If you're like a lot families, you rarely use your living room. A few times a year, generally around the holidays, is when you living room might get a work out. But generally it sits empty while you and the kids congregate in the family room or den.
Instead of letting your living room collect dust, turn it into a fun space you and the whole family can enjoy. Or, if you need a place to get away, convert your living room into a relaxing retreat where you can unwind.
Here are some fun design options for taking your living room from stuffy and formal to warm and inviting:
Family-friendly library. This easy conversion makes your living room a great place to read books, help your kids with their homework, play games and enjoy some quality family time. Paint a neutral gray or cream on the walls, hangs some shelves and fill them with books and other family mementos. The shelving you choose depends on your aesthetic. For a more classic library look, choose one wall and build or buy shelving units that go from the floor to the ceiling. If you prefer a more modern vibe, use chunky, modern shelving and install only halfway up the wall.
Add a comfy throw and pillows to your living room couch, a footstool and plenty of lighting, and curl up with your favorite book. This could quickly become your favorite room in the house.
Art gallery. Put all that wall space to good use. Don't have an art collection? Create your own masterpieces or hang up some of the kid's drawings. To keep the space from looking cluttered, choose one wall that will showcase most of the art. Frame the pieces in similar frames and hang on the wall, keeping most of the art at or near eye level.
The art doesn't have to be hung straight across the wall, and it doesn't have to be the same size. Experiment by staggering works on the wall or grouping certain pieces together, and try highlighting a certain painting or drawing by hanging it on another wall, away from the group. The paint color you choose depends on your "art collection," but this is a great place to use fun, funky colors you may not use in any other room of your house.
Lounge. Depending on your circumstances, your living-room-turned-lounge can be family-friendly or adults only. Paint the walls a deep neutral color, then hang some patterned curtains to add a pop of color. Place a small round table in the center of the room and arrange a few club chairs around it. Hang a few wine racks on one wall with a serving space underneath to enjoy a true lounge atmosphere.
For the full effect, add some dim lighting, a wireless sound system, and a couple pieces of eye-catching art. Then pour yourself a glass of wine, put your feet up and relax.