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.
When shopping for living room furniture, remember that 'budget-friendly' means nothing if the furniture isn't well-built, made with durable materials and designed to last. While furniture pieces of low quality will need to be replaced time and time again, costing you more in the long run, affordable furniture crafted from solid wood, thick wood veneers, 100% leather and high-density foam will keep you – and your wallet – happy and comfortable for years to come.
Because of this ranch-style California home's open floor plan, the owner had to get creative with carving out designated spaces for "rooms." To help differentiate this living room from the adjacent kitchen and den, she placed the midcentury sofa (recovered with leather in the 1970s) on a vintage Moroccan rug she found on eBay. The floor-to-ceiling storage nook keeps books, blankets, and firewood at the ready.
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.
As we've mentioned a few times already, a small space doesn't mean you can't have fun with color. So if you love incorporating pretty pastels or vivid brights but want to make sure your living room doesn't look chaotic, the trick is to stick to a tight color palette. Mixing patterns is also fair game, especially when done as masterfully as this cheerful room designed by Ellen Kavanaugh.
Aside from the adorable dogs (Jacob and Wylo) cuddled up on the armchair-meets-dog-bed, that gallery wall is the clear statement-maker in this living room designed by Philip Mitchell. Mix and match frames for a subtle nod of personality. And speaking of personal touches, consider hanging art that means something to you, whether it's your children's artwork, your own, or a portrait of your pets.
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.
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.
Your living room sees the most use. It's where you entertain guests, have family movie nights, and even enjoy a quiet evening alone. Since you use it every day, it's no wonder it's the most frequently updated space in your home. Whether you're searching for a whole new style or just want to make a small update, get inspired by our editors' best tips for living room decorating below.
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.
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