about them. And, we’re constantly flipping back and forth between leather and cloth! Leather is more practical, especially because we have a dog that spends most of her day lounging on the sofa while we’re at work. But leather is also dark, and I worry it will “bring down” our living room – in addition to possibly making it feel a bit “man-cavey.” Light fabric, which I prefer, is probably a dangerous choice for our lady-of-luxury pup, as well.

What to do, what to do!? Here is a snapshot of our current layout and the sofa we have. The current sofa is fine, but too small – we want something a little more substantial.

Here are some living rooms + sofa combos I like, but would LOVE some advice and opinions from you, dear readers! Leather or cloth? Dark or light? Sectional or no? I’d also really love to hear from fellow dog-owners, too: what advice do you have on buying great furniture you can protect from your pup?

Image result for southern living living rooms

Image result for southern living living rooms

Image result for sofa for narrow living roomImage result for beige sofa colorful roomImage result for leather sofa with upholstered chairsNote furniture placement in small living room: This living room is only 11' x 15', but two streamlined linen sofas provide ample seating in tight quarters. The onyx-faced fireplace is original to the home, an 1,100-square-foot Colonial-style house:

RECIPE | Roasted Butternut Squash + Gorgonzola Lasagna

Image result for roasted butternut squash gorgonzola lasagnaWe hosted our first “formal” dinner in our new home this week (I even used my VIETRI chargers underneath the plates!). We invited our sweet new neighbors and their adorable baby daughter over and had the best time. We are over the moon to have young, cool neighbors next door!



Look Ma! I used my fancy plates!


Since they are vegetarian, I scoured the internet for the perfect recipe that would be tasty and satisfying for vegetarians and carnivores alike. I was thrilled to find this wonderful recipe from Gay Lea Foods Co-Operative. This lasagna turned out to be a wonderfully rustic, robust, creamy and delicious autumn entree — and great for serving a crowd! I’d highly recommend this whether you are vegetarian or not!

Be sure to swap out the chicken broth for vegetable broth to make sure it is vegetarian-friendly! Also, next time, I might do toasted pine nuts in lieu of walnuts for a more nutty, earthy taste.

I served the lasagna with a beautiful autumn apple kale salad I found on Pinterest – here’s the recipe! We finished the meal with a spectacularly delicious (and hassle-free) apple crisp pie from the Fresh Market with caramel ice cream.



  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Cut the squash into small equal-sized pieces (about 1/2-inch/2 cm). Toss the squash and onion with half the butter, the honey, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper until well combined. Spread in a single layer on parchment-lined baking sheets. Roast, turning occasionally, for 20 to 25 minutes or until very tender (rotate the baking sheets halfway through cooking). Cool slightly; combine with the cottage cheese, milk, broth and Gorgonzola.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Grease a 9 x 13-inch (3 L) casserole dish. Spread one quarter of the cottage cheese mixture evenly into the dish. Cover with an even layer of noodles, trimming to fit. Repeat layers of cheese and noodles twice. Spread the remaining cheese mixture evenly over the noodles.
  3. Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, toss breadcrumbs with walnuts, parsley, and remaining butter; sprinkle the lasagna evenly with breadcrumb mixture. Broil for 3 minutes or until golden brown. Rest for 20 minutes before slicing.



RVA Social Calendar: Wine, Women + Shoes

I am so excited to share this event with you all! Do you like wine? Do you like shoes? Are you a woman? Do you like supporting great causes? Well, this is the perfect chance for you to combine all of those things. Please join me on Sunday, October 30th from 2:00-5:30pm at the Hilton […]

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Beauty on the Go: Travel Essentials

Working in the travel and tourism industry, constantly being on the road and on the go is part of the job. It’s an amazing way to meet new people, see new places, and learn new things– all of which helps me do my job better. As wonderful as traveling is, it certainly can disrupt your […]

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Room in Progress: Dining Room

Well, we moved! Despite the 100+ degree temperatures, multiple trips back and forth between old house and new, and a few broken glasses due to my hasty packing, we survived the move and have been in our new home for almost two weeks now. Thanks to the tremendous, generous help from my parents and our […]

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About last night…

As I write this post sitting on our screened-in back porch, it’s cool and rainy. I’m sitting here listening to the gentle sound of raindrops and breeze through the oak tree leaves– it’s incredibly peaceful. With such gloomy weather this morning, it’s hard to believe that only a few hours ago, we were dining al […]

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Meet our new friend, Benjamin Moore.

A few weeks ago after we signed the contract for our new home, I reached out to my dear friend Meredith for some inspiration and advice on color and wallpaper. Mere is one of my oldest friends- we’ve known each other since second grade! Here’s Mere and me in third grade doing a “talk show” for […]

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A New Beginning…

It’s been a little quiet around here on Sweet Caroline over the past few weeks. Things have been non-stop, go-go-go, but I’ve also held off on posting for a while because the temptation was too great to share our big news. Now that it’s Facebook and Insta-official…   We bought a house!!! Paul and I […]

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4 Perfect Cocktails for this Wedding Season

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RECIPE | Skinny Piña Coladas

Warm, sunny days like we had this weekend have me daydreaming about summertime by the pool with a cocktail in hand! After a bike ride along the new Virginia Capital Trail yesterday, hubs and I stopped by Conch Republic at Rocketts Landing for a little lunch al fresco by the river. They make the BEST piña coladas there, but […]

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