How I Bought Furniture for our Waco Fixer Upper Project

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farmhouse living and dining room  

Many months ago, when our Waco Fixer Upper home was in the early stages of construction, I started planning the furniture for our home. I decided early on I wanted to create the perfect mix of new and vintage modern farmhouse furniture. Why did I start so early? The main reason was due to the amazing partnership I had with Overstock to buy furniture online for our living room and dining room.  Of course, the other reason I started early was that I could not wait to determine how I was going to decorate the Waco home! 

farmhouse dining area furniture

Today I am going to share the process I went through to plan and buy furniture online quite a few months before the construction was finished. I am sharing a sneak peek of the finished space but I promise the full reveal (with a gazillion photos) will be on my blog in two days!

The Fixer Upper Before Photos

We bought our one hundred year old fixer-upper home in Waco, Texas almost a year ago. We bought it as an investment to remodel and offer it as a short term rental (on Airbnb). The home was in terrible shape as we had to redo the foundation, plumbing, electrical, heat and air, roof, and more. This is a photo of what the living room looked like when we bought the home. 

waco fixer upper before photo

Soon we began the demolition to open up the entire left side of the home to create a living room, dining room, and kitchen.

image of waco fixer upper home before remodel

We found lots of surprises (good and bad) during the demolition. 

before photo of fixer upper

But after many months we were able to create the living space I had envisioned. My goal was to create a calm and relaxing ambiance in the style of modern farmhouse decor. Once the home looked like the photo below, I started planning all of my furniture needs. 

living area in waco fixer upper home

How to Buy Furniture

The first step to choosing furniture for a room is having a floor plan that matches the scale of the space. Originally I was using hand drawings on a napkin (seriously, it’s true!) but I was very fortunate to hire my sister-in-law at Sandy McDaniel Designs. She created all of my drawings for the remodel which also allowed me to determine the furniture placement. 

furniture plan for waco fixer upper home

Selecting furniture is a fun task but it takes a bit of trial and error. I started by creating a list of the items I needed for each room. I made a list of which items I thought needed to be new and which could be vintage. As you can see, most of the furniture is new. I feel strongly that vintage furniture works great for tables and cabinets. But I think most of the items you sit or stand on should be new. 

Living Room Shopping List

Living Room: NEW: sofa, love seat, chair, rug, drapes, lamps, side table

Living Room: VINTAGE: coffee table, an armoire for TV, a cabinet for coats, and side tables/cabinets

Dining Room Shopping List

Dining Room: NEW: table, chairs, chandelier, rug

Dining Room: VINTAGE: table, chandelier, sideboard

Obviously I wasn’t sure if my dining table or chandelier would be new or vintage. Since I hadn’t started shopping yet, I was open to both.

How to Buy Furniture Online

Overstock has an incredible variety of furniture for Living and Dining Rooms. So I started by narrowing my choices to my color palette which was offwhite, gray and tan. Each time I selected items from Overstock, we placed the furniture in the plan to make sure it would fit. (It is possible to do this all by hand with your own drawings or with one of the online virtual room planning programs.) Most of the items worked on the first try in the floor plan, although I had to try a few different sofas to make the seating work. I also decided to hang the drapes almost to the ceiling. Our ceilings are over ten feet tall, and the dramatic impact of the tall drapes is probably the smartest choice I made in our home!

Here are the items I selected from Overstock.

Living Room Mood Board

Overstock mood board for living room

RugSofaAccent ChairLoveseatMirrorTable LampPoufEnd TableCurtainsCurtain RodRug Pad

Dining Room Mood Board

As soon as I found this farmhouse style wood dining table on Overstock I knew I was going to buy a new table. It was love at first sight and it is the most perfect dining table ever! The chairs are an excellent match and are really comfortable.

Overstock mood board for dining room

TableChairsRugChandelierCurtainsCurtain RodRug Pad 


Months after I ordered my furniture, the living space started to look like a real room!

waco fixer upper living roomfarmhouse living room

I also went to the Round Top Antiques show and loaded up an entire truck with all of the vintage items I needed for our home. 

round top antiques

I decided to create a ladder chandelier similar to the one we have in our home in California. I used a vintage ladder and three chandelier lights from Overstock. We hung it above the dining room table and I love it. A complete DIY blog post on how to make this ladder chandelier will be available next week.

how to make a ladder chandelier

It is not difficult to buy furniture for your home, even when it’s under construction. All it takes is a little planning and organization. Mixing new and vintage furniture is so much fun and I love the final outcome of our living and dining room. Be sure to check back for the final reveal later this week. It really is incredible. 

modern farmhouse furniture

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  1. This post is a huge help! We’re currently half way through an old house restoration. Can you tell us how you put all the photos together to create the actual mood board?

  2. Leslie I love this place more every time I see it! These are gorgeous pictures, and I bet it’s even more lovely in real life! I have a room I’m redoing, and drawing a floor plan is a great idea – I’m going to do it! 🙂 Thanks for sharing your process!

    1. The dining room chandelier lights are from Overstock as are the table lamps. Links for the lights are in my post. The living room chandelier is vintage and was purchased at Round Top.

  3. Your tips are only regarding size and color. To me comfort is the priority when choosing furniture. Knowing measurements of height of seat and back, and depth of seat and angle of back can all make a huge difference for each person’s comfort. I realize you will be using this as an AirB&B so the comfort is quite as important because they probably won’t be staying long, but for people focusing on their own homes I don’t know how you can buy online and be assured you will be happy. Old fashioned enough I need to sit before I pay. Your home is very nice and I have purchased things from Overstock and been. Very happy, just not pieces to sit on.

  4. We are actually in the process of moving from Memphis TN to the Waco area. I am trying to find a way to mix my more formal furnishings in with more of the casual. You did a remarkable job!

  5. We just purchased a darling little home in Waco. My good friend introduced me to your blog and your Waco airbnb. It’s just beautiful! Thank you for sharing all of your tips!

    1. Oh my gosh Tracey, thank you so much! I love that you reached out and appreciate your kind comments. Have a great day!

  6. Love everything about both your homes!! Amazing how much work and heart goes into your blogs as well! Thank you for sharing:)

  7. YOU are amazing! It seems that everything you touch turns into magic. So-so-so thankful that you share where you buy your items from. I’ve been hooked on Roundtop antique weekend for years. Again, thank you for sharing! YOU are truly awesome!!!

  8. Love your tips & seeing your beautiful home! Wish I could start over with a plan! I’m trying to mix dark, antique furniture (that I just can’t paint😬) with a lighter, whiter look in a long rectangle family room-ugh. It’s too full! Had to put my dining table at one end(no formal dining room) & separate den with 2 chairs. We bought the home 20yrs ago.
    Maybe my next home will be ideal! Thanks for your ideas! Love it all!

  9. Leslie, your envision of your home are spot on to something magnificent that needed to be shared I love the shabby chic look. Bringing the old and the new together, your eye is spot on. I am doing a remodel of my own and of course I want my 65 year old childhood home to be as beautiful as your home. I understand the dootling on a napkin my difference is it’s in my head. That’s my napkin. I can’t wait to see more god bless you and thank you for sharing

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