- Determine Your Budget
- Find Your Distinct Interior Design Style
- Consider Popular Interior Design Trends
- Consider the Size & Shape of Your Living Room
- Consider Your Overall Furniture Layout
Whether it’s watching TV, reading the latest bestseller, or playing games together, many families spend the majority of their time at home in the living room. In today’s blog, we’ll answer all your questions about to decorate your living room, including how to decorate a living room on a budget, how to decorate living rooms of different shapes and sizes, how to choose a focal point for your living room, and much, much more!
Step 1: Determine Your Budget
Wondering how to decorate a living room on a budget? The first step is to determine exactly what your furniture budget will be. This number should be a hard and fast limit you decide you won’t surpass, no matter the circumstances.
Make a Shopping List
Once you have your overall furniture budget, figure out how many items you need. Write each of the items down along with a general price range for how much each of those items tend to cost. This will help you start the process of figuring out a budget for each individual item that you need.
Find Your Priority Items
Out of the items you included on your shopping list, determine which ones are the most important to you. If, for example, choosing the perfect sofa is the highest priority, figure out a range for the sofa and then pick out that item first. That way, if you need to go a little over-budget on your couch, you can adjust the budget of other living room furniture items that are less important to you.
Watch Out for Furniture Sales
At Star Furniture, we have a wide variety of furniture sales throughout the year. Plus, we have the best value for your budget, so you know you're getting high-quality products while still saving money.
Step 2: Find Your Distinct Interior Design Style
After determining your furniture budget, the next step when decorating a living room is to find your distinct interior design style. While there will often be overlap, exploring the more general furniture styles can help you narrow down the types of furniture you’re looking for.
Modern & Contemporary Living Room Furniture
A modern decorating style is often defined as much by the negative space around your furniture as it is by the furniture itself, so modern contemporary living rooms tend to be clutter-free and bright, with an open living room layout. Other modern furniture characteristics include minimalism, neutral colors, square-edged couches, clean lines, metal accents, natural woods, fabrics, and textures.
Traditional Living Room Furniture
Find yourself drawn to ornate detailing, patterned upholstery, lustrous accents, plush fabrics, rich wood tones, soft edges, and a sense of symmetry and balance? You’ll love decorating your living room in the traditional design style. Traditional style furniture tends to have a large scale, which means it tends to work best in larger rooms, as the large appearance of the furniture can overshadow a small living room, making it appear even smaller.
Transitional Living Room Furniture
Transitional furniture blends characteristics from traditional and modern contemporary design, creating a look that’s classic yet modern. In terms of living room furniture, transitional furniture tends to be casual, comfortable, and inviting. Other characteristics of transitional furniture include a mix of curved and straight lines, simple silhouettes, tone-on-tone palettes, complementary textures, minimal accents and accessories, balance, and a medium scale.
Step 3: Consider Popular Interior Design Trends
Once you’ve settled on your general furniture style, you may want to take a look at popular interior design trends. These trends can be great inspiration once you start furniture shopping. Here’s a few current trends that might look great in your living room.
Velvet Furniture Trend
Whether it’s a velvet couch, a velvet ottoman, a velvet accent chair, or even velvet throw pillows, furnishing your living room with velvet furniture can create a smart, sophisticated look that will wow your guests.
Geometric Furniture Trend
Just because you hated high school math class doesn’t mean you won’t love the geometric furniture trend, which includes geometric patterned fabric, rugs, and wall art, as well as furniture designed to showcase certain geometric shapes and patterns.
Mixed Metals Trend
Whether you’re decorating your living room in the modern, traditional, or transitional furniture style, you can still take advantage of the mixed metals trend, which involves using a combination of different metal accents (i.e. silver with gold, brass with stainless steel) in a single room.
Floral Furniture Trend
Love the great outdoors? Decorating your living room with at least one piece of floral furniture can add a touch of nature and brighten up your space. We recommend choosing a floral accent piece to really make your living room pop.
Step 4: Consider the Size & Shape of Your Living Room
Before you actually start buying furniture, it’s important to consider the size and shape of your furniture. The size and shape of your living room doesn’t necessarily dictate the style of the furniture, but there are certain factors you’ll need to consider when choosing furniture for these spaces. Not only does the furniture need to fit in the living room, but different furniture arrangements can end up making the room feel larger or smaller. Here’s how to decorate common living room shapes and sizes.
How to Decorate a Long and Narrow Living Room
Decorating a long and narrow living room can be tricky. Want to make your long and narrow living room feel more spacious? Rry floating the furniture, segmenting your space, incorporating round coffee tables or other furniture with rounded edges, and choosing taller pieces that utilize vertical space.
How to Decorate a Very Small Living Room
When furnishing a very small living room, you’ll want to focus on making the room feel roomier and taking advantage of the cozy quality of a small space. To do this, try decorating with mirrors, using neutral colors, floating furniture, choosing a large rug, and adding hidden storage. While it won’t make your living room any bigger, these decorating tips can make a big difference in how big the room feels.
How to Decorate a Large Living Room
When decorating a large living room, there are certain steps you can take to make the room feel more stylish, functional, and cozy. The interior design experts at Star Furniture recommend dividing the room visually, anchoring the room with a sectional or large furniture piece, doubling up on items like coffee tables and accent chairs, and floating furniture away from the walls. This can help you fill empty space in your large living room, so it feels cozier and more welcoming.
Step 5: Consider Your Overall Furniture Layout
Finding the perfect living room furniture layout for your space will likely require some trial and error. The good news is that Star Furniture & Mattress offers a free room planner tool that allows you to try out different furniture arrangements without the heavy lifting. Here are some different living room furniture layout ideas that can help, whether you’re buying all new furniture or simply rearranging what you have.
Choose a Focal Point
In home design, a focal point is a specific area or furniture piece that attracts visual attention and draws people’s eyes when they walk into a room. While the focal point is often a large piece of furniture, you can also use a brightly colored or boldly decorated wall, a stylish mirror, a decorated fireplace, or a bold accent piece to serve as the focal point in your living room.
Pay Attention to Proportion & Scale
Furniture scale has to do with its size. Couches, for example, can have a small, medium, or large scale, which is determined by their size, including width, height, and length. Generally, the scale of your furniture in any given room should be proportional to one another. You wouldn’t, for example, want a massive curio cabinet in a room with small, minimalist furniture. While different furniture styles tend to have different scales, you’ll want to base this decision mainly on the size and shape of the room. If there’s a tall ceiling, for example, a low-profile couch may seem too insignificant to fill the room.
Break Up the Room
Dividing the room into two or more spaces can be an effective furniture layout, especially if you’re dealing with a long, narrow living room or a very large living room. For this layout, you’ll simply break up the room into two or more spaces. It often makes sense to divide the spaces functionally, meaning that one area is a cozy seating area where people can gather, and another area serves a different functional purpose. This could be a reading nook, a small office area, or even a separate seating area. You don’t necessarily need to divide the space functionally, you can simply create visual distinctions. If you’re looking for interesting ways to break up the room, consider using area rugs, curtains, wallpaper, and/or furniture placement to help create visually cozy spaces within the larger room
Consider Traffic Flow
When arranging the furniture in your living room, be sure to consider traffic flow. Ideally, you’ll want to arrange your furniture in such a way that there is a clear and wide path so that people will not inadvertently run into furniture (or each other) when passing through the living room. If you have a coffee table, be sure there are a few feet between the coffee table and any sofas or chairs in the room and make sure there is enough space for people to move about comfortably.
Float Your Furniture
One of the most common furniture arrangement mistakes is pushing all the furniture against the wall. While many people think it will help a smaller living room appear larger, floating furniture away from the walls actually has the opposite effect—it makes the room look more spacious. Remember, the bigger the room, the further away from the walls you can float the furniture, so if you’re decorating a large living room, feel free to float your furniture a few feet away from the wall in order to utilize all your space.
Create Conversation Areas
Especially if you’re frequently hosting houseguests and holiday parties, you’ll want to consider creating conversation areas in your living room. Whether you’re furnishing a small or large living room, you’ll want to make sure the furniture is arranged in a way that people can easily talk to one another. Try arranging the sofa and chairs close enough together that people can speak to one another without raising their voices. If you have a very large living room, you might consider creating multiple conversation areas, so that two groups of people can conveniently converse at the same time.
Thinking about redoing your living room? Star Furniture & Mattress has a huge selection of living room furniture, including sofas, sectionals, ottomans, coffee tables, accent chairs, rugs, wall art, and so much more! Plus, if you visit a Star Furniture & Mattress store, you can take advantage of our complimentary interior design services. Let us help you create the living room of your dreams!