Your living room should be a place where you can relax, unwind, and spend quality time with friends, family, or just yourself, regardless of whether your style is traditional or modern, easygoing or formal, bold or subdued. It takes skill to design a room that looks amazing and functions well for you. So, before you hire a professional to redecorate your living room, arm yourself with some designer tips and tricks. Here are a few of my personal favorites.

1. Combine light and dark colors.

A living room that is completely white and bright can feel excessively “clean” and distant. It can feel like a cave when everything is dark. However, combining dark and light colors gives a dynamic, balanced effect. Incorporating at least a little white and a little black into the design of any area is beneficial.

2. Play with Contrasts in Your Neutrals

Decorating a living room with a mix of contrasting neutrals, in addition to some white and black, goes a long way toward making it feel rich and hospitable. The white walls, caramel leather, brass hardware, gray sofa, and blue-gray cabinetry all contrast with one another in this example, emphasizing their various finishes and undertones. Even before adding other crucial aspects like color, pattern, and texture, the palette feels rich.

3. Experiment with texture

When it comes to arranging a living room, texture is easy to miss, especially because we don’t see it as often as we touch it. However, velvety textures that appeal to the touch, as well as harsher textures that offer contrast, are vital for making a living room seem snug. Include as many textures as you can, such as leather, cotton, wool, metal, stone, glass, and plant life.

Pillows are a terrific place to start, especially if you’re on a budget and need to decorate a living room. To add different materials to the palette, look to other accessories and furnishings, even in modest quantities.

4. Do Some Woodwork

We can’t talk about texture without mentioning wood, which is one of the best materials for creating a pleasant atmosphere in a living area.

There are numerous methods to incorporate wood into a place, all of which will make it feel more inviting. Just a few of the many alternatives include wall paneling, side tables, movable stools, picture frames, sofa legs, and carved works of art.

5. Experiment With Your Upholstery

Although most furniture companies offer the option of purchasing a full living room set with matching upholstery, this is not something you should do. Matching upholstery in a formal seating area might give the impression of maturity and order, but if you want your living room to seem friendly and welcome, mix and match your upholstered items.

Mixing leather chairs with a fabric sofa, or vice versa, is one of the safest ways to accomplish this, as the materials contrast in an evident way. It adds variety to the living room décor, as well as giving family members varied seating alternatives to suit their preferences.

6. Select Fabrics That Are Practical

When it comes to upholstery, it’s particularly crucial for living room chairs to be both comfortable and long-lasting. Your family will choose what this means. You may have babies or small children, pets or not, and they could be filthy or clean. Mid-tone fabrics are the safest bet, as extremely light or dark tones will show soil and wear quickly.

When a spill occurs, leather is an excellent material for avoiding stains because it can be quickly wiped clean. However, because it is more easily scratched than most fabrics, it may not hold up as well to animals. A leather that has already been broken in or has a pattern can age beautifully.

Denim and corduroy are two more textiles that are both appealing and long-lasting. Plus, when compared to the traditional basic cotton or wool upholstery you see in stores, they give an intriguing twist. When choosing fabric for your living room furniture, seek for a blend of natural and synthetic textiles to get the best of both worlds, and if feasible, bend a fabric sample to make sure the weaving is tight and the backing material isn’t visible. Regardless of the material, a tight weave will last longer than a loose one (which allows dirt to hide).

7. Incorporate a splash of color

While a beautiful space can be created without the use of vibrant colors, even a small amount of color in a living room can go a long way toward creating a relaxing and pleasant ambiance.

When in doubt, go with a bright blue; it’s a color that almost everyone can agree on. It perfectly contrasts warm materials like leather and wood, and it’s neutral enough to function with almost any additional accent colors in the future.

8. Place a Patterned Rug in the Room

Pattern is a powerful design tool that can infuse a living room with energy while also hiding stains and damage. A patterned rug extends these advantages to the “fifth wall” — the floor — while also anchoring a seating area and bringing liveliness to the entire space. Consider adding a rug to your seating area even if you already have carpeting. You’ll be pleased you have it on hand the first time you roll it up to go to the cleaners after a huge spill.

9. Select Tables and Stools that Can Be Moved

Lightweight tables, stools, ottomans, and even side chairs that can be readily moved around make a living area much more comfortable, providing you and your family a variety of options for putting your feet up, setting a drink down, or sitting an extra visitor on a regular basis.

Use a few smaller pieces, like the upholstered footstools shown here, to allow pieces to be moved closer or farther away from the main sitting as desired.

10. Take into account conversational distances

There’s a limit to how huge a seated group can be and still make sense for private conversation and pleasant gatherings, no matter how spacious your living room is. If you have numerous sofas or a sofa and side chairs, the seating area should have a circle of 8 feet, or 4 feet away from the center, to allow for conversation.

A large, 12-seat sectional sofa may look beautiful and be ideal for a party, but if you want to create an intimate living room, use fewer, smaller seating pieces and put them closer together.

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Joel is an inspiring carpenter who is addicted to flying. Physically, he is built like a truck. He always carries a wand. He is hiding a terrible secret concerning his friend.

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