Whether you live solo or head up a large family household, your living room is the social heart of your home. When you add the right design elements, your living area or lounge
can be a space to gather for movie nights, catch up with friends over a bottle of wine, or somewhere to relax at the end of the day. Certain types of homes will sell themselves better as
sociable spaces, but there are ways to work with what you’ve got and maximize your square footage.
Here are five tips that will help turn any living room into a hub of social activity.
Provide plenty of seating options
It doesn’t matter how big or small your living room is, there are plenty of ways you can build seating into your space. Find storage benches that double up as extra seating if cushions and blankets are placed on top, or look for comfortable chairs that’ll fill any corner of a room. If you’re a lover of contemporary design, Y Living provides sleek furnishings from international brands and an array of seating options in various shapes and sizes. The Eames Chair and Ottoman, in particular, is iconic design that offers a clean and welcoming aesthetic and brings timeless style and comfort to any space.
Tip: Look for seating that can be easily moved. If a chair swivels, then it can face another person, wherever they are in the room. Perfect for utilizing every inch of space and providing comfortable conversations.
Maximize small spaces
If your living room is on the small side, it’s more important than ever to get your furniture arrangement right. Look for small couches, loveseats and chairs that will provide comfort as well as style, and think about ways you can use your existing furniture. Could your ottoman double as a coffee table or seat, for example? You can create extra drinks space using almost any furniture piece by placing a pretty tray on top. Another option is to go for a sectional couch with storage underneath.
Set the mood with lighting and music
Good lighting is essential for setting the mood in any room, so it’s worth investing in some adjustable dimmer lights and well-placed table lamps or floor lamps to illuminate dark corners. Music will also add to the ambiance and get people talking, so consider incorporating a sound system into your design.
The TV is the obvious focal point of most living rooms; after all, it makes sense to sit in the optimum viewing position for your favorite movies and shows. However, this doesn’t exactly encourage sociability, and it can become all too easy to stare at the screen rather than communicate with your loved ones. If you have a wall-mounted TV, you can place a decorative covering over it to take the focus away from it. Or, choose a smaller screen that you can keep less conspicuously on a side unit, and place a large piece of artwork nearby to draw attention away from it.
Make your guests feel comfortable
While minimalist design can be attractive, a cozier environment will make your guests feel welcome. In addition to providing comfortable seating, you should also give your visitors a place to put their feet up -- either on an ottoman or footstall -- and furnish with cushions and blankets. Keep fresh, colorful flowers in the living room, and have an ornate and beautiful tea or coffee pot to bring out for deep conversations with friends.