Hands up - who watches those American house reno shows, brims over with ideas only to have a rude awakening when you remember that your living room is just a fraction of the size...✋ We hate to break it to you but that 22 seat corner sofa is pure fantasy!

For us Brits, especially the city dwellers amongst us, space is a premium. Even when we're lucky enough to have a separate living room to retreat to outside of our main living space, it's channelling 'snug' vibes rather than 'home cinema'.

But never fear, we are here! Here are our 16 top tips to make the most of your little lounge.

 

1. Stick with same palette 

small living room ideas

Image credit: @shelbygirard

When deciding on a colour scheme for your small living room, try to stick within the same colour palette so that your eye isn't constantly being broken up which will only emphasise its tiny proportions. 

Now this doesn't mean you can't go bold with colour in a small room (more on that later!) But stick to either cool tones or warm.

 

2. Get the scale of your sofa spot on

sofa for small living roomImage credit: @from_house_to_home_84

In living rooms of every size, it's very important to get the scale of your sofa spot on. Let's pretend that you even managed to fit a ginormous sofa through your door frame - it would only serve to make the room feel even smaller as the proportions would be completely off. 

Before you make the purchase, make sure you measure up.  But just because you can fit it in, doesn't mean you should! To get an idea of how it will feel in the room, lay boxes out to represent the new sofa and live with it for a few days. 

Struggling to choose a sofa? Check out our dedicated guide.

 

3. Disguise your TV (as much as possible)

small living room ideas with tv

Image credit: Jess Rose

TV's are a necessary evil so there's no sense in trying to pretend they don't exist! Particularly in a small living room, they can stick out like a sore thumb! There are some clever tricks to help your TV blend into the background. 

You can opt for dark colours on the walls so that the TV isn't such a stark contrast against it. You can also frame it within a gallery wall which stops it from being such a focal point as your eye is then drawn to the pictures beside it. 

 

If you'd like help getting the most from your small living room, book a FREE chat to start your transformation:

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4. Paint tricks for small living rooms

small living room ideas

Image credit: Matthew Williams

There are a few paint tricks you could use that help to give the illusion of space. By painting the hallway or adjoining room a darker shade, when you walk into your living room you will instantly get a feeling of space.

Another paint trick is to use the same colour on your woodwork as your walls. This will give the illusion that your walls are taller and longer.

You could even take this a step further and paint your ceiling as well!

 

5. Don't dismiss pattern

how to decorate a small living room

Image credit: Future PLC/ Katya De Grunwald

Did you believe that wallpaper would make your living room feel smaller? Wrong! Many prints can actually trick the eye to make it seem like there are hidden depths beyond, making the room feel larger. Any excuse for a beautiful floral print, I say!

 

6. Dual purpose furniture

small side tables for living room

Image credit: Urban outfitters

In small spaces, every item of furniture you put in there needs to be thought through and purposeful. Why have a coffee table that's just a coffee table when you could have a coffee table that's a coffee table AND storage? 

 

f you'd like help getting the most from your small living room, book a FREE chat to start your transformation:

BOOK A FREE CALL 

 

7. Think vertically

small living room ideas

Image credit: Lizzie Green/ Popixdesigns

When floor space is a premium, look for any opportunity to lift your furniture off the floor and put it on the walls instead! Instead of a bulky shelving unit, hang shelves on the walls instead - you get the same amount of storage but gain back precious floor space. 

This applies to lower-level lighting too - we all love a floor or table lamp but going for a wall-mounted option instead will free up space. You don't always need an electrician either - there are plenty of plug-in wall light options out there. 

 

8. Just one feature wall

cozy small living room decor

Image credit: Haneen's Haven

In a small space, it can quickly feel claustrophobic if there's too much asking for attention as your eye doesn't know where to rest. Creating a clear focal point to draw you in is essential for rooms of any size but in a small one, try to scale it back. Pick just one wall to be the real show stopper, whether that's with wallpaper or a gallery wall

 

9. Replace your door with a pocket or sliding one

small living room ideas

Image credit: Etsy

Does your living room have that fun quirk where you open the door and it bangs straight onto the sofa behind it? Normal swing doors prevent you from putting furniture anywhere near them which takes up valuable floor space in a small living room. 

If your budget allows, consider installing a pocket door instead so that the door disappears into the wall when open. This also has the added advantage of giving the illusion that the room flows into the adjoining one, particularly if the floor finish is the same. 

If your budget doesn't allow for this, or you don't fancy the disruption, you can hang a barn style sliding door instead. 

 

If you'd like help getting the most from your small living room, book a FREE chat to start your transformation:

BOOK A FREE CALL 

 

10. Go big on the rug

small living room rug

Image credit: Pinterest

Don't skimp on the size of your rug in your small living room! Choose the biggest rug possible as it will mean that the floor isn't visually broken up, helping it feel more spacious than it really is.

 

11. Choose floating or slim furniture

small table for living room

Image credit:  Chris Nook

Steer clear of boxy furniture that takes up lots of precious floor space. If it's not possible to mount it on the wall, choose furniture with slim legs. If you can see more of the floor, the room will feel more spacious.

 

12. Declutter

small living room chairs

Image credit:  These Four Walls

This seems an obvious one but it's so often forgotten - having too many things in a room will make it feel cluttered and claustrophobic. Take everything out then only put back things that you really need or love.

Remember the earlier point about the scale of your sofa? This applies to the other furniture in the room as well as your decorative bits and bobs - an enormous vase will only serve to emphasise how small the rest of the room is so find a home for it in another room instead!

 

f you'd like help getting the most from your small living room, book a FREE chat to start your transformation:

BOOK A FREE CALL 

 

13. Go bespoke to make use of every inch

small living room layout

Image credit:  Purdom's Bespoke Furniture

If you're in need of extra storage, but you're worried that adding more furniture will clutter up the room, consider going bespoke instead.

Bespoke fitted furniture is designed to fit into the quirks of your room so that you get maximum storage while taking up minimal space. Also, by painting them the same colour as the walls, they will disappear, unlike a bulky shelving unit!

 

14. Light up every nook and cranny

small living room lights

Image credit:  @ourlistedhome

Make the most of the natural light you have by having sheer curtains or blinds so that you still have some light even when you want a bit more privacy.

A carefully considered artificial lighting plan is essential. Layer in lighting around the room making sure that every nook and cranny is lit up - having portions of your room in the dark certainly won't make it feel any bigger!

Watch our video with lighting pros houseof for more living room lighting tips. 

 

14. Use reflective materials

small living room ideas

Image credit:  Fifi McGee

It's an oldy but a goody - mounting mirrors on the wall will instantly make the room appear larger.

Using reflective materials in your furniture will also help, such a metallic side table which will help to bounce the light around the room.

 

16. Embrace the cosiness!

cozy small living room decor

Image credit:  @houselust

So what if your living room is on the small side! It's much easier to create a comfy, cosy vibe in a smaller space, so embrace it! 

Paint those walls a moody deep hue, layer in lots of blankets and cushions then add warm, ambient low-level lighting and you'll have yourself a living room that will turn those American's with their cathedral-like living rooms green with envy!

 

Need help getting the most from your small living room? Book your room design today from just £395:

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