The Living Room Style Trend And How To Pull It Off

Choosing your living room style can be one of the most exciting things about designing your home. But it can also be one of the most frustrating. After all, this is an important room where you’ll be entertaining guests.

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There are quite a few different design living room styles attached to the living room. In fact, you can use any design style in the living room but there are a few that really stand out and make a living room look like a home. 

Contemporary Living Room Style

Contemporary Living Room StyleView in gallery

The contemporary living room is the most popular type of living room. This type of design is always changing as the contemporary living room style is something that is inspired by what is currently trending. 

What To Do

  • Clean Lines – clean lines are probably the most important part of the contemporary design style. Because the lines need to be clean as if drawn by a skilled artist very recently. This is the outline for the design. 
  • Contrasts – going along with the clean theme, simple contrasts can really bring a contemporary design together. Choose either light or dark and then accent it with the other, using both for your design. 
  • Geometric Designs – whether you choose diamond, circles, or hexagons, choosing at least one and implementing it is important. Without it, the design really doesn’t live up to the expectations. 
  • Open Concept – a lot of designs look best with an open concept, but currently, the contemporary design style needs to have this. While the bedroom can have four walls, the living room and kitchen look best together. 
  • Minimalism – minimalism is absolutely necessary if you want to live in a contemporary home. After all, minimalism has been trending ever since the release of Marie Kondo’s book and Netflix series. 

What Not To Do

  • Overdo The Art – while art should be an inspiration for any contemporary home, overdoing it can be distasteful and take away from the cleanness of the lines. So be careful and choose selectively. 
  • Go “Modern” – there’s a huge difference between modern and contemporary. We will learn more about modern designs later, but know that they are different and should not be confused with one another. 
  • Not Leaving Enough Space – empty space is crucial for a contemporary living room. So leave space behind the couch or omit a coffee table to ensure that you have that walking space that creates the contemporary flow. 

Mid-Century Modern Living Room 

Mid-Century Modern Living Room View in gallery

Mid-century modern is an extremely popular design style for any room, but it is most popular in the living room. This design style refers to a certain style that was popularized in the 1920s and lasted until the 1970s. 

What To Do

  • Asymmetry – while most designs tend to be fairly symmetrical, mid-century modern designs often lean towards asymmetrical designs. While you don’t have to make your living room look like a funhouse, a little asymmetry can go a long way. 
  • Inspired Designs – people during this time were inspired by tv shows, Hollywood, and even their neighbors. Being trendy was important and so was showing off your own design in your home.
  • Functionality – everything in a mid-century modern living room should have a purpose. It doesn’t need to be extremely practical or used every day, but you want everything to be cohesive, to say the least. 
  • Organic Meets Modern – the best thing about mid-century modern is that it blends faux aspects with natural, organic materials. Imagine a potted plant in a funky plastic pot. Natural meets synthetic.  

What Not To Do

  • Going Too Retro – retro can be quite synonymous with mid-century, but they don’t always blend. Today, retro means what was current 25-years ago or so. But mid-century modern never changes. 
  • Using Electronic Decorations – of course, go ahead and hang your TV, but try not to use modern technology to decorate. If you use a radio, use a classic 1950s one instead of a modern one. 
  • Ignoring The Architecture – look at the architecture in your living room. There’s a good chance that unless your home is new, that there are already mid-century modern aspects that you can use to your advantage. 
  • Using A White Base – there’s nothing wrong with painting your walls white in any design style. However, a white base doesn’t work out well in the normally warm mid-century modern design style. 

Transitional Living Room

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The transitional design is for those who like pieces of both contemporary and traditional design styles but want to merge them. If you can’t decide on a design style, there’s a good chance you’ll love transitional. 

What To Do

  • Go Elemental – this means multiple things. Yes, the four elements can be beneficial here, but what we are referring to are the design elements. Use them all to really draw the room together.
  • Choice Fabrics – the fabrics you use are so important in a transitional design. Think about adding fur or chenille throws or throw pillows, anything that adds texture and class to this transitional living room. 
  • Neutrals – neutrals are absolutely a staple in a transitional design style. Greys, blacks, and whites should be the ultimate backdrop for a transitional living room, so stick with them before adding color. 
  • Fun Metals – chrome is definitely the top metal for transitional living room designs. You can use anything, but sticking to cooler metals is ideal for this style while warm metals should be avoided. 

What Not To Do

  • Use Too Much Color – don’t be afraid to go full monochrome with a transitional design style. This is actually ideal and color should only be added in small amounts and shouldn’t vary too much. 
  • Forgetting To Balance – balance is very important in a design style that is all about balance. Try not to go overboard on one side of the design and instead try to balance it evenly to keep it true. 
  • Not Adding Natural Light – natural light is important in a transitional living room. So if you don’t have any windows, you can either fake it, or you can put new windows in. Consider clerestory windows. 

Beach Living Room

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Image from Tych & Walker Architects

This is a familiar style for most people because who hasn’t wanted to live at a beach house before? But it can be difficult to pull it off without it looking cheap and clumsy. But there are ways to do it right.

What To Do

  • Use Beach Neutrals – don’t get overwhelmed with all of the bright, beachy colors. Stick to the sandiness and the clouds before moving on to the blues and greens. This can help balance out things.
  • Be Natural – get everything as natural as possible. Natural colors, natural tones, and natural furniture. Opt for wooden furniture or even glass due to the sea glass theme, and stay away from plastics. 
  • Use Resources – driftwood is definitely the inspiration here. If you can get your hands on some, then do it and cherish it. Make mantles, flooring, beams, and whatever else you can imagine.

What Not To Do

  • Get Gimmicky – adding seastars and mermaids on everything is definitely not where it’s all at unless you are decorating a teen or child’s room. If it’s a living room, keep it simple and natural.
  • Mix Too Many Blueslayering every blue that you can imagine without taking a moment to decide which ones will work won’t work out. Pick at most three and then stick with them throughout the room.
  • Let Things Get Dim – avoid letting things get dark as this is definitely not a beach-themed thing to do. Keep things light, airy, and relaxing if you really want to keep everything looking its best.

Eclectic Living Room

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The word eclectic means, “deriving ideas, style, or taste from a broad and diverse range of sources.” This is the perfect description for the design style as well because people mix and match, creating their own unique style.

What To Do

  • Get Artsy – eclectic living rooms are like stage rooms or galleries. You should use them to display everything that means something to you. This includes all of your favorite art pieces, made by you or someone else. 
  • Mix Cultures – every culture that you can draw inspiration from can be added to an eclectic living room. If you pick up something on vacation, add it. If you find something at the thrift store, add it. 
  • Layer – layer your living room with rugs, coffee tables, and accents. While it is possible to overdo it, if you take things slow, you won’t end up doing this and instead will have that perfect eclectic look. 

What Not To Do

  • Overwhelm Your Space – I know that I just mentioned that it is difficult to overdo it, if you go too fast, it is bound to happen. So take things slow and let the art and your inspirations come naturally. 
  • Disrespect Culture – this is very important. If you don’t know what something is, then look it up before displaying it. The last thing you want to do in an eclectic living room is to disrespect anyone. 
  • Only Add Small Pieces – if you add 100 small pieces of home decor and furniture without adding large pieces, the space will look cluttered. Start big and then go smaller to complement the living room. 

Rustic Living Room

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The rustic living room is one of the oldest living room styles in history. This should not be confused with the farmhouse living room, but is a broader term more akin to describing lodges than farmhouses. 

What To Do

  • Open Beams – open beams are a given in rustic living rooms. If you can salvage your own, then that is perfect. But if not, any type of beams will do as long as you stain them the right color for your living room design. 
  • Fireplace – if you can’t afford a fireplace, it isn’t crucial that you have one. However, if you can’t get a real one, both electric ones and gas ones can be beneficial and can look just like the real thing. 
  • Natural As Can Be – rustic living rooms must be as natural as possible. This means using natural materials and natural decor as often as you can. Opt for wood, stone, and leathers for your living room.
  • Warm And Inviting – cool tones can work in part for a rustic living room but it’s much better to stick with what is warm and welcoming. Think dark reds, browns, and such to warm the room up.

What Not To Do

  • Too Many Textures – if you add too many patterns and textures to your rustic living room, it will take away the simplicity that makes the rustic living room so special in the first place. So keep that simplicity. 
  • Try Too Hard – trying too hard to make things look like you live in a lodge from the 1800s will only end up making things look cheap. It’s okay for that to be your inspiration, but chill and let it flow. 
  • Avoid Faux Replacements – that’s right, faux replacements can actually be better than the real thing. If you’re vegan, then it’s the only option so don’t shame faux leather nor real leather, just do you.

Farmhouse Living Room

Farmhouse Living RoomView in gallery

The farmhouse living room is becoming very popular as of late. In fact, the popularity has been growing for about a decade. It won’t be long before it becomes more dominant than more modern options. 

What To Do

  • Repurpose – this is probably the first thing you want to do for your farmhouse living room. Whether it be jars or wood. Repurpose anything that you can to really make the farmhouse living room genuine. 
  • Whitewash And Texture – texturing things yourself, from distressing them to limewashing them, can really work well in a farmhouse living room. It adds character and keeps to the theme well. 
  • Build Something – don’t be afraid to start from scratch and bu8ild your own furniture for your home. Even if it’s just an end table or a throw pillow, it can only look good in a farmhouse living room. 

What Not To Do

  • Copycat – don’t try to copy someone else’s living room exactly. Instead, draw inspirations from different living rooms, find your favorite aspects of each and add your own, most importantly. 
  • Limit Shopping – do not limit shopping to standard furniture stores like IKEA. Instead, move on to Tractor Supply and other more rustic stores that can help you find the perfect home decor for your living room. 
  • Forget The Details – the details are the most important part of a farmhouse living room. You don’t just want the perfect couch, you want that herbal wall art and that milk can with flowers in the corner. 

Shabby Chic Living Room

Shabby Chic Living RoomView in gallery

Shabby Chic is a timeless design style that mixes rustic, sophistication, and light-hearted designs. Think magic farmhouse or rustic cottage with a bit of fantasy mixed in. Now enter the shabby chic living room. 

What To Do

  • Go Sheer – sheer curtains are especially wonderful in a shabby chic living room. But truly, sheer tablecloths, or even lace, can add to any living room with a shabby chic design. The point is to keep it light. 
  • Whitewash – whitewashed wood looks amazing in a shabby chic living room. You can even bluewash or pinkwash if you like as long as the colors are light, which brings us to our next point on the shabby chic living room. 
  • Pastels – pastels are always present in a true shabby chic living room. You can choose your own color scheme, by using mint, lavender, or even a barely-there orange. But there will always be a standard. 

What Not To Do

  • Underestimate Solid Colors – solid colors are almost always preferable in a shabby chic living room. While simple patterns, such as floral, and of course lace are present, almost everything will be a solid color.
  • Add Dark Accents – dark accents can be added if they are very tasteful, but most of the time, they take away from the look and stark looking more rustic or even Scandanavian. So stick to the lights. 
  • Choose Your Own Way – if you have to decide between sticking to the theme or following your heart, then follow your heart. This is true for every single design style we mentioned today and that will never change.