Architectural salvage offers another simple avenue for creating your rustic living room. Visit any good salvage dealer to tour a wide selection of possibilities; you're bound to come away with plenty of rustic decorating ideas. This antique door, for example, leans against the wall like a prized piece of artwork, displaying multiple coats of old peeling paint that tell a story of days gone by. Be sure to cover the surfaces of any old painted piece with clear polyurethane to preserve the beauty of the finish and seal in any issues with lead-based paint. Choose flat or low-luster sheen so the look remains old and worn.

Take a walk around. Is it easy to go from one furniture to another? Does the space look cramped or more open? It is ok to re-arrange it several times to get it right. You can also remove some of the furniture that you think no longer fits in the room. You can always put these furniture in other places around the house. If the furniture is broken or just not worth saving, consider selling it or donating it.


This Ibiza living room features local-limestone floors covered in custom Spanish esparto rugs from Antonia Molina. Walls covered in a sandy lime plaster, and a wood-beam ceiling set a rustic tone in the living room. Custom sofas by Atelier Tapissier Seigneur and curtains in a quilted Braquenié fabric; the Oeil cocktail table by Pierre Chapo is vintage, the lacquered-coral sculpture is by Maurizio Epifani, and the painting over the mantel is by Alex Katz.


A black marble fireplace strikes the perfect balance between edgy and timeless. It anchors this living room designed by Arent & Pyke, which get a contemporary lift from the jute rug, modern and bright artwork, and shapely table lamp. And because the armchairs are a classic silhouette, they'll last forever—you can reupholster them with different colors and prints throughout the years as your taste and style changes.
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