Get Your Living Room Lighting Spot On
You might think lighting can come later with your living room decor, but in fact, you should be thinking about your lighting scheme early on. Good lighting can really make a living room so it’s worth taking some time to plan what lighting you need in your space and where it’s going to work in your layout.
‘Living rooms, more than any other space within the home, are the place where you want to promote a sense of familiarity, relaxation and coziness all of which can be enhanced by how you use lighting.’ explains Rohan Blacker, founder of Pooky.com.
‘Rather than strong overhead lights, try using more localized lamps to highlight a particular part of the room, use a dimmer to give you options for different occasions. Wall lights are a great option in a living room as they are unobtrusive, pretty and very efficient with space if you arent spoiled for it. The more sources of light you have, the more moods you can create. Clustering a few small lamps is a great way to add impact to an alcove or mantelpiece.’
Opt For Oversized Ottomans
In lieu of a classic coffee table, try an upholstered ottoman to make your space more comfortable and livable. Interior designer Jenn Feldman explains why she made the choice in this family-friendly living room. “We opted for an oversized upholstered ottoman with a soft silhouette that could easily be used for entertaining needs, adults to rest their feet on, or for smaller children to jump and play on,” she says. “This ottoman packs a powerful design punch with a gorgeously soft performance fabric that coordinates with the tonal blue on the walls, art and other textiles in the space. The result? A living room that will make you want to kick up your feet and stay awhile!”
Pare It Back With Multifunctional Furniture
Image credit: Future PLC/ David Brittain
Think about alternatives to traditional living room furniture, such as the three-piece suite. Its still possible to have a cosy area for relaxing and reading with less space-greedy furnishings. Swap an upholstered armchair for a wooden rocker with cushions and bookcases for slimline ladder-style shelving. Wash walls and accessorise with subtle colour.
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What Should Dictate My Living Room Design
Living rooms were originally intended to act as sophisticated settings for hosting and entertaining, while family rooms were used for more casual, everyday activities, like lounging, playing or watching TV. However, many homes today will only have one larger room that acts as both an entertainment and primary living space. If yours is the former, youll likely be utilizing it as a sitting room to have drinks and good conversation with guests, without distractions like television. As often shown in living room photos, a bar cart, formal furniture and an eye-catching focal point, such as a sophisticated fireplace and mantel, will help achieve this look and feel. On the other hand, if it’s your primary living space it should see more daily use, often functioning as a TV room, complete with sofa sectional, media console and gaming spot . In the end, think about your needs when considering different living room ideas after all, a family with small children will likely need a playroom more than a formal sitting room.
How Do You Set Up Living Room Furniture
This depends on the size of your living room and what the room is most commonly used for. Small living rooms may require you to place furniture against the walls to ensure theres enough space for people to move about without sidling around chairs or banging their shins on the coffee table.
Ideally you need at least 50cm between each piece of furniture to allow for optimum traffic flow.
If you have a bit more space to play with, bring the furniture away from the walls to create a cosy sitting area. This works especially well in open-plan living spaces, helping to zone the relaxation area from the thoroughfares or dining, cooking and study areas. If the back of your sofa isnt much to look at, hide it behind a low console table topped with decorative objects.
A good rug can also help to zone a living space, making it feel more intimate. Place the front legs of sofas and chairs on the rug, leaving the back legs off, to give mismatched furniture a more unified feel.
If your living room is your main TV room, it goes without saying that seating needs to be positioned to give a good view of the television, and that it isnt so far away that viewers need to squint. Living rooms without a TV give you the freedom to choose a more aesthetically pleasing focal point, whether its a period fireplace, an ornate mirror or a statement coffee table.
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Rely On Metallics For Living Room Glamor
Metallics in a living room needn’t be limited to hard surfaces such as light fittings and furniture upholstery or curtain fabric with a shimmering finish can also bring glamor and enliven an otherwise neutral space.
‘Velvet is extraordinarily hard-wearing fabric,’ says Homes & Gardens Editor in Chief, Lucy Searle. ‘I inherited a sofa from my parents that they bought in the 1970s. It is a classic velvet piece with a strong, sculptural frame, and the fabric looks as good as it did when they bought it. If you are considering living room seating ideas, know that a well-cared for velvet sofa will still look fabulous in decades to come.’
What Colors Are Best For A Living Room
The best living room colors will of course depend on your style and the look you want to create. But there are a few general rules if you are struggling to decide on a color scheme. Rule of thumb is if you living room is on the smaller side, keep your colors light and bright stick to white or something close to white on the walls and ceiling. Of course, if space is tight you don’t have to rule out dark colors all together, going for darker walls in say navy or deep green will enhance the coziness of a smaller room and can make it feel really inviting.
As welll as size, lighting is something to think about when choosing colors for your living room. If your space gets lots of natural light then lucky you, most colors will work. However, if your living room is North facing and therefor might lack natural light you will want to warm up the space with warmer tones and avoid anything too cool toned.
Just make sure to always order swatches so you can see what your choice looks like in your exact space.
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Hang Baskets To Provide Extra Wall Storage
Image credit: Future PLC/ Joanna Henderson
If you are faced with small space living the only way really is up! Make the most of any floor space by keeping it as clutter-free as possible. That includes any small bits and bobs you might otherwise have laying around. We have used attractive willow baskets to solve the storage problem. Ideal because one they look great and two they are sturdy enough to hold all manner of clutter a savvy living room storage idea.
Hanging from decorative hooks that can take a lot of weight, these baskets are great for quick end-of-day tidy-ups for toys, books, magazines, iPads and all the other stuff that tends to lay around.
Be Bang On Trend With Living Room Floor Tiles
An option you might not normally consider for a living room. is decorative floor tiles yes, they are beginning to be seen in rooms other than bathrooms, hallways and kitchens. Practical, easy to clean and great in modern spaces, you can pull out the colors in them to accessorize the rest of your scheme.
‘For years tiles have been the go-to floor option for consumers in kitchens, bathrooms and traffic-heavy hallways. We are now seeing a rise in tiles being used in living rooms as well – as they can be an incredibly convincing alternative to wood and natural stone, as well as kinder to budgets.’ says Kamila Chalfin, Marketing and Brand Manager at Tile Giant.
There’s something very Mediterranean feeling about a tiled living room floor, but if you are worried about it feeling cold just throw down a large rug, you can always take it back up again in the warmer months.
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Paint The Walls A Dark Color
Though all-white walls are still ultra-popular, deep, dark-hued interiors are on the rise. Dark walls or even just a dark accent wall, like the one in this eclectic living room work to create a sense of intimacy within a living space. Not convinced? Interior designer Noz Nozawa explains why it works: “While it can seem like dark paint in a living room would feel heavy or dim, in practice, it can be the opposite! In a room where the walls are dark but the trim is light, the contrast brings focus to the windows and the light from the windows, creating a room that feels bold and dramatic, but still bright!”
Ikea Home Planner Tools
When you flip through the Ikea catalog, do you ever wish you could see how a certain bookshelf and desk would look in your space? You can Ikea now has a room designing software! With the free, easy-to-use Ikea home planner tool online, you can configure your floor plan, choose from the stores gallery of furniture and decor, calculate the cost, and print out your wishlist for in-store browsing.
Room-specific tools include a virtual kitchen planner, a bedroom planner, a bathroom planner, and storage planning solutions.
Ikea Home Planner Tools. Note they are not available on the App Store or on Google Play.
Warm With Natural Wood
Interior designer Ginger Curtis of Urbanology Designs says natural wood is a go-to when shes trying to make a large, open living area feel warm and inviting. “The use of natural wood in a living space not only acts as a decorative or functional feature, but it can provide balance by adding texture and warmth,” she says. “It has an organic element that reminds you of nature and brings a cozy, unfussy look and feel to a contemporary space.” She suggests installing large beams, plank walls or raw oak floors for major impact or a handmade wood table as an accent piece.
Play Around With Texture And Color
There is so much design potential when youre decorating a living room. Go for décor items that speak to your personality and that lend variations in texture and color to the room. For example, layer the textures on your couch with throw pillows and a blanket, and add pops of color throughout, both through wall hanging items and décor items that sit on various surfaces. Just be careful not to overcrowd the space in appearance or actuality, since, again, you want your living room to be cozynot stressful.
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Use Lighting For Dramatic Effect
Chandeliers and pendants are popular living room lighting ideas for dramatic effect, but they dont need to be in the center of a room. Try hanging a pendant low over a desk or table, or perhaps three blown-glass spheres suspended at different heights in a corner. Using a pendant is an unusual way can add a fun layer to your lighting scheme.
How To Decorate Living Room Walls
There are so many wall art ideas for the living room that sometimes you just cant decide which one is the one that will last the test of time and mood swings. There are many factors you should take into account when choosing wall art like size, shape, material, colors and originality. Here are some guidelines to help you personalize the experience.
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How To Decorate A Small Living Room: 10 Proven Styling Tricks You Should Try At Your Place
I bet youve found the process of how to decorate a small living room a tricky one. I reckon thats because theres so much noise online. So many tips. Just too much information coming at you.
Today, allow me to break it down real simply for you. Because heres the truth: you can have a small living room and it can still look absolutely phenomenal. I know this to be true because Ive styled small living rooms for my design clients. So youre in safe hands, decorating junkies.
And no, when it comes to how to decorate a small living room, you dont have to have all white walls and a minimalist approach. Read on and all will become clear
Hero image in this post via Temple & Webster.
Introduce Wood For Warmth
If you’re looking for living room ideas for a cool space perhaps one served by north- or east-facing windows that only deliver morning daylight, if at all it is a wise idea to add warmth to the room with structural materials. You can do this with a wooden floor, wood-panelled walls or wooden ceilings.
Or, of course you can simply add warmth with wooden furniture and complementing colors and textures in other furnishings.
This gorgeous room is by Champalimaud Design in New York.
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Make A Dark Living Room Feel Instantly Summery
If your living room is north- or east-facing, or if it lacks natural daylight, your choice of decor can change its mood dramatically.
This is where green living room ideas can come in useful: it’s a transformative color that can connect indoors with outdoors, and make a room feel brighter and more cheerful, even when the tones you choose are quite subtle or elegant. This trellis wallpaper speaks of blissful summer days in the garden. Working geometric motifs into the scheme gives the finished look a modern edge.
Divide A Living Room To Suit Your Daily Routines
Where once living rooms were somewhere we watched TV in the evenings, they’re now invariably sitting rooms, homework studies for kids, home offices for adults and, of course, movie rooms which is why searches for broken plan living rooms are rising sharply.
So how to pack this all into one space? If yours is a long living room you can divide it semi-permanently without closing off an area of the room entirely. The smartest, most permanent way to do so is with a wall of glazing, as above, which can include doors allowing family members some time apart to pursue different activities, while keeping the room feeling spacious and open.
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+ How To Decorate Your Living Room Walls
Before you can make any drastic decisions about decorating your living space youll want to have an. Although keep in mind that a strict color palette or using the same materials for every part of the gallery wall is not necessary.
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Display Objects Of Interest
Image credit: Future PLC/ Lizzie Orme
Just because your living room is verging on the small side, it doesnt mean that you should hide away all your favourite belongings in storage. If you have objects that are worthy of showing off then display them along an open shelf, above the sofa. This idea is great for when floor space is at a premium. Hanging a neon sign also helps to distract the eye.
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Other Ways To Decorate Your Living Room: Light It Up
Living room decor by designer Corine M.
Light can add a lot of drama and character to your living room, and the key to get it right is layering. In particular, its always a good idea to complement your overhead lighting with floor lamps, sconces and accent lights.
The key to success lays in spreading different sources of light around the room to add interest. And dont forget you can use light to emphasize that beautiful artwork or molding you have!
Warm Up A Monotone Scheme With Wood
South Carolina-based interior designer Cortney Bishop is known for her modern design vision that runs the gamut of style and structure, balancing comfort with creativity and functionality.
She brings this to the living rooms she designs by combining neutrals with a ton of wood textures, which make the spaces feel easy to live with, airy and bright, but warm and welcoming, too. Here, the wooden ceiling is the star of the show, subtly echoed below by the warm tones in the furniture and soft furnishings.
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Draw Attention To The Windows
Image credit: Walls in Cream White and Mustard Jar Easyclean Matt emulsion, £25 for 2.5ltrs, Crown Paint
To let as much light in as possible make sure there is nothing obscuring your windows. Avoid hanging heavy curtains and opt for minimal blinds instead. Also, remember to keep windows clean, this will lighten and brighten up the room beyond. Painting the window surround can help to draw attention to the source of natural light, which aids the feeling of space.
Decorate In A Neutral Palette
The search for the ideal neutral is not as easy as it would initially appear. Pure whites can often be too stark, while trying to warm it up means possibly straying into magnolia territory. The color wheel is your oyster when it comes to choosing accompanying shades. For a soothing feel, sage or olive are perfect partners, soft browns and whites add elegance, while dusky pinks add subtle vibrancy.
Here, a nature-inspired palette of cool neutrals provides a beautiful backdrop to a host of raw materials, delicate texture and lush greenery.
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