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To create a sense of serenity, Taniya suggests painting the walls a soothing blue-green. "There's no better way to make a dramatic change in a room," she says. Next Taniya recommends swapping the bulky sofa for a sleek new sectional in a neutral tone. "With a console and lamp behind, you don't have to look at the back of the sofa when you walk in the door," she says. "Add a coffee table and the vignette makes an inviting conversation area." The piano stays where it is, out of sight against a wall behind the sofa. Bookcases on each side of the fireplace hold the TV and serve as storage. "If built-ins aren't in the budget, secure inexpensive freestanding units to the walls and install a flat-panel retractable mount so you can see the screen from all angles."
"Patty asked me to create a place where she can curl up and relax," says Taniya. A chaise longue by the windows fills the bill. "This signature piece in a fun print will also liven up the solid colors in the room." If new hardwood flooring isn't possible, place a throw rug over the carpeting to further define the sitting area and add a comfortable chair in the corner. As a personal touch and to tie everything together, Taniya selects a range of accessories for shelves and walls—books, plants, vases, and family photos. Finally she hangs a sparkling sunburst mirror above the mantel. "It showcases the handsome fireplace," says Taniya, "and adds a little bling."