Stylish Living Rooms: 6 Interior Design Tips

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Photo: Photographee.eu / Shutterstock

The living room is often the hub of your home. And it’s also the place where you gather to entertain or to spend time with family. Since it’s such a frequently used room, it makes sense to put the living room at the top of your priority list when it comes to decorating.

A beautifully decorated living room can completely change the way you feel about your home. But it takes more than just a few throw pillows to achieve both style and flow, and also function for your room. There are a lot of factors to consider when it comes to designing a stylish living room. These six interior design tips will help you create a living room with a look and feel you love.

Define a Focal Point

Every room needs a focal point. That wow feature that draws the eye and helps anchor the room. Sometimes it’s an architectural feature such as a fireplace, beautiful built-ins, or a big window with a great view. But if your living room doesn’t offer a natural focal point, that doesn’t mean you can’t create one.

A living room without a fireplace or great view is not uncommon, so don’t feel your home is lacking if it doesn’t have one. You now have the freedom to create your own striking focal point. Adding a large piece of artwork, or a statement piece of furniture like a sofa is a great way to create a focal point and to set a colour scheme for your room.

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Photo: Photographee.eu / Shutterstock

Plan Your Furniture Layout

A well-designed living room should be comfortable and welcoming. Part of designing a room that people want to spend time in is ensuring that the layout is balanced and has a good flow.  Starting with a furniture plan can help you see how different pieces work together before you start moving heavy furniture around.

To make your living room a place where everyone loves to gather, optimize your seating arrangement for socializing. A properly spaced conversation area will allow everyone in the room to carry on a conversation without raising their voice. A large area rug can help anchor your conversation area and make the room feel cozy. The right size rug for your room will allow each piece of furniture to have at least two legs on the carpet.

Avoid the Showroom Look

To create a living room with a curated look, take your time selecting pieces that you truly love. Your living room should express your style, not look like it came straight from a showroom floor. Avoid the matching sofa and loveseat or the set of identical coffee and end tables. Mixing and matching your furniture also allows you to introduce fun colours and patterns to your décor. Customize your space with unique finds from vintage and antique stores for a look you won’t find elsewhere.

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Photo: Photographee.eu / Shutterstock

Layer your Lighting

Good lighting can completely transform a space. Even if a room is beautifully designed, poor lighting can make it feel dark and unwelcoming. In a room where activities vary from reading to socializing to watching TV, a selection of lighting options is even more important.  A properly lit living room should have ambient, accent, and task lighting to allow for all purposes. Many living rooms feature only one light source, but you can create layered lighting with the addition of lamps and sconces.

Bring the Room to Life with Texture

Often when a living room feels a bit flat or like it’s missing something, the problem is lack of texture.  Many people focus their decorating efforts on selecting a colour pattern and the perfect piece of furniture. Texture adds warmth and interest to a room and brings the senses to life. If your living room features a lot of glass and metal surfaces, add a plush carpet and some wood pieces to balance it out. Alternatively, if you have a room full of soft upholstered furniture, introducing a glass vase or metallic tray can add some shimmer and sparkle.

Scale Back

The saying ‘less is more’ is definitely true when it comes to interior decorating. Your room will have better flow and look cleaner and more open if it has less stuff in it. You’ll find taking out even one piece of furniture can have a big impact on the feel of a space. Look for an extra chair or side table that doesn’t get a lot of use and then see how much better the room works without it. Look at scaling back on knick-knacks as well. Select a few favourite pieces that work with your colour scheme and pack the rest away for when you change your décor.

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