Make your living room design the best by avoiding these ten most common livingroom decorating mistakes. 

Mistake #1 Creating a rarely-used room.

Think about your needs to make sure you design a living room that will be used, loved, and enjoyed. In the past, living rooms were used for formal entertaining. Continuing this tradition sometimes results in a room that not used often. If this is the case for you, consider additional ways the living room could function, such as a cozy place to read, play a game, or a comfortable place for families to talk at the end of each day. 

Blue and white living room
Photo by Sidekix Media on Unsplash

Mistake #2 Not paying attention to scale.

It is crucial to select furniture that is in proportion to the room. A large, overstuffed sofa looks plush and comfortable, but it will overwhelm a small space. A sofa with a petite appearance would be a better choice and can even help to make it the room appear more spacious. 

Mistake #3 Creating a room you are afraid to use

It is imperative to choose the best fabrics for the use of the space. Be careful not to get caught up in the “pretty.” For pieces that will be well used, select high-performance fabrics that can withstand it all; children, pets, and wine spills. If the room gets a lot of substantial sun exposure, the fade resistance of the fabric becomes a factor. The good news is that there are many options available in high-performance fabrics that are both beautiful and durable. You don’t have to block off the living room with velvet ropes anymore.

Photo by DeMorris Byrd on Unsplash

Mistake #4 Forgetting the ceiling

All surfaces are game, even the ceiling. Make it contribute to your design scheme by adding trim, wallpaper, beams, or just by painting it a color other than white. Treating the ceiling adds drama and has a huge visual impact on the room.

Mistake #5 Hanging wall decor too high

The best placement for art and other wall decor is for the middle of the piece to be at the eye level of an average height person, which is 60″ off the floor. This height is standard for rooms with an eight-foot ceiling. If you have high ceilings, hang a few inches higher. So remember, If you are looking up, the artwork is too high.

Mistake #6 Missing the opportunity to use decorative trim

It’s all in the details! Think well-coordinated trims, decorative tapes, and nail heads to embellish drapery, pillows, and furniture. In the end, these little details add to the custom look and make a lasting impression.

Mistake #7 Not planning for different needs

Good design is flexible and can accommodate changing needs. Swivel chairs and furniture with casters can be moved quickly and easily. Ottomans can be stored under a sofa table for extra seating when needed. 

Cream living room
Photo by Minh Pham on Unsplash

Mistake #8 Not incorporating multiple types of lighting sources in your living room design

Incorporating multiple sources of lighting adds atmosphere and interest to a room. Recessed ceiling lights provide balanced illumination. Lamps add visual appeal and bring light to specific areas. Sconces and other forms of accent lighting highlight artwork or displayed items in a space. 

#9 Making every piece the star

One of my favorite design expressions is, “not every piece has to be the star.” The pieces in your room should not all be competing for your attention. Pick one or two that are unique to be highlighted and let all other selections play a supporting role. 

Photo by Sidekix Media on Unsplash

#10 Not personalizing the room

Your living room should reflect you and the others that live in your home. Don’t get so caught up in creating a magazine-worthy living room that you overlook adding your personal effects. Incorporate the things you love, and what makes you happy. After all, making it a home that is perfect for you is what it is all about!

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Published by

Barbara Rose

Hi I am Barbara Rose. I am an Interior Designer and I started design2bhappy to inspire others to think of Interior Design as more than just creating a beautiful home. It is about living comfortably, while being surrounded by things you love. It is about creating an environment that we feel good in while providing a sanctuary to counter- balance the stress that life can throw at us. This blog is aimed at helping others achieve that "there is no place like home" feeling.

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