Tag Archive 'Living Room'

Feb 02 2012

Living Room Design Tips

Today, living room themes vary as much, and are as individual as, the people who live in their homes.  It’s even common for a living room to be fairly ignored, as more and more people tend to congregate in the kitchen/dining room area of the home to eat, visit with neighbors, play games and just enjoy each other’s company.  If you have been thinking about updating your living room but don’t know what to do with it, the information in this article will help you with the task.

Give it plenty of thought

Think about the other members in your family, and what they enjoy doing.

If you have teenagers, do they usually retreat to their bedrooms to watch television or listen to music?  Get them involved in designing the living room area.  You may find that if you set up areas in the living room that are meant for listening to music, playing games or watching television, your teens spend more time with the family.

Would you rather your living room be more of a family room where everyone relaxes, reads and unwinds at the end of the day, or do you prefer a more formal area that is quiet and peaceful, no television or music allowed?

Keep these things in mind so that your living room will be used exactly as you intend.  Your desire may be a mixture of the things mentioned above, but whatever it is, decide before you begin to plan out the design.

Visualize your ideas

Next, put your thoughts on paper.  Write down those ideas you like best, and even draw a rough outline of different designs for the living room.  This could be living room furniture lay outs, color schemes, textiles, etc.

By writing down your ideas and sketching out your thoughts, those ideas that are your favorites will clearly be defined, making it easier for you when it comes time to begin the project.

Look through magazines or online and keep a folder of those design ideas that you love most.  Tear the pages out of magazines, print out the pictures you find online.

Deciding on furniture needs

How much seating you have available in your living room depends largely on the size of the room, but you do want to take account of how many people would usually be in the room if it were to be used.  Consider how many are in your family and whether you have company (relatives, friends) on a regular basis.

This will help you determine whether you need a sofa and recliner.  Perhaps additional furnishings such as a love seat or additional chair are appropriate.

Walls set the mood of the room

Your walls will be the most prominent aspect of the living room, so it’s important that you decide whether you want them to be bold and modern, warm and soft, elegant, casual, dramatic, etc.

The colors you choose for the walls will dictate the rest of the decor.  If your living room is large, consider rich shades of pumpkin, caramel, burgundy or grey-blue.  For a smaller living room, it’s usually best to stick to light shades of cream, butter yellow, apricot or pastel blue and green shades.

When it comes to accessories for the walls, the sky is the limit!  What you choose will depend largely on the theme you have chosen for the room.  Large tapestries, mirrors, bold prints, wall sconces – choose those things you really love instead of putting something on the wall just because “it fits”.

Put these tips to use when designing your living room and you just may see that your family actually starts migrating out of the kitchen and in to the room that was meant for gathering.

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Oct 18 2011

Modern Living Room Decorating Ideas – For Those Who Enjoy Minimal Fuss

Published by under Living Room

Modern decorating is perfect for those who enjoy sleek, clean lines with a minimum of clutter and fuss.  Open spaces, neutral colors injected with small bold touches, and modern accessories make for a room that can be dramatic, calm, or even futuristic in appearance.

If you love a clean modern look, the ideas below will help you create rooms you will enjoy coming home to at the end of the day.  Want to know what is the nicest thing about modern décor?  Your home looks spotless, even when you know you haven’t cleaned it in a while.

Furniture ideas

In a modern living room, you usually find a sofa, coffee and side tables, bean bag chairs, or even huge over-sized pillows for sitting on the floor.

Modern furniture is sleek and without intricate adornments or patterns.  A sofa may be extra long and have no arms on the ends; a small love seat may have open ends as well, with a single cushion as the back.

Tables in a modern living room can be anything from rectangular or square glass top tables to square box shapes that sit directly on the floor, perfect for those over-sized pillows.  Glass topped tables with fluted edges, set atop a wrought iron base, are also common.

Leather furniture is also suitable for a modern look; just make sure the look is streamlined and clean, and avoid over-stuffed, bulky looking furniture.

A minimum of accessories adds to the drama

Modern decorating can often take a dramatic turn.  While in most decorating themes walls, shelves and tables are adorned with an abundance of accents, not so in modern decor.

All but one wall may be completely bare.  That wall may spotlight a huge painting or print.  It is not uncommon to see a picture that is 4 feet by 6 feet hanging on a wall, and the look is striking.

Other accessories consist of throw pillows, which may contain a bit of bold color and pattern to add a bit of spice to a neutral room.  A large ceramic vase for the coffee table and a nubby area rug placed underneath is all you need to complete the room.

Lighting

A modern design usually consists of brightly lit spaces which can come through windows or artificial light.  Windows are light and uncluttered.  Ax simple shade or blind is sufficient in modern décor.  You can consider leaving the window completely uncovered if your home isn’t visible to passers-by.

For lighting, consider sleek floor lamps topped by round globes, or a single, large round globe light that drops from the ceiling in the center of the room.

Light sand colors, gray, taupe, brown, white, black and orange are perfectly suited to modern design.  You can add any colors you like through accents, as long as they aren’t overpowering.

Modern decor looks clean, sleek and even efficient.  The tips above will help you create a look for your living room that you will love!

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Jun 20 2011

How to Give Your Living Room a Whole New Look on a Shoestring Budget

Have designer tastes but no budget to go along with it?  You can give your living room a fresh, updated look without spending much money at all.  Your living room is where you relax with family, visit with guests, and generally live your life when it’s time to unwind after a busy day.  You want it to be beautiful and welcoming to all who enter.  This article offers lots of easy ideas for giving your living room an appealing new look without busting your budget.

Give a worn floor a colorful new look

If you have wood floors that have lost their luster, put a coat of polyurethane on to shine them up.

Have cracked tiles or worn carpet?  Decorative throw rugs can hide a multitude of sins!  Braided rugs, square, oval or oblong rugs with bright patterns – these all work to not only cover up a floor that has seen better days, they add color and texture as well.

Paint – one solution for many problems

Paint is one of the most affordable ways to spruce up your home!  If you currently have off-white walls, why not add a little fresh color?  Consider soft blues and greens if you tend toward cool colors.  Those who prefer warm shades should consider shades like rusty orange, warm amber or spring fawn to give the room dimension and interest.

If you decide a little texture for the walls would dress it up, use some of the popular techniques such as sponging, stenciling and rag rolling.

Paint is also a great way to freshen up your living room tables, especially if you like a country or shabby chic look.  Just paint over the existing finish, then do a little light sanding to naturally “wear” the edges.

Have a talent with a needle and thread?

Make your own throw pillows and curtains!  This is easily accomplished, since most pillows are square or oblong.  Buy some discounted fabric in shades that match your decor, then sew up your own original throw pillows.

For the windows, casually drape a long piece of hemmed fabric over the curtain rod leaving a curved “swag” in the center to add elegance, or use cotton or satin bed sheets!  No one will ever know the difference, and your windows will look beautiful.

Take a few ideas from nature

When it comes to accents, there are some easy ways to make your own!  Keep old canning jars, bottles and other glass pieces and fill them with shells, herbs, marbles, stones, nuts, potpourri or anything you like.

Take a few photos when you’re outdoors.  Pictures of nature are beautiful when blown up and framed – you can even craft your own wooden frames for an old-fashioned, unique look or, if you have a little artistic ability, paint your own pictures!  Abstracts, landscapes – whatever suits your decor tastes.

Have a few family heirlooms stored away?  Get them out and put them on display.

Need new lamps but just cannot afford them?  Changing the lamp shades or even the wattage of bulbs you use can make a dramatic difference in your living room.

There is no limit to what you can accomplish when you put your imagination to work!  Visit estate sales and flea markets to see what you can find.  Use any talents you have to create your own original accents.  The ideas above will get your creative juices flowing, and you will have a whole new living room – on a shoe-string budget!

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May 31 2011

Tips & Ideas For Decorating a Small Living Area

Decorating a small living area can be a challenge; you want the room to look as spacious as possible.  You also want plenty of walking space for your family and guests.  It is possible to make your living room look twice the size it actually is; the tips and ideas below will help you design an appealing living area that looks open and airy.

Consider your decor theme

Modern or contemporary furnishings and accents offer straight clean lines with minimal ornamentation; this can also make a room look larger, as such furnishings are often built on a smaller scale.

A country or western theme may not be ideal, as these styles of decorating tend to use larger, bulky furnishings and lots of accents.

Choosing a color palette

The colors you use in your living area make a huge difference in its appearance.  Light colors make a room appear larger, because they reflect light.  Darker colors tend to make a room look smaller, as they absorb the light.

You do not have to stick to white or neutral colors to make the room look larger; a palette consisting of pale tones such as light blue and light gray will enhance the spacious appearance as well.  Look for hues of peach, green, blue or beige all of which are on the lighter side.

Less is more

When it comes to your furniture, measure the room before you buy.  You want to make sure your sofa will fit on a certain wall, and that chairs or recliners will not block the walking path.  You may even consider a love seat in lieu of a sofa, since it is much shorter in length.

A coffee table placed in front of the love seat, along with a single side table placed next to a chair is usually all you need to bring the look together.

Brighten up the walls

The accents you choose to hang on your walls can make a room look much larger.  Consider a grouping of odd-shaped mirrors for a single wall; you can even hang silver serving platters of various shapes.  Anything reflective will add more light to the room.

Use light colored curtains or sheers to dress up the windows.  Dark drapes look heavy, and prevent natural light from streaming into the room.  Light colored sheers let plenty of light in, and look airy.

Avoid clutter

Perhaps the most important thing to remember when trying to make a small living area look more spacious is to avoid clutter.  Too many accessories look messy; bring out only a few bright accents that you really love.

A large, brightly colored ceramic vase filled with wildflowers and placed in the corner of the room adds a punch of color.  Avoid cluttering the tops of tables with books, magazines, candles and other items.  A grouping of pillar candles placed in the center of the coffee table is all you need to dress up the room.

Put these tips and ideas to work when decorating your small living area.  Once the project is completed, you will find your living room looks twice the size it did before!

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Apr 11 2011

Decorating Your Living Room in White

A room decorated in white can be described as clean, pristine, open, airy, spacious and light.  If you love a room that is bright and fresh, or have a living room that currently looks somewhat dungeon-like due to the darkness, the tips found in this article will help you create a room that comes to life with open spaces!

It’s hard to imagine a room that is almost totally white; you may think it would have a clinical look and feel, but if done right this can be the most beautiful room you have ever laid eyes upon!

Of course the basis of the room is white

To open up any room and make it look twice as big, use whites for the walls, sofa and chairs.  They can be an antique white or cream shade, or a genuine white.  If your furnishings are dark colored or patterned with bold prints, the slip covers you find today are beautiful and well-fitted.  Cover your furniture with white!

Walls should be white or antique white as well.  While this may sound a bit stark and basic, color will come in to play with furnishings and accessories.  White offers a look that is comforting and open; instead of family photos or loud prints for the walls, consider large round, square and oval shaped mirrors to reflect the light and open up the room even further.

Accent tables are worn with an antique finish

Accent tables set the mood for the room; well-worn pieces in shades of ivory add a relaxed look to the room.  Consider an old dresser topped by an ivory framed mirror and a wall shelf that is light brown and sanded for shade variation and then topped with greenery in pastel colored ceramic containers.

A coffee table made from an old door and stenciled with a delicate floral pattern is a great eye-catcher, and showcases your artistic talent.

Country blue is also a great addition to white surroundings; a fireplace mantel or sofa table in this country-themed shade adds a punch of color that is relaxing and comfortable.

Wood floors add to the old-fashioned charm

Nothing says “comfortable” and old-fashioned better than wide plank wood floors!  Light, natural tones work best with the white theme; top your wood floor with a large accent rug placed under the edges of the furniture, so that the rug is in the middle of the conversation area.

A rug consisting of natural tones such as cream, wheat and a thin stripe of chocolate brown adds interest, texture and appeal to the floor.  To light up the room, an old-fashioned chandelier is the perfect touch.

Think white is basic and without personality?  Think again!  The look is airy, elegant and old-fashioned all at once.  If you have a room that could use a little “opening up,” consider white!  By adding those antique accessories you love along with a few other well-chosen accents, you will create a room that is comfortable, inviting, charming and oh-so beautiful.

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Feb 23 2011

Remodel Your Living Room On A Budget

Published by under Interior Design & Decorating

Remodeling a living room can cost a substantial amount of money; today, many people just don’t have the budget for a complete remodel.  If your living room needs a fresh new look but your financial situation prevents you from spending too much money, this article offers tips for giving the room an entirely appearance for $1000 or less.

Paint – A budget-friendly solution for many problems

Paint can cover a multitude of sins!  If your walls are paneled and look like they came right out of the 60’s, paint can work miracles.  You can paint directly over clean paneling, or remove it if you like.  Use trendy shades such as peach, burnt orange or toast to warm up the room.

You may want to paint baseboards and trim a contrasting or complementary color to add depth and interest.  Paint your ceiling a bright white to make the room look taller, or a darker shade to bring a tall ceiling down to size.

Paint can also be used to give your wood furniture a new look.  Sand off the old stain or paint, add a new color and gently sand the edges for an antiqued appearance.  Also consider giving your walls rich texture by using techniques such as rag-rolling and sponging.

A new floor doesn’t have to cost a fortune

Most people assume that putting a new floor covering in the living room will cost thousands of dollars, but that isn’t necessarily true.  Today, you can have carpet or laminate flooring installed for approximately $2 per square foot.  This means that if your living room is 300 square feet, you can have a brand new floor for about $600!

Laminate flooring is a project you can probably handle yourself, so you don’t pay for installation charges.  Carpet is a bit trickier, and it’s probably best to leave the installation of carpet to the pros.

Lighting

Another bright idea for updating your living room is to install a new light fixture especially if you have only one in the ceiling as the main source of light.  Replace it with a completely new light fixture, or consider placing a ceiling fan with lights to give the room a cozy, comfortable appeal.  You can replace a light fixture or add a ceiling fan for about $100.

Window treatments make a world of difference

Have a large window in your living room that is your main source of natural light?  If you have sheers, curtains or thick draperies hanging from the windows, consider a window treatment that is a bit more modern in appearance.  A fabric valance with tassels that hang just over the top edge of the window adds modern appeal, and lets natural light flood the room!

These are just a few ideas for giving your living room an entirely new appeal without spending more than your budget will allow.  Put these tips to work in your home, and your living room will look as though you’ve spent a fortune – only you will know the real truth!

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Nov 05 2010

Incorporating Brown and Teal for a Living Room that is Modern and Appealing

Today, modern decor is refreshing and attractive.  Two decades ago, most people would never dream of decorating a living room in shades of brown and teal; now, it’s one of the most appealing looks you can have if you love a clean, modern decor.  In this article, you will find many useful tips for incorporating these two colors for a look that is vibrant and beautiful.

Starting point:  Walls

In order to prevent your living room from looking closed in or small, you want to use a light, neutral shade for the walls.  Consider light sand, a pale, soft aqua or a muted caramel color.  To add further interest and appeal, paint baseboards and trim in a contrasting shade such as bold aqua or dark chocolate brown.

If you’re feeling particularly creative, consider texturing the walls through various techniques such as stamping, ragging or rag-rolling to add a wallpaper-like finish that is original and eye-catching.

Choosing the furniture

To achieve balance in this style of decorating, it’s best to choose furnishings that are scaled to a larger size.  Tables, entertainment centers, chairs and sofas should all be the same deep brown shade if possible.  Leather furnishings work especially well in this decor, and add rich texture.

Accessories are where the fun begins

Once walls are completed and furnishings are chosen, it’s time to start adding colorful accents.  Choose 3 shades of teal; a pale shade, a medium shade, and one that is dark and bold.  The medium shade will be the dominant teal color for the room, while the others help balance things out.

When shopping for accents, let anything teal catch your eye and consider if it will work with your decorating theme.  Throw pillows, picture frames, vases, window treatments, candles, tapestries – all of these things will add color and visual appeal to the room.

Vary patterns for further appeal

Long gone are the days when everything had to match.  In past years, if you chose a floral pattern for your living room, you would not dare use stripes or abstract patterns.  Today, it is very common for savvy decorators to mix stripes, plaids, swirls and all types of patterns together, and the look is creative and attention grabbing.  Consider a plaid throw, along with striped pillows and abstract paintings for the walls to create a room that is full of life.  Mixing patterns adds depth and originality, making each room striking in its own unique way.

For those who love modern, contemporary rooms, this look is ultra-chic and absolutely beautiful.  Incorporate hues of dark, chocolate brown and shades of teal for a rich look with bright splashes of color that bring the room alive!  Decorate with accessories that are unique and capture the attention of the eye.  Once you see the finished results, you will want to show your living room off to everyone you know!

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Nov 05 2010

How Color Schemes Set the Mood for Your Living Room

Published by under Living Room,Painting

Many people have no idea to what extent the colors you they in their living room affects mood.  Color is responsible for giving a room a cool or warm tone, for making it look rich, airy or elegant.  Textures and pattern play a large role as well, but every item you place in your living room adds color, so you want to make sure you are setting the tone you desire for the room.  In this article, you will learn how to incorporate color in your living room to achieve the desired effect.

Yellow and Red

Right now, you may be thinking these colors are “loud” or too bright, but quite the opposite is true.  When you incorporate soft yellow tones with warm reds, you invoke the countryside of Southern France.  Infuse a bit of bright green or moss green then add sunflowers, mustard toned ceramic pots, and floral prints for a look that is fresh, inviting and relaxing.

White and Butter Yellow Strike a Paris Appeal

Butter yellow walls and white furnishings offer a gently worn, French-inspired appeal.  Painted furniture, white upholstery and aged pastels offer a romantic, warm atmosphere that is truly inviting.  Rugs and draperies should be adorned with small splashes of pale blue and green, while faint touches of red outline throw pillows.  Vintage fabrics really add an authentic flair to the room!

Go Sophisticated with Dusty Chocolate and Lime

Love a sophisticated, modern look?  Today, brown is not at all like the dull earth browns from decades ago rather it is a softer, muted chocolate brown that adds a richness and warmth to the room.  Splashes of lime add vibrant color and perk up the atmosphere.  Lime green ottomans and an elegantly painted canvas splashed with a touch of lime offer a lively, fun look.  Oatmeal hued walls and throws, pillows and other accents with a nubby texture complete the look of the room.

Blue, Tan and White – Oh So Relaxing

Want your living room to have a relaxed and inviting “I’m on vacation” appeal?  Incorporate pale blue, sand and white for a look that brings the ocean to mind.  A pale blue rug, the color of robin’s eggs, tops a wood floor; woven or rattan furnishings enhance the island appeal.  White accent tables have a worn look, while white sheers on the windows add to the airy feel of the room.  Include throw pillows and other accents that blend all three colors for a dash of excitement.

These are just a few examples of what you can accomplish with color.  Imagine all of the colors and shades available to you today, and what you can create!  Whether you are going for country comfort and appeal, contemporary class, a romantic French look or the utmost in regal elegance, much can be achieved by simply using color for the basis of your decorating ideas.

When it comes to decorating your living room, let your imagination inspire you!  Go online or search through magazines to find those living rooms you truly love.  You’ll be happiest in your home when your living room beckons to you to come and enjoy.

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Oct 06 2010

Simple Decorating Fixes to Rejuvenate a Tired Living Room

Has your living room looked exactly the same for years, and now you are growing tired of it?  Without spending much, or any, money, you can perk up a tired room and give it a fresh new look.  A few simple changes will make your living room appealing and beautiful once again.  This article contains many simple fixes that will have you loving an entirely different look over the span of a weekend.

Furniture

To change things up a bit, rearrange the furniture!  If your furnishings are against the walls, pull them further into the room and create an intimate sitting area around an accent rug.  Arrange the sofa, love seat and chairs around a large coffee table, so that visiting with guests seems a bit more personal.

You may want to try a diagonal approach as well, especially if the room is longer and narrow.  Arranging your sofa diagonally adds a unique touch and makes the room look wider.  Try slipcovers if your upholstery needs an updated look.  Afghans and throws work well for covering up worn spots or tears.

Paint

Frequently, people think of paint as simply for freshening up a white wall or re-painting the ceiling.  Paint is actually one of the most affordable ways to dramatically change the look of a room!  Paint a single wall a bold, vibrant color that blends with the other colors in the room.  Consider painting baseboards and door facings a contrasting color to add depth and interest.

Once you have completed the wall, add beautiful artwork, a curio cabinet, or anything you love and make it the focal point of the room.

Add Accessories for Texture and Color

A few well-placed accessories can really bring your living room to life.  Add richly-textured throw pillows in bold patterns to the sofa, or throw an antique quilt casually over one corner if you decorate in a country theme.  Green plants, scattered accent rugs and unique floor or table lamps complete the look.

Lamps are the one item in your home that can make your living room look dated.  Most can be freshened up by replacing or painting the shade, or even stenciling it.  If the base is ceramic, stone or glass, consider giving it a coat of brightly colored paint as well.  Who knew paint could be so versatile?

Add a large mirror to a living room that is dark or small.  By placing it strategically so that natural light that comes in from a window is reflected, you can lighten up the room and make it appear more spacious.

If you have some favorite collectibles, place them in spots around the room in groups of 3 or 5.  Remove any clutter, as too many dust catchers tend to make a room look messy and unorganized.  Often, we don’t realize that newspapers, toys, too many knick-knacks and other items lying around take away from the atmosphere of the room.

Put these ideas to work for you, and you can have a completely refreshed and appealing living room over the course of a single weekend.

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Sep 28 2010

Budget Decorating Ideas for the Living Room

Does your living room look like it came straight out of the seventies, or just have a worn-out look?  If your living room is old and tired but there is little money to spend, don’t despair!  There are lots of things you can do to spruce up the room and make it look new again without busting your budget.  This article details many easy changes you can make to bring your living room back to life again.

Freshen up the walls

The easiest thing you can do to update the look of your living room is to change the walls.  You may have the basic white or cream colored walls right now, or you may even have old paneling.  Today, faux finishes add texture to the room, and the look is easily accomplished.

To create beautiful walls, first paint them with the basic color you have chosen for the room.  This can be a sand shade, soft blue, terracotta or any shade that you choose.  Once complete, add the faux finish by using rubber stamps, a feather duster or a rag rolling technique.  You can find instructions for completing nearly any faux finish online.

Revive your furniture

Is your furniture tired and worn out?  As long as it is still structurally sound, there are a few things you can do to make it look new again.  If your sofa and love seat have wood arms or other accents, you can either refinish them or give them a coat of paint.  You may attempt to clean the fabric yourself if you like, or use slipcovers to give your furniture an entirely new appearance.  Unlike the slipcovers of years ago, today you can find slipcovers that fit well and don’t look as though you have thrown a sheet over the sofa.

Consider adding a few plush throw pillows that are boldly colored in any design that suits your decorating style.  Stripes, checks, floral and geometric patterns all work as long as you choose colors that complement the room.

Find some old treasures

Many people don’t realize the great decorating sources they have right under their nose!  Look in your basement or attic at things you have put away long ago.  Old lamps, an antique trunk, accent tables and other things you find can often be renewed by giving them a fresh coat of paint or a new lamp shade.  You may not realize it, but many paper lamp shades can be painted.  If you have old lamps with a ceramic base, paint them and perform a little stenciling magic!

To further transform your living room, take out some old accents and accessories if you have a great deal of them.  Too many accessories make a room look cluttered and messy.  Use only a few boldly colored accents to add a splash of interest to the living room.

As the old saying goes, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”  How true this is!  You can find tons of great bargains at garage sales and flea markets.  Just use your creative ideas to give them a new look.  Take an old wooden accent table and give it a fresh coat of paint and you have an interesting new piece for your living room.  Decorating on a tight budget is much easier if you just throw a little creativity and imagination into the mix.

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