The modest size of your home is not a reason to deny yourself the opportunity of realizing the ideas about the comfort, coziness and elegant appearance of the modern tiny living room. Of course, the small area of the room limits the owners in choosing a color palette, the number and models of furniture, placing decor, etc. However, there are many design techniques that can visually expand the available space, creating the illusion of spaciousness in the room.
Starting from the choice of color schemes and ending with the placement of decorative elements, there are a number of unspoken rules for arranging tiny rooms, rooms with an asymmetric shape or an uncomfortable layout. We hope that the following examples of design projects of living rooms, made in various interior styles, will help you plan renovation in your own small rest room for the whole family.
The Color Palette is the Key to Success when Designing Tiny Spaces
We all perfectly understand that the light color scheme of a room visually expands it, creates the illusion that space is bigger than it really is. Many stylistic directions for interior design of certain premises are based on snow-white or gray wall decoration and arrangement of rooms using natural shades of furniture using bright accessories as accents. And such design techniques are very popular because they are the simplest and most understandable option for homeowners to arrange a tiny living room. The white color of the living room decoration allows you to feel a certain freedom in choosing other interior items – furniture, decor, lighting, textiles. Any color looks great on a white background, even neutral shades acquire a special charm and you do not need to worry about combinatorics.
If the ceiling and walls in your room are decorated with white and the flooring is much darker, then such color schemes will visually expand the boundaries of a small family room.
Snow-white walls, against which the furniture in neutral shades is located, can give a very boring image of the living room as a result. You can create accents in the decoration by using interesting wallpaper with photo printing or textured decoration of the same color to design one of the walls of the room. Such an approach will not violate the overall color scheme of the room but will bring an interesting and unique design element to the interior of the living room.
Creating an accent wall among the snow-white finish is not a difficult task. Even the use of light, pastel shades allows you to highlight the surface, draw attention to the furniture (and most often it is a sofa), which is on its background. In order to create a more effective focus, you can use contrasting or bright decor – a photo within the frame, a picture, a panel or collectibles displayed on open shelves.
The use of pastel colors to decorate and furnish tiny living room can be a successful alternative to using white for decorating the room’s vertical planes. The beige palette will create a warm and pleasant atmosphere. Bluish-gray tones will become a neutral background for contrasting furniture and give the room a feeling of freshness and coolness. Light green, mint, pistachio and olive shades, generously diluted with a white tone, will create a relaxing environment that helps cleanse thoughts and emotions and relax after a difficult workday.
The use of warm natural shades helps to create a pleasant, cozy atmosphere in the living room. This is especially true for the decoration of the room, which uses natural materials, for example, wooden wall panels. This design allows you to create an atmosphere of proximity to nature, both in the dwellings located outside the city limits and in the framework of city apartments.
Contrasting combinations of light and dark tones are a universal option for creating an interesting interior for rooms of any size. But it is important to keep in mind that small rooms require using white as the predominant color, intermediate (one of the shades of gray) as the color scheme for large items (sofa or armchairs), and black tones for dosed use in decor, textiles.
If for some reason monochromatic walls do not suit you and you decide to use wallpaper with a print to decorate the walls in a small room, then remember that using a large picture will create the effect of a slammed box, narrowing an already small room. A small drawing will create the illusion of a larger space. The same applies to the textiles used in the living.
Use horizontal and vertical stripes in the finish to visually expand the space in height or width as you wish. The same effect can be achieved from a striped print on the upholstery of soft furniture or carpet. But remember that the strips should not be too variegated, this will affect the visual perception of a small room.
Visual Zoning of the Space – Ergonomic Interior of the Common Room
It often happens that even in a small living room you need to place another zone, in addition to the rest area. It can be a workplace, a corner for creativity or a dining area. Obviously, the use of partitions, screens and other enclosing elements in a room with a modest size is unacceptable, they all take space, clutter it. In order to carry out conditional zoning, it is easiest to imagine the furniture of a room inscribed in a geometric figure – a triangle, square or rectangle. By placing the main pieces of furniture of this or that segment in imaginary peaks, you can achieve an ergonomic and rational layout of even the tiniest room.
For example, the vertices of the triangle are a sofa (soft zone), TV (video zone) and a dining group (dining area) in a small living room. A sufficient amount of free space will remain in the room if you do not use unnecessary furniture and try to limit yourself only to wall decor.
Our vision is arranged in such a way that smooth and plain objects seem to us larger in size than colorful and textured ones. You can use these illusions to visually “zoom in” or “zoom out” the surfaces you need. If you paint a smooth wall in one tone and place a plane nearby decorated, for example, in the form of brickwork, then we will perceive them in different ways. Thus, it is possible not only to zone the room, but also to focus the attention of anyone entering the room on the objects we need – pieces of furniture, equipment or decor.
Use the asymmetry and irregular shapes of the room to your advantage as much as possible. If the living room is located in attic rooms with ceilings that have a large slant, then try to arrange seating areas with low storage systems from the places of the lowest ceiling height. If the room, due to the original layout, has niches and nooks, you can always build in storage systems or equip soft seats for them. In this case, it is enough to hang a wall lamp nearby and the place for reading is ready.
A Fireplace in a Small Living Room is a Reality
Most of the European and American homeowners cannot imagine the comfort and coziness of a common relaxation room without a family hearth – a fireplace. The popularity of this interior item that can not only warm the room, bring an element of natural relaxation, but also decorate the design of the living room, is rapidly growing all over the world. If, within the framework of a private house, the construction of a fireplace does not cause any obstacles other than your desire and the availability of a certain budget, then in a city apartment you will most likely have to confine yourself to an electric imitation of a hearth or a fake fireplace, the purpose of which is boiled down to lighting candles and aromatic lamps.
To equip a fireplace, you need to allocate not so much space, in addition, the space above it can be used to organize a TV zone or hang a large mirror in a beautiful frame which, in addition to the main purpose, will visually increase the scale of your living room.
The Right Choice of Furniture – Comfort and Rationality of Arranging a Tiny Living Room
To make the space of a small living room visually larger and preserve some space, it is necessary to choose furniture of compact sizes. Currently, the range of models of modular sofas and armchairs that can transform is very wide. On sale there are many options for folding furniture of small sizes, which can provide enough seating for the family members and a small party.
The sofa is an integral part of the living room interior, no matter in what style it is made out. It is worth approaching the choice of a central piece of furniture with all responsibility. Corner models of sofas will help save space in the living room while creating a spacious seating area. Most of these models require the possibility of folding into a sleeping place of at least two people. If any of your guests stayed overnight, you only need to fold out your multifunctional piece of upholstered furniture.
When choosing a sofa for the living room, try to remember not only the combination of the color of its upholstery with decoration and other interior items but also that it will undergo quite active use. There are many models with removable covers that are easy to wash in the washing machine. You can also order sewing a cover for a sofa made of practical fabric, the model of which does not provide for the removal of textiles.
The leather sofa is easiest to care for as its surface is easy to clean. In addition, many homeowners love furniture with leather upholstery for the effect of nobility and affluence, which introduces natural material (or its successful artificial imitation). But it is important to remember that in hot weather the leather surface does not provide the necessary ventilation, and in cold weather, it remains cold. In the presence of condition and space heating systems, these problems are removed.
The subject seems larger than it actually is if surrounded by other elements of much smaller size. By installing a small sofa in the living room and surrounding it with even smaller pieces of furniture and decor, we manage to make an optical illusion and increase the scale of not only the central focal element but also the space in which it is located.
Built-in furniture, namely, storage systems will help save the usable space of a small living room. There is no need to talk about the location of large built-in wardrobes, but even a small living room can accommodate compact swing or drawers, racks, and shelves. For example, a wall with a window cannot be used to install large furniture near it, but the space around the window (especially under it) can be given for built-in storage systems.
It is proved that objects located horizontally are perceived by us shorter than similar elements occupying a vertical position. If you place open shelves on the walls, then our eyes perceive them as objects of smaller sizes than they really are. This fact is due to the speed of perception of information by our eye. Thus, you can place a lot of the items you need on open shelves in the living room, even if its area is very small.
The use of furniture that is able to assemble one into another on the principle of nesting dolls will help you save useful living space. For example, small stand tables, which can also serve as a place for sitting. They are compactly pushed one under the other at a time when you are resting in family and get out during the reception.
In small spaces, the use of multifunctional furniture becomes especially relevant. For example, a pouf-stand with soft upholstery though a rigid frame can serve both as a seat (for one or two people), and play the role of a coffee table.
Create the right lighting and achieve visual expansion of a small room
For small spaces, the lighting system plays a particularly important role. If you have the opportunity to increase the amount of natural light in your small living room by increasing the size or number of windows – this should not be neglected. But most often (especially within the framework of dwellings in apartment buildings), the problem of a sufficient level of illumination can be solved only with the help of an artificial lighting system at different levels.
The fact that the living room is modest in size does not mean that one central lighting device, a chandelier, will be enough to create the necessary atmosphere. If your room is conditionally divided into zones (workplace or dining room), then it is necessary to provide each functional segment of the living room with its own lighting system. For a mini-office it can be a table lamp or a wall sconce lamp. For a recreation area, it is a chandelier and a floor lamp.
The built-in lighting system is able to blur the boundaries of your tiny sitting room. And we are talking not only about the familiar lighting hiding in the bowels of suspended ceilings, but also LED strips transforming the look of cabinet furniture, structural elements of the room or decor items.