The living room is arguably one of the most important rooms in your home. It’s where you entertain guests, relax after a long day, and it’s where you and your family spend the majority of your time together.
For a room that forms such a significant part of the home, it’s crucial that you fill the space wisely, making sure every piece fits well, complements each other nicely, and is suited not just to your personal style, but also to your lifestyle.
Whether you have a new space to fill or are thinking of updating your current living room, we’ve shared our top tips that will help you choose the furniture that is perfect for your home.
Planning is key when it comes to buying furniture, so before you jump straight into choosing furniture pieces that you love, think carefully about how you will be using the room and what will fit in it, to help you make the most of your space.
Is it a place to relax and unwind with your family? Or would you like to create a more formal setting for entertaining guests?
Once you’ve got this vision in mind, it’s time to get measuring, and work out the layout of the room.
2. Map out your room, and play around with layouts
To figure out how much furniture you can fit in to your living room, without it looking cluttered, we recommend sketching out a floor plan. This allows you to experiment with layouts and different pieces of furniture, so see what will work best.
Alternatively, you can stage your living room by marking out spaces on the floor where the furniture will go. This can be done with masking tape or by spreading out pieces of newspaper in the dimensions of your potential new furniture.
Whichever route you prefer, remember to leave at least a metre of space between furniture pieces to prevent the space from looking cluttered!
Having a plan and mapping out the room will allow you to envision the furniture in your living room, and make sensible decisions to fill your space optimally.
3. Start with the basics
We always recommend starting with the basic elements first, and building from there. A sofa is always an excellent place to start, then adding key pieces like an armchair, side or coffee tables and a media unit.
Your sofa choice, for example, can impact the layout of your entire living room. Are you going to go for a corner sofa, or a matching pair of sofas facing each other? You will want to style your room differently for each, or may require different complementary pieces of furniture or accessories depending on this choice.
4. Coordinate and complement
When designing your living space, every element should pull together to create your own unique style. And choosing pieces of furniture that complement each other, in terms of style and colour, will help you achieve this.
If you’re going for a contemporary look, your furniture will likely have clean lines and sleek design elements, pairing neutral tones alongside black lacquer, metal and glass, which can be seen across current Scandi and industrial trends.
Traditional furniture, however, is usually more formal and elegant in style, with classical designs such as intricate detailing, and a rich, natural colour palette.
When buying your furniture, keep an eye out for these design elements to ensure that each piece is consistent with your chosen interior style, and you’re not buying contrasting pieces that could clash.
An easy way to do this is to select a range you like, and purchase several items from within it - this ensures consistency in your style, and takes that stress away. Or if you’d like to choose individual pieces, you could select furniture made from the same wood or material, to help unite each piece and pull your entire room together.
5. Get creative and add extras
Corners of the room can stand out if they’re left completely bare, so we’d always recommend considering a couple of stylish extras if you have room. Here are some ideas:
- Create a bar area, to display beautiful glassware and bottles of your favourite tipple. This is very popular right now, and we even added this into a recent show home we designed.
- An occasional chair can add character, colour and style to your living room, and it’s also extremely practical to provide more seating for guests. You could also achieve this with a footstool too, and some have hidden storage inside.
- Selecting a chest, sideboard or bookshelf will provide you with extra storage space, and provide room to add an array of accessories that express your personal style.
- Tables can be handy and stylish extras in your lounge. A coffee table can help bring your seating together, or a group of side tables can make a stylish alternative that is more flexible and keeps the space open, which is ideal for a small room.