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Your living room is one of the first things guests see when they visit your home. It’s probably also the space that you and your family use the most, which means you’ve probably put some thought into how it looks.
However, if your living room seems more functional than welcoming, it’s probably time for a change. Fortunately, making your living room more inviting doesn’t have to mean spending a lot of time or money. Following a few smart design tips will make this important room cozier for family and visitors alike.
While going natural doesn’t necessarily mean making your living room look like a ski lodge, it does mean embracing a softer decor. Polished services and pristine furniture, look nice, but they don’t exactly make a room feel approachable, much less inviting. Opting for softer and more natural-looking pastels like light blues, greens, yellows and wood materials will make your space feel warmer and more relaxed. In fact, these types of colors also tend to make a room feel larger, which is an added bonus if you’re working with a smaller living space. Black and white color combinations usually cooler and more functional than cozy, so use these colors sparingly.
Minimize the Appearance of Your Air-conditioner
If you don’t have central air, you’ve probably encountered the problem of what to do with your window air-conditioner, or more specifically how to make your air-conditioner less conspicuous. This is a very real concern for apartment dwellers and those who live in hotter climates. In addition, few things can make a room uninviting as quickly as a large, loud and unsightly window system. Investing in a low profile air conditioner will instantly make your living room feel cozier. Some models are so sleek and discrete that visitors may not even know that there is a window system in the room. Likewise, depending on which type of model you get, you may also be able to free up some extra space in your living room.
Embrace the Curves
In addition to being dangerous for small children, angular furniture, tends to emit a more functional and, at times, even corporate feel than say rounder furniture. Rounded furniture is both more esthetically and emotionally appealing because the smoother edges create a feeling of protection and comfort. Your guests will feel the difference in the room the moment they enter. You can also go a step further by crafting a quasi-circle in the center of your room, or wherever the main sitting pieces are located. This creates a feeling of inclusiveness by making it easier to communicate with others in the room and maintain direct eye contact.
Relocate the TV
If you own a television, your living room is the place you’re most likely to keep it in. However, unless your living room is unusually large, making a TV the focal point of it doesn’t exactly invite conversation or quality time with family or visitors. Much like a smartphone, having a TV nearby quickly becomes a distraction, making it difficult to have a meaningful connection with those around you. If you can’t move the TV to another room, consider storing it in a cabinet so you can at least choose if or when you want it to be visible. You may also want to purchase a TV lift cabinet, which is designed specifically to store TVs but appears to be just a cabinet from the outside.
Layers and Knits
There’s a good chance that you already have a lot of warm and fuzzy throws and pillows that you can add to your living room chairs and couches to make the room feel more inviting. Adding layers to your room can really make a difference in the ambiance, as well as, the actual temperature, especially if you have exposed brick or high ceiling, which often make rooms feel colder.
Put an extra rug under the coffee table, add thick and colorful throws to your couches and strategically scatter some pillows around the floor. Guests will enjoy the added color and soft and welcoming items throughout the room and be a lot more likely to feel at home in your living room. In fact, you may have a hard time getting them to leave but at least you’ll know that they enjoy coming to visit.
If you’re like most people, you probably spend a fair amount of time in your living room. While you may be used to it just the way that it is, it’s probably not as inviting as it could be. To get the most out of your living room, you just need to add a few warm and welcoming touches to make it a truly special place where friends and family want to spend time.