Here is what our living room looked like when we moved in. We had cream walls, baby blue ceilings, and white beams. The owners before us were going for a contemporary look, but it just didn't feel right to me. They also put in these new wood look tiles, but I'm not a huge fan and we will eventually change them out. I've had my eye on tiger striped bamboo or dark wood flooring in a herringbone pattern.
This is where we're at so far in the living room. We painted the ceilings Behr Ultra Pure White, the walls Benjamin Moore Stonington Gray, and are currently in the process of painting the beams Benjamin Moore Nightfall. We also covered up most of the floor with a new rug and I'm waiting for my new white Moroccan pouf that will go in front of the fireplace. I'm still on the hunt for the right coffee table and the art on the mantle was just placed up there quickly when we moved in, so ignore these as they will also be changed around a bit.
If I had my way, I'd take out all of the brick surrounding the fireplace and put in millwork and marble tile similar to this:
Since I could never convince Charlie to take on such a large project, I'll settle with painting out the fireplace the same bright white that we used on our ceilings, and the mantle will go the same color as the beams. I think it will really brighten it up in here, because right now it's feeling a bit cave-like with the wall of brick.
I've hesitated until recently to paint it because I'm trying to think ahead to when we're ready to sell the house, and there are many people that dislike painted brick. Since we're the ones living with it for the next few years I've decided to take the plunge - I'll keep you posted on the progress!