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Light & Cozy Living & Dining Room | Bloggers Heart Habitat

Today I want to share with you a very special project, and how it comes together from start to finish!

This project is sponsored by Raymour & Flanigan.


A few years ago, Charlotte of At Charlotte’s House came up with the idea to pull together home bloggers in her area to pool DIY and design resources and help new owners of Habitat For Humanity homes furnish a room or two in their abodes. In the past, Charlotte and the team of bloggers have reached out to local companies for help with donations of furnishings, and then used those donations as a jumping off point for the design, filling in the rest of the space by building furniture, creating art, and scouring thrift stores for treasures that would fit the space.

Raymour & Flanigan has been one of the major sponsors in two previous homes, and this time around, they sponsored the ENTIRE project! This company is such a generous steward of the community and thanks to them we were able to outfit a living room, dining room AND a kids’ bedroom! I can hardly believe it and am so grateful to Raymour & Flanigan for helping us make this house a little more homey and comfortable for a mom and her four young children!

The team for this house included Charlotte, Carli of Fearfully and Wonderfully Made By Carli, Diane of The Rath Project,  Jillian of I Am A Homemaker, Kate of Kate Smith Interiors and yours truly. I had the privilege of working with Carli and Diane on the living room and dining room, and we planned and schemed and shopped for these spaces for months before the install day finally arrived in late January. Here’s a bit about how it all went down.

• FYI If you’re looking for something in particular, I put all the sources at the end of the post! •



After going through a lengthy application and review process, a family of 5 was chosen for this home in a rural community. In the fall, Habitat For Humanity of Eastern Connecticut completely renovated the house from top to bottom, creating these beautiful light-filled spaces for them.

Charlotte met with the homeowner and took some measurements and photos of the spaces we’d be working on while the house was still under construction. The living room is to the left when you walk through the front door…..

…and opens to the dining area, with a bathroom at the far end and the kitchen to the right.

The dining area has this great bumpout that makes the space feel so much bigger!

Can you believe all these windows and natural light?

This is the view standing in the dining area looking toward the living room at the front of the house. We all feel really lucky that we have this brand new space to work with!

The homeowner shared a bit about her style and colors she prefers, and how she envisions using these spaces, with Charlotte. She was hoping for a space that exuded “calm”, and one of her wishes was a big dining area for daily meals and having extended family over. We took all of her hopes and dreams for her new home into consideration and Diane worked on a few versions of a design, ending up with this one that checked all the boxes for the family, and stayed within our budget:

Design:  Diane Rath • The Rath Project


After Diane nailed the design plan, Carli met with Raymour & Flanigan to iron out the details and place our order, and I shopped ’til I dropped for accessories and details to finish off the spaces.



On a blessedly warm and un-snowy January Saturday morning I headed down to Connecticut with my car packed with tools, flowers and the spoils of my shopping adventures, and met up with Carli, Diane, Charlotte, Kate and Jillian, and we spent the whole day installing the three rooms.

We raced to the finish and at long last, the sweetest family of five I ever did see walked into their new house to this:

Photo:  Carli •   Fearfully and Wonderfully Made By Carli


Just thinking about the reaction of the oldest boy, age 11, makes me all teary – he walked in, and while wiping his feet on the mat (something not lost on this momma!!) said


In came the rest of the family, and they were just BEYOND happy to see their new surroundings!!! The kids immediately went to the big comfy sectional and tried it out. One of the boys laid on the shag rug and made snow angels. They were so, so cute, excited and thankful, and their reactions truly made this all so worthwhile!!

Photo:  Carli •   Fearfully and Wonderfully Made By Carli


We recovered some of the pillows that came with the couch to bring in the blues and greens that the homeowner loves, but kept the yellow ones for a little pop of cheer!

See how the pillow color combination is echoed in the dining room’s abstract art piece below?

The mom loved it all but was especially thrilled with this huge table that has two leaves and extends to 108″!

Momma and her four baby fishies 🙂

As I mentioned in yesterday’s Best Bang For Your Buck post, plants, flowers and fresh greens go a long way to fill out and bring a space to life!

We didn’t want to block much of this natural light, but lamps will make the living and dining rooms cozy at night.

Everything is kid-friendly (except for the candles we lit here, there and everywhere for the reveal!) 

The homeowner’s TV will go on this wall below so we just styled it a bit until they move in. I love this console table for bringing a little warm wood to this side of the room without being too visually heavy.

A little staging trick:  agate or marble scrapbook paper held to the paper that came with the frame with photo corners gives the space a bit of interest and color!

See more details of the living room and dining room here:

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made By Carli • The Rath Project


After checking out these rooms, the kiddos raced upstairs to see the shared boys’ bedroom Charlotte, Jillian and Kate installed! (Don’t you love that there are windows on this stair wall?)

Here is the bedroom before; it’s small but Charlotte, Jillian and Kate really maximized the space!

A peek of the after! You can just imagine how fired up the kids were to see this!!!

Photo:  Charlotte • At Charlotte’s House

The other side of the room is SO fun, I can’t wait for you to see it! Visit these blogs for all the details and clever ideas for taking advantage of every nook and cranny in a small bedroom.

At Charlotte’s HouseI Am A HomemakerKate Smith Interiors


To Charlotte for dreaming up this amazing way to make a difference, for organizing a brigade of DIY and design bloggers, and for finding such a fantastic sponsor to set this whole idea into motion, thank you!

To Raymour & Flanigan, for so generously supporting our efforts to help new Habitat homeowners – it is an absolute honor to share your company and furnishings – thank you!

To the talented, creative and fun bloggers with whom I got to collaborate on this project – I loved working with you all!

To the family who will call this house their home, best wishes for many years of happiness here!

May your walls know joy; may every room hold laughter and every window open to great possibility. 

-Maryanne Radmacher Hershey 


My Blogger Heart Habitat Dream Team and Happy Family!

The new homeowner and her beautiful kids along with

(left to right) Jillian, Kate, Diane, me, Carli, and Charlotte



 A few of the items on the design board didn’t arrive in time for the install so I noted that below.


Living Room


Coffee Table

End Tables


Blue Chair (on design board)

Floor Lamp (on design board)

Rug (on design board)


Dining Room

Abstract Art

Dining Table

Dining Chairs





THANK YOU for stopping by to see how this joy-filled design project came out! If you love projects like these, check out the Bloggers Heart Habitat house I did last summer with Kris of Driven By Decor and our teenage daughters!Throws and pillows bring so much life to a room design.

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diane rath

Wednesday 14th of February 2018

Lisa- what a beautiful post to highlight all the things that made this project special! Can't wait to work together again in the future... hugs and kisses Diane


Wednesday 14th of February 2018

Diane writing about that day truly made me all's such a wonderful thing to be a part of, and the cherry on top is getting to do it all with you, Carli and the rest of the crew! xx

Tara @ Lehman lane

Tuesday 13th of February 2018

The little boy was right, it is beautiful!!! You ladies did such a fantastic thing. Absolutely gorgeous Lisa.


Wednesday 14th of February 2018

Thanks so much Tara! I'm like a broken record in saying this but it truly was such a joy to work on!


Friday 9th of February 2018

This project is beautiful inside and out. You ladies have started something that should be used across our country. Reach out and help a family in need. I like the idea of using a house and remodeling it as there appears to be a few of those in every town and city.


Friday 9th of February 2018

Mary thank you so very much for your kind words. All the credit goes to Charlotte at At Charlotte's House. Those of us bloggers in Massachusetts are hoping to do one around here in the coming year. I wish I could do that full time, wouldn't that be amazing?! Oh and yes - I think a lot of the Habitat For Humanity houses are rehabs - the last three I worked in were all redone older homes.


Friday 9th of February 2018

What a happy project. Great job! Can you source the lamp on the console? Thanks!


Friday 9th of February 2018

The lamps on the console (there's a matching pair) are from Bed, Bath & Beyond and were on sale for $21 at the time I found them. I saw an almost identical lamp base at Target recently too!!

Debbie - MountainMama

Friday 9th of February 2018

I absolutely love this project that you are involved in, Lisa! I can only imagine what a feeling it is for that homeowner and her children to come in and see such a beautiful space....and know they don't have to leave it! You did a wonderful job, as always!


Friday 9th of February 2018

Debbie the mom actually said the thing she is happiest about is that her kiddos won't be uprooted again and have a place to call home. The things my own kids don't think twice about because they've never had to, are dreams for's really special to be involved in. I love it!! Thank you for your kind words, always!! XOX