6 tips to make your living room feel cosy and inviting
New homeowners are often faced with the issue of making their property feel liveable and cosy, which can be a challenge when you are neither inspired, nor do you have the necessary know-how to style your space. A good way to tackle this issue would be to start by giving character and personality to your living room, the area that tends to be the centre of all homes. The majority of homes, especially landed properties and condominiums, are based around open-plan living and dining spaces. Here are things to consider.
PLAN THE LAYOUT
Ensure that the layout of the room is conducive to entertaining, and that it’s more than just a space for two persons facing a TV screen. Focus on creating a layout that encourages interaction among the inhabitants. Ensure that the arrangement feels comfortable, before moving on to decorate the space. A sectional or three-seater sofa is ideal for positioning groups of people so they can interact with one another, but such furniture items can be a tough fit for a small living room. If that’s the case, look towards enhancing the atmosphere with mood lighting. You’ll be surprised by how ambient lighting helps to facilitate conversation among those present. The following is a list of items to consider when styling your living room.
X-bench or small ottoman
Small coffee tables that vary in shape, or a large coffee table
Indoor palm tree, to create a tropical atmosphere and to place at odd corners
Living areas in condominium apartments are usually small. The space can be enlarged by dressing the verandah, so that it becomes an extension of the living room. Make sure to leave some money in your styling budget for large planters with star jasmine which flowers all year round. Top it off with battery operated lights to highlight the greenery and create mood lighting in the evenings.
SCENT IS IMPORTANT
Every home has its own smell which is a reflection of the homeowner’s character, as it’s a function of his or her preference. Don’t neglect to light a scented candle in the evening. The evening is a time to unwind, relax and recharge, so opt for soothing scents, such as lavender or lemongrass, to help you ease into the mood.
The wall behind the sofa must have something on it. You don’t have to wait to find the perfect art piece. Use black and white photographs of your family (enlarged to a suitable size) or some hand-coloured prints to create a statement wall.
DON’T FORGET THE COFFEE TABLE
A coffee table, no matter the size of the room or whether you have small children, need to be dressed, otherwise its presence feels heavy and cold. It doesn’t need to be cluttered, but a few key items of varying heights will do the trick, for instance:
Faux orchid or real flowers in a bud vase
Coffee table book or stack of magazines
Box to hold remote controls
Tray to anchor the pieces
If you don't have the space, consider two square or three round tables of different sizes. Use nickel or brass finishes, or textured sides, to add interest.
MORE ON OPEN-PLAN KITCHENS
Kitchen countertops should be treated as though they are side buffet stations or a console. An easy way to jazz up the space would be to add a series of glass jars with limes or lemons, or place two large glass vases with fresh flowers on either end of the kitchen bench. This leaves space to use the countertop, but also dresses it for the evenings and when not in use.