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I’ve been spending a fair amount of time researching and designing living rooms for clients this week, and despite having a dark living room myself one of the design styles that I’ve really enjoyed seeing are the more neutral and lighter scandi style rooms that will add freshness and vibrancy to your home.
When designing your living room it needs to work for you and compliment your existing home interior style. Another big part of the design process is how you use the room and its orientation too. For example northerly facing rooms will benefit from more warmer and richer tones, rather than colours with grey undertones which may make the room feel even cooler. Whereas on the flip side southerly facing rooms will benefit from lighter and cooler tones to help cool down a hot feeling in the room particularly in the summer months.
However you’re choosing to decorate and style your living room have a read of my 5 design ideas that you can apply to your home.
Often in older houses like ours the fireplace would be the focal place and this often remains the feature of the room where we style around it. In newer homes it can be trickier, so instead of making the TV the focal point it could be a large feature window, a bespoke media wall, a mirror to bounce around light or a statement piece of artwork.
Ground your sofas
It’s tempting to purchase a rug that sits in the middle of the room with a coffee on top. I would always advise that you oversize it letting the feet of your sofas sit on it. This will help to zone the space and define the seating area if you have a large room, and also make the room flow as one without any line breaks of flooring in between.
Here are three modern rugs that I’ve spotted on Ufurnish.com that I think would look perfect slightly tucked under a sofa in your home.
Starting with Genna Large Petrol Blue Rug from made.com
Another one of my favourites for colour and texture is the Drax rug also from made.com
Lastly the Skuld rug in Charcoal by Heals would look great in a minimalist room or teamed with pale pinks and neutrals.
Your living room may be a room you want to escape to in the evening, away from the mess of the kitchen. In addition to one main ceiling light, I would always recommend adding table lamps or a floor lamp to soften the space, as well as wall lights to cast a spotlight on a particular feature.
To help with your lighting search here are three wall lights that could be positioned in an alcove, above a picture or in a dining area of a large open plan living area to help zone the space.
I’m a big fan of brass lights and I adore this retro wall light from Perch and Parrow. It’s very similar to our wall light in our loft bathroom, only the other way up.
These reeded glass Astro Lighting wall lights from Made by Design are stunning. A little pricy however I am so impressed with the quality of Astro Lighting and choosing lighting for your home is an investment.
Lastly these fun wall lights from made.com will compliment a green and neutral colour palette. Plus they are really good value too!
Don’t be afraid to play around with colour. We chose Hague Blue by Farrow and Ball in our living room to contrast against our white kitchen walls, and I love how the colour changes in different lights.
But it doesn’t need to be dark. First of all consider your room orientation and go from there. If you’re using it more as a formal room in the evenings then dark tones are ideal to create a cosy atmosphere. Whereas if it’s an everyday room for your whole family to enjoy lighter tones and more playful colours may be a better option.
The projects I’m working on at the moment aren’t dark in the slightest.
Consider how you’ll use the space
We all use our living rooms in different ways. We designed our living room as an escape away from the kitchen, however in reality we actually barely use it as a living room as we’re always in the kitchen in the evenings.
So before you start designing and planning it, think about how you use it. Do you really need another sofa if you already have two in your kitchen extension, or do you need a hard wearing and practical sofa because it’s going to be used as the family sofa for spending time together.
My advice would be to really think about the space and how you’ll use it before you start decorating and buying furniture for it.
I hope you found that useful. For more home interiors advice and how I can help you with your living room makeover pop over to my interior design services page.