We spend a lot of time in our living room so it is natural to want to decorate the space well. We want our living room to seem homely and welcoming whilst at the same time impressing our guests. Many of us are happy to spend many hours decorating our living rooms and will have spent many more choosing colours and décor and yet, when the room is finished we are unsatisfied with the result.
The reason could be because there are simple decorating mistakes that are made time and time again. By knowing what they are before you begin you can avoid making them and end up with a room to be proud of.
Living rooms are used both night and day so it is important to get the lighting right. Contemporary lighting schemes involve creating drama with sculptural light fittings. Try placing an oversized lamp by an armchair for reading or fitting a dramatic pendant.
Patterns and colours
One or two carefully chosen patterns can add drama and interest to carefully selected parts of your room but you can have too much of a good thing. Use neutrals for most of your colour palette when it comes to pattern choice and stick to one or, at most, two patterns for decorating individual pieces such as a beautiful Louis de Poortere rug or eye-catching scatter cushions. Choose different shapes, materials and finishes to provide diversity and individuality.
Bigger is better with rugs. Many rooms are spoilt by having a “floating rug” that seems like an afterthought. Rugs that touch all the main pieces of furniture will bring the room together.
Too many rooms lack a focal point so the room feels directionless. A single, large, piece of contemporary artwork placed in a prominent position will give the room focus. Be careful not to hang your art work too high as you will usually be sitting down when using the room and you should not need to strain your neck to see it.
Messy wires and too little storage can quickly ruin the effect you are trying to achieve when you redecorate. A coffee table with drawers will offer storage for magazines, books and those all-important but easily mislaid remote controls.
Make sure you think about where your electronics are going, especially if you have a wall-mounted television. If you are planning on repapering or repainting you can take the opportunity to have sockets moved so that wires can be neatly hidden away. For wiring that is not so permanent in nature use trunking or cable tidies to stop the cables becoming tangled and unsightly.
Big heavy curtains, whilst ideal for blocking out light and noise, hide the windows and can make the room feel dark. Instead choose a blind that can be retracted completely during the day.
Although tempting to increase floor space, pushing your furniture up against the walls can actually make your room look smaller than it is.
By knowing the mistakes that others have made when decorating their living rooms, you’ll be able to avoid them, allowing you to create a living room you can really be proud of!