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How to Nail your Living Room Design with just a few Small Tweaks

People say that the kitchen is the hub of the home but for me (and granted, I don’t love to cook), it’s all about the living room.

We spend so much time in this space that it’s really important that it looks great, feels right and functions properly. But getting it to that point might be driving you up the wall, so I wanted to give you some tips to improve your living room design by making a few small tweaks.

I filmed a video recently with the design team at Metricon that addresses some of these issues (and you can watch it below), but I’ll elaborate on some of the points made in the vid so you can fully understand what might or might not be working in your own home.

How to Nail your Living Room Design

Neutral Living Room Design Ideas from Metricon on TLC Interiors

Make sure there’s a focal point

Every room needs a focal point, so ask yourself what yours is. Is it a rug, a piece of art or the lounge itself? There is no right or wrong answer here, but it’s important that the room has a focal point because it helps ground the space and pulls all of the other elements together.

It’s possible that you could have a focal point that’s almost there but not quite working, like a rug that’s slightly too small. Consider a new rug that’ll make the space feel resolved.

You might find, on closer inspection, that the room has too many focal points and that visually it’s feeling a little cluttered. Consider taking one or two of the elements away and see how the space feels with less in it.

Living Room Design Ideas Monochromatic Cushions on Grey Sofa

Keep the palette to four main colours

I’m a huge colour lover, so I understand that you can go too crazy with hue without realising. Assess your current living room design and figure out if there is too much competing colour. Limiting your palette to four main colours is a great way to ensure there’s consistency and flow in the space – and that the pieces are all connecting without causing visual confusion.

I always recommend having large, base pieces of furniture in neutral colours. They are often the pieces you’ll spend more money on, so if you keep them subdued in tone you can change up your accessories and soft furnishings seasonally without breaking the bank.

Coffee Table Styling Living room Design Ideas on TLC Interiors

Pull your sofa away from the wall

This is a great tip for those of you in a larger room, but it can often work wonders in smaller spaces too. The era of sofas pushed right up against a wall is over, so take a look at your current living room design and get experimenting.

By bringing sofas in from the wall and placing a rug in the middle of the room, you can often create a much more inviting nook. Ground the area with a rug, add a coffee table in the centre and place an armchair diagonally across from your sofa and you’ve created a conversation zone that will feel a million times cosier that a room with sofas stuck to walls.

Take some time to rework your vignettes

Shelves are the best pieces of furniture because they really allow you to constantly change up the look of your room without spending a buck.

Take a look at your current shelf and change up some of your vignettes. A really good looking shelf is not completely full of books. If you have a series of shelves that run vertically up the wall, or even a cube shelf with multiple holes, alternative between books and ornaments on each shelf (the video below will show you how).

This is a great way to add some interesting moments and to showcase your precious mementos in unexpected ways!

Grey Feature wall Living Room Design Ideas with Ceramic Pineapple

Think outside the box with your decor

The last piece of advice I can give – which the video below supports – is to mix and match your decor. Pop a tray on a coffee table and showcase a travel keepsake from years ago. Team it with something you purchased recently on a stack of books and then pop some flowers beside it.

A really well resolved room is full of these rich, interesting layers. So please, don’t be afraid to pull out old relics you thought may have been ‘off-trend’ and rock them in new and interesting ways.

I love nothing more than going into a home and seeing something I’ve never seen before, and asking where it’s from. It’s these moments that create conversation. So I ask you… what pieces in your home can you make conversation starters?

Check out the video below for more living room design tips!

This post includes images and/or videos of Metricon display homes and events, reproduced with permission. © Metricon Homes Pty Ltd 2016.


Chris Carroll

Outside of writing this blog, Chris is an interior designer, presenter and author. He’s also spent time on TV, on Channel 10’s Changing Rooms, as well presenting segments on Channel 7’s Sunrise and The Morning Show. If you’d like to book a design consult with Chris, you can find out more here

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I’m interior designer Chris Carroll, and at TLC Interiors we’re all about helping you create an amazing home without breaking the bank. It’s affordable designer style at its best, and we make the whole process easy and fun for clients & readers alike!

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