Porch.com Editor-in-Chief Anne Reagan shows how to create a serene living room in a white color palette, and some tips to accommodate real living with a light color scheme – it can be done, even with kids!
The living room has traditionally been the most public room in our home. It’s the room we welcome guests, host parties, and continue our family traditions. Not all homes have formal living rooms; in fact, your living room might also be called the family room and play host to video game playing or lazy Sunday mornings. No matter how small your space or budget, you can create a room that’s full of warmth, comfort, and personality.
See all of Anne’s picks here on her Styleboard.
Lighting is key
Having great lighting is key to achieving both a comfortable environment and a multi-functional space. The best lighting will come from multiple sources in the room and will be set on dimmers so that the amount of lighting can be easily controlled. Make sure that your lighting illuminates all corners of the room – a dark corner will make the room look smaller. Lampshades will help diffuse the light and will be more flattering on the face. Pro tip: It’s easy to increase your lighting by adding floor lamps, table lamps or sconces. Make sure no one trips over the cords by placing them under a rug or out of the way of foot traffic.
Know your textiles
Think you can’t have a gorgeous white (and functional) living room in your home? Although the living room is traditionally the place where more formal or “fancy” furniture lives, you don’t have to sacrifice convenience. Look for easy-care fabrics or textiles with patterns. Or purchase durable upholstery (like leather or faux suede) and dress them up with more delicate pillows and throws. Mixing patterns and designs is easy when you stick within the same color family. Pro tip: If you can, ask for a fabric swatch or sample and practice spilling and cleaning them. This is the best way to test a fabric’s durability.
Show off your personality
The living room is the perfect space to show off your family’s personality and style. Because foot traffic is usually low in this room, feel free to display precious mementos or more delicate objects. Glass decorative objects or shiny ceramics are perfect as they also bring more reflective light into a space. This is mostly a room for sitting and relaxing, so focus on furniture that is comfortable and encourages conversation. Pro tip: Look for furniture that can function in multiple ways. A coffee table that can store extra blankets, for example, or an ottoman that can be used as extra seating, will make your living room extra functional.
— Anne Reagan, porch.com editor-in-chief