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Livable Living Rooms

Inspiration for a well-styled, well-appointed living room.

Make the floor extra cushy for lounging by throwing a layer of carpet padding under your area rug:

To bring extra seating and tons of well-hidden storage to the living room, Team DIY designer Pamela Porter recommended building a window seat under the bay windows:

The size of TV your room can accommodate depends on how far you sit from it:

Use a neutral background as the canvas for pops of bright color, clean lines, and funky patterns:

Even when you are creating a colorful living room, you don't need to completely swear off neutrals:

Position diffused, low-watt lighting, such as sconces with frosted glass shades or table lamps on dimmers, behind and slightly to the side of your TV:

Colors don't need to be bright or bold to make a big impact in a space:

A little bit of color goes a long way, especially when coupled with one-of-a-kind accessories:

Floor cushions add extra seating -- perfect for kids -- without introducing more furniture than your room can handle:

Every living space needs a table-height surface for homework and projects:

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A fully functioning office has been blended into this tight living space, too:

Arrange furniture for conversation:

  • Pamela Cross

    Because I have seven grandchildren all under the age of 10, I would never have my moms coffee table. While it worked in mom's house, because there was no living in the living room, it would not be any advantage to me. I love the ottoman/soft piece of furniture that can hold drinks with a tray underneath; or hold a little person who wants to talk to Granee. We live in all rooms in my house. My grandchildren have to 'run ,' of the house and most times that's in the literal sense. :) Love this furniture arrangement and the soft pieces in it. Thanks BHG.

Rather than precisely matching everything within your room (which can be daunting), give yourself a little breathing room and focus on coordinating:

Strong blocks of neutral color, such as blue-gray walls and a chocolate brown couch, are the perfect backdrop for lively patterns:

Fabulously bold patterned curtains dress up white walls and serve as the inspiration for this room's color scheme:

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If you already have a piece you love, use it as a starting point for a room makeover:

Red, white, and blue is a perennial favorite for cottage living rooms:

The pastel citron green on this living room’s walls and fabrics is countered by rustic browns, a light hue on the sofa, and the textural browns of the coffee table and rug to give the space a comfortable yet peppy vibe:

This pink room is sweet without being sticky! More colorful options:

Stacking accessories can add visual interest and contain the clutter:

Color can transform a blank-slate living room into a space filled with personality: