Red living room ideas – curl up with this comforting and vibrant colour

These stunning red living room ideas will inspire you to add this bold and warming shade to your living room for a cosy, welcoming space
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  • There are a range of stunning red living room ideas to choose from. Whether used as an accent or a bold backdrop, this shade is a wonderful statement colour for your home. This warming hue can breathe life into any space, adding vibrancy and a sense of daring expressionism.

    You don’t have to go all-out to incorporate the shade into your red living room idea; you can introduce red by way of soft furnishings – think rugs, cushions and throws. Or through furniture choices, with an accent chair being a lovely way to pep up any scheme.

    Tone-wise, traffic-stopping crimson red is always head-turning. But if you’re looking for a softer living room colour scheme, why not choose earthier hues like terracotta and rust? Or go deeper and richer with burgundy and maroon?

    We’ve rounded up a selection of stylish red living room ideas below, so you can feel inspired and learn how to integrate the colour into your own home.

    Red living room ideas

    1. Look to earthy red tones inspired by nature

    A red living room with brown accessories and a large window

    image credit: Benjamin Moore

    Organic, earthy shades are totally de rigueur, and are an inviting and relaxing living room paint idea. Deep reddish browns offer a strong yet subdued red to welcome warmth to a living room wall. Warming by day and cosy by night, reds derived from an earthy colour palette offer a grounding feel but luxurious atmosphere.

    Enhance the depth of brownish red tones by pairing the wall colour with accessories in other hues found in the natural world – from warm woods shades to clay terracotta tones.

    2. Welcome orange undertones

    red living room with brown leather sofa and wooden bookcase

    Image credit: Future PLC/ Dominic Blackmore

    Make your choice of red warmer by choosing a red with undertones of orange, to welcome a sense of lightness to the hue. Red can feel heavy when decorating with shades that hold a vast amount of blue undertones.

    A warmer red is perfect for a living room with existing warming textures and materials, such as this with cosy living room with aged leather sofas and armchairs with natural wooden larger pieces of furniture. Welcome extra warmth underfoot with a textured rug to add comfort to floorboards.

    3. Balance bold red with striking white

    A red and white living room with grey roller blinds and white sofa

    Image credit: English Blinds

    Create a living room feature wall of bold, captivating red on one wall and temper the look with a white or neutral shade on the remaining walls. Break from the traditional feature wall placement from being the fireplace or ‘tv’ wall, instead painting the window wall. This will draw the eye to the view beyond, helping to frame it with colour.

    Ensure if you’re following this design idea you choose the right window treatment idea, so windows are dressed to perfection. Such as these high quality, custom-made luxury grey pleated blinds in the modern living room shown above.

    4. Ground a country scheme with deep berry reds

    A cosy living room with log burner wooden clad walls painted red and off white

    Image credit: Future PLC

    Look to nature for berry inspired shades of red to create a cosy atmosphere for a country living room look. The blue-toned red is perfect for making a contrast against cooler tones of stone and off-white.

    Pair this natural hedgerow shade of berry red with complimentary shades of nature to add natural charm to the decorating palette. From earthy tones of brown to rich walnut wooden shades.

    5. Contrast the window ledges to keep it bright

    A red living room with a tartan upholstered sofa and foot stool

    Image credit: Future PLC/ Polly Eltes

    When decorating the whole room with red be mindful of the size of your space. Avoid it feeling too closed in and overwhelming. A great way to ensure the colour is kept light and less restrictive is to paint the window surrounds and ledges in a contrasting neutral to reflect the light.

    As the natural light comes in through the windows, a brighter shade of white or stone will help to bounce the light into the room. If painted in the same shade of red it can fall flat, preventing the room from benefitting from the injection of daylight.

    6. Captivate with a characterful wallpaper

    An oriental inspired wall mural in red, black and white

    Image credit: Wallsauce.com

    Incorporate red into your living room wallpaper idea or wall mural to really make a statement for your living room decor. Pattern helps to break up the block of colour, so it offers a more subtle way of using one dominant colour. Of course the term subtle very much depends on the pattern you choose – there’s very little that’s subtle about this striking wall mural.

    This beautifully captivating made-to-measure wallpaper mural is available at Wallsauce.com. Available to order onto a variety of wallpapers including paste the wall and peel and stick that’s great for rented accommodation!

    7. Try terracotta tones

    A terracotta red living room wall by a fireplace with cream log burner

    Image credit: David Brittain

    Be bold and apply a terracotta shade all over your wall, and then warm things up even more with country-style checks and throws. Add a pop of metallic here and there for a modern finish.

    8. Incorporate country classic patterns and textures

    A country living room with red walls white fireplace and leather armchair with wooden furniture

    Image credit: Simon Whitmore

    The earthy tones of burnished red lends itself beautifully to a country classic decor scheme. This warming tone of red helps to add depth to the elements surrounding it.

    From rustic wood to aged leather furniture choices and tactile knitted textures, allow the scheme to encompass all that is magnificent about the charm of natural country style.

    9. Paint a bold red feature wall

    Red living room wall with flowers in vase

    Image credit: Farrow & Ball

    Liven up your lounge with red living room ideas like a fun feature wall. It’s a great way to enjoy a large splash of your favourite colour without having it all over the room. Pair with monochrome and neutral prints and colours. Don’t be afraid to introduce other shades of red into the room, too. It doesn’t have to be matchy-matchy.

    10. Add subtle warmth with two-tone tongue and groove

    A living room with white and red wall panelling with a grey sofa and armchair

    Image credit: Argos

    Tongue and groove cladding is always a lovely way to add interest to any living room, evoking a modern rustic country feel. Why not make things even more exciting and add a deep berry red into the colour mix?

    Traditionally, tongue and groove is seen in white living rooms, but you can tear up the rule book and introduce a colour with a fab two-tone painted finish.

    11. Style a traditional Highland country retreat

    A cosy living room with wood cladding on the walls and a red sofa with chunky knit throw

    Image credit: Tim Young

    Give guests a warm welcome by creating a luxe log cabin look with a red sofa at its heart. Complete the look using cosy cottons, natural furnishings and a red plaid carpet or – for extra practicality – a washable rug.

    Deep red is the ultimate shade for an authentic baronial look and can be mixed with mossy green accents, as well as earthy neutrals. Drape chunky knitted throws over the sofa for cosying up when the temperature drops.

    12. Try red with cool kitsch prints

    A retro living room with a red sofa and colourful pattered curtains and cushions

    Image credit: Nicholas Yarsley

    Create a playful look with retro-inspired floral designs in clashing primary colours including orange, sunflower yellow, leaf green and petrol blue. A red carpet and sofa provide a strong base for this eye-popping look.

    13. Get creative with paint

    A creative painted living room wall in orange and red squares of colour

    Image credit: Annie Sloan

    If you don’t want one block colour, why not release your inner artist and mix your colours? Annie Sloan, colour and paint expert, says: ‘Orange and red are a good pairing. They sit next to one another on the colour wheel and create that feeling of layered warmth.’

    Annie has used her Barcelona Orange with Emperor’s Silk red here to beautiful effect. Annie added: ‘Red also looks gorgeous on furniture or in soft furnishings and lampshades.’

    14. Choose colour-blocking for an elegant finish

    A red living room with black painted above picture rail and dark upholstered sofa

    Image credit: Parker Knoll

    Colour-blocking is a brilliant way of introducing colour, as seen in this grey living room, but soften it with a contrasting hue. Paint and colour expert Annie Sloan says: ‘Greys look fabulous and will temper the feistiness of a bright red. Use a blue-toned grey to contrast and enhance the warmth.’

    15. Temper red with pink tones

    Red clay painted living room wall behind blue velvet sofa

    Image credit: Habitat

    ‘Red doesn’t always mean the bright primary hue that immediately comes to mind,’ says Kate Butler, Head of Design for Habitat.

    ‘Clay red is currently a very popular tone to use within interiors and should be paired with metallics such as rose gold and copper, which will complement its warming tone in an elegant, understated way.’

    This beautiful pink living room has been teamed with a teal velvet sofa to break up the block of colour on the walls.

    16. Hang beautiful statement blinds

    A grey living room with red blind red sofa and red chair

    Image credit: English Blinds

    Mix bright scarlet red with an iconic print for a show-stopping look that enhances rather than controls the room. These Orla Kiely linear stem tomato red vintage Roman blinds at English Blinds are just the ticket.

    17. Settle on a red-hued sofa

    neutral barn conversion living room with muted red sofa

    Image credit: Loaf

    ‘For those looking for red living room ideas, I recommend first updating inexpensive, smaller accessories like cushions, throws and art,’ says Loaf founder Charlie Marshall.

    ‘You could even update your windows with blinds and curtains. If you want to make a real statement, then a sofa in a red fabric will add real wow-factor to a sitting room. Cinnamon and rust red tones are proving very popular this season and would look great used tonally or contrasted against deep blues.’

    18. Introduce a bold accent chair

    A red armchair with a blue blanket in neutral living room

    Image credit: Sofology

    Don’t want to go the whole hog and cover all your walls in red? No problem. Just try adding a chic accent chair, like this beauty from Sofology.

    It’s a great nod to the hue without being all-consuming. The perfect way to welcome red into a neutral living room idea

    19. Warm up with heritage red accents on floors

    A Christmas themed living room with tartan carpet, a grey sofa and cream footstool

    Image credit: David Brittain/TI Media

    Welcome red to your carpet pattern to incorporate the shade at the heart of the scheme as a bold accent colour.

    No other shade evokes the celebratory mood of Christmas quite like rich cranberry red. Use woollen and felt textiles in this bold colour to bring a cool palette of taupe and grey. Add plenty of natural elements, such as wooden furniture, wicker baskets and evergreen foliage for a refined, traditional scheme with a cosy, enveloping feel.

    Is red a good Colour for living rooms?

    Red is a good colour for living rooms because it evokes a comforting feeling, creating a cocooning space ideal for a place of relaxation. Red is a good colour for decorating a living room also because of the many layers of tone, meaning it can create very different looks depending on the hue you choose.

    Pure tones of pillar box red are best paired with striking white to create a contemporary style. While deeper berry tones of red or earthy brownish reds instantly feel more suited to country-style settings.

    How can I use red in my living room?

    You can use red in a living room to create the depth of colour you desire. From painting all walls to making a statement with one red feature wall. Opt for a more relaxed approach to incorporating red on walls with a pattern that features red, so it’s less saturated. Add accents of red to an alternative coloured living room with furniture pieces and soft furnishings.

    Additional words by Ruth Doherty

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