Room for living
Living rooms should be relaxing spaces that convey comfort. The choice of carpet, rugs, bookshelves, houseplants, side lights, wall pictures and tables is almost limitless. However, the atmosphere created in a living room is greatly dependant on the basics: the size of space, the style of windows, the colours of the walls and the height of the ceiling.
A large old room can handle generous furnishings, dramatic colours for the walls, and the window can be dressed – large folds of luxurious curtain – to create a homely feel. Small rooms such as those found in a contemporary new build call out for simplicity and often modern furnishings: practical, efficient and along the lines of Bauhaus ideals.
Most aspects of a room can be changed, even the shape of the space. Remove a wall to enlarge (seek the advice of a structural engineer if the wall is load bearing), or add a partition wall to reduce. Add, move, remove or replace fireplaces, radiators or even windows. To change the atmosphere of a room is an aesthetic choice, but the other issue is the budget. Don’t get too carried away on a small budget unless you want to create a stereotypical decorating TV programme look carried out in rooms all across the country!
Lighting drastically alters the feel of a room. Do you want a central contemporary or traditional chandelier, or will you introduce focused soft spot lighting?
What is the function of your living room? A library, an entertainment area?
Will the large areas of empty walls play host to your art collection? Is there a place for a cup of tea and the television? Where will you sit to entertain the children?
Colours chosen for the walls will unify the space. You may like the notion of an access wall finished in a different colour. A pale coloured room is like a canvas waiting to be filled with exciting shapes/furnishings adding a little drama to the space. If you want to show off your antique chair collection don’t let the wall colours clash with your prized collectibles.
The room can be divided to be multi-functional. A simple way to achieve this is through the placing of house plants or bookcases.
Most of all, create a space to relax, and live, in.