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Deconstructing a Living Room

header image from Better Homes and Gardens New Cottage Style

A friend who was looking at my blog posts said it would be helpful to her if I would explain why I liked the the look of certain rooms. Today I am going to take apart a living room and describe the details that I think make it work.

Better Homes & Gardens : New Cottage Style book

This living room is in a Florida coastal cottage. These are the things I noticed:

1. Pops of Color: Although the sofa, chairs, and rug are neutral, the room is colorful and interesting. The bright abstract painting above the fireplace provides the tight color palette for the room–pillows are in shades of orange, the walls are a light lemon yellow, the coffee table and glass elements are turquoise. These pops of color make the room feel playful, cheery, and coastal.

2. Balance and symmetry: The architecture of the room is balanced–the fireplace is in the middle of the seating arrangement with a window on each side. The sofa on one side of the room is balanced by two chairs on the facing side. The symmetrical arrangement adds calmness and order to the space.


3.  Mix of old and new: A room that incorporates both old elements and new ones is far more interesting than a room that is all one or the other. If everything in a room is new, it often looks like a furniture store showroom that lacks character. This room mixes modern light fixtures with a weathered, paint-stripped coffee table adding interest to the space.

4.  Natural elements: Natural elements add life and nature to a room. This room has a wicker basket, sisal rug, logs in the fireplace, shells, and live plants and flowers –all of which add a touch of life to the space.

5.  Light: This room has an abundance of natural light. In addition, it has an overhead light that is airy and scaled appropriately to the size of the room, and it has glass lamps, glass vases and glass mantel ornaments that add to the open, bright, and coastal quality of the room.

6. Comfort: Perhaps the most important quality for a living room is to actually be comfortable! The slip-covered chairs and sofas look made for lounging, there are books and magazines to read, and there are games, and even a guitar, to play. The cozy blankets in the basket and soft pillows are inviting, too.

I hope this post helped to explain some of the elements that I look for in a room. See you tomorrow for another Tuesday Tour!

2 thoughts on “Deconstructing a Living Room

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