Your living room is probably of the most used spaces in the house, which means it not only needs to look great but also needs to work hard. Meet the living room trifecta: function, comfort, and style. Meeting this criteria can be a design challenge, no doubt, so we rounded up the best living room examples to inspire your own decorating projects and make the process a whole easier. From modern and formal spaces to approachable and rustic environments, there's a living room idea you'll want to take home below. Keep reading for 10 stylish designer living room tips, ideas, and shopping suggestions for spaces of any size, and find the solutions to your burning questions like, "what color will make my living room look bigger?" and "how can I spice up a boring living room?!"
1. Refresh With Accent Paint
We're loving this dark blue-green color in a living room corner designed by Avery Cox. It's stylish enough to hold its own against the rich chartreuse velvet fabric as well as the layers of quirky prints. She only painted one of the walls along with the door and moldings so that a complementary wallpaper could be applied on the opposite side.
2. Put a Record On
Victoria Sass of Project Refuge Studio snuck a record player into the corner of this texture-rich and minimalist living room. It opens right up into the kitchen, where the side of the island facing the sitting area contains ample exposed shelving for an extensive record collection.
3. Display Old Books
There's just something about old books that instantly makes a room feel more personal. Whether you collect used books or you've inherited some, display them on an exposed shelving unit so they can shine. In this living room designed by Oliver Thornton, they add character and speak to the layered warmth of the furnishings.
4. Warm Up Walls With Wood
Designer Nicole Dohmen applied hardwood floors in a Hungarian point pattern in this living room. It's a complex and classic parquet flooring design that works surprisingly well with modern furniture and geometric patterns, as seen here. But the fun doesn't stop there! Dohmen also applied wood panels to the wall for an extra surge of warmth.
5. Balance Hard Materials With Soft Ones
If your living room has hardwood floors or stone tile flooring and lots of glass surfaces like this one designed by Caroline Turner, soften it up with super plush seating and rich materials like velvet in jewel tones. A statement light also helps bring down the scale of the high ceilings.
6. Enhance a Bakyard View
Working with landscape architect Lila Fendrick, designer Nestor Santa Cruz chose a wall of steel and glass windows and doors for this formal pool house living room that leads to the backyard. Though the glass decor, from the pendant light to the coffee table and doors, leaves a decidedly sleek impression, the plush rug and ethereal curtains make it extra cozy, too.
7. Dabble In Nostalgia
Embrace old-fashioned trends and hand-me-down furniture, like this chaise in a nostalgic yet contemporary living room designed by Amity Worrel. Dainty florals, ginghams, and plaids are paired with modern accents and artwork, so the classic prints take on a whole new meaning.
8. Work Around Restrictions
When designer Celerie Kemble moved into this New York City apartment, there was only one thing that prevented it from being the perfect fit: The building had a no wallpaper rule. To work around that obstacle, she applied a light shade of pink paint in a plaster-like finish that channels the texture of wallpaper.
9. Mix Clean Lines With Casual Materials
In the living room of designer Devin Kirk, a light shade of blue-gray along with clean-lined furniture makes for a polished backdrop while the woven chairs, light wood side table, and tree stump coffee table ensure a laidback atmosphere. It's the perfect balance of approachable and formal.
10. Incorporate Fun Trees and Plants
Invite some nods to nature into your living room with quirky indoor plants and trees. Designer Elizabeth Cooper placed a lush citrus tree in the corner for an extra pop of life and color and then staggered topiaries on the windowsill.