In the living area of this Martha's Vineyard home, furnishings are awash in a sea of blues, but slight variations in tone and subtle patchwork motifs take the place of sharply contrasting patterns and hues. A patchwork rug from Nomadic Trading Company anchors the living area, furnished with linen sofas and a wingback chair by Cisco. The glass top on Groundwork's reclaimed-oak coffee table displays a collage of vintage art.


On this page we explore ways to get beautiful living room décor on a budget. The living room is like a person’s physical appearance. When you first meet someone, you first notice their clothes, their hair, their shoes, and their facial expression. In a house, the first thing you see is the exterior: roof, door, windows, landscape, fence, and paint. When you enter the house, it is commonly the living room that first greets you. This is the first room that welcomes you and sets the tone of the house for you. If you are sharing the house with other people, the living room also becomes a common room where anybody can hang out.


The secret to this inviting rustic living room? Top-to-bottom texture: starting from the scuffed ceiling beams (salvaged from an old warehouse) to the velvet-covered armchair to the dhurrie-topped sisal rug. Add a wood-planked coffee table, some foraged pine cones, a stack of birch logs, and a vintage tobacco basket above the mantel, and you have a rustic look that can’t be beat.
So the interior didn't compete with views of the farm, the owner of this Alberta farmhouse opted for crisp white paint on the walls and ceiling, and blue draperies that complement the large stretch of sky outside the windows. Light pine floors with a single coat of whitewash allow the wood's natural grain to show without taking away from the room's airy feel.
For contemporary living room ideas, dark blues and greens are on trend, but if you don’t want to dive straight into the dark wall trend, you could opt for a couple of pieces of furniture, or go for dark-hued living room accessories instead. Whites, woods and pastels could work well for Scandinavian living room designs. If an eclectic living room is what you’re after, you could go for large print wallpaper, a statement lighting piece, vibrant rug and lots of colourful book or ornament displays. For a country feel, rustic carpet, stone hearths, comfy armchairs and traditional patterns in creams, greens and browns will give you that cosy cottage feel.
You might have thought that wall lamps and sconces were a thing of the past in living room interior design, but our interior designers keep reporting on new covetable styles and our clients keep asking for lighting options that take the least tablespace. Wall lamps and sconces are back in full force; from modern matte finishes to oversized swing arms to Art Deco-inspired lighting and double sconces, illumination options are taking a remarkably different turn.
Take a look at estate sales and yard sales – There are many great furniture bargains to be had at your local estate or yard sales. Estate sales are great for those looking to purchase a matching furniture set at a discounted price. There are several websites that offer email alerts you can sign up for to let you know when an estate sale is planned in your area. Stores such as Habitat for Humanity or thrift stores in your area may be another good place to search for salvaged goods of high quality.
The fiddle leaf fig tree definitely wins the popularity contest as far as design favorites for indoor trees. And for good reason: They look great with pretty much any interior design scheme, from bohemian to modern spaces like this one designed by Hecker Guthrie. It really freshens up the cooler gray tones of the living room and makes that floral-printed pillow pop even more.
When it comes to decorating inspiration, a photo is definitely worth a thousand words. Visit this living room photo galleries below to find ideas that you can imitate or use these living room photos to inspire your own creative ideas. When you are looking for living room ideas on a budget, find one or two items or layouts that you like and then emulate that. Some of the cheapest routes for big design impacts can be paint and wallpaper.
Before you start choosing pieces for your living room, pick the main palette of one or two colors, and keep the main furniture pieces within those color families. Unlike busier, multicolor color schemes, sticking to one or two main colors will help create a clean, timeless aesthetic that will outlast trends – saving you time and money in the long run.

A stacked fieldstone fireplace takes center stage in this family room. Rather than just a sheer wall of stone, the exposed chimney is designed with a central recess for artwork, along with tapered edges on either side, to keep it from appearing too overpowering. Sconces mounted directly to the stone are an attractive way to shed plenty of light on the antique timber mantel.


Crisp whites combined with punches of bright colors immediately transport you to the coast. In this living room, aqua accents in the pillows, throw, and rug mimic the ocean’s dazzling blues, and the pops of bright orange are inspired by the magnificent hues of the setting sun. Whitewashed horizontal shiplap planking evokes the feel of old Gulf-front beach houses.
With the multihued curtain fabric as her jumping-off point, designer Ashley Whittaker splashed an amped-up version of pink in three places in the living room—the footstool, the contrasting pillow welt, and the slipper-chair trim. "We wanted the home to feel bright and colorful like Florida but not like a vacation home," says Ashley. She pulled off the cozy yet elegant vibe by grounding the sun-and-surf palette with serious touches, such as the antique demilune tables.
Use ottomans in place of a traditional coffee table to make better use of your space (because a tiny house means your living room often does double or triple duty when people come over). You can top them with a tray to hold flowers and books, or use as extra seating. Then when it's family time, they become footrests. These red leather ottomans in a small family room designed by Redmond Aldrich strike that perfect balance between formal and casual.
Leaning into the smallness of a space can actually be what makes it feel genuinely cozy and inviting. Keep seating close together and intimate, and choose a plush, soft rug, like the one in this space designed by 2LG Studio. This is especially well advised if you're decorating a small family room, where you'll want things to super welcoming and functional.
A living room that's both narrow and small can be particularly challenging to decorate. However, as in this bright and airy space redone by Decor Aid, a carefully chosen sectional sofa can make the most of the precious square footage. When shopping for a sofa, look for one that is long and can lean up against a wall to give your living room more depth.

Struggling with what living room colours to choose, or what style to go with? While a grey living room design is popular at the moment, you might not want to go with the ubiquitous colour. Although, if neutral and contemporary are the living room ideas you’re after, a grey sofa or grey walls will give you a good base to work on. If you want to stay neutral, beige is not your only other option, either. Light yellows, taupes and soft greys will work. Why not try adding simple but plush cushions to your sofa and a rug in these colours to achieve a modern-traditional look?

Bring life to your living room by adding houseplants or flowers. However, make sure to do your homework and research on which houseplants fit your home. There are houseplants and flowers that may cause allergies, or may be toxic to your pets. Ask for recommendations from friends or landscapers. However, if you frequently travel, it is best to use artificial plants instead. They are cheaper and last longer.
Dark, glossy walls create a sophisticated backdrop for simple, clean-lined pieces and even colorful, bold items. Use the small space to your advantage and make it feel like a jewel-box. Painting your ceilings the same color can enhance the sense of intimacy even further. Then have fun with brighter furniture throughout, as done in this small living room designed by Andrew Felsher.
Surround yourself with aged natural materials and the result is pure rustic beauty. In this cozy window-wrapped sunroom, homeowner Ellen Allen combined a reclaimed wood planked ceiling and walls, an extended stone “baseboard,” and a brick floor to set the rustic scene. An unexpected Lucite table and lots of lush indoor plants and trees keep the room from feeling too dark and heavy.
Struggling with what living room colours to choose, or what style to go with? While a grey living room design is popular at the moment, you might not want to go with the ubiquitous colour. Although, if neutral and contemporary are the living room ideas you’re after, a grey sofa or grey walls will give you a good base to work on. If you want to stay neutral, beige is not your only other option, either. Light yellows, taupes and soft greys will work. Why not try adding simple but plush cushions to your sofa and a rug in these colours to achieve a modern-traditional look?
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Employing expensive materials in restrained but meaningful ways lets you enjoy the finer things while staying on budget. Display a fancy wallpaper on a focal wall or as a patterned backdrop for built-in shelves. Buy one really good leather chair, but pair it with a less expensive garden-seat table. Create pillows that showcase pricey silks, brocades, and velvets on their face, but that boast inexpensive fabric backs.
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You don’t always have to buy new pieces to decorate. Take a stroll around the house, and see what décor you already have. You may stumble upon pieces that you can use for your living room, and vice versa. Maybe you have some old pieces in the basement or garage that you can still dig up. You can look at recent gifts that you set aside not knowing where to put them. You can look for some small pillows that you can add to your couch.


If your living room has access to a ton of natural light, don't block it out with dark curtains. Let it pour in to make the space feel more airy and open. Even if you don't have large windows and tons of sunlight, choose lighter shades to maximize the light you do have. Semi-sheer shades like the ones in this living room designed by Barrie Benson will help, too.
Avoid stores that offer 0% financing – While at first glance these deals may seem like a great offer. You get to finance the furniture right now with little or nothing down and you don’t have to pay any financing charges for the first year or so. The only problem with this is, the price of financing the furniture is often built in to the total. Meaning the furniture is not such a great bargain and overpriced from the start.
If your living room or family room is cramped and cluttered, the last thing you'll want to do is spend time in there. That is, unless you trick your eye into thinking the space is bigger than it appears. It's not magic; it's just smart styling. Get ready to Pin all these tips and transform your small living room or small family room into a comfortable, stylish oasis for you and your house guests to enjoy.
The best place to start is with the seating – one corner sofa will usually seat three to four people, and if that’s all you think you’ll need, then you can leave it at that. Placing your sofa along the longest wall helps to make the most of the space, but think about where you want the focus of the room to be, too. If you need more seating, look at armchairs that offer comfort but don’t take up too much space – cramming a room with too many large armchairs is something to avoid. But armchairs and sofas don’t have to be your only options – go for bean bags and floor cushions for an eclectic feel, pouffes and ottomans if you’re more traditional, and smart design chairs for contemporary living room ideas.
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