Living Rooms: Comfort and Design
For most people, the days of a formal living room that was only used when special guests visited are over. Living rooms are stylish and functional spaces that are used every day by everyone who enters the home.
Family gatherings, movie and game nights, sitting by the fireplace, and sometimes dinner in front of the TV all take place in the living room. We all want a beautiful space, but consider comfort first.
After all, what’s the point of having a beautiful room that isn’t used?
We spoke with Eileen Smith from Madison Furniture Barn, who worked on staging The Fish Flip, for living room design tips.
Is your living room formal or informal? Will you be hosting gatherings or watching TV? Do you have children and/or pets?
Knowing how the room will be used most often is key in the initial stages of design. You may love the minimalist look of all white, but if the room is used to host Sunday Night Football with your neighbors, it’s not a practical option.
When designing a space, many people think measurements are all you need to get started. But you also want to consider areas adjacent to the living room.
“We like to know how the living room space interacts with other areas of the home,” said Eileen. “For instance, is it important that you be able to speak with the person preparing dinner in the kitchen?”
Open Floor Plans
Many open floor plans go from the kitchen island to an informal dining room to the living room. With this type of setup, you can utilize living room furniture to be able to comfortably interact with people in other areas.
“If you have swivel gliders, you can just turn around and talk to anyone at the kitchen island or dining table,” stated Eileen.
To create separation between the main living spaces, decor that can transition between the two areas is ideal. For example, if you have a couch or loveseat with the back to the dining area, you can put a table behind the couch that matches the dining decor. This creates a flow between the two rooms, while still showing a distinct separation.
On the flip side, some homes come with smaller living rooms. To maximize space, Eileen suggests a sectional for seating. “Believe it or not, a sectional works better in a small space than a large space,” she explained. A sectional gives more seating than a sofa and chair in a small room, and eliminates the empty corner space that two pieces of furniture create.
Matching living room sets, with every piece of furniture in the same fabric, are no longer a popular choice. Instead, mix and match materials that go together.
“We like at least three fabrics,” said Eileen. “If you can work with four or five in the same room and they don’t clash, that is perfect.”
With a solid color on the sofa, you can incorporate stripes on a chair, and a print on pillows. The blend of different fabrics adds a new dimension to the room and keeps it from feeling too staged.
Another design trend Eileen and her team are noticing in 2019 include the incorporation of pinks. Most often, pink is incorporated as a pop of color with throw pillows or a blanket.
Want to see how The Fish Flip living room turned out? Come to our Reveal Party on August 8th to see how Madison Furniture Barn set it up!