The Art of the Perfect Living Room


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The perfect living room speaks to your character. When done right, you’ll have a functional space that embodies the word “living” in living room. There are a number of intricacies involved in creating the perfect living room. It is important to balance comfort with the relationship each piece of furniture has with the room.

This endeavor also doesn’t need to be costly. A few rules of thumb are:

  • Spend money on furniture used the most, sofas, lounge chairs, and coffee tables
  • Save money on furniture and other home décor items, side tables and reading lamps
  • Introduce or keep furniture you already have for a personal touch
  • Have a plan from the get go, saving you time and money

One absolutely essential element to designing your living room is to plan the space around your lifestyle. For instance, if family movie nights are common, you may want a bigger sectional type sofa. If you throw a lot of weekend mixers, you may want more open space and less furniture.

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Image via Patrick Perkins@pperkins

These little personal nuances can help you create a modern living room that is aesthetically appealing and livable. Here’s how to do it.

Featured Image via Brina Blum@brina_blum

Start with a Foundational Piece

Every great home space has a foundational piece of furniture. For a living room, this is usually the sofa. This is where you relax, gather with friends, or spend time with the family. This is an important part of living room geometry.

This makes investing in a quality sofa that serves as an aesthetic, comfortable foundational piece of the room necessary. Budget is always a consideration, since sofas are generally the most expensive part of the living room. However, think of it as a long-term investment.

Another key factor is comfort and lifestyle. The family home sofa will generally be a gentle and soft texture. Whereas a bachelor’s living room may have a classic brown leather salon sofa as the main attraction. It really depends on lifestyle and use.

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Image via Steven Ramon@ssttevven

Think About Lighting

Lighting can make or break the perfect living room. You want a balance of natural lighting from windows or skylights with high and low level ceiling and lamp lighting. Thinking about lighting can set the mood for any occasion, and accentuate your furniture and space with style.

For natural lighting, understand the sun’s pattern as it hits your window. If you get intense morning sun, you may want to opt for darker curtains. But if you have high noon natural light, more light and lacy curtains will do the trick.

Ceiling lighting is another important element.Track lighting or island lights are among the most popular. Fluorescent lighting is a definite no. Also be sure to use eco-friendly bulbs, like compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), and light emitting diodes (LEDs).

Lamp lighting is also a must. When you want to relax, lamp lighting is perfect. It also sets a nice tranquil mood for family and friends. Lamps come in plenty of varieties, and you can get great ideas online, like in this home décor blog.

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Image via Annie Spratt@anniespratt

Tie Spaces Together with Accent Tables

When creating the perfect living room, you want to have a focal point. One common focal point for any amazing living room space is a coffee table. The reason for this is that coffee tables contrast the biggest piece of furniture in the room, the sofa.

Aged or artistically shaped coffee tables are the best at grabbing attention. You can even craft your own DIY coffee table to add a personal touch and great story for guests.

Other accent tables needed for the perfect living room are side tables or even cocktail tables, depending on your lifestyle. These simply add functionality to the space, where drinks can be placed, magazines stored, and a good place for your lamps too.

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Image via Stephen Di Donato@sdidonato

Add Contrast with Pillows and a Rug

Your living room is really coming together, but it is time to make it pop in a few key ways. Once you have defined a few main color schemes for the room, it’s time to add that contrast.

Sofa and floor pillows are a great way to do this. They should definitely speak to your personality. For instance, if you vacation to exotic places a lot, make your pillows exotic. World Market has some great worldly décor pillow designs.

Rugs are also a great way to add contrast, and even make your room look bigger. The rug should be much larger than the space it will occupy.

For example, if it is used for the main seating area, make the rug big and colorful. Selecting the best rug for your living room can make a big difference in aesthetics.

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Image via Toa Heftiba@heftiba

Keep Personality Part of Your Living Room Design

It is important not to pick a living room design from a magazine and simply settle. You should always be thinking about how you can sprinkle in your personality. After all, this is one of the rooms of your home you spend the most time in.

Home décor items, like artwork prints from your favorite artist, stylish trinkets you bring back from vacations, or even an indoor hammock can be easily implemented into the space. Keep your personality part of the design while making it functional and comfortable. How will you redesign your living room?

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Image via Toa Heftiba@heftiba


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