Interior design magazines, furniture showrooms, and the Web are just three of the likely places to turn to when looking for inspiration when designing your ideal living room. The moment you find a photograph or a scene that captures your idea of a perfect living room, you are then faced with the challenge of recreating it. Here are tips for effectively and inexpensively bringing to life your dream living room.
Consider Your Personal Circumstances
You can’t just immediately look for and get hold of the furniture and décor similar to what you’ve seen on websites. Consider your space constraints and the family routine. You should also think of the level of comfort you’re aiming for when designing your living room. Is the living room the designated place in the house for watching television? If so, opting for a museum-like layout of bulky antique-looking fixtures and stiff-backed chairs just won’t do for your family’s lifestyle. Balance function and design when using other homes’ living rooms for inspiration.
Think of the Lighting and the Lack Thereof
Lighting (or lack of it) is important when deciding how to place appropriate furniture pieces and living room décor. Natural lighting, for instance, can be used to show off your living room’s unique architectural detailing, if there are exposed beams and the like that you’d love to emphasize. Natural light can also lift your mood and kill harmful bacteria. So try to maximize it by using lightweight window treatments.
When reworking design elements from other homes’ living rooms, do so with an eye for how your ambient lighting can impact them. For example, a décor that dons a glossy finish can cast a harsh glare when set close to the window. Your upholstered living room furniture may not agree with direct sunlight. Also, think of the aesthetics of your chosen pieces of furniture and accessories if you have to rely solely on artificial lighting.
You Don’t Always Have to Splurge
Examine your living room design inspiration. Pay attention to the areas where you can save or splurge. A high-quality and expensive sofa can make for a smart investment, while a pricey item of non-functional living room décor is an indulgence. The good news is that you can always opt for an equally arresting alternative to a stunning turn-of-the-century gilded mirror you’re planning to place over your faux enamel fireplace, for example.
If you can’t have the luxurious feel of wide crown molding, then make it up by smartly choosing paint colors. For instance, a high-pigment paint type that sports neutral tones can inject an air of sophistication in a living area, according to design and architecture magazine Freshome.com. Your choice of throw pillows can also make a lot of difference. An assortment of small pillows looks cheap, but a few 22-inch ones with bold patterns and prints can lend a luxurious feel to your seating area.
Search your neighborhood chain store for a perfect accent piece and area rug. Keep in mind that you can be judicious with your spending when recreating the look of another home’s living room and still end up satisfied with the results.