You spend a lot of time in your living room, so it not only needs to look great, but it needs to be functional and comfortable. Blending all three things can be tricky, but we've got plenty of examples to inspire you. From modern and formal spaces to approachable and rustic environments, there's a living room idea you'll want to steal below. Keep reading for forty-five stylish designer living room tips, ideas, and shopping suggestions for spaces of any size.
Winter wonderland or mermaid’s abode? The silvery, shimmery rustic chic decor of this living room leaves either open for interpretation. Grays, ivories, silvers, and taupes abound in this lovely communal space, with pillow-piled sofas and large (and slightly clam shaped) floor cushions providing ample options for reclining in comfort. A multi-toned wall lamp and tall candles give off a soft white light that’s ideal for such intimate and ethereal interiors. Tip: try to keep wall hangings and floor clutter at a minimum to enhance the elegance and add to the ethereal quality of the decor.
Pale and pristine decor meet their more primitive match with faux fur coverings, to name only a few of the charming contrasts in this rustic chic living room. Mixing tones and textures is the hallmark of great living room decorating, and this room’s careful blending of refined furnishings (glass topped coffee table and domed candle covering) and heavier fur throws and pillows, with delicate floral touches interspersed throughout, is the epitome of a modishly balanced rustic style.
In the living room of Vivia Horn’s Japanese-style retreat in Hunter, New York, the leather-and-plastic Italian sofas, cocktail table, and wool shag rug were purchased in the 1980s at Bloomingdale’s. The Japanese-style fire pit and tin range hood are custom, the floor lamp is from the '70s, the sisal carpet is by Stark, the ceiling beams are Douglas fir, and a series of color lithographs from Japan are displayed along the pine wainscoting.
Buy blank canvases that you can paint and place prominently above a mantel or sofa. Using paints in your favorite hues, brush on a variety of cool geometric shapes or simply splatter colors at random to compose contemporary compositions. Like something less abstract? Use the canvases as bases for painted images, stenciled motifs, or collages created from all sorts of crafting remnants.
Wall Decor: Blank walls in a living room can give a bare feeling to the space, so consider hanging up some art or framed photos along the wall. You don’t need to spend lots of money on expensive frames or art, however. Pick up some frames from a vintage or thrift store, and frame wallpaper, old photos or children’s book pages for something unique. Or, why not paint the glass pane of the frame with chalkboard paint? That way you can use chalk to draw new art within the frame each day!
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.
Family photographs instantly add warmth and personality to your home. Take them out of the attic, off your computer, or out of the infrequently viewed albums on your bookshelves, and enjoy them every day. Pick a wall, corner, or entire room. If your chosen spot already has picture molding (found in many older homes), your job will be easy. If not, adding new molding is not that complicated.
Rearrange: If you already have furniture in your living room but want to create a new look, try rearranging the furniture. By simply moving the items around, you might realize it looks like a different space entirely. Don’t line up all your furniture along the perimeter of the room, especially if you have a large space. Be creative and arrange the furniture in two groups, creating two separate areas in one!