By Forgie Home Staging & Redesign
Decorating a small living room can be a challenge. A well-defined style, great color palette and paying close
attention to the final details or finishing touches, will help to pull your look together.
Tip # 1 Color Choice
Often, our choice of color will be dictated by mood. For example yellow is a cheerful, bright color while pale blue is
cool and subdued. We recommend you choose your color palette before you do anything else.
Tip # 2 –Room Purpose
Most small living rooms share a variety of purposes – you may relax here, listen to music, watch TV, eat, read or
entertain friends. Besides color, some important things you should consider include:
- Seating arrangements
- doors and windows
- storage and shelving
- wall and floor finishes, and
- Finishing touches
Tip # 3 - Seating Arrangements
Every living room needs comfortable and versatile seating. In a small room you won’t have the luxury of creating
more than one seating area, and size will dictate on how much seating you can accommodate. Look at what
you’ve got and what you want or still need.
A good way to assess layout of existing furniture, including seating, is to measure and draw the room to scale and
then make template cut-outs of each item, drawn to the same scale. Be sure to accurately mark the position of
windows and doorways – and which way doors open and close. Then position the templates on the plan. You
should try to imagine what different layouts will look like. The templates will help to ensure that the furniture will fit
– but still use your imagination.
Generally people like to sit in circles, so they can look at one another and talk. If the room is to be used for
watching television, don’t let the TV set dominate the room. This can be a particular challenge in a small room, but
positioning it to the side of the circle often works well.
Once you know what seating will fit, you can decide whether what you already have needs to be reupholstered or
redone in any other way to fit the look or theme – or just to make it look bright and cheerful again.
Tip # 4 Tables
Tables are always useful in a living room, for drinks, paperwork, books, even for eating on. If you plan to use the
room for eating, then a reasonably large table is a good idea, as long as it doesn’t dominate. Aim to separate
couches and so-on from a dining table. What often happens is that some people will group around the table while
others sit more comfortably on couches. That in itself creates two distinct seating areas.
If space is at a premium, nesting tables are often a good idea. And a coffee table or even a chest that will double
for storage is always useful in front of couches.
There isn’t usually much room for other furniture in small living rooms, but sometimes a decorative sideboard can
find its place and improve the appeal of the room as a whole.
Always remember your sense of purpose and make sure that what you choose will fit in and look good.
Tip # 5 Doors and windows
Doors and windows improve the quality of light in any living room. If there is a good view from one or more
windows, this can become a focal point when you arrange your furniture.
But decoratively speaking windows come into their own with window coverings, in particular, curtains and blinds.
Consider style as well as pattern and texture when you make your choice.
Tip # 6 - Storage and Shelving
Storage space is always useful in the living room but it isn’t essential. Before you consider bringing in an
entertainment unit or hanging shelves, consider what it will look like. If storage space is at a premium, you might
have to find storage space for books or other items in the living room. If so it often helps to make them a distinct
decorating feature. You can do this easily by creating pretty and simple displays.
Tip # 7 – Walls and Floors
Both practical and decorative, wall and floor finishes can spell the success or failure of any living rooms décor.
Although these surfaces are considered the shell of the room, they do so much to make the room feel cool or cozy.
Walls present the simplest way to introduce color to a room, while floor surfaces will sound-proof, insulate and
add warmth to the room. Generally neutral colors are easiest to work with on the floor, but rugs can add a
welcome splash of color and pattern.
Tip # 8 – The Finishing Touches
The finishing touches are the items that finally tie your entire room together. When it comes to decorating a small
living room think carefully about what these finishing touches mean to you. You might want to place a special
painting on the wall, or create a display of your favorite treasures on the mantel. A vase filled with bright flowers or
some scented candles, are all examples of some of the finishing touches that can complete your look and create
the living room you love!