The living room is one of the rooms we spend most of our waking hours in, but it can be one of the hardest rooms to arrange. We want to help you make your living room the most liveable room possible, with a few key tips.
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Have a good look at your room and consider the following:
- What do you love about it, and what drives you crazy?
- If constant clutter or toys everywhere drive you batty, think about a storage system that might work for you.
- Is your furniture the correct scale for the room? Lots of small furniture pieces in a large room can make it feel cluttered and busy. And on the flipside, giant overstuffed couches in a small living room can make it feel smaller and cramped.
- Does the room function the way you use your living space? Since living rooms can serve so many functions, it’s important to think about the way YOU use it. Is it a playroom, TV room, game room, or all of the above?
- Consider the way that people move through the space, also known as the flow of the room. What are the destinations within the room (ie: couch, chairs, bookcase, etc)… are there obstacles in the way? Do people need to walk through the living room to get to other areas in your house? If so, these require wider walkways.
2. Less is more
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed in a room that just has too much stuff in it. Start by taking out anything that you don’t use. If you have a collection of knick-knacks, pair it down to your favorites. Clear off the clutter from your coffee table. Invest in some smart storage that can store away or display some of the clutter, while still looking great; like Sarah’s sideboard (Canada) (USA), for instance.
3. Clean it up
A clean space can be so beneficial to your mental and physical health. So the next step is to clean up your room.
- Work in a circle, top to bottom, and left to right. Start with your ceiling fan if you have one.
- Vacuum everything first, then wipe down surfaces (and walls where needed) with our recipe of 1 gallon of hot water and 1 tsp of powdered Tide (Canada) (USA) (no bleach here since there’s likely carpet or upholstery that could be ruined).
- Move your couches and vacuum behind and under them. (Don’t forget to vacuum (Canada) (USA) underneath your cushions and suck up any lint or pet hair on your upholstery.)
- Make sure to dust your fireplace, and clean your TV.
- Lastly, give the whole space one last vacuum and mop.
Now that you have a clean, decluttered room, it’s time to arrange your furniture. Here are some tips that designers use for arranging furniture:
- Don’t place all the furniture against the walls. It sounds counterintuitive, but this actually makes your room look smaller. Even pulling your couch just 6 inches away from the wall will draw your eye away from the wall and into the room.
- Consider flow. Where will people be walking in the room? How will they get from point A to point B? Does the room function as a walkway between other rooms in your home? Make sure you leave extra space as a walkway in this case.
- What is the focal point of the room? Is it the fireplace, the TV, or something else entirely?
- What is the purpose of the room? Is it a playroom? Do you play board games or watch TV? Make sure the furniture is arranged so that your room works for those purposes.
- Do you have kids? Think about how they will use the room too. Also, if you need to be able to see them playing from another room like the kitchen.
- Create conversation areas and groupings.
- Use an area rug to define the space, and ground the furniture groupings. (Hello, ruggable.)
5. Let there be light and life
Nothing brings life to a space like actual living things. Maybe you have a green thumb or maybe you couldn’t keep a plant alive if your life depended on it – but no worries!
Start small – bring in one plant, see if you can keep it alive, and see how it makes you feel. (My 3 plant tips are: light, water, and drainage!) Then you can go from there.
Plants and humans need sunlight. Maximize your windows! Open up your blinds and let in all that natural light. Hang your curtains as close to the ceiling as you can to draw your eye up and out.
6. Layer and accessorize
Now it’s time to add some personality. Bring in your favorite accessories and display them in a pleasing way. Consider the rule of threes: Items often look pleasing when grouped in sets of threes. But don’t let us tell you what to do. Play around with it. Up the ‘cozy factor’ by bringing in pillows and blankets.
Make Your House a Home
Hopefully these tips will help you to create a living space that makes you happy. It’s a living room – now live in it! For more great cleaning tips, be sure to take our Basic Training interactive video course! You can learn more here.
- Becky @ GoCleanCo