6 Smart Living Room Updates

6 Smart Living Room Updates
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Our living room is one of the trickiest rooms in our house! You walk right into it when you come in the front door, it has a large angled fireplace wall (that my dad beautifully tiled a few years back!), and it opens wide into the dining room and kitchen. A true open concept.

I’ve tried every way imaginable to re-configure the furniture but the couch against the window always makes the most sense. We used to have a sectional here and while I didn’t love the dark brown color and the style-less shape I do miss the extra seating. But now I have room on the fireplace side for the fabulous new rattan media cabinet that I scored on Craigslist.

I’ve recently made a few changes and I wanted to share with you 6 smart living room updates that we invested in to take this space up a notch!

1. Add paneling.

I love board and batten and I knew it would be the perfect way to add some character to this space and lighten up the walls! It made such a difference and I’m glad that we went with two sections, lower rectangles and upper squares. The paneling is Pure White by Sherwin Williams and the walls are Sea Salt also by Sherwin Williams. I’ll hopefully have a DIY post coming soon!

living room upgrades

6 Living Room changes

2. Create a sitting area.

After saying goodbye to our sectional I knew I needed some extra seating and instead of adding a love seat or something else I opted for two chairs to create a conversation area. When it’s just us at home the chairs usually end up holding our piles of laundry (did you see the Real Life Home Tour?) but when friends are over it’s a great place for people to sit and chat. And it gets some of the best light in the house!

These blue chairs are really inexpensive and are the perfect size and scale for our small space!

Smart Living Room Updates

3. Use an eclectic accent piece.

Although my style still has a coastal cottage vibe I love adding modern and eclectic pieces to mix it up a bit! This awesome indigo pouf from Bryght is the perfect boho addition to the room. It is certainly a conversation piece and it adds additional seating as well!

If you’ve never been on Bryght’s site you need to check it out. I found them when I was looking for some mid century modern pieces for the house and they are by far my new favorite affordable source. I love their mid century modern sofas and chairs too! When I miss my sectional too much and end up switching back it’s definitely going to be the Sven Charme tan leather sectional for sure! And on top of that they have flat rate shipping for $49!!

6 Living Room Updates

 Living Room Updates with boho pouf

4. Warm it up with rattan or bamboo.

I found this beauty on Craigslist and I love the warmth and vintage vibe it gives to the room. You can’t go wrong with one of these classic pieces and if you don’t like the natural look they also look great painted a fun glossy color. I considered going navy with this piece but I’m enjoying it in it’s natural state for a bit before I decide. Thoughts?

I used a warm faux bamboo piece in my our big boy room makeover and it definitely adds warmth in there too!



5. Turn the books around.

This one might seem a little odd but I find myself becoming over stimulated in many of the rooms in our home. I can’t stand clutter and when I see too much color and pattern it overloads my eyes and my brain! By turning the books around in our clear trunk table it helps calm the eye and give the room a more cohesive look. I also did this on the bookshelves in my office and it made a huge difference about how I feel about the shelves and the room in general. I’ll share a picture of them soon!



6. Make an impact with pops of color.

Pops of color in an overall neutral palette is a decorating win for any space! Our space isn’t completely neutral and I do use some color, mostly blues, but you can see how a pop of color goes along way, even in these paint dipped art pieces.



I hope you enjoyed seeing these changes. It’s pretty cool how just a few small things change add so much to a room’s character and overall feel! Check back tomorrow for the 2nd edition of our Favorite Things Friday! I’ve got some fun stuff to share!



You can shop our room by scrolling through and clicking on the products for direct links!

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{This was not a sponsored post but Bryght provided the pour for my review. All ideas, words and opinions are my own. Thank YOU for supporting the brands that make Simple Stylings possible!}


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  1. It’s amazing how something so small such as a cushion can make all the difference. I need to take these tips and have a long, hard look at my old tired living room.

    1. Thanks so much Andi! I found the clear and brass trunk at an antique/thrift store here in Belmont and the wood and gold hairpin leg table is from At Home! Have a great weekend!

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