More likely than not, your living room is where you spend most of your time at home. It’s where you veg out on the couch, where you work and work out, where you entertain your friends — and where you eat all your meals. Sound familiar? Because chances are, your living room also functions as your dining room. (Looking at you, urban apartment dwellers.)
In order to make it look like one cohesive space while functioning more like two (or more), you need decorating ideas and furniture pieces that will serve all your needs. Read on for our favorite tips to help transform your living room into a truly flex space — and a beautiful one at that.
If you frequently entertain, having extra seating on hand is important to ensure all your guests have a comfortable place to sit. But rather than storing extra chairs or stools in a corner or closet you’d probably rather not spare, why not make use of the extra surface space when it's not being used as seating? A chair or stool can function as an accent table to display your favorite books and candles, while a dining bench could be repurposed by the entryway as a console to store your bag, mail, and keys.
Let’s face it: room for a standalone bar cart is a luxury not many of us have. But fear not — it’s still totally possible to create a space to display your favorite liquors and barware. It’s all about thinking creatively. One of our favorite tips is to carve out room on an existing piece of living room furniture, like a bookcase, cabinet, or even media unit. Then, use a decorative tray to corral your bottles and accessories. This will help make the placement look organized and intentional.
When you’re stuck with a dining table or eat-in bar in your living room, your home can start to feel chaotic and disparate. One way to remedy this is to treat your table or bar as an extension of the the living room design, rather than as a separate section. Use it as an opportunity to decorate just like you would any other piece of living room furniture: display coffee table books or candles, use a decorative tray or vessel in lieu of a traditional fruit basket, bring in greenery, even place a small table lamp if you need light. This will help the entire space feel cohesive.
Ever noticed how media consoles and sideboards look similar? Here's an under-the-radar tip: forgo a traditional media console in favor of a sideboard for your space. It can still house your TV on top, but comes with all the built-in storage you need to tuck away any extra plates, dishes, glasses, and linens underneath. Sneaky, right? Some even come with storage for your wine collection!