Posted by Clive Braude on 23rd Aug 2016
If the kitchen is supposed to be the heart of the home, then your living room is the soul; it’s where you live, where you enjoy your morning coffee, where you read, and where your kids play. You’re free to be yourself and to let loose here.
Accessorizing the central hub of your home can be intimidating – you’ll probably want to make it a bit of a showpiece, displaying the best of what you’ve got to your potential guests, friends and family – yet, it has to remain livable, useable.
Adding accessories to your existing living room space is an easy and effective way to add your own personal touch of character and personality. It can be liberating to feel such a sense of confidence when you find yourself entertaining and your living space tells your guests everything they need to know about you.
Here are a few tips for transforming your living room with personalized accessories that you can substitute for drab and dull classics:
Start with a Rug
A great vintage rug can be the most powerful focal point of your reimagined living room. It can act as both a foundation, and as an accent for other strong pieces. A bold colourful Persian style rug can grab attention away from dated furnishings, giving life and a chic retro vibe to a bland room.
If your living room happens to be smaller, try a rug that contrasts the colour of your hardwood floors and features a tight diagonal design, or weave. The elongated lines will make your space feel and look larger, and will add a postmodern design element that will upcycle the rest of your living room.
Adding throw pillows to your sofa, love seat or set of big comfy chairs can add an element of colour and texture to your living room. Inexpensive and easily replaceable, pillows are a great way to begin your experimentation process when reimagining your room. Contrasting their colour with the colour of your furniture will help to break up the sightlines of the space, adding depth. The same ideals work for blankets to accent your couch or loveseat.
Add More Art
A great piece of art can help to define your space exponentially – and it doesn’t have to be a priceless portrait taken from a museum. The art you choose to adorn your walls says a lot about you and your family, adding personality and character to a space. It can be the framed doodles your kids gave you for your birthday, the music festival poster where you met your partner, or a prized oil painting. Anything goes.
A piece of art can help to frame a fireplace, or compliment a window and its natural light. It’s important to gauge the pieces you put up with the size of wall they’re going to live on – try to match the scope of a space with a piece of appropriate size. Use colour and texture to spice up a light coloured room. Consider putting together a gallery wall of contemporary black and white photography to become a focal point for your new furniture arrangement.
Make it Personal
What makes your house a home? Is it the colour of the walls, the size of your yard, the appliances in the kitchen? No – it’s the people you share it with. So why not decorate your home with fragments of your families’ personality so you can be constantly reminded of what and whom are truly important?
Check out design magazines and art blogs for tips on postmodern framing practices to boost the appeal of favourite family photos and scatter your selections all over the house.
Consider placing that family heirloom vase or stein in a glass box for a display to adorn your fireplace mantle, a snap from your wedding here, a family reunion group shot there, an old film negative of your ancestors blown up over there – it’s a process that will take some creativity and some time researching, but the satisfaction you’ll get from accessorizing your living room with photos and mementos of your loved ones will keep you smiling. They’ll help to remind you of who you are, where you’ve been, and who you keep close to you.
Accent Tables and Extra Seating
A living room is for living, and lots of the time – entertaining. Investing in two small end tables or accent tables to balance out your new couch will become the perfect spot for drinks, reading material and a lamp, or a small photo or two.
Accent tables and end tables serve the same function as a larger more expensive coffee table, but take up considerably less room, keeping your room feeling large. Pairing two end tables with a small coffee table is a great option, too. Contrast the colour and texture of your end tables to that of your furniture, or consider trying to match the hardwood floors for a warm flow upwards to the seating area.
Adding an extra set of chic foldable bistro chairs is perfect for impromptu dinner parties or weekend socials. Having available seating options serves as a great accessory for a budding living room design, and can be custom tailored to match your existing coffee or end tables, or hardwood floors.
Adding a narrow console table behind your loveseat or sofa adds another spot for reading materials, art pieces or decorative décor like candles or a tidy remote tray. They also help to make a smaller room larger, by pulling the furniture away from the walls.
Drapes Pack a Punch
A new set of drapes or curtains can introduce a powerful punch of colour and vibrancy to any room, and are an inexpensive way to add patterns or texture to a dull space. Keep in mind, if they’re plain or boring, they can blend into the walls and appear to be in the way, rather than as a thoughtful design accessory.
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