Does your living room storage need an overhaul? Keep your living room clutter free with storage that is handsome as well as handy. If you’ve lost that loving feeling for your living room, chances are it’s because it hasn’t got enough storage. There’s nothing more unappealing than being surrounded by clutter, so restore that relaxing vibe with these fabulous living room storage ideas.
Make living room furniture work harder by choosing items that include storage. A coffee table with a shelf beneath will create an extra surface for stashing newspapers and remote controls out of the way. An upholstered ottoman could double up as a storage unit and a coffee table. Vintage trunks are also ideal for this job and will add character to your living room, too.
Create space on your coffee table for hot mugs of tea by relocating books and magazines to shelves. Bookcases aren’t just for traditional-style rooms; modular shelving units and ladder-style shelves are ideal for contemporary schemes. If your room hasn’t the floor space to accommodate a bookcase or a freestanding unit, opt for a wall-hung shelving unit instead. DVD storage will also banish the clutter and keep your living room in order.
Storage doesn’t just need to be functional; you could use it to give your room a whole new focal point. Floor-to-ceiling and wall-to-wall shelving filled with books, framed family photographs and much-loved home accessories will create a striking feature that is unique to you. If you’d prefer storage to take a back seat, make use of alcoves. Ask a carpenter to create subtle, built-in units and paint them in the same shade as the walls so that they blend in. For a contemporary scheme, try fitting a streamlined sliding panel to conceal a whole wall of shelving, drawers and pull-out cupboards. If you have lots of dinner party items and equipment, have a look at our dining room storage ideas.
A painted dresser sits beautifully in this country-style living room. The natural wood behind the shelves creates a rustic feel, while the smart cream finish of the doors blends in with the walls, keeping the look contemporary.
These smart shelves provide a combination of storage space for books and DVDs, as well as surfaces that can be used to display photographs and accessories. Breaking shelves into areas like this makes sure that they don’t overwhelm the space. Paint the back of a shelving unit in a bright stand-out colour, so that your wall of books becomes a focal point in your living room.
Similar shelving unit
A glass-fronted cupboard is a great way to display stylish belongings. Keep cookery books and tableware in a glass cabinet in an open-plan living-dining room for a traditional look with a cool Scandi edge. The glass will act like a frame for the objects stored inside your cabinet, so don’t fill it to bursting. Give items space to breathe so they become well-considered focal points.
Similar display cabinet
Hide away your living room bits and pieces in a classic sideboard and use the top for display against feature wallpaper. This vintage design has wide drawers, perfect for games and DVDs, plus cupboards for glassware and your drinks collection.
With no fireplace or fittings to work around, this room has plenty of wall space on which to make a storage feature. Link two identical freestanding units with open shelves to create the look of a large modular combination, then add interest by painting various shelves in soft contrasting colours. Choose a mix of drawers and open shelves to squirrel away clutter and display books, candles and favourite ornaments.
Similar display units
Make a feature of a plain window by turning it into a delightful window seat with storage. If you don’t have the budget to build a bespoke design, simply place a low sturdy console table under the window frame instead. Add plump, comfy cushions on top and fill the shelves with attractive baskets for bits and bobs.
For an eclectic interior full of charm, buy pre-loved pieces. A storage trunk not only gives a room a sense of history, but can double up as a feature coffee table, too. You should be able to pick up sturdy, good-quality solid-wood vintage pieces for much less than you’d pay for them new. Antique shop fittings and cabinets work brilliantly in modern homes as they offer well-organised storage in a unique piece of furniture that’s full of character and personality. Optimise storage further with a wooden sideboard with plenty of drawers.
House of Fraser
When space is at a premium, recessed shelves are a great option, both practically and stylistically. Why not go bespoke? This faux chimney breast doubles as display storage, with interesting rectangular alcoves to break up the space. Brighten the look by painting each shelf a different colour.
To help fill in awkward corners whilst maintaining a traditional scheme, choose tall slim units in matching wood finishes. Pull together complementary pieces for a built-in library look. As the majority of wall space is taken up by shelving, keep the rest of the scheme simple with a neutral sofa and delicate paint shades. Balance the room with a low coffee table with drawers to store magazines and ugly TV remote controls.
Sliding screens are normally used to divide a room, but why not put them to good use as a pretty solution to conceal brimming wall-to-wall recess shelves? Blend the panel blinds into your room by choosing the same print or colour as the wallpaper or paint. It’s a much cheaper and brighter alternative to wooden doors.
Similar sliding screens
Blinds Online UK
A smart, low unit for your television, with storage underneath for all your media equipment is a must, in a modern family living room. Create a fresh open-plan look by selecting a neutral colour for storage, then consolidate it to just one wall. Divide it up into a neat row of units with floating shelves above, then display favourite items in an accent colour, hiding away everything else to create an uncluttered feel. Only put larger objects on show and banish small items to baskets and boxes to combat chaos.
Similar wicker baskets
The Holding company
Televisions have become a vital part of modern life, but often ruin the look of a room that has been lovingly decorated. Here, modular storage has been used to cleverly blend the television into the living room scheme. Building a media unit not only creates a huge amount of storage, but also provides a canvas to camouflage a wall-mounted screen. Fill the surrounding shelves with monochrome books and objects, then mount silhouette frames to integrate the whole look.
Similar storage unit
If you are blessed with high ceilings, use them creatively to add subtle storage space with a long running shelf. A picture ledge will house interesting objects such as votives and photographs, whilst a wider floating shelf will keep pre-loved books out of the way. Create the illusion of lower ceilings by painting the space above the rail a different colour, drawing the eye downwards.
Similar picture rail
Step up your storage with ladder-style shelving. A leaning ladder shelf is a great way to add storage without overwhelming a living room. As well as being an interesting alternative to more conventional shelving, they are perfect for paler schemes or rooms with limited space. Be sure to secure the frame to the wall for safety.
Similar ladder shelving
Give your living room a less cluttered feel by storing books inside built-in alcove cupboards. Here, the units have been finished with country-style detailing and painted in a neutral off-white shade to fit in with the rustic scheme.
Let period details, such as intricate cornicing, shine out by opting for streamlined storage. Steal a section of the room to build a set of wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling cupboard without breaking up the feeling of space. Banish handles and opt for push-to-open mechanisms that pop the doors open. The wall-hung box storage here is sleek and modern, but has been painted in the same neutral shade as the walls to ensure it stays subtle.
We all need a place to keep our bits and bobs, so a good storage unit, like this bespoke one that can be accessed from all sides, is vital to keep your living room clutter-free. A mix of wood and concrete keeps the look fresh and modern. Look closely and you’ll see that this unit is also a clever way to disguise the TV.
A polished steel cabinet is a great, sturdy place to store paraphernalia you wish you keep hidden away from the naked eye. This uber stylish living room has been layered with soft charcoal and white, while gunmetal furniture and delicate lace curtains add texture. The almost-there coffee table is a great piece to take centre stage.
Traditionally, an office keeps you shut away from the rest of the house, but these days, social and work lives are more closely entwined. Recessed overhead storage keeps surfaces clear in this open-plan home office and the library-style ladder is an ingenious space-saving solution to accessing the shelving above.
Graham & Green
Don’t let an alcove go to waste. Build in a few bespoke shelves into an unused space, then pile them with books, magazines and quirky curios. Various shades and textures has been used for tone and warmth and mixed with reclaimed pieces with big, comfy seating for a cosy living scheme that makes you feel like you’re cocooned.
Opt for recessed shelving in the living room. The cubbyhole-style shelving unit has been painted in a pop of tomato red, which creates a strong statement in this cosy dimly light room – it disguises the radiator, turning something functional into something stylish.
Storage cabinets with drawers are a great idea if you have heaps of treasures you wish to keep hidden away, but that shouldn’t distract from a cosy, relaxed scheme. Here, a modular unit painted in white neatly sits on the back wall, while the rest of the furniture take centre stage. The L-shaped sofa creates a defined seating zone in the open-plan space.
Bespoke storage built into a false wall, which can conceal living room clutter and display favourite items, creates a streamlined and modern look. An L-shaped sofa is great if you have a big family or want plenty of entertaining space.
Ever dreamt of having a cosy place to while away the days? Us, too. Away from the sofa and TV, a hanging basket chair makes a cosy reading retreat. Even better, it’s set up within reaching distance of white floating shelves, offering easy access to favoured books and magazines.
Living room storage doesn’t have to be neatly concealed away. It can be as bold and brash as you like. This living room has an industrial-luxe feel, thanks to the metal drinks cabinet, deep purple feature wall and buttoned armchair.
This is a star example of how practical storage can be turned into a stand-out feature.