There’s no doubt we’ve all been spending more time indoors over the last year. And we’ve realised how important it is to create a space that actually feels like home. You want the good vibes, and the relaxing times. So it makes sense you want to create the lounge of your dreams. Read on for how to get decorating.
With so much inspiration out there (we’re looking at you, Insta feed), it’s easy to learn what you like, and how to put it all together. Want to find your style? It’s likely to come under one of the following:
For classic interiors, think member’s club chic: an eclectic, vintage-inspired space with Art Deco references. Velvet is key, updated in clean lines and soft silhouettes. When it comes to colour, a rich palette of navy, blush pink and green is cut with fresh white and grey, and accented with metal details. Lighting is soft yet formal, in bold pendant shapes and curved glass shades.
A Scandinavian home starts with a calming canvas of white and grey. Find inspiration in the Nordic landscape – think natural materials like leather, wood, wool and linen, and smooth, clean shapes. Emphasise natural light where possible, adding multiple light sources where not. Airy, welcoming and warm – there's a reason Scandi's so popular.
In a retro interior, anything goes. An eclectic mix of materials highlight the optimism of the era and the freedom of expression. Think wood detailing, luxe metallics and super-soft textiles. An earthy colour palette pops with rich blues and blush pinks. Pattern, texture and personality, all in one place.
The modern home is all about understated luxury, combining form, function and high-end design. Expect to see stone, metal and leather executed in linear silhouettes with smooth, curved edges. Look up to see statement lighting, and finish with well-considered accessories and clean, crisp textiles. Stick to a sophisticated palette of grey, blush and forest green.
For industrial decor, we're restoring to factory settings. Think airy, loft-like spaces, heavy metals and dark stained woods. Mix in pop culture and arty references, and you've got utilitarian pieces with wit and attitude. City slickers and urban dwellers, this is one for you.
The quickest and easiest (well, for some) way to change how a room feels is to paint, or repaint, the walls. For example if you’re a fan of a crisp, white interior, an off-white might bring more warmth to your space. The subtle cream tone will help you incorporate other furniture colours, and it won’t feel like you’re living in a well-lit gallery space – even if your new print deserves an audience. It’ll add depth, and remove any harshness in the room.
The paint colours of the moment? Pastels. Do we even need to mention Millennial pink? Soft grey, sage green and even dusky terracottas create a warm, earthy backdrop that’s effortlessly stylish. Fresh perspectives? You got it.
For a bolder approach, try choosing one wall to be the centre of attention. Pick where you’d like to create a gallery wall, an eye-catching pop of colour, or somewhere you can highlight the new sofa you just bought. Think impactful, vibrant colours, multiple prints and pictures or striking patterned wallpaper – just make sure it goes with the rest of the room.
Another tip? Look up for inspiration – the ceiling is another canvas. If your high ceilings leave your living room drowning in the excess space, try painting it a darker colour – this will instantly make your room feel balanced. Space on the smaller side? Paint the ceiling and the walls the same shade – the uninterrupted colour takes away any harsh lines and gives the feeling of space.
Sticking to fewer furnishings is critical to keep the space comfortable and uncluttered. Choose pieces with a smaller footprint and slimmer frames, which will save you space without compromising on comfort. To maximise the functionality of your living room, make the swap: use small stools as extra seats, replace a bulky coffee table with a stack of nesting tables, or consider a big sofa for a loveseat. L-shaped sofas also help cash in on every centimetre, freeing up space elsewhere.
Having less furniture doesn’t mean you need to keep the room bare – this is where accessories and lighting come in. Bring in patterned, colourful pillows and textured throws and blankets to cosy up your movie night. A large rug can also help to structure spaces – set the stage for your seating area with something striking (and eliminate any cold feet).
Mirrors are a great way to make the place feel bigger – choose a large one or a set of smaller designs. They’ll create the illusion of more light and space – we’d hang opposite a window to make the most of the effect.
Accent lighting is the key to adding extra impact – choose something bold for a statement ceiling pendant, or a feature floor or table lamp to bring in lots of fun, for not a lot of effort. Want something more low-key? Pick a style that suits you, whether that means frosted glass, brass, marble or wood. When you’re redoing the room, lighting is one of the easiest things to help create your desired vibe.
The best way to breathe life into a small living room is populating it with plants. Greenery great and small can become focal points next to the sofa, by the window or perched on a shelf. Choose a few large, or a mix of different sized plants to bring the outside in. (Just promise us you’ll keep up with the watering.)