Living Room Decorating
by Jessica Ackerman
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The living room is typically one of the most common rooms in a home. It is a place for spending time with family and friends, and it is quite often the first area beyond the foyer that guests notice upon arrival. A well-decorated living room makes a grand first impression, and when it is not overdone, it feels comfortable, warm, and exceptionally inviting. With the following easy decorating tips and mirror tricks, you can transform a small living room into a space that feels more open, airy, and welcoming.
Repaint to Enlarge the Look of the Space
A dark area will look smaller than it actually is, even if it is spacious. A small living room that is dark will appear smaller than ever, but you can enlarge the look of the area with a coat or two of paint. Select light cool colors for walls, and if the ceiling is low, paint it white to create the illusion of height. To make the entire living room appear larger than it actually is, paint the ceiling the same light cool color as the walls.
Downsize Sofas and Chairs to Enlarge Available Floor Space
Overstuffed furniture is comfortable, but it is not ideal for furnishing a small living room. When striving to enlarge the appearance of a small space, relocate oversized furniture to a family room or a basement recreation area, and when sticking to a budget, search for gently used living room furnishings that will not overtake the space. Otherwise, downsize living room furnishings and make use of unnecessary items elsewhere in the home. Relocate a loveseat, a side table, or an extra chair or two to another area of the home. You will be amazed by how much larger the living room looks once unnecessary furnishings are no longer taking up valuable space.
Budget Side and End Table Suggestions
Solid wood or slate tile side tables and coffee tables are attractive in a spacious living room, but in a small living room, they make the area appear even smaller by covering valuable floor space. If you are shopping for a new or gently used coffee table and side tables for a small living room, opt for glass-topped tables to enlarge the look of the space. When the floor is visible through the tables, the furnishings will not reduce the appearance of the size of the room.
Budget Wall Decor Tips that Add the Illusion of Square Footage
Take a long look at the walls in your living room. If the walls behind the wall decor are barely visible and are clearly overdone, take everything down and select a few favorite pieces. Create a focal point on a single wall by choosing one large piece. Decorate around a single item such as a mirror or wall art with a pair of budget wall planters or candle wall sconces for a beautiful new look that will not appear cramped.
Budget Mirror Tricks
The addition of a large mirror is an affordable and stylish way to enlarge the appearance of a small living room. If possible, place a large wall mirror opposite a living room window. This will create the illusion of square footage by making the space lighter and brighter, and by providing another view of the outdoors, it will create an ever changing framed work of art. Wall mirrors are ideal for those who are decorating a living room on a budget since they can be found in many different styles and price ranges.
Lighten Window Coverings to Enlarge the Look of Living Space
When decorating a small living room on a budget, do not make the mistake of covering the windows with heavy drapery. Instead, enlarge the appearance of the space by hanging light window coverings and blinds that can be adjusted to control the level of lighting while providing privacy. Consider choosing sheers when shopping for living room window treatments. They are ideal for those sticking to a budget, and they dress up the windows without bringing down the overall look of the space.
Enlarge the Look of a Space by Brightening Dark Flooring
Dark flooring can be as dreary as dark walls, and besides appearing dismal, it naturally draws the walls inward, especially in a small space. The eyes are guided down to the flooring, and as a result, the living room will appear smaller and more constrictive than ever. A light colored area rug will lighten the appearance of the room and guide the eyes away from the flooring and out toward the open space.
When implementing all of the ways to enlarge the look of a small living room on a budget, the space will appear open, airy, and well-decorated. For the price of paint and a few embellishments, you can have a stylish living room that appears large and comfortable. The room that once looked small will look larger than ever, and it will become a space where family and friends want to spend time.
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