Swing in the Family Room

Posted by on Oct 4, 2012 in decorating for clients, family room, painted furniture, pillows | 26 comments

Still enjoying great times at the beach.

Tonight, I am trying to get this post out before we head out to ride go-carts!

My girls are busy icing cupcakes.

We have formed them into a fish and they are icing them in several creative colors they have come up with.

My youngest is wishing for “piping bags like the Cake Boss has.”

She loves that show!

Oh well, cheap butter knives from our condo will have to work.

Before I left, I snapped a few pictures of a house that I recently had the privilege of decorating.

This family is special to me, because they started my decorating career about 7 years ago when they asked me to help them decorate their living space.

I had never done anything like it before, and I worked for trade.

Renee cooked a WONDERFUL home-cooked meal for me once a week for about 8 weeks in exchange for my services.

At the time, Daisy was 5, Anna Belle was 3 and Lila Mae was 6 months.

What a tremendous service to me and my family!

Word spread that I had decorated their house, and others soon asked me to help them with theirs.

Soon, I was decorating for real money!

So, here is the family room that I just finished for them.

The biggest surprise in this family room is the swing.

This has now traveled to 3 houses with them.

We originally had it built for a sunroom.

It ended up being so comfortable, they hated not to use it any more.

There is no sunroom here, so we decided to hang it in the family room!

The next surprise is the coffee table.

It is a giant electrical spool.

Renee is the master Craiglist shopper!

She found the spool and her sofa on Craigslist.

The swing did get new upholstery, new paint, and new down filled pillows.

The spool also got a fresh coat of paint.

Renee tried to distress it, but just could not bring herself to mess up the nice paint!

They just happened to have the marble top from another table.

The “dining room” is actually their piano and sitting room.

This is the view from their kitchen.

You can see more of their kitchen here.

I love the industrial look of this table as well.

This is a World Market find.

I did not buy one new decorative accessory for this job.

I just used the things that they already had.

(I had actually bought most of this for the other houses I had decorated for them.)

Those bowls are handmade by a friend!

Just amazing!

I love how their family living space turned out.

So warm and inviting!

The cupcakes are frosted, and we are off to the go-cart track!

Life to the full,


Here are the places that I party!


Southern Hospitality

Under the Table and Dreaming

Flamingo Toes

I Heart Naptime

The DIY Showoff

My 1929 Charmer

The Tablescaper




Cowgirl Up

I Should Be Mopping The Floor

Mod Vintage Life

The Brassy Apple


Between Naps on the Porch

Home Stories A to Z

A Stroll Thru Life

Boogieboard Cottage

Kelly’s Corner

The Dedicated House

Skip To My Lou


Domestically Speaking

Elizabeth and Company

My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

Uncommon Designs

The Winthrop Chronicles

Coastal Charm

Primitive and Proper

Cozy Little House

Tip Junkie handmade projects



Savvy Southern Style

Shades of Amber

Faded Charm

Someday Crafts

Lil Luna

Ginger Snap Crafts

Beyond the Picket Fence

The 36th Avenue

Restore Interiors



Imparting Grace

My Re-Purposed Life

The Vintage Farmhouse

Freckled Laundry

52 Mantels

No Minimalist Here

The Charm of Home

The Shabby Creek Cottage

From My Front Porch to Yours

Chic on a Shoestring

AKA Design

504 Main

Katie's Nesting Spot




My Romantic Home

French Country Cottage

Tatertots and Jello

Miss Mustard Seed

Thirty Handmade Days

Stuff and Nonsense

Craft Junkie Too

Common Ground

The Shabby Nest

Faith, Trust and Pixie Dust

Rooted in Thyme

Fingerprints on the Fridge

Liz Marie

Twenty Eight O Five

Craftberry Bush


Funky Junk Interiors

Classy Clutter

Six Sisters Stuff

It’s Overflowing

Be Different Act Normal


Thrifty Decor Chick

Kelly’s Korner

DIY Show Off Fall Festival Party

Domestically Speaking

Southern Hospitality Fall Party

Fall Party
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  1. We had a electric spool TV stand growing up! Love the house! Looks great!

  2. Jaw-dropping. I have never seen this…I think I have to show my husband this – ha ha! This unconventional “couch” is a nice fit with the simple, clean style in the rest of the room. Thanks for sharing.

    Blessings from Oklahoma,
    Meredith at thepolkadotshoes.blogspot.com

  3. I never knew you did decorating and staging. Love how their room turned out and that that swing is so great. I really like the print on the swing cushions. Very neutral and stylish.
    I’m having fun making some Fall table runners and maybe couple of pillows. I keep unearthing fabric in my sewing room boxes to make things with. The only thing my machine won’t do is sew burlap, machine really rebels and jams so I have to sew the ruffles on ends of runner by hand but I take it a little at a time and it turns out better. Think I’ll make a couple for friends.
    I love riding and driving go carts. Only did it once and sure had a good time.
    You’ll be going home soon won’t you? Sorry for bringing up something you’d rather not have to think about. Enjoy your vacation. They give us something to look forward to.

  4. OK- Melissa, you have, once again, outdone yourself. As the OWNERS of the swing, we love it for not only the aesthetics, and “cool/wow” factor, but it is wonderfully comfortable and a great nap-taking couch. It took a while for us to research the best rope to suspend the swing, and you need to make sure you hit those ceiling joists. 🙂 The best rope ended up being (for those of you who want to steal Melissa’s great idea) a twisted/braided nylon sailing rope for securing one’s yacht to the pier. Instead of securing our yacht, we secure our swing.

    Thank you Melissa! When we were looking at the pictures this morning, Renee and I both agreed that we cannot believe we live here!

  5. what a fun idea
    for adding a little
    fun and comfort
    to a family space

    thanks for sharing
    at Fridays Unfolded!


  6. Beautiful! I so love that swing! I have always dreamed of a sunroom or porch with a swing like that. Unfortunately, I have neither a sunroom nor a large-enough covered porch. I had never considered putting one in the living room, but what a great idea. Or, maybe in my bedroom?? What a pleasure that would be, facing the bay windows??!!

  7. I love it!!! I wish I can have one in my so tiny leaving room lol
    Have a nice week end


  8. A swing! Love it!

    – The Tablescaper

  9. You have the nerve and the panache to create what we all dream about. Good for you and I applaud the effort!

    Susan and Bentley

  10. Wonderful job – I love the eclectic feel to this space.

  11. That’s a fabulous room, I love the swing and the wire spool especially. How wonderful tht they already had the marble top, perfect look for a family room.
    Glad to know that you’re having lots of fun at the beach.
    Hugs, Cindy

  12. What a great room! Love the swing, it’s so unexpected!

  13. That swing is something else…I’ve had my eye on a wooden spool that has been laying outside a construction site for a while…:)

  14. If I could, I would commission someone on your beach vacation to build a sandcastle in your honor because that swing is GENIUS. Coolest idea ever.

  15. Love the swing couch!

    and BTW, Macie LOVES the cake boss too!!

  16. oh my gosh, how fun!!

  17. How adorable! I love the sofa…so unique!
    Debbie 🙂

  18. What a neat idea! It looks wonderful and so fun!!

  19. The swing couch is so gorgeous and such a great idea!

  20. Congratulations on your newest completed room! I am in awe of the swing in this room. I seriously have thought about doing this for my play room, I think I may to go through with it now. Can I ask if you have tips on how it was hung from the ceiling? So fun! Sharing at my party. Also, love the electrical spool, I have one too, but I am giving to a friend for her front porch. She will love this post. -K

    • @Karen:
      We have hung this swing 3 times now in 3 different houses and we have gotten pretty good at it. Here is how it is done:
      Go to your local home improvement store and buy 2 6″ long swing hanging hooks (you will find them probably in the rope section.) They will be a bit over 1/2″ in width and have a pretty heavy duty thread on them. You will then measure, check, double measure and double check and then triple measure and triple check (with a good stud-finder I might add) for your ceiling joists. MOST houses (built buy reputable builders in the last 50 years) will have joists on 16″ centers. This means that if you find one ceiling joist (or wall stud for that matter) that you can count on finding one 16″ farther down the wall or ceiling. This particular swing was built with that in mind (Melissa’s dad built it for us.)
      Once you find those ceiling joists and you have confirmed you have the CENTER of those joists, I would suggest drilling a long (2″ minimum) small (1/8″ drill bit) confirmation hole. If you hit wood all the way – you should be good to go. Then you will drill a good deep (again, 2-3″ deep) pilot hole with a smaller than normal drill bit. What you want in the drill bit is that the threads of your hanging screw are bigger than the drill bit. Hard to describe, but a good place to start would be to look at the 1/4″ drill bit to use as the pilot hole drill bit.
      Once you have both pilot holes drilled (hopefully you had LOTS of wood chips fall out – that is a good sign) you will then need to begin screwing the hangers in. I use a very long (12-14″)) thick screwdriver for leverage. You will have a pretty tough time getting it all the way in the ceiling (that is a good thing) but it is worth it. Take the screws all the way up to the neck of the hanger meeting the ceiling. (I will respond separately on the rope choices, etc.)

    • PART 2:

      On the rope choice – we ordered our rope (for this time hanging the swing) from amazon.com. You want very strong rope, but you also need rope that will not stretch when it is put under a load. Here is the exact rope we ordered – we need 2 of them for a 9′ ceiling [Seasense Double Braided Deckline 1/2″ x 25′ long.) You could hang with the same length of rope from a 10′ ceiling as well, you would just cut off less of the rope.) You will then need to tie some good knots (having an Eagle Scout at this point would be helpful) and start on the front of the swing (again, this was made for this purpose, so we had the right holes in the right places, etc) and then run the rope from front of swing to ceiling to back of swing. The next big challenge is setting your height and making sure it is level. We have found that a long level across the back of the swing will make sure it is even on both sides, but you will not want it perfectly flat front back to back as that makes it feel like you are about to fall forward off the swing. This will take a bit of time and adjusting. Ultimately you will want to finish off the rope in the back with a “friction” knot that will only get tighter under load. I will try to post some pictures, but if not, maybe Melissa could take some and post them for you if you need them. Best of luck and enjoy. We have had 2 adults, 2 dogs and 3 kids in it before and have been swinging and it has not budged…

  21. Thanks so much for sharing this fun post on Simple & Sweet Fridays. I love the idea of a swing in the house. What a wonderful fun idea!


  22. That is just beyond fun!! Thanx for sharing at tHT!

  23. I was just going back through older posts on your blog and found this fabulous one that I’d missed. I think the swing is so cool I just had to say something!
    I love it all, you did a fabulous job!

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  1. Link Party #76 and Mes Préférés! | Redoux Interiors - [...] ever seen a swing in a family room?  Do you wish your family room looked more like a sun…
  2. Christmas Decorations and DIY Music Letters - [...] I helped them build and decorate this house.  You can check out their kitchen and family room. [...]

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