In the living room of a Manhattan apartment designed by Jamie Drake and Caleb Anderson of Drake/Anderson, the sectional sofas by Avenue Road are covered in a Great Plains mohair, the pair of vintage Gio Ponti armchairs are from Karl Kemp Antiques, the glass cocktail table by Fredrikson Stallard is filled with feathers, the round side table is by Holly Hunt Studio, the lamp on it is by Charles Paris and the custom rug is by Tai Ping.
It’s not as much about where you put your furniture as it is about the types of pieces you choose. "In each room I design, I try to include at least one round piece, such as a coffee table, that people can walk around without bumping their knees," says interior designer Katie Rosenfeld. "I also add a few armchairs and a versatile piece like a garden stool that can be used as a stool to sit on or as a table for a drink."
Whether vivid Fiesta creamers, Grecian urns, or sleek chrome pitchers, collections handily underscore a theme and introduce colors and patterns. Curios and knickknacks -- whether valuable relics or cheap white platters -- have the greatest impact when grouped by color, shape, or subject matter. Keep those attributes in mind when you shop; you're likely to find myriad discounted objects that complement your displays.
Employing expensive materials in restrained but meaningful ways lets you enjoy the finer things while staying on budget. Display a fancy wallpaper on a focal wall or as a patterned backdrop for built-in shelves. Buy one really good leather chair, but pair it with a less expensive garden-seat table. Create pillows that showcase pricey silks, brocades, and velvets on their face, but that boast inexpensive fabric backs.
The nubby texture of a sisal fiber area rug makes an attractive anchor for furnishings in a rustic living room. When choosing an area rug, select one large enough to create a cohesive look. Follow this rule of thumb: When the furniture grouping doesn't touch walls (but "floats" in the center of the room), the rug should be large enough that all the furniture legs rest on the rug without crowding the grouping. If your furniture backs up against walls, then the rug should be large enough to extend beneath front legs.
Buy blank canvases that you can paint and place prominently above a mantel or sofa. Using paints in your favorite hues, brush on a variety of cool geometric shapes or simply splatter colors at random to compose contemporary compositions. Like something less abstract? Use the canvases as bases for painted images, stenciled motifs, or collages created from all sorts of crafting remnants.
Designers Heather Brock and Jennifer Wundrow of Nest Design Co. used a rug larger than the overall seating to make the room feel bigger. "This is often a misconception we find in people’s homes. They are of the mindset that a smaller rug makes a room feel larger, when in fact a smaller rug can make the room feel a bit more fragmented. We love when all the furniture sits on the rug creating an intimate and cohesive space," according to the designers.
On this page we explore ways to get beautiful living room décor on a budget. The living room is like a person’s physical appearance. When you first meet someone, you first notice their clothes, their hair, their shoes, and their facial expression. In a house, the first thing you see is the exterior: roof, door, windows, landscape, fence, and paint. When you enter the house, it is commonly the living room that first greets you. This is the first room that welcomes you and sets the tone of the house for you. If you are sharing the house with other people, the living room also becomes a common room where anybody can hang out.
Winter wonderland or mermaid’s abode? The silvery, shimmery rustic chic decor of this living room leaves either open for interpretation. Grays, ivories, silvers, and taupes abound in this lovely communal space, with pillow-piled sofas and large (and slightly clam shaped) floor cushions providing ample options for reclining in comfort. A multi-toned wall lamp and tall candles give off a soft white light that’s ideal for such intimate and ethereal interiors. Tip: try to keep wall hangings and floor clutter at a minimum to enhance the elegance and add to the ethereal quality of the decor.