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Layout Guide: Two Ideas for a Long, Narrow Living Room With a Fireplace

In our Layout Guides series, you’ll find layout solutions for rooms of all shapes and sizes. This week we set out to find two design solutions for a long, narrow living room layout with the added challenge of a fireplace.

The Space: A long, narrow living room with a fireplace

The Style: Rustic Southwestern

The Challenge: Creating a functional, uncrowded layout in a long, narrow living room design with a fireplace.

narrow living room design

There’s no other way around it—long, narrow living rooms are a design quandary for even the savviest decorators. Even a basic living room design requires a fair amount of design savvy to ensure that it functions well and fits everything you need. And if you are filling out a long, narrow space, you have some extra concerns to address.

When you’re designing a long, narrow living room layout, think about how you’d like to divide the space. Will you want to keep it open as one single space or divide it to have two distinct areas that flow into each other? What is the ideal layout for the functionality you need? Are you leaning toward cozy, lounge furniture or a more formal setup? It can be tricky to fit your furniture into a long room without overcrowding it—and a living room with a fireplace is even more challenging. Here we tackle a narrow living room with two totally different designs—take a peek and start brainstorming for your own space!

narrow living room designLayout Idea #1: Dual Purpose Living Room

Layout Idea #1 makes smart use of the space to create a dual-purpose living room. We sectioned the large space into distinct areas, which is a great way to maximize square footage if you have limited rooms in the house. The spaces include multiple conversation zones—the main sofa and living area, a cozy fireplace seating arrangement and a dining area. Guests can choose to kick back and cozy up by the fire or take a seat at the table and enjoy the beautiful view!

We love how this layout creates multiple zones for different uses. The intimate seating area near the fireplace is great for conversation while the seating table in the back of the space works for games/homework/crafts or as a more formal dining spot. The main focus of this layout is to break up the space to create functional and different seating arrangements that still feel cohesive and flow together.

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narrow living room designThe Key Elements:

Designing a long, narrow space is all about choosing furniture pieces that don’t overcrowd the space. The rattan chairs are the perfect size to flank the fireplace. They add cozy seating that is light and easily moveable—setting them across from the sofa also creates a warm conversation circle.

We went with the “Floating Sofa” setup, which places the sofa in the center of the room instead of up against a wall. This serves as another comfortable place to sit and it faces the chairs and fireplace for conversation and entertaining. This placement calls for a low profile sofa that divides the space into two zones without blocking the view. A round kitchen table adds additional seating and provides a place to do different activities while still being a part of the living room/conversation.

narrow living room designWill this narrow living room layout work for you? Yes if…

  • You need to maximize the use of a single living room/dining room space.
  • You like to have multiple conversations areas.
  • You want a table for games, homework, happy hour drinks, etc.

Layout Idea #2: Open Lounge

Our second layout makes the most of the big space by using the openness to create a lounge-like feel. It has lots of extra seating, making it a great layout for entertaining—guests can relax by the fireplace or on the large sectional sofa with plenty of poufs for seating galore. It also leaves a lot of floor space open for reading/games, etc.

This living room has a relaxed and luxurious lounge vibe in both distinct seating zones. You can have two separate areas to hang out, the sectional sofa and the fireplace seats, but they’re also open to each other and cohesive in style. The layout doesn’t interrupt the flow of walking through the space. The fireplace lounge area has chairs that are easy to slide over to the sectional area if you need. Either way, the sofa provides a  great area for large groups to lounge together.

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The Key Elements:

This living room looks great with the enormous “L” sectional that fills up the corner and maximizes seating. Pushed back against two walls, it creates a cozy corner without wasting any space! A furniture piece like this makes the room feel immediately inviting and also keeps a large space from feeling too sparse.

The armchairs flanking the fireplace are stylish and cozy, great for reading, intimate convos, and fireside warmth. Having another seating nook at the far end of the room means you can get a little privacy here while others hang out on the sectional. This living room layout also makes use of one of our favorite design tricks—area rugs! You can subtly “divide” the different seating zones by using rugs to visually delineate them. It divides space while keeping the design cohesive and the room extra cozy.

Will this living room layout work for you? Yes if…

  • You love to have friends over and entertain!
  • You live with kids/pets and want some open floor space.
  • Your fam likes a big space to sprawl out.
  • You like having more than one comfy space to kick back and relax.

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best living rooms 2019

Year In Review: The 17 Best Living Room Designs of 2019

best living rooms 2019We can’t believe that 2019 is almost over. To celebrate the end of another amazing year, we’re looking back at some of our best living room design ideas, which are the most popular rooms among Modsy customers!

Take a peek at some of the best living room designs we’ve put together in 2019, and see why we just can’t get enough of these spaces!

The Look: Perfectly California Casual

We’re starting with THE living room of the year. This Cali Casual living room was one of the most-popular Modsy designs of the year, and we can see why. It’s comfortable yet trendy, has a good neutral mix of patterns, textures, and materials, and it feels laid-back California but still family-friendly.

Why We Love It: It gets the California coastal blend of chic and chill totally right.

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2019 best living roomsThe Look: Desert Minimal

This Desert Minimal living room was the perfect introduction to the organic modernist style. With its cool and bright eclectic furnishings, earthy accents and materials, and edgy mid-century designs, this space definitely ranks high on our list of super-chic looks. If you want color without going too bold, this living room design is for you.

Why We Love It: It’s our idea of the luxe eclectic look perfected.

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The Look: Contemporary & Formal

Speaking of organic modern style, this contemporary living room painted in Sherwin Williams’s 2020 color of the year, Naval, offers a slightly formal take on the look. It’s a space that plays with neutrals and dusty blues in an elegant way that we didn’t expect. The sophisticated furniture arrangement and unique pieces also all came together in a balanced way.

Why We Love It: Formal doesn’t always mean traditional and this proves it!

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best living rooms 2019The Look: Lake House Modern

While we love the cozy cabin look to no end, this modern lake house living room offered an updated take on the style that instantly captivated us. It’s modern farmhouse style with a twist in all the right ways—organic patterns, natural materials, comfy foundation pieces. And it’s all done in a way that feels thoroughly modern.

Why We Love It: A cool take on rustic that keeps up the cozy cabin vibe is always a plus!

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The Look: Tropical Boho

If we’re talking over-the-top winner, this tropical boho living room takes the prize. It’s the ultimate haven for color and pattern lovers and there are textures galore. Think of it as the upbeat, very opposite cousin of Desert Minimal. With all the layers of poppy prints, punchy hues, and tactile materials, this is for all the maximalists out there!

Why We Love It: If there’s a room that captures our love of 2019’s maximalism trend, this is it.

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The Look: Traditional With a Glam Edge

Chesterfield sofa in a citrine velvet? Yes, please! This living room with a tad of trad showed us how a major velvet piece can really dial up the glamour in a room. We (and many of our customers) were instant converts of the idea! And when it’s done in this palette of ochres, yellows, and mustards, it’s just perfection.

Why We Love It: Velvet used in a big way like we’ve never seen before—and we’re all about it!

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The Look: Classic Farmhouse Elegance

Inspired by the Waco, Texas, lifestyle of Chip and Jo Gaines, this sophisticated living room is basically all our farmhouse style dreams come true. It’s classic rustic beauty. There are refined furniture and accents but the room still feels comfy and inviting, and the rustic elements (woven accents, natural woods, white upholstery) are beautifully balanced. 

Why We Love It: This is master class farmhouse decorating! It’s an elevated style that’s made to feel none too precious for family living.

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The Look: Mid-Century Boho

This curated living room captured a new way we saw the mid-century trend play out in 2019. It consisted of more earthy, organic, and boho elements all mixed in with the streamlined simplicity of mid-century. Looking at it again now, we’re certain this is a look that’s here to stay.

Why We Love It: Mid-Century Modern style with just the right amount of boho and organic touches. What’s not to love?

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The Look: Dreamy Rustic Warmth

We can probably talk about rustic living rooms painted in cozy neutral and white all day long. But we’ll always come back to this warm and bright living room that has everything we can’t get enough of. There are plenty of natural materials (the baskets and rugs), cool eclectic and boho details (the trunk), and the perfect comfy furnishings (sofa and pillows). You can find us here all winter!

Why We Love It: You can rarely go wrong with white on white on white in a rustic space.

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best living rooms 2019The Look: Laid-Back Industrial

Calling out city lofters! This industrial living room duplex design is urban apartment living goals. It’s livable and bright and the eclectic furniture mix warms up the sleek interior architecture in all the right ways. The minimal leather sofa instantly cozies up the room while the tribal patterned rug, graphic pillows, and black-and-white art add a cool edge.

Why We Love It: Cool, colorful, and collected, this is what city living dreams are made of!

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The Look: Global Chic

There’s no denying the simple-chic look of velvet in pastel shades. In this well-curated living room, a pink velvet sofa takes center stage amid a global mix of furniture and graphic contemporary art, which proves that big bursts of pastels can actually have gorgeous neutral appeal.

Why We Love It: The channeled back on the sofa is an elegant detail that truly shines here and we’re predicting it will be a huge trend in 2020!

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The Look: High-Contrast Cool

As much as we love a welcoming city loft, we’re all about this edgy, high-contrast space that gets the modern black, white, and grey palette right. The sectional arranged with the super-slender coffee table and black-leather armchairs make for a seating area that’s cool and comfy. And there are plenty of patterns and textures that add warmth and make this open, airy space feel incredibly cozy and livable.

Why We Love It: A modern space with a modern palette made warm. We’re there!

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The Look: Eclectic Rustic Comfort

Rustic with an eclectic furniture mix that adds tons of warmth, this cozy living room look scored high marks among our Modsy customers. It has all the right comfy foundational furniture pieces along with woven accents and farmhouse details that truly make a house a home.

Why We Love It: Relaxed but colorfully curated, this is family-friendly style upgraded!

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The Look: Nashville Bohemian

When we looked to Nashville for style inspiration, we happily found interiors with lots of eclectic art and classic furnishings. It’s also a classic yet boho look that showcases traditional furniture in shapes and colors that are totally unexpected. All to say, it’s a bright and bold look that we still find endlessly inspiring.

Why We Love It: A room with a colorful gallery wall always wins our approval for best living room.

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best living roomsThe Look: Bold Classic Elegance

One of our most-loved rooms from the year, this classic living room shows how layering texture on texture can make for a super bold and inviting look. Even though the large room is outfitted in mostly neutral and white, the natural materials and the playful pops of patterns help keep it feeling full and cozy.

Why We Love It: There’s just no arguing when pattern and texture add impact like this.

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The Look: Monochrome Chic

One room, one color can go in any direction, really. But this glamorous monochrome living room in shades of saturated green is far from one-note. The luxe furnishings manage to feel at once minimal yet bold. Also, green isn’t an easy color to decorate with, but here it’s layered in a way that feels chic and comfortable.

Why We Love It: Emerald green is a jewel tone with timeless appeal, so this is monochrome brilliance if you ask us!

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best living rooms 2019The Look: Curated Modern Farmhouse

The bright and curated modern farmhouse look was one of our top styles of 2019, and it’s obvious why. The look mixes all the best trends together in one room, from layers of natural textures to a mix of industrial and mid-century furniture to clean lines and cozy neutrals. This light-filled modern farmhouse living room sums it all up beautifully.

Why We Love It: The window panes, the round mirror above the stone fireplace, the perfect display cabinet. This is our modern farmhouse dreams come true!

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