White & Woodsy Living Room Color Scheme

How I came up with a style and color scheme for my living room.

This is the time of year that many decorating magazines, Pinterest, HGTV, and online sites like Houzz all compile their upcoming trends in decorating lists. Each list is filled with what their editors see becoming popular for all things house and home.

These lists are fun to read, but they don’t influence how I decorate.

What does influence me though is when I come across a photo in a magazine, book or online at which I just can’t stop looking.

Hallway and stairwell with cypress plank walls
Designer Tom Scheerer. Photo from the book, House Beautiful Dream Homes.

This image is one of those photos. I love how this stairwell is decorated, but it was not until I examined each and every item in the photo that I figured out exactly what it is that I like so much.

The space is not quite rustic, but has a nod to it. It’s casual and laid back, but overall has a bit of polish and uniformity. On further inspection, what I really like is how the smooth wide white trim pops against the textured grey-tan wood plank walls.

Many readers have asked me how I come up with the ideas I use to decorate my house, this is how I start, by studying what appeals to me and breaking it down one piece at a time.

Then it is all about figuring out a way to make it happen in my house on a small budget.

This step requires research, aka shopping around to keep abreast of what the home improvement, craft and fabric stores offers that I can use. I keep an open mind to find the best I can for my budget.

Living Room Color Scheme Changes

The first decorating project I am going to take on this year is my living room. Since moving into the house 4 years ago, I have never been in love with the living room as a whole. I like bits and pieces.

You know I enjoy switching things up in my living room for the seasons. My house will always be a work in progress. I like how it evolves as I learn how to make it the best it can be for Ed and me and the way we live in the room.

A room in transition between holiday decor to winter decor

A few posts ago, I told you that after I took the holiday decorations down, I was leaving the living room plain for awhile so I could just sit in the room to get a feel for what it needs.

After a lot of thought, I finally figured out what it needs. I like the white color scheme, but it needs more texture and contrast to give it a cozier feel.

One item that is on all the decorating trend lists and in my inspiration photo is wood – unfinished or stained on floors, walls, ceilings, furniture, and decorative accessories.

I like all styles of decor and my house shows that I do it in my own way. My style doesn’t fit into any one style category like Traditional, Modern, Farmhouse, etc. It is all my own which makes me happy.

When I was trying to come up with a plan for how I wanted my living room to look, I gave a name to what my style for the living room looks like, at least in my head. For now I am calling it…

Items to use for a White and Woodsy Decorating style

1. | 2. | 3. | 4. | 5. | 6. | 7. | 8. | 9. | 10. | 11.

White & Woodsy – Not quite rustic, but with a nod to it. Casual, laid back, but clean-lined and a little bit polished.

Living on a lake with tall pines and cedars swaying in the breeze all around me every day, makes this White and Woodsy decor fit the house.

I will never be a rustic cabin in the woods kind of decorator, but I am going to give my living room some big and small woodsy tweaks that will keep it familiar, yet give it a fresh update.

I already own some of the items in my mood board above. The rest are items that I like and will give you the general idea of what I am going for, but I will try to find inexpensive versions or create them on my own to save money.

I am excited to get started. I will share each new decorative layer here on the blog as I add it to the room, so stayed tuned.

If you want to find out what some of the other predicted decorating trends are, here is a list.

According to gathered data, here are a few things that we may be seeing more of in home decor this year.

  • Bringing nature in to create more serene environments that align with health and wellness.
  • Sustainability in design. Decorating with thrift store finds – with sustainability a huge focus going forward. Creative and cost-conscious repurposing of thrift store finds to craft personalized home decor is HOT! (You know I like this!)
  • Mixing farmhouse with modern pieces.
  • Mixing natural unfinished wood with painted pieces.
  • All things blue – Navy to pale blues and every blue in-between.
  • Popular all-white kitchens are having their palette expanded to include creamy pastels in grey, green, blue and earth tones. It is a subtle, serene shift.
  • Multi-functional spaces, global influences in every area of design.

There were a few items on the lists that I was happy to see since I already do them. I will always do them, even if they go on an “out” list someday. :-)

Side table found at a thrift store for $5.90.

So going forward here on the blog you will be seeing me bring in more wood to my decor.

There will be more natural touches and more thrift store or yard sale transformations like this $5.90 side thrift store table I made over many years ago. It still finds a home in my living room.

Do you have any decorating projects planned for your home this year? What trends get you excited?

You May Also Like:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. I love your mood board! White and woodsy! Very inspiring!

  2. Worth Appreciating. Great work.

  3. This is exactly how I go about decorating my own home. I love so many different styles that I refuse to be put into one category & it works if it makes you happy when you walk into a room. Looking forward to seeing your living room!

  4. That inspiration photo is beautiful!!
    Congrats on zeroing in on your plans for the living room.
    I’m sure it will be beautiful.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Kat – Thanks. I hope to make a run to Lowes early next week to get the supplies I need to start.

  5. I love your style and I love that you don’t try to follow trends that come and go. you know what you like and you make it happen. I would love to be that confident in my decorating! maybe in time…..

  6. Wow, you sure know how to put things together what talent! cheers from Canada

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Wynn – It took me a few weeks to figure it out, but I am happy now to move forward. Hope it isn’t too cold so far this winter up in Canada. We are having a warm spell so far this winter. Today and yesterday were 74 degrees. I had the doors and windows open in my house. It felt great, but I know it won’t last.

  7. Great article. I’m fairly new to your blog and this is one of the most helpful I’ve read in a long time. For those of us who love to decorate, whether we have skill or not, it is a process. I love looking at pictures of other people’s homes, finding inspiration and even validation. And, once something strikes me — the process begins — analyzing it, the how to’s, the budget, the hunt/shopping, the materials, the crafting, etc. Such a delicious adventure — keeps me and my endorphins busy for weeks! Love it!

    However, I tend to over decorate. I want to incorporate too many of those inspiring looks!! I struggle with balance; whether it’s color(s) in a room or the number of decorative objects or their placement, or as you talked about, the subtle use of texture. I want the clever and the unique and to personalize it. Yet, that ability to make it cohesive, comfortable and relaxing to the eye and body, eludes me. I read your blog and other hoping to hone in on that ability, whatever it’s called… I’m afraid it’s probably much like art or good taste and you either have an eye for it or you don’t.

    Thanks for all you do!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Nina – Thank you for taking the time to say hi and comment. I really enjoy blogging and sharing what I know and do. Thanks for reading. If you ever have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask.

  8. Deanna Rabe says:

    I like your plan. I like many styles too, but I’m not a cabin in the woods decorator either! If I had a cabin in the woods, it would be decorated in my style, not decorated for its location! (grin)
    I think bringing wood tones, and some texture will give you the cozy feel your looking for!

  9. And this why i love following you Diane, you stay true to yourself.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Valerie – Thanks, I try to do what feels right. I have lived too long and know if I try to do what others are doing, I might like it for a few days and then it feels off. Doing it in my own style is the only way to make my house and life feel right. XO

  10. Like you….my style doesn’t really fit one category because I like so many parts of different styles. White and woodsy is gorgeous and the inspiration pic is gorgeous I have many ripped pages in a file from years of collecting ideas and of course lots of Pins!!
    Can’t wait to see this idea evolve in your home!!

  11. Tom Scheerer for proper credit.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Sherry – Did I spell his name wrong? I credited him under the photo and the book where I found the photo.

      1. Diane Henkler says:

        :-) Yes I did spell it wrong. Will fix. Thanks for catching that.

  12. It will look very lovely! I’ve fallen in love with bits of wood after being a paint fanatic. :) It just brings a warmth and sense of history (even if it’s a new piece!) that paint can’t.