What do I do with my living room…this is the question that Anne (my right hand gal) & I are asked the most.

Formal living…is out of style. I do have a great appreciation for a beautifully decorated home that has a formal living room, dining room, library and parlor. In general we do not live that way anymore.

More often than not I hear my clients say that there is no living going on in their living rooms. I think we can change that!

I removed all the walls on the first floor of my house to open things up, and allow us to live in every space. I have pillars to hold up the steel beam that allows this open concept to work, and I use those pillars to create different living spaces in the room. We have a TV area, Living space, dining space and kitchen all in one room!

If you do not want to make a major change like I did, I understand.You can still make changes to your home to make it reflect your lifestyle.

  • Add a TV to your living room…I know you do not want to but…you can hide it!
  • Look at the seating in the room; is it comfortable and adequate to seat the family and friends? If you love your furniture consider recovering it, this is usually about half the cost of replacing items. I love rooms that have two sofas!
  • How do the walls look? Are they tired looking? Fresh paint will fix this! You can also add trim, wainscoting or wallpaper.
  • Do you have a coffee table that anchors the space? Make this piece large enough to hold books, magazines, flowers and hors d’oeuvres. This is a family and entertaining space!
  • Do you have an area rug? Is it the right size? A good sized rug should allow you to set your furniture at least halfway on the rug.
  • Make the room cozy and comfortable. In the Northeast we use drapes and throw blankets to cozy up our homes.
  • Do not forget lighting, sconces, recessed lights and lamps are a must.

Here are some of my favorite rooms and must haves:

  • I love this room layout, it is very balanced but not boring…note the TV above the fireplace.
http://www.houzz.com

These curtain panels are fabulous:

Seating is the single most important feature of a living room:

Lee Industries Swivel…my favorite swivel!

Proper lighting is crucial!

Great lighting at http://www.fogglighting.com
Classic lamp styles can work in almost any room

Coffee tables…anchor the room

I love this French Coffee table http://www.celiabedilia.com
Storage style coffee tables are great too! Celia Bedilia Design

Side tables are also a must

Clean and simple side tables work best in most living rooms

Do not overlook dressing your walls…paint, wallpaper, trim, mirrors and art finish the look.

Feature one wall with wallpaper
Do not forget trim can really finish a space
I love this Wisteria mirror

Floors cannot be forgotten hardwood, tile, carpet are all great options. Go with a rug that matches the style you are trying to achieve, do not try to make the wrong rug work!

This floor was painted by my decorative painter to look like inlaid wood.

Finally the finishing touches are so important

Get cozy…invest in a cashmere blanket
I love these vases…on sale now http://www.potterybarn.com
Plants are great things to use to finish a room!

Resources:

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