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Design Challenge: One Living Room, Three Budgets

We’re going to start by stating the obvious: furniture is expensive. (Raise your hand if you had sticker shock the first time you saw the price for a sofa or bed frame!) But it also happens to be one of life’s little necessities. And if you’re getting your first apartment, living solo for the first time, or buying your first home and upgrading to more “grown-up” furniture, it can definitely feel overwhelming to figure out how to furnish your home and still afford to pay your bills and buy groceries.

Many of our Modsy clients are unsure how to think about budget and what to expect when starting a design project. How much does it cost to furnish a whole room? If you’re buying furniture over time, where do you start and what can wait? How do you make your space livable without it being fully furnished? It’s enough to make your head spin! So, we tapped one of our top designers to show us how she’d decorate one room with three different budgets.

Our hope is that this exercise will show you how far different budgets can get you when designing a room from scratch, as well as give you some practical living room design ideas. Of course, not everyone is starting from scratch—perhaps you’re starting with an existing sofa or decorating around a dining room table. But to level the playing field and show you as accurately as possible what it takes to design a full room, we’re starting with nothing but an empty room!

With some smart design choices and a couple of insider hacks, a Modsy designer can help you make the most of any budget. Read on to see how far $3,500, $10,000, and $20,000 will get you when designing a living room.

The Before

Here’s a little context before we get started: The room we’re designing is a 19’x17’ living room with a fireplace. Our designer’s main priorities for the space were to offer the functional basics and a conversational layout, with as much seating, storage, and surfaces as possible for each budget.

Design #1: Living Room With a $3,500 Budget

With a $3,500 budget, you’re just getting the bare necessities. When you’re starting with an empty living room, prioritizing function is key. So, we started with the living room essentials.

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What You Get

  • A Simple Sofa: For a budget-friendly sofa, we opted for a comfortable but less expensive option. Though it’s a fabric-upholstered sofa (made in a durable vinyl), it has a faux leather look which we like. The single bench seat cushion gives the sofa a sleek but simple look. It has smaller dimensions than the average sofa, being shorter and less deep, which helps keep the price point lower.
  • Basic Accent Furniture: The simple accent chairs, side table, coffee table, and floor lamp help fill out the function in this space. They offer a bare minimum for surface space and seating and are all 100% focused on functionality. But that doesn’t mean they’re lacking in style! Small details—whether the shape, material, or finish make them still feel like thoughtful pieces within the space.
  • A Synthetic-Fiber Rug: Why are rugs so expensive? Size and material are huge factors. So, we opted for a rug with slightly smaller dimensions and made of synthetic fibers (since synthetic-fiber rugs tend to be more affordable than their natural fiber counterparts). This rug is made of a combo of polyester and polypropylene and woven in a beautiful, global-inspired pattern that makes it look more expensive than it is. It provides necessary floor protection and helps to “zone” the floating furniture, but the material it’s made out of means it won’t last forever. (AKA, this isn’t an investment piece but rather a rug that does the trick for now!)
  • Minimal Decor: There wasn’t a ton of money left in the budget for decor—but we didn’t want to leave this living room feeling bare. So, one statement piece of wall art above the fireplace (a beautiful landscape painting) adds color and a touch of intentionality to the space. A basket next to the sofa adds a touch of hidden storage, and a few throw pillows and a plant help finish the look.

The Strategy: Function With a Few Frills

This is a “no-frills” living room design. When decorating on a budget, you’re getting the basics and not much else. But we didn’t skimp on functionality. Even with a smaller budget, we were able to fill out the space with essential furniture and accessories while leaving plenty of room to add more over time.

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Design #2: Living Room With a $10,000 Budget

With a $10,000 budget, you’re able to upgrade some of the basic pieces of furniture to add a little more luxury to your space. You can also go beyond the essentials and fill out the living room with a bit more decor.

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What You Get

  • Upgraded Essentials: At this budget, you can spend a bit more on a sofa and accent chairs—leaning more toward investment pieces than shorter-term placeholders. (Check out our guide on how much to spend on a sofa if you’re waffling between a mid-range and more luxurious sofa.) We swapped out the vinyl sofa for a leather one with brass legs. Not only is it a material upgrade, but it’s also longer and deeper, offering more room to kick back and relax. The accent chairs are also more substantial; this design is more comfortable to sit in for long periods of time.
  • Additional Seating: We added two poufs in front of the fireplace to add seating and visual depth to the room. Bonus: they can easily be moved around as needed. We also swapped out the coffee table for a tufted ottoman, which can be used for additional seating as needed.
  • A Larger Rug: Rugs get more expensive the larger they are; so it makes sense that with a smaller budget you likely have to go with a smaller rug. But with more to spend, you can upgrade the size. You’re able to cover more floor space—which, with this floating furniture layout, allows the whole furniture set-up to expand and feel more spacious.
  • Layered Lighting: For lighting in this living room design, we started with a larger and more decorative floor lamp, making a grander visual statement in the space. But we also added additional lighting—including a table lamp on the console, candles on various surfaces, and a beautiful beaded chandelier to give the space more layered lighting.
  • More Accent Furniture and Decor: One of the most notable upgrades to this living room with a $10,000 budget is the addition of a credenza. This not only offers added storage to the living room, but it also offers a styled surface for lighting and decor, and helps fill in the wall alcove on one side of the fireplace. Beyond the credenza, we were also able to add more decorative accents, as well as a large tree which adds texture and color to the space.

The Strategy: Upgraded Essentials

The name of the game at this price point was giving the essential furniture and decor an upgrade. Larger pieces made of higher quality materials will last longer and give this living room design a more elevated look and feel. The addition of a few extra pieces also helps fill out the space.

Design #3: Living Room With a $20,000 Budget

With a $20,000 budget, get to go way beyond the essentials to a fully furnished and styled living room (with upgraded furniture and decor, of course). And with extra furniture, you now have a perfect set-up for larger entertaining and family hangouts.

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What You Get

  • Two Sofas: We loved the sofa from the previous design—so we decided to level up this living room design with two of them! Having a pair of matching sofas facing each other (especially ones finished in such beautiful, high-quality leather) really elevates the design of this living room.
  • Extra Accent Seating: Rather than ditch the pair of accent chairs from the previous designs, we simply swapped out the poufs and placed them in front of the fireplace instead. This offers more substantial seating options, rounding out a robust conversational seating area. The tufted ottoman coffee table or bench behind the sofa could also be used as additional seating when needed.
  • Larger, Layered Rugs: When a budget allows for it, we love layering rugs to add visual depth to a room and give it a stylized and finished feel. And that’s exactly what these layered rugs do for this living room. The top rug also adds beautiful color and pattern to the space—and it’s handwoven by artisans in India, in a durable but lightweight cotton (a meaningful upgrade from power-loomed, synthetic-fiber rugs).
  • Two Display Cabinets: With a larger budget, we could afford to upgrade the one credenza to two display cabinets that frame in the fireplace. This helps utilize the empty space that’s created on either side of the fireplace while adding lots of space for displaying decor and oodles of storage.
  • Additional Accent Furniture: To help fill out the space and give it a more polished look, we added a console table behind the sofa on the window side of the room, offering an extra surface for accent lighting and decor. And a bench behind the other sofa adds some visual depth and a warmer welcome when you enter the space (rather than having a bare sofa back be the first thing you see when you walk into the room).
  • Plenty of Decor and Accents: This budget allowed us to fill out the room with tons of decor and accents. We were able to style all the surfaces—from the coffee table and console to both of the display cabinets. We were also able to swap out the landscape print above the fireplace with a custom piece of artwork. Additionally, we added layered window treatments—building on the roman shades with silk curtains.

The Strategy: Add the Bells and Whistles

Feel like you’re seeing double? That’s because you are—with two sofas, two accent chairs, two display cabinets, and two rugs, there’s simply MORE in this space. And the pieces that are here are high-quality investment pieces that will last for years to come. But we didn’t stop at more furniture. With a $20,000 budget, we were also able to add in all the bells and whistles—fully styling this living room with decorative accents to give it a finished look.

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My Modsy Story: Creating a Design That Captured the Beauty Of Our Home

When Alberto and his partner moved their family into a Manhattan duplex, they loved the airy feeling of the space and wanted to make sure their decor complemented it perfectly.

 

Homeowner: Alberto A.

Spaces: Living Room and Bedroom

My Style: Mod Enthusiast

The Backstory

When Alberto and his partner bought a duplex in Manhattan, they were excited for their family to have a bright and open space in the city.

“We had just bought the duplex and we wanted to make sure we kept the open feeling that we fell in love with. But we struggled to find furniture that would fill the open floor plan and maintain that sense of openness while also making space feel inviting.” –Alberto

The Design Dilemma

Alberto and his partner wanted to find decor that captured the airy vibe of their family’s new home, but they worried about investing in foundational furniture they hadn’t seen in the space beforehand.

“We wanted to try the furniture in the setting before we actually bought it so we would be comfortable with size and scale.” –Alberto

The Modsy Moment

Working with a Modsy designer allowed Alberto and his partner to see their open concept living room and their bedroom with decor that not only fit in the space but also complemented the open feel of their house—creating two inviting rooms with an eclectic-meets-mid-century-modern vibe the couple loved for themselves and their family.

“Modsy was an essential service when it came to decorating our home. We wanted to know the scale of each item in the design and how those items worked together and seeing our room in 3D allowed us to do that. We also loved that the 3D designs we received were filled with items from popular brands like West Elm and Design Within Reach.” –Alberto

The Real Results

Now that Alberto and his family have a home filled with decor they love, they are excited for when they can entertain again.

“Our Modsy designs work great in our space. We love having people over to show it off and can’t wait to entertain again.” –Alberto

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My Modsy Story: Creating a Joyful Space With Modern Style

Lindsay and her husband had a bold vision for their new family home. They just didn’t have the design skills to bring that vision to life on their own—so they decided to give virtual interior design a try.

 

Homeowner: Lindsay B., Stay-at-home mom

Spaces: Living-Dining Room

My Style: Modern

The Backstory

Lindsay and her family were excited to move into a new house and fill it with joyful memories and decor. But they were a bit overwhelmed at the thought of filling the space.

“When my husband and I moved into our dream house, we were so excited to make it our home. We knew we wanted our living-dining room to be a comfortable yet stylish hangout for us and the kids. We both imaged a space full of high-contrast color, with clean mid-century-modern lines, and a dash of stylish whimsy. But besides an heirloom dining room set, we were furnishing the space from scratch.”

“We both imaged a space full of high-contrast color, with clean mid-century-modern lines, and a dash of stylish whimsy.”

The Design Dilemma

They knew that they wanted to go bold with their design—but they struggled to find a cohesive look for their space.

“We both love bold colors and unique mid-century-modern pieces, but we are clueless about layout and struggle to make things feel cohesive. I was worried that if we were left to our own devices, our home would end up looking more like a college dorm room than the curated space we envisioned—which is something we’ve run into before. We needed help making our house the home I knew it could be. I’d heard about Modsy, so we decided to give the service a try.”

“We both love bold colors and unique mid-century-modern pieces, but we are clueless about layout and struggle to make things feel cohesive.”

Designer Insights:

“Lindsay’s biggest challenge for the space was creating something that felt really fun while still being refined.” –Cassie, Lindsay’s Modsy Designer

The Modsy Moment

Working with their designer, they got a playful color scheme tempered by tasteful mid-century-modern-inspired decor.

“We were completely awestruck when we saw our 3D design for the first time—so much so that our jaws dropped. Our Modsy designer, Cassie, understood what we wanted for the space even more than we did. She gathered a few of our stray thoughts and turned them into a magazine-worthy functional living space that felt so cohesive.

“We were completely awestruck when we saw our 3D design for the first time—so much so that our jaws dropped.”

“The furniture she selected went perfectly with our heirloom dining set and the colors she chose truly brought the space to life. The living room area included the most spectacular rug; I have never seen a better rug in my life! It was a magical moment to see the potential my raw space had. And that potential even included a pink accent wall!”

Designer Insights:

“I wanted to capture Lindsay’s joyfulness in her designs, so I chose unexpected wall color pairings (pale pink in the living area and rich forest green in the dining area) and then I grounded these colors by tying them into the decor. I kept the furniture classic but added in eclectic pillows, rugs, artwork, and accessories.” –Cassie, Lindsay’s Modsy Designer

The Real Results

Now that their home is coming together IRL, they have a design that lives up to their expectations for the space and provides a joyful feeling for their family.

“Before using Modsy, we thought our space had a lot of promise and design potential, but we didn’t know how to deliver on that promise on our own. As more and more items arrive from Modsy and our virtual design becomes a reality, I can feel our home radiate happiness—something I had not planned on. This colorful and chic space is beloved by our entire family. Even the dog seems happier in it!”

“As more and more items arrive from Modsy and our virtual design becomes a reality, I can feel our home radiate happiness.”

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My Modsy Story: Giving Our Home Office the Update it Deserves

Quarantine during COVID has presented many unexpected challenges for everyone. For spouses Rebekah and Jack, the extra time at home meant seizing the opportunity to create an office space they loved.

Homeowners: Rebekah and Jack T. HR Consultant and Pharmacy Manager

Location: Waunakee, WI.

Spaces: Home Office

My Style: Refined Industrial

The Backstory

Shortly after moving into their house 10 years ago, Rebekah and her husband Jack had their first son. They had another son three years later and never had the time to really personalize their home office space.

Between work and our growing family, we were unfortunately left with little time to invest in our home!

“Between work and our growing family, we were unfortunately left with little time to invest in our home office! With the pandemic this year, we were finally able to devote some time to spurcing things up.”

The Design Dilemma

Spending more time at home this year not only made it evident that it was time for some updates—but also provided time and motivation to do it. But Rebekah and Jack weren’t quite sure where to start.

“We know what we like, but we were afraid to make a mistake by putting things together that did not belong. As a result, we did nothing for quite a while.”

Designer Insights:

“I wanted to create a home office that was functional for Rebekah and Jack but also felt personal and relaxing. We honed in on their style and I gave them a design that would be simple to implement.”– McKenzie, Rebekah + Jack’s Modsy Designer

The Modsy Moment

Knowing they needed some expert help with designing their office, Rebekah and Jack turned to Modsy–and were so excited with the transformation they saw in their designs.

Our first reaction with all the office designs was how well our style was captured with so little direction.

“Our first reaction to the home office designs was how well our style was captured with so little direction. It was like our designer could see what was in our heads and just brought it to life in our space!”

Designer Insights:

“I love that Jack and Rebekah were so open to pops of color and texture through the accent wall, rug, and other decor. Those elements really give this office space a cozy and layered feel! I added a wall shelf for them to layer family photos and personalize the space. And adding some leather chairs opposite the desk created a comfy reading nook where Rebekah’s kids could curl up with a book while she worked!”–McKenzie, Rebekah + Jack’s Modsy Designer

The Real Results

Rebekah’s designer created a space where their family could both get stuff done and relax—while also offering plenty of storage space. It’s now a space in which they love spending time.

Our favorite part of using Modsy is how good our design makes us feel.

“Our favorite part of using Modsy is how our design makes us feel. Before using the service, we were embarrassed about how the space looked. Now, with our designer’s expert help, we’re proud of how the room looks and love that we’re able to honor the beauty of our home.”

Designer Insights:

“I wanted to make sure to give Rebekah and Jack plenty of function and comfort in their home office design. I focused on scoring items for work and relaxation while also being family-friendly.”–McKenzie, Rebekah + Jack’s Modsy Designer

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My Modsy Story: Rediscovering My Old Self With a New Design

When her two eldest children left the nest Lisa decided she wanted a fresh design for her space with ties to her past. Using Modsy she was able to bring the old and new together.

Customer home makeover

 

Homeowner: Lisa H.

Spaces: Living Room and Office

Her Style: Mod Collector

Customer home makeoverThe Backstory

Lisa and her husband were living with the furniture they bought when they moved into their house 18 years ago. After raising three kids in that home, their furniture was a bit worn, to say the least. When two of her kids moved out of the house this past year, Lisa decided it was time to freshen up the living room and turn one of the kid’s bedrooms into her office.

“When we first moved into our house, we had two little kids and just wanted something sturdy—the furniture was just about function. By the time they moved out, I was sick of our space, and I actually started looking at new houses online. But then I was like—I don’t need to move, I just need to re-decorate!”

“By the time the kids moved, I was sick of our space, and I actually started looking at new houses online. But then I was like—I don’t need to move, I just need to re-decorate!” 

Customer home makeover

The Design Dilemma

Knowing she wanted a fresh, more grown-up space for her husband and herself, Lisa was ready for a brand new style. But, she didn’t know what that style should be or how to source new furniture that would fit with the pieces she wanted to keep.

Customer home makeover

“I had no idea what my style was. This space had been about our kids—but with two of them grown and one teenager, we decided it was time to make our space feel more adult. I knew I’d be spending money on furniture, and I wanted to foolproof that investment to make sure I was buying the right items. I just wanted extra guidance for the process. Since I wasn’t sure how to pull it off on my own, I decided to try Modsy.”

Customer home makeover

The Modsy Moment

Using Modsy, Lisa worked one-on-one with a designer who helped her find furniture that fit perfectly with the items she wanted to keep in her home—like a Korean cabinet and some artwork from her grandmother. Lisa’s Modsy designer managed to create a new design that felt both fresh and personal.

Customer home makeover

“When I opened up my designs, I was stunned. They were nothing near what I expected, but totally perfect. My designer did a great job of seamlessly integrating my belongings into the design. She took my valued items, all cherished but stylistically disparate, and merged them together in a way that looked cohesive with the new furniture.”

Customer home makeover

“My designer even incorporated my love of travel photography into the designs and selected artwork that reflected that interest.”

“My designer even incorporated my love of travel photography into the designs and selected artwork that reflected that interest. The art she chose actually inspired me to go back into my own travel photography archives and find meaningful photos to hang in my office space. The whole Modsy experience helped me tap into my own creativity and bring more of my own vision and personality into my living room and office design. I literally bought everything I needed for the space in a single day! “

Customer home makeover

 

“The whole Modsy experience helped me tap into my own creativity and bring more of my own vision and personality into my living room and office design. I literally bought everything I needed for the space in a single day!”

Customer home makeover

Customer home makeover

The Real Results

Before using Modsy, Lisa never spent much time in the living room and never had a dedicated space to call her own. Now that the living room is redesigned, Lisa finds herself relaxing in it constantly. As for the office, she couldn’t be happier to have a space that reflects her style and interests.

“Both of these spaces are everything I hoped for and more. The living room is so nice now. I love how we got our grown-up space that ties together the old and the new in a meaningful and pleasing way. And I absolutely love my office. It’s the first time I’ve had my very own space in this house. Before, I was taking Zoom calls from the bar counter in the dining room. Now, I have a dedicated workspace that’s also home to my personal interests. It’s so much MY space. My sewing machine, knitting projects, books, and travel photos all have a home in this room. After so many years of our home being geared toward our kids, who I adore, it feels special to have a space that’s all my own.”

Customer home makeover

Customer home makeover

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How to Design A Living Room With Low Ceilings

We recently dished out our best tips for how to decorate a room with high ceilings. But what about the opposite problem? Rooms with low ceilings?

Just like high ceilings, it can be a challenge to decorate a room with low ceilings. You don’t want to overstuff it with furniture and the wrong decor, which will make your space feel cramped and even claustrophobic. And that’s definitely not what you want, especially these days when we’re spending so much of our time inside our homes!

All that said, there are some easy decorating ideas that can help make your room with a low ceiling appear taller and more spacious. From curtains to tall mirrors, here are our best designer tips for solving the low ceiling dilemma for any space in your home.

 

decorate a room with low ceilings

Tip #1: Add Reflective Surfaces

In rooms with low ceilings, using reflective furniture helps bounce light around and visually open up your space. It’s the easiest way to create the illusion of a more spacious room.

Consider all furniture and accent pieces in reflective materials and finishes, like mercury glass decor, mirrored tables and chests, and even antiqued glass pieces. And don’t rule out clear furniture either, which can minimize the visual clutter in a room.

In this low-ceilinged living room, an acrylic side table and a glass-top coffee table help to anchor the room while opening up the space with an airy, open vibe. It’s also a great idea to work in these hacks to make a room seem larger!

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decorate a room with low ceilings

Tip #2: Mix In Small-Scale furniture

Low ceiling rooms come in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes, low ceilings are part of the home’s architecture that you have to work around, like a sloped or A-frame attic room. If that’s the case, you’ll want to lean into small-scale furniture that fits into your space without it looking cramped.

Try pulling in pieces with low profiles, which will in turn accentuate the height of the ceiling versus the size of the room. Small-scale furniture that’s proportional to your space is key.

In this attic nursery, the open-base dresser and crib bring an openness to the space. By hanging a large tapestry high up along one wall also helps draw attention to the vertical space instead of the compact, cave-like feel of the room. If you’re not sure what’s considered small scale in relation to your room, check out our guide to scale and proportion!

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decorate a room with low ceilings

Tip #3: Hang Tall Wall Decor

An entryway with a low ceiling can easily leave a claustrophobic impression. One way to make a ceiling look higher in a busy spot like the entryway is to hang wall decor high up, which will draw the eye up and elevate the focus in the space.

Center a tall mirror on a wall in your foyer to instantly add to the height of your walls and create the illusion of higher ceilings. Additionally, tall sconces that shine light upward or in both directions are also great for elongating your walls visually. Hang these accents closer to the ceiling, as in this entryway, to play up the vertical space in your entry and give it a more open look and feel.

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decorate a room with low ceilings

Tip #4: Keep To Minimal Patterns

Bedrooms with low ceilings are one of the most common challenges we tackle for Modsy homeowners. The trick is to minimize the focus on the size and height of the room, which means keeping colors and patterns to a minimum and finding furnishings that play up comfort.

Draw attention to the floors with one big neutral pattern and skip colorful prints everywhere else. In this bedroom, the geometric rug helps draw attention to the floor instead of the low ceiling. Meanwhile, the tall floor mirror reflects light, gives the look of more vertical wall space, and opens up the room as a whole. If you do want to add some color, go with two to three pops of soft neutral shades to avoid overwhelming the space.

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decorate a room with low ceilings

Tip #5: Paint A Dark Accent Wall

Similar to a room with high ceilings, an accent wall can change the perspective of size and space in a room with low ceilings. But the key is to always stick to a darker shade, like a black or deep gray, which will lend major cozy vibes and a spacious look.

The best way to balance a dark accent wall in a room that has a low ceiling is to mix in small-scale furniture. Small means it will feel more proportional to the room size and also work well in a space that already has a cozy dark accent wall. Keep to lower streamlined seats and pieces that are less bulky, like a deep reclining accent chair or a Mid-Century sofa. This will also prevent furniture from blocking light streaming into the room. If you’re working with an odd-shaped living room, start here with our awkward living room design solutions.

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decorate a room with low ceilings

Tip #6: Put Up Long Curtains

Low ceiling, long curtains. It’s a foolproof trick that always works. And it’s the easiest decor trick to make a low ceiling look higher. The key is to find the right length curtain that goes full floor to ceiling.

Start by hanging floor-to-ceiling curtains higher above your windows and closer to the ceiling as a way to draw the eye up. What this does is make the room appear taller and have more ceiling height than there actually is. The long curtains will also help elongate the walls and draw the focus upwards in the room.

Good tip: Be sure to hang your curtains at least 3”-4” above your window frame if you’re going for this look!

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Tip #7: Work In A Tall Bookcase

It might sound counterintuitive, but a bookcase that spans floor to ceiling is a great way to open up a small room with a low ceiling. Why? Just like a tall mirror and long curtains, it directs the focus vertically rather than horizontally, so it distracts from the size of the room.

Try a modern and more streamlined bookcase that’s almost ceiling height. The minimal style will keep the space from appearing cramped or bulky and it will create a more airy, open flow look in the space. Contrast your tall bookcase with smaller furniture. This way, you’ll have pieces that are proportional to the largest piece in the room, creating perfect visual balance. Check out our small space furniture guide for some tips on how to decorate compact spaces.

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Also, check out our gallery for small living room design tips!

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Design Basics: How to Arrange an Area Rug in Your Living Room

For a functional living room layout, rug placement is key. Because an area rug will give you some basic structure around where to place your furniture. That said, how your living room furniture is arranged on (or off) a rug can ultimately determine the look and feel (and flow!) of your space. We know it might feel tricky and confusing.

So, to help you with your living room rug placement, we’ve rounded up a few rug layout options! Read on for our rug layout ideas and get our tips for making it work for you.

Stuck on finding an area rug or the right size rug for your living room? Check out our living room rug layout guide for what to keep in mind in your search!

Rug Layout #1: All Furniture On Top

With this layout approach, it’s all about scale, starting with the large area rug that covers the entire living room area.

The Furniture Setup: You’ll want to arrange all your furniture and table and chair legs on the rug. Just be sure to leave enough room on all sides so they don’t feel crammed onto the rug. Think 3-5 inches between your furniture and the edge of the rug.

The Vibe: A large rug size that anchors your main living room area will give you the look and feel of there being more space (smaller rugs tend to look and feel more confining). The result is a living space with an open and welcoming vibe that appears grounded.

Good to Know: This is definitely a layout for larger living rooms. And because the rug takes up the entire space, be sure to choose a design and pattern you absolutely love. A larger-scale rug is also likely more expensive, so keep that in mind if you’re leaning towards this layout.

Rug Layout #2: Furniture Partially On Top

In this layout, the area rug centers the room so that the focus is around the fireplace, not so much the seating area.

The Furniture Setup: You’ll want to arrange your furniture with only their front legs on the rug. Make sure there are at least a few inches between the edge of your rug and where the legs stand. What this does is balance out the long vertical placement of the rug.

The Vibe: This area rug approach plays up a casual vibe that’s also balanced and grounded. The length of the rug makes your space feel airy, while the furniture arranged around the fireplace also manages to give a comfy and cozy feel.

Good To Know: This is ideal in mid to large-size rooms, so you’ll need a relatively big rug. But because the rug is placed running long towards the fireplace, it’ll be easy to find a size that works, no matter your space. Be sure to use rug pads to hold down the edges to avoid trips.

Rug Layout #3: No Furniture On Top

If you want an airy and open living room, you’ll want to go with this area rug layout, where it’s more of an accent.

The Furniture Setup: With a smaller area rug as the centerpiece in a seating area, your only option is to have all of your furniture arranged around the rug. The key is to find a rug that runs the approximate length of your seating so that they all line up neatly along the edges.

The Vibe: The vibe is definitely casual in this space, as the rug size is smaller and less “grand.” But that doesn’t mean it’s any less special; there is just less of an emphasis on the rug itself and more on the furniture and the room, which feels very casual but still comfy.

Good To Know: When using a small rug in a large space, make sure the room doesn’t end up feeling bare and empty. Consider a rug that makes a statement or go with a vintage design. A plain jute rug here can look like an afterthought so avoid using a piece like that in this instance.

Rug Layout #4: Stacked Layering

For a cozy layout option, layering two area rugs under a seating area guarantees a warm and welcoming look in any space.

The Furniture Setup: Just as you would with a large area rug, you’ll want to set all your furniture on top of your largest rug. Then arrange only part of your furniture legs on the smaller top rug. This gives the seating area a stylish layered look that also adds a bit of depth.

The Vibe: This layered approach definitely creates a cozy look. But depending on your furniture, it can easily feel elevated or casual. So this is a great versatile option for family rooms that need to be laidback every day but entertaining-ready on occasion.

Good To Know: A patterned or colorful rug on top of a large natural-fiber works best here. Rug sizes also play a big part. A 5’x7’ or 6’x9’ rug that’s too small for a large space is perfect for layering as a top rug. Just be sure it leaves enough room around for a border.

Need help finding a natural-fiber rug for your foundation? Read our guide to natural fiber rugs.

Rug Layout #5: Organic Layering

This final option is about layering an organically shaped rug over a larger rectangular one, which will create a more free-form, casual-chic look.

The Furniture Setup: A balanced living space is key to this rug layout, where different shape area rugs intersect. The more symmetrical your furniture and seating, the better it will look and feel visually. The idea is for your organic-shaped rug to break up the linear look of your space.

The Vibe: This approach will result in a more boho and casual space, especially if you choose a freeform-shaped sheepskin or cowhide rug. They’ll add major cozy vibes while also playing up a subtly chic look.

Good To Know: This is one of our foolproof tips for layering rugs. It’s also one of our favorite living room ideas for cozying up a seating area or a small corner. Or you can use this technique to create a reading nook within a larger space as well as warm-up an oddly shaped corner.

Find more rug inspiration in our gallery of living room design ideas!

See What Area Rugs Work In Your Space!

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Americana Design: 3 Fresh Takes on this Interior Design Style

When you think of Americana design, you might just think of Fourth of July-inspired stars and stripes. But there are actually many ways for this look to come to life—and some don’t even include red, white, and blue! But, no matter what way you approach it, there’s always a sense of timelessness and comfort to this style.

Made up of many classic design elements, Americana design celebrates the bright spots of our country’s cultural heritage, along with some of its history, folklore, and geography. Like our diverse country, Americana design embodies the many different backgrounds, experiences, and preferences of the people who use it. While one Americana room might lean very traditional and coastal, another is eclectic or industrial! What it always comes back to are the timeless designs and vintage influences that give this style a sense of nostalgia and causal approachability.

The History of Americana Design

Throughout our country’s history, the idea of Americana design has morphed and changed. In 1876, when America celebrated its centennial, people looked toward the early days of the country for design inspiration. Colonial styles, including woven baskets, hooked rugs, and Federal-style furniture, became popular again. In the 1920s and 1930s, Americana styles included bucolic prints and patterns and linoleum tiles stamped with Colonial-inspired brick patterns. By the 1970s and 1980s, Americana design was defined by the collecting of old signs and historic artifacts of the decades past. Replica designs for Route 66 signs and old gas station pumps began to pop up to play into this nostalgia.

In today’s Americana design, you can see mixed influences from all of these eras—including the historic and iconic Arts and Crafts design movement. This design style, which took off after the Industrial Revolution, was born out of a rejection of the fussy, overwrought style of the Victorian era. So, this style instead embraces simplicity and the natural beauty and traditional, artisanal craftsmanship of furniture and architecture. The simplicity of Arts and Crafts design comes through in Americana design, which celebrates livable, approachable spaces with rustic woodwork and traditional interior design ideas and elements.

Want to learn more about decorating with Americana design and see this look come to life? Tour our three takes on Americana living room design ideas and decide which one is right for you!

Americana designClassic Americana Style

As you can tell by its name, this is your everyday Americana decorating style, brought to life through a red, white, and blue color palette and the use of flags and stripes as decor. This is likely the type of room that comes to mind when you think of an Americana theme in your home. It has that classic, traditional-but-timeless vibe to it, with nods to the simplicity of days gone by. And, while it feels particularly fresh and relevant in the summer months, it’s a style that can be used and celebrated year-round.

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Americana designA neutral color palette makes this living room a bright, cozy, and inviting space, while varying shades of red and blue are used as accents to make the design pop. With a focus on comfort and livability, this is definitely a family-friendly approach to Americana decorating. (Even with a white sofa! Many parents swear by white slipcovers, which you can just bleach in the wash and keep it sparkling clean!)

You’ll notice rustic design influence throughout Classic Americana homes, with raw and natural wood tones and textures, along with various natural fibers, like the linen sofa slipcover and the jute rug. A room like this also demands some nature-inspired touches, like using greenery as decor, along with simple, everyday items like apples on the coffee table and wood in the fireplace.

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Along with rustic elements, Classic Americana design also has noticeable coastal interior design influences—of the Nantucket and Cape Cod variety, specifically. You see that in the use of furniture with caning, the natural materials throughout, and the white and light blue color palette, especially in the striped pillows. The room above even has some subtle nautical touches, like  the art prints on the built-in shelves.

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Americana designClassic Colonial Americana: AKA Grand Millennial

The most unexpected Americana decorating style of the bunch, Grand Millennial is a very particular brand of Americana style. With some serious Colonial American vibes, it definitely leans formal and classical in its design influences. You’ll see that come through in dark wood furniture, woven textures, and ornate decor—like the scalloped mirror in the living room design above, or the brass accents throughout.

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Americana designBut, where this style steps out of Colonial Americana and into Grand Millennial is with the colors and patterns. Florals are a big part of the Grand Millennial look, along with other vintage-inspired patterns, like chinoiserie, toile, or the wallpaper used in this room.

Grand Millennial Americana has a collected but polished look, and celebrates a thrifted or vintage vibe. Trinkets like a scottie dog figurine, small vintage paintings, and other collected objects give this style curated eclecticism. Stylize these decorative objects on a bookcase or console to really show off your collections!

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Ultimately, Grand Millennial Americana decorating is all about the mix of old with new. Along with decorative objects, think about the furniture as well. So, a chesterfield sofa with modern blue velvet upholstery, or a vintage-inspired coffee table with modern design elements.

And speaking of furniture, in a Grand Millennial living room, opt for sophisticated seating. Go for a comfortable but conversational set-up, where you can enjoy reading or afternoon tea just as much as conversation with friends! As for a color palette, pastels rule in Grand Millennial design. But make sure to incorporate pops of bright colors for a new millennial vibe!

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Americana designIndustrial Americana

As the name Industrial Americana implies, this style has some major industrial interior design influences. It’s ideal if you can use the architecture of your space as a foundation for this style—whether that’s high ceilings, brick walls, or exposed ductwork. Anything that gives off an industrial and rugged feel.

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Americana designThen, use natural materials used in a bold way to help your Industrial Americana designs come to life. In the living room above, we did this through an overstuffed leather chesterfield sofa and club chair, along with a mixed material coffee table and a metal bookcase. An edison bulb and piping floor lamp, along with other rustic metals throughout the space, add to the industrial vibe.

Overall, Industrial Americana decorating is very utilitarian. But it has a more sophisticated spin with the leather furniture, color palette, and decorative objects, which give it a bit of a cigar lounge vibe. But what places this style in the Americana camp rather than being strictly industrial is both the focus on comfort and the color palette.

While the room above has a darker color palette, which mostly comes from the natural materials throughout, classic American hues are used in a subtle and traditional way. This faded vintage-inspired rug infuses red, white, and blue into the space in an unexpected way, and you’ll also notice those colors in traditional patterns in the throw pillows.

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Americana designThe decor also has that folksy, collected Americana vibe in a way that is simple but rugged. In the living room above, we achieved this through pieces like a wood-carved ram head, iron dice, a vintage car, globe, maps, vintage prints, a vintage-style clock—all of which subtly speak to American ingenuity and exploration.

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purple

Pride at Modsy: Bringing Pride Home with Interior Design

June is Pride Month, and here at Modsy, we couldn’t be more excited to celebrate.  Traditionally, Pride celebrations are a time for LGBTQIA people to gather in the spirit of love and diversity, look back at their shared history, and plan for a better future. However, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many Pride gatherings have been canceled nationwide.

Because people are still stuck at home, the folks here at Modsy thought it might be fun to find a way to bring Pride home to our LGBTQIA followers and team. With this in mind, we decided to focus on the most iconic aspect of Pride, the RAINBOW FLAG. Below you will find a bevy of designs that celebrate the different Pride colors and their unique meanings. But before we take that stroll down the rainbow road, let’s dive into a little bit of history on the fabulous flag.

Pride MonthHistory of the Pride Flag

Inspired by the Wizard of Oz song “Over the Rainbow,” the first Pride flag was designed by veteran Gilbert Baker in 1977. Interestingly enough, the flag made its debut after Baker’s friend Harvey Milk, the first openly gay elected official, challenged him to create a symbol for the gay community.

Baker’s original design was hand-sewn and featured eight colors, each representing a different aspect of LGBT+ culture But demand for the flag soon grew too large, and Baker couldn’t continue to create each flag by hand. Instead, he began using a  rainbow fabric that was only available in six colors, as a way to create more flags in a quicker way. The new consolidated version of the flag was the one primarily used during LGBT+ Pride parades. That is, until 2017 when black and brown were introduced as additional colors to the flag in order to represent and include BIPOC members of the LGBTQIA community. The following year, three additional colors, light blue, pink, and white, were added to the flag to represent transgender men, women, and non-binary people.
Pride Month

Before we go full technicolor on you, we’d like to take a moment to highlight the work of some fellow interior designers within the  LGBTQIA community. Each of these individuals is skilled at their craft and represents a small fraction of the queer-BIPOC and trans communities working in the interior design field.

Pride MonthAdair Curtis

Widely known for his starring role in the Netflix reality TV series, Styling Hollywood, Adair Curtis is an interior designer and husband of famed stylist Jason Boldin. Curtis began his career working for Def Jam Enterprises as a brand manager in the mid-00’s and after meeting his husband he embarked on a path into interior design. He has designed homes for many Hollywood elites, creating designs for the likes of “Bring it On” star Gabrielle Union.

Explore more of Adair Curtis’ work here!

Pride MonthSawyer DeVuyst

Sawyer DeVuyst is a New York and Los Angeles based model, actor, and furniture designer. DeVuyst’s acting work has helped bring wider visibility to the trans and gender non-conforming communities. Meanwhile, his design work has also developed an impressive following. DeVuyst has made beautiful pieces for the Wythe Hotel, Etsy Headquarters, and his work has even been sold in West Elm.

Explore more of Sawyer Devuyst’ work here!

Now without further ado… Here are our rainbow rooms to bring a little pride inspiration to your space.

Pride MonthRed: Life

Red means many things to many people. It can symbolize passion, lust, rage, and caution, but in the Pride flag, red means life. Perhaps Baker chose red to represent life because it is the color of the human heart. At Modsy,our customers are at the center of our work and we always strive to lead with the heart which is why we chose this lovely office space to represent life.

Speaking of heart, this design has tons of it. The attractive terracotta color of the walls is soothing and not aggressive (as red walls often are). The sweet red butterfly print adds a touch of soulfulness to space. Finally, the Eames desk chair is equal parts iconic and comfortable, making it perfect for a long (and impassioned) day at the home office.

Get Ready for Red

Pride MonthOrange: Healing

Orange represents healing on the Pride flag, which makes sense when you think about it. Orange recalls sunsets, the warm glow of candlelight, and healthful foods like carrots and, well, oranges. And what space do we do more healing in than the bedroom? After all, the bedroom is where we repair ourselves after a long day with a good night’s rest.

Like red, orange can often feel a little intense in the world of home decor. That’s why we chose subdued earth tone hues for the walls and balanced them with some crisp whites and neutrals. To keep things from feeling too “beige,” we incorporated a vibrant tangerine color side chair in sumptuous velvet. We also added some decorative pillows with a lively sense of geometry. The lovely orange oasis like this has you feeling refreshed and repaired in no time!

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Pride MonthYellow: Sunlight

Yellow is the symbol of sunlight on the pride flag, and we don’t think that requires much explanation. When choosing a space to represent this concept, we knew as surely as the sunrise in the east that there was no better space than a breakfast nook! After all, it’s the ideal spot to start the day with a delicious meal (we’ll take our eggs sunny side up, thank you) while perusing the news (like this historical Supreme Court ruling) or chatting with loved ones.

To really play-up the sunny disposition of this space, we chose an inviting butter yellow for the walls. Then we picked some statement-making wall decor like the starburst mirror, which really lets the sunshine in!

Let the Sunshine In

Pride MonthGreen: Nature

If you think the meaning of yellow on the Pride flag is a no brainer, we’re sure you can come to a NATURAL conclusion about the meaning of green. That’s right, the green stripe symbolizes nature! From the leaves of trees to the grass on the ground, green dominates the lion’s share of color in the natural world. With this in mind, we thought there would be no better way to celebrate the diversity of nature than with a stunning green entryway complete with a nature-inspired gallery wall.

For this space, we really wanted to highlight all that mother nature has to offer, so we brought together an assortment of pieces to represent its variety. We selected images from the sea, the earth, and even the stratosphere to really showcase nature’s bounty. However, because our entryway isn’t the size of the planet, we wanted to keep this collection feeling curated, so we chose wall art that felt slightly antique and vintage.

Go Green

Pride MonthBlue: Harmony

Blue is the symbol of harmony on the Pride flag, and we understand why. In visual language, harmony is defined as being pleasing to the eye. Harmony between people means a shared experience and a sense of alignment. What better way to represent these concepts than with a beautiful blue nursery. One of the iconic examples of harmony in human relationships is between a loving parent and their child.

For this soothing nursery space, we selected a rich assortment of blue hues in dark tones. The effect is restful and calming, making it the perfect place for a quiet read while your baby is down for their afternoon nap.

Find Harmony

Pride MonthPurple: Spirit

Purple is best known for being the color of royalty, but in the context of the Pride flag purple is symbolic of spirit. For us, the two meanings go hand-in-hand because if spirit is the essence of who we are as people, aren’t we all deserving of a little royal treatment? That’s why we decided that the living-room was the perfect spot for our purple paradise. It is the center (or soul) of most homes and the place where we want to showcase our style like the royalty (hey queens) we all are.

When bringing this space together, we chose classic and soothing hues of purple in luxurious fabrics like velvet and faux-fur. We went with strong silhouettes that are both bold and spirited. For the wall decor, we chose ethereal artwork to add a touch of lightness and whimsy to this regal and soulful space.

Get Royal Treatment

We hope this post put a little pep in your step and brought some joy to your hearts. Before we bid you ado, we wanted to share some links to some LGBTQIA organizations near and dear to us that work to raise awareness for LGBTQIA rights and equality.

Human Rights Campaign

Transgender Law Center

The Trevor Project

Thanks for taking this little journey with us over the rainbow. Happy PRIDE!

Find your place over the rainbow.

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Get The Nook Look: 11 Ways to Design A Comfy Reading Nook

If you haven’t heard, we’re major reading nook fans! Who doesn’t love the idea of a cozy place to curl up with a good book and a cup of tea or just a little corner to snuggle up with a throw blanket and a glass of wine at the end of a long week? Now more than ever as we hunker down at home, carving out space for a designated reading nook isn’t just a good idea, it’s totally necessary.

If you don’t think your space makes sense for a reading nook, think again. The best thing about reading nooks is that it’s really up to you how you want to design them. You can simply anchor one corner in your bedroom with a comfy armchair and side table to turn it into a reading space or if you have a window seat, you can pile it with throw pillows and blankets to really make it the perfect spot for snuggling up with a book.

Of course, finding the essential furniture pieces is key to building out a stylish and functional place to read, whether it’s the choosing the perfect chair, a side table at the right height, a few poufs to use as footrests, or having all the cozy finishing touches like a soft rug and plush pillows. But once you’ve nailed down your furnishings, all you need is to do a bit of clever arranging to create your perfect place to read.

To inspire and show you how you can easily fit a reading nook in your living room, bedroom, home office, or even kid’s room, we’ve rounded up some of our best reading corner ideas in a range of interior design styles and spaces. Read on to get our tips and see how you can bring the ideas into your own rooms.

A Boho-Chic Reading Area

There’s no rule saying that reading nooks have to be tucked away. Take a cue from this eclectic boho corner where a high-back chair, pouf, and accent table create a cozy nook-like spot.

Essentials For This Reading Nook:

  • Pair a colorful pouf with a small side table for a footrest and a practical place for coffee.
  • A faux fur rug adds softness underfoot and will define the zone for your reading nook.
  • Place a chair, like a wingback or a birdcage style, by the window to capitalize on natural light.

Great For… any unused window corner in a living room, and if you love the eclectic boho look. This is also one of our favorite nook ideas for people living in a small home or working with a small living room since it doesn’t take up a lot of space but still has presence.

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A Classic Reading Nook

If you have a random window nook in your home, turn it into the perfect place for curling up with a good book. All you need are some pillows, baskets, greenery, and a rug to warm up the otherwise unused space.

Essentials For This Reading Nook:

  • Lean into symmetry by hanging art on the walls and opting for accents in pairs.
  • Add layers of pillows to a deep window ledge to build out a comfy resting spot.
  • Play up a serene scene by keeping to a neutral palette of soft greens and natural hues.

Great For… anyone trying to maximize use out of an awkward alcove or window seat. We can picture this in a traditional elegant family house that has open areas along wide hallways.

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A Cozy Bedroom Spot

When it comes to bedroom essentials, a deep armchair that gives you an instant cozy reading nook ranks high on our list. Take after this bedroom and opt for a clean-lined modern armchair.

Essentials For This Reading Nook:

  • A sheepskin is a must for a bedroom reading spot that’s all about chic comfort.
  • Baskets are a necessary storage piece for holding pillows, blankets, and books.
  • Focus on armchairs versus side chairs because you want this to be a curl-up corner.

Great For… those looking for stylish bedroom seating ideas that bring more comfort and function to the corners of the room. It’s also perfect if you love to read your favorite book before getting into bed at night.

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An Industrial-Chic Reading Nook

With bold elements like a large ornate floor mirror, a black faux fur rug, and a towering sculptural bookcase, this industrial-chic nook approach combines comfort with edgy design.

Essentials For This Reading Nook:

  • A mid-century leather swivel chair makes for a cozy and design-forward anchor piece (AKA the perfect spot for lounging)
  • Bold details, like a gold mirror, lucite table, and brass floor lamp are key here.
  • A tall and sculptural floor lamp is both a style statement and a practical light for reading your book.

Great For… city-dwellers who love the urban-chic aesthetic or anyone living in a loft-like space. If you live in a city apartment with modern interior architecture, this mix of furnishings is perfect.

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A Modern Rustic Office Nook

For a modern rustic take on a reading spot, this home office corner has it all. The wingback chair, ottoman, drum accent table, and floor lamp lend big comfort while also setting a cool rustic vibe.

Essentials For this Reading Nook:

  • A high-contrast palette mixed with warm wood tones establishes the modern rustic vibe.
  • The statement rustic wood bookcase provides storage as well as major visual texture.
  • The fringed oval rug distinguishes this reading nook from the rest of the room.

Great For… any WFH office in need of a little cozy spot for unwinding and reading. If you have a shared home office, this is the ideal way to give both people a place to take breaks during the day.

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A Contemporary Reading Area

A common challenge is making sure your reading area feels separate but also part of the larger living space. This chic spot nails that balance with its contemporary-cool palette and furnishings.

Essential For this Reading Nook:

  • The gallery wall behind the armchair makes this reading spot feel like it’s own space.
  • A versatile pouf works wonders here as a footrest or extra seat for the larger living space.
  • A floor lamp with small eye-catching details is best here for a chic and practical accent.

Great For… a reading spot that’s clean-lined and seamlessly integrated into your living space. This approach is also perfect for open living and dining space in city apartments.

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An Under-Stair Reading Nook

The space under your stairs is full of design possibilities. Our favorite idea is to repurpose it into a cozy reading spot. All you need is a simple chair and a few practical storage accent pieces.

Essentials For This Reading Nook:

  • Lay down an area rug to define this area as its own spot from the entry and living room.
  • Tucked away floating shelves add practical storage and keep clutter out of sight.
  • Instead of a floor lamp, hang a pendant light to maximize floor space.

Great For… homes with an awkward staircase alcove or corner that can fit a chair and some small accents. If you also work from home and need extra reading and storage space, this approach is for you.

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An Eclectic-Cool Reading Nook

An easy way to create your own reading space within a larger room is to decorate it as its own room, like this corner. The armchair, table, and layers of accents make it feel like its own space. If you have space, you could even swap in a chaise lounge for a more “home library” vibe.

Essentials For This Reading Nook:

  • The foolproof pairing of an accent table and a pouf add instant comfort and versatile style.
  • Opt for an always-chic tufted armchair that can work with a range of eclectic accents.
  • Layering a sheepskin with an area rug sets off the space and adds a cozy, homey vibe.

Great For… those who want a place in the home to call their own within a larger living space. This can also work in a family room where one side is used for watching TV.

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A Traditional Reading Area

Sophisticated and refined, this corner for two is the definition of a classic reading nook. Perfect for a master bedroom corner, it’s as elegant as it is simple with a pair of elegant armchairs.

Essentials For This Reading Nook:

  • Traditional swivel chairs make for a great matching set in any conversation area.
  • Don’t underestimate luxe accents like a faux fur or cowhide pillow that add bold texture.
  • Fewer but more traditional accents, like a bird print, add the most impact in this instance.

Great For… a master bedroom suite with room beyond the bed for lounging. Or this can also work as a second seating area in a spacious living room corner.

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A Nursery Reading Nook

If you’re a new parent, having a comfy and relaxing spot for nursing and napping in the nursery is non-negotiable. The best part is that it also functions as a cozy reading spot by default.

Essentials For This Reading Nook:

  • A glider or rocker is a nursery anchor piece, so make sure it’s comfy for parent and child.
  • A pouf can easily be moved, is lightweight, and is non-hazardous for a baby’s room.
  • Keeping to a neutral color palette with earthy flairs adds a serene and calming feel.

Great For…  new parents who want an all-in-one nursery and kids room that’s made to handle all types of activities, from nursing to nap time.

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A Boho Window Nook

With any awkward nook or open space that’s too small to make a full room, turn it into a private reading space. Simply pull in a chair, add a rug and pouf, and layer in some lighting.

Essentials For This Reading Nook:

  • An area rug will help define the area as well as add color and soften up the wood floors.
  • An outdoor chair, like this rattan one, is an airy yet comfy alternative to armchairs.
  • Candles and a hanging pendant make for different sources of lighting that add ambiance.

Great For… a seating area that’s off to the side in the house or an empty space that can be transformed into a private hideaway within the home.

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April Edit: Best Living Room Designs of the Month

Living rooms… they’re one of the most important spaces in your home, but can also be tricky to design. Living room updates are a great way to revamp your home styling when you’re in need of a change of scenery. Maybe you’ve had the same living room furniture and style for ages and want to totally refresh your living space with the help of a designer. Or maybe you just have a couple of new home decor ideas for living room upgrades, like a cool modern coffee table, new floor plan, or other design tweaks. If you’re looking for living room inspiration, we create hundreds of living room designs every month! We rounded up some of our April favorites to show off living room ideas of all shapes, sizes, and styles. Read on and get inspired by April’s best living room design ideas for your home!

living room designsWest Coast Casual

This living room design blends California Bobo with a casual-cool coastal living room look to create a laid-back and welcoming setting. It has a casual feel with lounge chairs, a deep sofa, and a wicker coffee table. The rug anchors the space and, paired with the complimentary patterns on the pillows, ties the whole color scheme together into a vintage feel. This is a great example of using minimal living room decor ideas in a way that’s still impactful.

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Modern Minimalism

Living room designs that blend minimalist and mid-century modern style are all about creating a clean and crisp look. This space has a casual layout with furniture that makes a statement! The large pouf and modern daybed give it a lounge feel and stay in line with the low coffee table and neutral color palette. Pops of blue throughout the room pair well with the beautiful distressed rub and shibori patterned swivel chair. And the balance of modern and organic shapes feels ultra serene and stylish.

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living room designsEclectic Energy

We are really digging this eclectic living room with a vibrant, multi-color palette! The blue wall sets the stage and pops of reds and yellows from the rug are mimicked in the wall art and pillows. The floor plan is open and airy, one of the best living room ideas for creating an inviting space. All in all, it’s a casual but curated look that will make your guests feel right at home.

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Rustic Ranch

This living room style blends eclectic furniture and art with a rustic color scheme and decor. The design definitely has a global flair with Moroccan-style carved tables and a woven basket wall. Warm color tones on the neutral furniture create balance. The large billowy sectional alongside the cozy floor pouf create a casual living room lounge feel.

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living room designsBoho Eclectic

Another example of a great eclectic design, this living room uses a warm neutral color palette and a variety of textures to create an inviting, laid-back living space. Rattan chairs and coffee table give it a bohemian design vibe and furniture is arranged in a conversational setting in front of the fireplace. The contrast comes in from all the patterns and varying textures—and we love the funky art!

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Rustic Mod

This living room makes a bold statement with the dark green walls and fantastic mid-century living room furniture! The sofa and chairs are very much mid-century forms and the side tables and coffee table add organic balance with a rustic touch. The color palette stays somewhat monochromatic even with the bold blues, greens, and soft pink neutrals. And the layout design feels formal with L-shaped seating that’s still great for conversation.

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Modern Industrial

For a funky living room design that ups the ante on style, check out this modern industrial look. It has an open and inviting layout with formal symmetry, but the low furniture keeps it casual and cool. A black and white color palette keeps it interesting with varying patterns and sculptural tables. And the large wall artwork adds a definitive focal point!

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living room designsRustic Contemporary

We love the calm and balance of this rustic contemporary living room design. An earth-toned color palette keeps it extra sophisticated and the vintage rug adds a little bit of a boho touch. The rug also anchors the seating area and creates an intimate, welcoming conversation setting. Double coffee tables give the space a very stylish vibe while also adding a formal touch.

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living room designsContemporary Calm

This living room style is contemporary, rustic, and minimal all at once! A neutral color palette grounded in warm tones keeps the look clean and fresh with an inviting brightness. The woven rug and patterned coffee table create an intimate area in front of the fireplace, the focal point of the room. And the styling is minimal with decor that is simple and impactful with a welcoming circle for conversation.

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living room designsRetro Relaxation

This blend of retro and mid-century modern styles creates a super stylish aesthetic we love. The playful color palette features iconic mid-century colors like blue and deep mustard yellow to spice things up. And the iconic retro furniture shapes like the slingback chair and Noguchi coffee table add visual interest to the room. And we love how simple decor pieces like the artwork, cactus, and layered mirror still makes a strong mid-century statement.

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Refined Rustic

This living room design is rustic in style with sophisticated touches like the classic blue and white lamp and carved side table. The blue color scheme features neutral shades and gets lots of warmth from the leather ottoman. This living room design is super casual with lots of room on the sectional and the ottoman taking the place of a coffee table. And lots of windows and open archways give the room a spacious and airy feel.

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Subtle Sophistication

Contemporary and mid-century modern always make a great pair! This living room features the two styles in a formal layout with lots of decorative accents in ceramic for a little drama. Cooler tones in the neutral color scheme are warmed up by the hide rug and wooden sideboard. And the conversational seating features solid furniture with a contemporary feel.

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Cozy Contemporary

This living room pairs elements of contemporary and coastal styles to create a bright and cheery space. Pops of yellow provide an accent against the neutral base and the inviting layout makes the room even cozier. The jute rug, jute pouf, and sea-themed decor create cool, coastal vibes and the extra layers of pillows add extra comfort to the sofa.

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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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