Making a living room beautiful is something of an art but there are plenty of achievable ways to elevate your living room's aesthetic, from picking the perfect paint through to finding the perfect furniture for your space.
You'll also be thrilled to learn that with these stunning interiors and expert tips, it's surprisingly easy to take your living room ideas from so-so to stunningly beautiful.
How can I make my living room beautiful?
There are lots of ways that you can make your living room beautiful including updating your color scheme, adding luxurious accessories and increasing the amount of natural light that floods into your space.
1. Find a paint color that flatters its proportions
Repainting the walls is a great way to make your living room beautiful. There are lots of living room paint ideas that will not only reinvigorate your space but it will also breathe new life into your current decor, helping you to view the whole room in a new light.
'You want a living room to feel welcoming, so choosing a color that flatters the room's natural light is a must, and if it's north-facing, ensure there is a hint of warmth in the color you choose,' says Lucy Searle, Editor in Chief, Homes & Gardens.
'Paint is an easy way to transform your living room without breaking the bank. You can use paint as a way of arranging your living space. Painting the wall behind your room’s focal point, be it a sofa or desk, is a great and easy way of creating separate zones within a space,' says Justyna Korczynska, senior designer at Crown (opens in new tab).
'This paint trick can either be a wide stripe that extends to either side of the furniture or stretches from floor to ceiling, or an entire feature wall painted in a bold colour with the same undertone as the neutral shades of the room, to create a harmonious look.'
If you're unsure where to start, there are plenty of living room color schemes that are sure to spark inspiration.
2. Brighten your living room with mirrors
Decorating with mirrors offers an instant way to make any living room more beautiful.
'Whether you want to add space, light or just somewhere practical to see yourself, a mirror is a great design feature that can work wonders in changing the look of any room. I love the idea of creating a gallery wall of different shaped mirrors – mixing antiques, charity shop finds, and new purchases to create an amalgamation of reflective art,' says Sam Baldry, head of design at Swoon (opens in new tab).
When you've decided on the perfect living room mirror ideas for your scheme, it is also important that you know where to hang them and how to maintain them. Putting them adjacent to a window will reflect most light, while if there is a fireplace, this is the most natural place for a mirror. In fact, Feng Shui experts urge you to put mirrors over fireplaces. Ensure that you know how to clean a mirror without streaks to ensure a spotless finish.
3. Make a statement with bold pendant lighting
Despite often being an after-thought, living room lighting ideas have the power to make or break your interior scheme. There are plenty of living room lighting trends that you can draw upon to make sure that you're scheme is chic.
'Lighting is one of the most important elements of interior design as it can completely transform the look and feel of a room. Layer lighting and use multiple light sources to make a room flexible and versatile,' explains Martin Waller, Founder of Andrew Martin (opens in new tab).
'Opt for dramatic pendants as your main source of light and pair with statement table lamps to create an atmospheric mood. Wall lights work well as accent lighting to highlight interesting features in the room, such as art or artefacts. Choose bold pieces featuring structural shapes, interesting texture or colored glass to make a style statement, even if the lighting is switched off.'
And of course, you can't go wrong with stunning antique living room chandelier ideas that will tie the look together and will create an instant be talking point.
'A beautiful antique chandelier is an investment piece and forms the showstopper that sets the tone. If you think about how much you spend on a sofa or the carpet, it’s usually the chandelier that will get the compliments. Perfect for entrance halls, living or dining rooms and bedrooms, chandeliers are surprisingly versatile, and you can take them with you when you move house,' says Owen Pacey, founder of Renaissance London (opens in new tab).
4. Update your couch
Your couch is the single most important piece of furniture in your living room. As the hero of your scheme it is important that it is elegant and sophisticated. No matter how beautiful the rest of your living room is, if your couch isn't perfect then the whole room will feel disjointed and uncoordinated.
There are plenty of upholstery ideas that will bring an air of sophistication to your space. To make your living room feel more modern, opt for contrasting sofas and armchairs to add texture to the space. For example, select a minimalist leather armchair and pair with a luxurious velvet sofa in a dusky blue hue.
'The quickest way to refresh any space is the soft furnishing. Swap out old cushion covers and outdated rugs for vibrant and contemporary alternatives. It's amazing how different an outdated piece of furniture can look with the addition of a new fabric. It's easier than you think to reupholster an accent chair or make your own cushion out of a favorite fabric,' says Ben Stokes, founder of Kagu Interiors (opens in new tab).
5. Decorate with flowers
Flowers never fail to brighten and bring life to a space and they are a quick and affordable way to instantly make your living room beautiful.
'A new bunch of flowers is an easy way to update your living room with an instant injection of color and scent. What’s more, using fresh, in season products to bring the outside in has a profoundly positive impact on your mood,' explains Suzie Woolley, head of product at Serenata Flowers (opens in new tab).
'Home-grown water-colored gladioli add a subtle burst of summer but if you’re looking for a bunch that will suit any décor, the understated yet highly fragrant Scented Moonlight will make your living room smell like a fresh summer meadow.'
6. Emphasize natural light
Increasing the amount of natural light is a surefire way to beautify your living room. However, that is easier said than done. Knowing how to increase natural light, through methods such as painting walls white, increasing the number of mirrors and expanding the size of windows, will all help to brighten your space.
One less well known idea, however, is to swap solid walls for glazed partitions or adding glazed panels into internal doors. Embracing broken plan living room ideas ensures that your space still feels zoned but means that every corner is also flooded with light.
Also, choose low slung, light colored furniture; taller, darker pieces block and absorb light. The same goes for drapes: heavy, dark drapes will make a living room feel darker and smaller.
7. Opt for luxury materials
Incorporating luxury living room ideas into your scheme will take your design to the next level. Velvet, marble and metals are all sumptuous materials that will give your living room a luxe look.
Luxury materials don't have to break the bank either, a marble tray on your wooden coffee table or a few velvet cushions on a cotton or leather sofa can go a long way to elevate your scheme without costing the earth.
8. Incorporate antiques
When trying to figure out 'how can I make my living room beautiful?', it is important that every piece of furniture earns its place. The best way to ensure your furniture is brimming with character is to invest in antiques.
Decorating with antiques brings rich heritage and personality to your space, helping to make your living room feel unique and characterful as well as beautiful.
‘Antiques show a passion for beautiful objects. There are so many amazing pieces out there that will work in any interior and bring a sense of authenticity to your home. It can be overwhelming looking through hundreds of items but once you find the right one, it’s a feeling you get that you have to have it – never force yourself into something.
'We always say if you are not 100 per cent in love with it then it is not the right piece for you and something else will come along,' says Camilla Clarke, Creative Director at Albion Nord (opens in new tab).
If you are new to buying antiques, or feel daunted by the prospect of going to an auction, you'll be thrilled to know that there are plenty of expert top tips for how to shop for antiques that will help you on your way, including buying antiques online.
9. Reduce clutter
The best way that you can make your living room more beautiful is to have a clear out. Reducing clutter will elevate the space, making it feel brighter and more organized.
However, decluttering can feel like a very intimidating prospect, especially if it's been a while since you last undertook the challenge. Thankfully, however, there are plenty of decluttering tips that will help you to get started. It is also worth investing in the best living room organizers that will not only offer storage but will also bring style and substance to the heart of your home.
There are lots of home organizing ideas that are sure to help you keep your living room neat and tidy and let your decor sing.
10. Think about all the senses
When it comes to designing a living room, you're first thought will always be for the visual aesthetics. However, it is also worth thinking about your other senses, and you can do this with fragrance layering. The fragrance of a room is as influential as the way a space looks.
'Paying attention to how your home smells is just as important as appearance. Here are some of the concepts and products we use for our hotel clients that could easily be applied within the home.' advises Emma Loane, hotel business manager at the home and body care specialists Arran (opens in new tab).
'Try scent-scaping. Fancy hotels will often diffuse different aromas around the lobby, bathrooms and communal areas, as well as in the rooms themselves. You can easily apply this concept to your home, just be careful none of the adjacent rooms contain fragrances that clash.
'In homes, you don’t want to be overwhelmed as soon as you step through the door. Then you need to think of which notes will complement one another as you move from room to room. When it comes to choosing the best home fragrance for the living room, I would opt for the uplifting floral notes of bergamot or geranium, with something more citrusy in the kitchen, such as Just Grapefruit,' adds Emma.
11. Hide the television
When you've spent lots of time and money curating the perfect beautiful living room, everything can fall apart when you try to add a TV to the scheme. Thankfully, there are lots of living room TV ideas to help you to seamlessly integrate the TV into your living room without compromising its beauty.
'The best way to camouflage your TV is to invest in a framed version that acts as a piece of art whilst not in use,' says Jen & Mar, the duo behind Interior Fox (opens in new tab).
However, if you don't want to invest in a new television, figure out how your TV will work into the scheme from the outset of the design process rather than treating it as an after-thought – that way it will seem like a natural part of the scheme rather than an add-on. There are also lots of TV stand ideas and TV wall ideas to help inspire you.
12. Decorate with wall paneling
Wall paneling is a valuable asset to any interior design, especially when it comes to living room styling. When used as part of living room accent wall ideas, it adds warmth, texture and color in equal proportions.
'Paneling is an easy way to add texture, depth and interest to the walls. Great for all types of properties, especially new builds as it really helps to add character and interest when architectural features are minimal. This technique is ideal for small rooms when used vertically as it makes the walls appear taller,' explains Jen & Mar.
From wainscoting and tongue and groove through to board and batten and square, there a plenty of living room paneling ideas that will help you to find the perfect fit for your space.
How can I make my living room more beautiful?
The easiest way to make your living room look beautiful is to repaint the walls. This will instantly refresh the look and feel of the space and will help you to look at your existing decor in a new light. Opt for light shades, such as a clean white or bright pastels, to increase the amount of natural light in the room, helping to brighten the space. Also consider the paint finishes, paint walls with a muted matte shade then highlight details such as window frames, dado rails and skirting boards with a gloss.
You can make your living room more beautiful by introducing high-end materials such as marble, velvet and gold finishes to your scheme. You can also add panelling to the walls which will elevate your scheme by improving its architecture.
Having graduated with a first class degree in English Literature four years ago, Holly started her career as a features writer and sub-editor at Period Living magazine, Homes & Gardens' sister title. Working on Period Living brought with it insight into the complexities of owning and caring for period homes, from interior decorating through to choosing the right windows and the challenges of extending. This has led to a passion for traditional interiors, particularly the country-look. Writing for the Homes & Gardens website as a content editor, alongside regular features for Period Living and Country Homes & Interiors magazines, has enabled her to broaden her writing to incorporate her interests in gardening, wildlife and nature.