Often considered one of the most important spaces in a home, the living room is a place to embody the perfect design that allows you to seamlessly relax, socialize, and enjoy entertainment with family or guests. Whether you enjoy hosting, using the living room as more of a quiet space, or you’re looking for a cozy, comfortable space decked out with the latest smart tech, we’re here to walk you through the process of how to go about choosing design features for your living room. 

Living Room Decorating Ideas
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Start with functionality

While there’s no such thing as one-size-fits-all when it comes to designing and decorating your living room, there are some key elements of design that can be emphasized once you establish its function. “Family room” and “living room” are regularly used interchangeably, while many modern homes encourage a multi-purpose space based on an open-plan or open-concept design. 

Living Room Designs

A more traditional living room 

Typically more of a formal space, a living room can sometimes be the place in which you do the least living. A more traditional living room will usually serve as an area to welcome and entertain guests, unlike a family room where comfort and utility reign supreme. This type of living room doesn’t usually feature a TV, and is instead accessory-heavy and showcases style through elegant décor.

Bear in mind traditional isn’t another word for dated or boring! Perhaps a more appropriate word is “timeless”. A key tip to remember is your sofa and feature rug are the anchors of this type of setup and set the tone. A classic sofa shape can be modernized by its colour and fabric, while traditional patterned wallpaper can be made more contemporary with a modern shade. Artwork with landscapes, still life, or more current art in elaborate frames will also help tie the room together.

Traditional Living Room Ideas

A family room

Given this communal space will be where you, your family, and friends lounge, factoring in a TV and other tech to a family room, as well as incorporating multiple textures (for both furniture and accessories) is a great way to make it feel family friendly. 

Consider having a large rug to anchor the space, with a sectional sofa opposite the TV, while a coffee table is framed with inward-facing chairs to create a sense of intimacy where conversations can take place. Curved furnishings and softer lines also help create a more welcoming space for all the family, in addition to warm, ambient lighting. Display your creativity through decorative lamps and a feature wall of clustered artwork, or of course, family photos! (And if you need help hanging a gallery wall, we have you covered.)

Family Room

A hybrid multifunctional living room

Free-flowing living room spaces are a common hallmark of modern homes and aim to seamlessly achieve the best of both a family and traditional living room, and this is where creating defined zones comes in. Zones allow furnishings, paint colours, and wood finishings to vary, though there should be some connection so the room flows through the repetition of the colour scheme, patterns, or fabrics used. 

Multifunctional Living Room
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The fundamentals

Being confronted with an empty room or space can be pretty intimidating. One of the initial questions you may ask yourself is how to make it both functional and aesthetically pleasing. We’ve got some tips to help make the task less daunting!

Living Room Aesthetics

Find the focal point

Many living rooms will already have a focal point like a large window or fireplace, but if not, a centre point needs to be created. TVs are often what draws our eye in living rooms, but statement pieces like large mirrors, artwork, and built-in cabinetry also do the job well. Incorporating curtains and accent walls that play around with colours, patterns, and textures also work, as well as sizable furniture—such as large sofas and storage cabinets—if your space allows it. Once the focal point has been determined, you can choose design elements to complement the area.

Focal Point in Family Room


Regardless of its functionality, there should always be a space dedicated to having conversations. This means, to an extent, sofas or armchairs should face each other. Larger rooms benefit from having more than one discussion area, and sectional “L” shaped sofas are a great way to maximize seating and proximity in smaller spaces. Small spaces also benefit from lower furniture as it doesn’t impede on sightlines  and creates a more open-concept feel.

While symmetry isn’t the goal, be mindful of not overloading one side of the room with too much furniture. In the same vein, resisting the urge to push furniture against the walls will help maintain this sense of balance and add to how intimate the room feels.

Living Room Furniture Tips

Colour schemes

Clever colour choices will create the illusion of expansion in smaller spaces and you have a chance to get creative in larger spaces. If you’re leaning towards a monochromatic colour scheme, this can easily be spruced up with accents of bright colour and layered textures like wicker and leather, as well as plants to add life and colour.

Colour hacks for Living Room

Or, you can keep your living room warm and welcoming with soft pastels, earthy, or neutral tones, shown in the image above. 

Bold Colours for Family Room

Bold colours like red and shades of berry, shown in the image above,  also add warmth, as they have versatile hues which help with pairing accessories.  

Living Room Colour Patterns


In what is likely a multi-functional space, the ideal living room lighting is bright enough for working, able to create a relaxing atmosphere for lounging and also sets the scene and ambience for movie watching and entertaining. 

Living Room Lighting Ideas

In addition to allowing natural light to flood into the room obstruction-free, a combination of ceiling lighting, wall lighting, and floor lamps are all great options to ensure you cover the foundational types of lighting, such as task, ambient, and mood lighting.

Home Design
Photo by Sidekix Media on Unsplash

When choosing your living room aesthetics, it boils down to how the room will reflect your own individual style and how it will meet your comfort and functionality expectations. Once these expectations are set, it will be much easier to create a cohesive design look to bring your space together!  

Courtesy: realtor.ca

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