47 small living room ideas - creative ideas that will maximise any tiny lounge

We've found the best small living room ideas and tiny space tricks to make the most of a little room

Living room with built in shelving and decorative furnishings, large pink L-shaped sofa
(Image credit: Future PLC / Brent Darby)

Small living room ideas are some of the most satisfying to plan, they require careful thought and planning to create a space that feels spacious but packs everything you and your family need. 

Clever use of space is where standard living room ideas depart from small living room ideas. The best small lounges not only use living room storage ideas to create more space physically but also take advantage of decor techniques to create the illusion of a large living room. 

There are the standard small room tricks you can use in a living room such as including storage furniture and opting for a light colour palette. However, we've spoken to decor experts to dig deeper for more creative solutions that will elevate a small space, and make your living room stand out from your neighbours.

Small living room ideas

We've rounded up everything you need to know about what style of furniture to opt for, right down to creative solutions for wall decor in a small living room. 

A small space doesn't mean you need to sacrifice trying out living room trends either, our tips offer plenty of ways you can sneak in a trend or two.

1. Consider a storage sofa

The Small Biggie 3 Seater Sofa in Fuzzy White Boucle

(Image credit: Snug)

The best sofas are getting more advanced and space-saving savvy every year. Currently the best new style for small sofa living room ideas are storage sofas. 'Storage sofas discreetly offer extra storage space in modular formats or footstools,' says Patricia Gibbons. 'Such innovative solutions cater to the growing demand for stylish yet functional furniture in compact living environments.'

A few of the brands creating great storage sofas at the moment include Snug with their small biggie a corner chaise made for tiny spaces. For something more customisable Sofa.com's new Ren sofa includes hidden storage too.

2. Go for a straight back sofa

A living room with panelled walls in sage green with a grey sofa

(Image credit: John Lewis)

If you're looking for sofa ideas for small living rooms, try sourcing one with slim proportions and small footprints, and ideally one with a straight back.

'This means that no space is wasted from being unable to sit something flush against the wall,' says Gisela Lancaster, head of buying at Sofology

3. Embrace vertical stripes

Green and neutral block stripe wallpaper in living room

(Image credit: Lust Home)

Deck chair stripes and ticking stripes are big news at the moment and they work a treat if you're looking for a wallpaper idea for a small living room. 

'If you're looking to make a room feel more spacious and airer, opt for lighter coloured designs that reflect natural light and create a sense of openess,' says Chelsea Clark, Head of Marketing at wallpaper company Lust Home. 'Vertical stripes for example can create the illusion of height in a smaller space, making a room feel larger, which is especially beneficial in smaller spaces with low ceilings.'

Stripes are easy to add to your walls either in the form of wallpaper or you can paint stripes on your wall. It all depends on how crafty you're feeling with your DIY skills.

4. Opt for furniture tapered legs

A living room with a yellow velvet sofa

(Image credit: Sofa.com)

It might sound strange, but choosing the wrong sofa design could be one of the biggest small living room mistakes you can make. Instead, opt for one with tapered legs.

'For people wanting to save on the minimal space they have, avoiding designs with wide frames and opting for slim lines will help to make the furniture feel far less imposing,' says Gisela. 

'Choosing a model with tapered legs can help create the illusion of space by elevating furniture slightly. Similarly, a petite sofa with a tall back and narrow arms will suit a small room whilst making the piece appear larger than it is.'

5. Incorporate a sleek armchair

Magnolia living room with cream armchairs

(Image credit: Future PLC)

In a small living room, the key is to not overwhelm the space with furniture, but you can include an armchair to maximise the available seating if you're smart about the design. 

'When incorporating an armchair into a living room, opt for style that complement the existing decor while maximising functionality,' recommends Patricia Gibbons, Head of Buying at Sofa.com. 'Choose sleek, clean silhouettes with elegant tapered legs to maintain an uncluttered look.'

'These styles not only provide additional seating but also contribute to the illusion of space by keeping the floor visible.'

Gisela Lancaster, Head of Buying at Sofology's tip is to opt for petite styles with a tall back and narrow arms in a small space. 'This design will make the piece appear larger than it is, giving the effect of a larger chair or loveseat without taking up your floor plan.'

So you want to be thinking about mid-century modern style armchairs with elegant legs and arms, or you might even be lucky enough to snap up an Ercol armchair on Ebay for a bargain price. Here are some of our other top picks:

6. Add design detail with your sofa

Organge L-shaped sofa in living room with cushions and rug

(Image credit: Future PLC/Caroline Mardon)

In a small living room every aspect and piece of furniture needs to work harder. You don't have the space to indulge in extra home décor accessories and pieces of furniture, instead role all that detailing into your sofa or another key piece of furniture like the coffee table. 

'Sofa styles with beautiful details, such as curves, buttons or fluting, are perfect to add character to a living pace without overpowering smaller living schemes,' says Gisela Lancaster at Sofology. 

7. Choose a large scale wallpaper design

blue walled living room with patterned curtains and matching wallpaper

(Image credit: Graham & Brown)

Feature wall ideas have their place, and while they can look great in a small living room, so can wallpaper on all four walls. If you do opt to cover all the walls in wallpaper the only thing to consider is the scale of the pattern. 

'If you choose to cover all the walls, opt for a large-scale design that doesn't overwhelm the space or compete with other elements in the room,' recommends Chelsea Clark at Lust Home. 

8. Keep it symmetrical

Open living room with white walls, grey stone floor, off-white corner sofas, wooden panel, brick fireplace, and colourful decorative accents A renovated Victorian four bedroomed farmhouse in Ottery St Mary, Devon, home of Emma and Hendrick Jaulin

(Image credit: Future PLC/Photoworld Ltd)

When it comes to sussing out how to arrange living room furniture, symmetry can, when used well, create balance and a feeling of calm. 

To that end, interior design experts recommend that you use a feature wall or fireplace as a marker, and set up your furniture around it, adhering to a mirroring effect as you go.

If you really want to make things feel even more serene, opt for calming neutrals and exposed brickwork, as seen above.

9. Wave goodbye to the 3-seater sofa

White living room, blue sofa with bright multicoloured cushions, bold floral rug, wooden coffee table, white sofa, stacked books used as table, stacked magazines in fireplace, wooden floorboards, 3D heart art on shelf, potted house plants.

(Image credit: Future PLC)

It's traditional, sure, but you don't have to have a 3-seater sofa in your small living room.

'When considering the benefits of a 3-seater sofa in a small space, it’s important to envisage how it will be used,' says Gisela. 

'If three people are unlikely to ever sit together then perhaps two 2-seater sofas will serve a family of four better than one 3-seater and an armchair.'

10. Go big with a rug

Blue velvet sofa with blue

(Image credit: Future PLC / Katie Jane Watson)

When designing a small living room, the worst design mistake you can make is going small with your rug choice. When trying to make your small living room look bigger, it's important to note that if your rug it is floating like an island between your furniture it will only make the space look smaller. This is your opportunity to go big so seize it.

However, you do need to make sure the rug your choose is in proportion to your furniture and space. ‘A good guide to follow is to ensure that your rug is larger than the biggest piece of furniture. For example, the longest side of the rug should always be longer by at least 6 inches than the largest piece of furniture, eg. sofa,’ says Therese Germain, Vice President of Product at Ruggable, our go-to machine washable rug brand.

‘In a small living room, a 150x215cm rug will fit underneath a coffee table, or in front of a fireplace with two comfy chairs sitting almost completely on the rug.’

11. Go bold with your paint choice

Living area with bay window, white shutters , green painted walls and white occasional chair

(Image credit: Future PLC / James Balston)

You'd better believe that there are some genius small living room paint ideas that can make a huge impact to your abode.

‘First instinct for a small living room is to keep it light, bright and de-cluttered (the word du jour right now) and while this is a perfectly acceptable decorating thing to do, especially if the room is flooded with natural light, sometimes going bolder can also be a wonderful option,’ says Patrick O’Donnell International Brand Ambassador at farrow and ball. 

Patrick recommends trying a mid-tone green living room ideas for an invitation oasis like French Gray or Lichen. Alternatively, consider taking the plunge with a bold and dark colour like Down Pipe. ‘Our perennially favourite grey that never comes across as too chilly- it will just cocoon you in a softly dramatic way!’ adds Patrick. 

12. Embrace the colour drenching trend

Pink living room with grey sofa

(Image credit: Future PLC / Veronica Rodriguez)

‘Another good trick is to paint EVERYTHING in one colour- a soft neutral such as Joa’s White or Stirabout will work in all lighting conditions and create a good backdrop to introduce your personal identity through cloth, pictures and furniture,’ says Patrick at Farrow and Ball.

Embracing the colour-drenching paint trend as Patrick suggests works by distracting the eye from the edges of the room which are usually picked out in another colour. However, don’t feel you need to stick to soft neutrals, bold dark greys and navy can also look great in a small living room.

13. Define space with paint

Green living room with pink armchair

(Image credit: Future PLC / Rachel Smith)

Much like in a larger space, even small living room ideas can benefit from the power of zoning a room with colour. If you use the room for dining and unwinding in front of the TV use contrasting paint colours to divide the room. 

‘Using contrasting paint colours to create division in a room is an effective way to manage smaller spaces,’ says Paula Taylor, Head Stylist at Graham & Brown. ‘If you were to split the wall up with contrasting paint colours, such as a deep blue and vibrant yellow, it will create the illusion of separate spaces, without the need to use furniture or physical divisions.’

Alternatively, for a softer look zone spaces with different shades of the same colour.

14. Switch out the sofa for a lounger

living room with sofa bed cushions and coffee table

(Image credit: Future PLC/Carolyn Barber)

Can a living room still be a living room without a sofa? The answer is a responding yes! 

While choosing a sofa might be the conventional furniture choice, if you’re working with tiny living room ideas it could be worth considering a lounger, day bed or cuddle seat.

‘Not every living space needs a sofa but often we feel the need to fill a space. When it comes to choosing seating, think about how the space is going to be used, who by and at what times of day. You might find a small chaise or classic mid-century lounger will be perfect,’ says Tom Rutt, founder of TR Studio 

15. Open up the space with blinds

Grey living room with blinds

(Image credit: Future PLC)

When designing a tiny living room, it pays to be clever with your window dressings and consider forgoing the usual living room curtain ideas. Instead, blinds or shutters could be a smart option to open up the space.

‘Changing accessories in your living room can make a huge difference. Although curtains add an element of luxury to your relaxing space, if your living room is small, it might be worth swapping them out blinds or shutters,’ says Lisa Cooper, Head of Product at Thomas Sanderson.

‘Blinds and shutters both make a room look taller, as they free up space on either side of the window.’

16. Experiment with a coloured ceiling

Living room with green ceiling

(Image credit: Future PLC / Anna Stathaki)

If you're looking for modern small living room ideas, get clever with paint.

‘Paint is your friend in a small space, particularly when it comes to giving the illusion of height,’ says Lick’s Director of Interior Design and Colour Psychologist Tash Bradley. 

‘By painting your ceilings in a light blue or light green, such as Lick’s Green 13 or Blue 02 the room will appear taller. Or, paint your walls, ceiling and skirting all in the same colour so your eye does not get drawn to the corners of the room, which will create the feeling of space.’ 

17. Pick pink

Pink living room with blue sofa and bookshelf

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Pink living room ideas are perfect for a small living room as an alternative to neutral living room ideas, the trick is to keep the shade light and powdery.  

‘Lighter neutral colours will help reflect light around a small room, or a lovely soft alternative to a neutral is pink,’  says Lick’s Tash. 

‘Lick’s Pink 01 and Pink 04 are great for small spaces as they make the room feel warm and welcoming, but also help to reflect the light.’ 

Pair the pink with a vibrant colourful sofa to add character and interest to the space. 

18. Focus on one feature wall

Living room with blue paint circle and pink sofa

(Image credit: Future PLC / Katie Jane Watson)

We know it’s hard, but in a small living room it is important to hone in on just a few key living room wall decor ideas. 

'In a small space, it can quickly feel claustrophobic if there's too much asking for attention as your eye doesn't know where to rest,’ explains Lucy Henderson, Head Designer at My Bespoke room. 

‘Creating a clear focal point to draw you in is essential for rooms of any size but in a small one, try to scale it back. Pick just one wall to be the real show stopper, whether that's with wallpaper or a gallery wall.’ 

19. Choose furniture with legs

living room with brown sofa, rug and black nested tables

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Kelly Collins from Swyft Home recommends furniture that’s raised off of the ground. 

'Selecting a sofa or armchair that sits on raised legs will help to bring a sense of light and space and make even the smallest living rooms feel airy,' she says. When more of the floor is visible, the room appears bigger. 

This trick lends itself well to any living room, as many of the best sofas and armchairs are finished with beautiful turned wooden legs. Lots of beautiful mid-century pieces are raised on legs, from sideboards and cabinets to sofas, keeping the floor on show.

20. Enlarge with wide flooring

stylish living space with boucle sofa, soft rug and gallery wall

(Image credit: Future PLC / Jon Day)

Elements of the room with large surface area, like the walls and floors, have a huge impact on how a small space feels. Consider living room flooring options that will expand the space. 

'Use wide flooring planks or those laid on a diagonal tangent across the room,' advises interior designer Vanessa Morgan. Chunky floorboards will work better than slim ones, and a Berber rug with a diamond pattern will also create the impression of a broader area.

21. Break up a neutral palette with boho patterns

neutral living room with boucle sofa, low shelf and monochrome patterned cushion and throw

(Image credit: Future PLC / Anna Stathaki)

As mentioned earlier, neutral tones will help a tiny living room to feel larger. Light-coloured carpets, walls and furniture are a great way to keep a space feeling bright and airy, whatever the size of the room. 

We love the little extra touches in this charming living room – the wall-mounted shelving unit provides the perfect space for personal mementoes and accessories. If you prefer a modern small living room idea like this one, then simplicity is key.

22. Hide corners to enhance the sense of space

Stove fireplace with white mantlepiece, topped with vase of pink flowers

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen explains a simple bit of science around corners, and how to make a room feel larger by drawing the eye away from its edges. 'Our minds become confused in a room, if our eyes can't see corners,' he begins. 

'If our eyes can see corners then our mind knows exactly what size the room is, but if you can find ways of disguising corners, hiding corners, drawing the attention of the eye to the middle of the wall rather than the edge of the wall, that will always help significantly.'  

He suggests getting savvy with living room house plant ideas and placing a tall plant in the corner of a room (or a tall lamp, if you prefer) to distract the eye from the perimeter.

23. Go oversized with artwork

mustard sofa with large abstract artwork and wooden table lamp

(Image credit: Future PLC)

A gallery wall will always be a popular way to approach decorating behind the sofa and display favourite artwork and photos. 

However, in a tight space, one large piece of artwork could stop the space from feeling cluttered and busy. Here, a large abstract print with tones of mustard and pink tie in with the sofa, while the rest of the space is kept bright and minimalist.

24. Hang easy breezy curtains

pink living room with sofa, side table and white curtains

(Image credit: Future PLC / Dominic Blackmore)

'Try to maximise the use of natural light with floaty window dressing and a statement/group of mirrors,' suggests Paula Taylor from Graham & Brown. 

Keep window treatments sheer and light rather than having anything too heavy, and it'll make the area around the window feel more spacious.

25. Soften with curved edges

navy living room with burnt orange sofa, white berber rug and glass topped coffee table

(Image credit: Future PLC / Anna Stathaki)

When decking out your small living room, look for furniture with curved edges to offset all the harsh angles, from the doorframe to the windows. An oval midcentury coffee table in warm wood softens the look in this small, cosy living room, and the glass top prevents it from feeling bulky. 

Circular cushions work well too, and we can personally recommend this circular jute rug from La Redoute, available in a range of sizes (go as big as possible). Curvy furniture, soft furnishings and even the cute rounded leaves of a money plant will make a small living room feel inviting.

26. Prioritise multifunctional designs

blue living room with artwork above fireplace, armchair and ottoman

(Image credit: Future PLC / James Merrell)

Wayfair’s Resident Style Advisor, Nadia McCowan Hill says multifunctionality is the number one rule to making the best of a small living room. 'Go all in with multi-functional furniture,' she says. A storage ottoman is a great idea for living room storage ideas, as it can triple up as a coffee table, footstool, and storage box. 

'It's an aesthetic statement piece of furniture which is also storage savvy,' Nadia adds. Just add a tray and some coffee table books when using as a table.

27. Go dark

dark living room with sofa, glass doors, fireplace filled with wood and candles

(Image credit: Future PLC)

If you're toying with the idea of a dark makeover, Lucy St George from Rockett St George says go for it. 

'It’s no secret that we’re big fans of a dark and dramatic living room scheme at Rockett St George and it’s a common misconception that black will make your room feel smaller,' she begins. 

'In fact, it has the opposite effect. Painting the walls and ceilings of your living room in black leans into the cosy feel and helps creates an illusion similar to looking up at the night sky.' Plenty of candles, table lamps and soft throws and you're all set for optimal cosiness.

28. Choose storage furniture with a small footprint

white living room with ladder shelf storage and sofa

(Image credit: Future PLC/Fiona Walker-Arnott)

Whilst living room storage ideas are still very much needed, regardless of the size of your space, try to make the most of ceiling height and avoid using too much floor space.

'More and more customers have embraced ladder-style shelving to store and display, from paperwork and keys to houseplants and prized possessions,' says Kate Gibson, Home Buying Manager, Habitat. 'A versatile storage solution, this style provides valuable shelf space with a minimal footprint.'

29. Create space using mirrors

small living room with sofa and mirrors

(Image credit: Future PLC/Mark Luscombe-Whyte)

It's the oldest trick in the book, but it really does work. You can instantly create the illusion of space by simply adding more living room mirror ideas. 

All the better still, like above, opt for an oversized mirror to cover an entire wall. The mirror will create the illusion of space by reflecting light and of course the interior decor – doubling up your small living room ideas.

'We always recommend going for the largest mirror you can afford to make the most of the reflection and bounce as much light back into the room as possible. 

Alternatively, create a feature on the wall of your living room with a mix of vintage, foxed or antiqued mirrors for a unique take on the classic gallery wall,' says Jane Rockett, Co-founder of Rockett St George.

30. Choose a broken plan layout

white broken plan living room with wooden floor and grey ottoman fireplace

(Image credit: Future PLC/Anna Stathaki)

The modern interpretation of open-plan living, broken plan layouts are perfect for small living room ideas. This contemporary look is well-suited to modern living room ideas. 

You'll have all the benefits of the sense of space that you get from open-plan. However, what broken plan also does if offer more of a visual separation between your zones without having to block them off with doors.

If a simple wall jutting out doesn't separate the spaces enough, look to glass doors, instead.

31. Use paint to trick the eye

white and yellow living room with pink armchair and blue sofa

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dan Duchars)

Living room feature wall ideas do much more than just add pretty decoration. Trick the eye into your room appearing taller by carefully considered painting. Coat the bottom half of the wall in your favourite bright shade, which will draw attention.

Then paint the top half and the ceiling in a more neutral colour so it seems to disappear by comparison, and blurs the lines of where the walls end and the ceiling begins.

32. Open up with a serving hatch

white living room with open alcove through kitchen

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

Forget all those 70s connotations of serving hatches. Instead, think of how this addition could bring light and space to your small living room ideas.

A simple rectangle cut in between your living room and kitchen will make both your rooms feel larger without having to commit to an open-plan living room layout. Plus, you can still use the space for its intended purpose, except leave the pineapple hedgehogs behind.

33. Open up to the hallway

small white living room with dark velWhile this might seem a dramatic move, you can increase the sense of space by opening up the wall behind the sofa, revealing the light-filled hallway behind it.

(Image credit: Future PLC/Anna Stathaki)

While this might seem a dramatic move, you can increase the sense of space by opening up the wall behind the sofa, revealing the light-filled hallway ideas behind.

This is a clever idea if your front room feels dark and crammed, and won't impact too much on the structure of your rooms, as you'll only be opening up part of the wall. Always seek professional advice before grabbing a sledge hammer but keep in mind a 'hole in the wall' could be the answer to your small space issue.

34. Choose a neutral sofa

living room with grey sofa and cushions, with artwork on wall

(Image credit: Future PLC / Caroline Mardon)

'A neutral sofa can help lighten the space, however it's worth remembering that neutral doesn’t have to mean selecting a plain design,' says Suzy McMahon, Buying Director, Sofology

'Opting for styles with beautiful details, such as curves, buttons or fluting, will add character to a small space without overpowering your scheme.' Bear this in mind when looking for sofa ideas for small living rooms.

'Additionally, cushions and throws in bolder shades and patterns can keep the look from feeling too pared back. Alternatively, an accent chair is a great way to add a pop of colour and will effortlessly lift a darker space.'

35. Keep it cohesive

pink painted living room with colourful rug and plants hanging from wall

(Image credit: Future PLC/Jo Henderson)

When working with small living room ideas, try and keep your colours cohesive, when it comes to furniture, accessories and wall colour too. 'A cohesive colour palette boosts light creating a tranquil, snug oasis,' says Nadia from Wayfair. 

Sticking to two or three key colours will mean everything seamlessly sits together and nothing will jump out too much, making it dominate the room. Use living room paint ideas to zone spaces within the room and add plenty of plants to bring a feeling of life to the room.

36. Opt for built in everything

living room with storage painted green with pink cushions

(Image credit: Future PLC)

If you need a lot of storage space in your living room, why not opt for built in everything!

Built in shelving and cupboards are much better space savers than freestanding. But a built in seating area, too, will mean no space is wasted at all, especially if you add under-bench storage too. Choosing a coffee table with an open, wire base will also make the space feel roomier.

37. Save space with wall lights

leather sofa small white living room with shelf and wall light

(Image credit: Future PLC/James French)

In small spaces, it's all about saving precious floor space so the room doesn't seem too cluttered. Bear this in mind when choosing your perfect living room lighting ideas.

'Opt for wall mounted lighting with a sleek profile to regain valuable floor space that would be lost to floor lamps or lamp topped side tables,' advises Anna Cross, Home Living Buying Manager, Habitat. 'We’ve seen high demand for plugin designs, as customers seek to create a cosy glow without the hassle of rewiring.”

38. Paint the skirting boards

blue living room with grey sofa blue rug

(Image credit: Future PLC/Rachael Smith)

Breaking with convention, the trick to make a space feel bigger is to paint the skirting boards in the same colour as the wall. No more bold white borders.  'One little tip, paint the skirting boards,' advises interior designer Kelly Hoppen

'It will make the whole wall look a lot taller. When you paint them white it's a bit like wearing a sock and your trouser leg being too high. It kind of looks a bit odd!'

A brilliant analogy for the look of bold white skirting boards standing out from the wall colour, for all the wrong reasons – especially prominent when using a dark living room colour scheme. This trick will prevent the wall from being divided – helping to elongate them, so the room feels taller and therefore bigger.

39. Add a feature wall in a warm colour

living room with navy blue feature wall and round mirror

(Image credit: Future PLC/Fiona Walker-Arnott)

We all want our living rooms to feel cosy and restful. However, in a small space, you may feel apprehensive about introducing too many dark colours for fear of making the room feel cramped.

In that instance, pick a rich warm colour as a backdrop to a part of the room that's all about relaxation, such as behind the sofa or your favourite armchair. So if you're after cosy living room ideas, that deep shot of colour is a visual 'hug' that relaxes and draws us in, without making the room feel smaller.

40. Take storage to new heights

white living room with white marble cupboard and wall mounted shelf with accessories

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Lizzie Orme)

Don’t let vertical space go to waste. Hang pictures, choose tall furniture and think about practical living room shelving ideas. A striking picture or wall hanging will draw the eye up, making a space feel more expansive than it actually is.

Just because your living room is verging on the small side, it doesn't mean that you should hide away all your favourite belongings in storage.

If you have objects that are worthy of showing off then display them along an open shelf, above the sofa. This idea is great for when floor space is at a premium.

41. Up the storage potential

Pink sofa with built in shelves

(Image credit: Future PLC)

The key in a small space is to make the most of every inch available. When it comes to storage think outside the box and create bespoke storage solutions that use the free vertical space on walls and unused corners and nooks created by living room fireplace ideas as an advantage. 

An affordable way to use a recess space for storage is to fit stacked floating shelves. Staggering them allows you to use both sides of the wall. The openness helps to keep the look light and airy, rather than boxed in. Just don't overwhelm the room with clutter, warns Lisa Cooper from Thomas Sanderson.

'It may look like you can fit a lot inside, but in the long run, your room may look messy,' she says. Use the shelves for displaying your very favourite books and trinkets.

42. Wall-mount and conceal a TV

living room with wall mount and conceal tv

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Simon Whitmore)

A wall-mounted TV is always going to be the better option for small living room ideas. Firstly we don't want it taking up valuable space! 

Secure your modern flatscreen to the wall to create a streamlined look, freeing up the space beneath where you would otherwise have to accommodate a TV stand. Above a disused fireplace helps to use up otherwise redundant wall space too.

Look for smart ways to disguise your TV to prevent it standing out as point of focus. Cleverly concealing the large black oblong, that looks like a black hole, will help to stop it encroaching on a small space.

43. Make a floating media centre

small living room ideas wall mounted tv

(Image credit: Future PLC/Jo Henderson)

Free up floor space, from storage units, by creating your own media centre that takes up minimal space. Fix an MDF panel to the wall and mount your TV screen and floating shelves on it, one above and one below if needed.

The space saving shelves will allow for storage without taking up too much needed space. The area underneath the bottom shelf allows for extra storage for items such as slim drawer units or drum storage stools.

44. Hang baskets to provide extra wall storage

white living room with wall hanging baskets and beige sofa with colorful pillows and plant accessory

(Image credit: Future PLC/Joanna Henderson)

If you are faced with small space living the only way really is up! Make the most of any floor space by keeping it as clutter-free as possible. That includes any small bits and bobs you might otherwise have laying around. 

Willow baskets are an attractive way to solve the storage problem. Ideal because one they look great and two they are sturdy enough to hold all manner of clutter – a  storage idea for a family living room.

Hanging from decorative hooks that can take a lot of weight, these baskets are great for quick end-of-day tidy-ups for toys, books, magazines, iPads and all the other stuff that tends to lay around.

45. Avoid a corridor effect with a corner sofa

small white living room with grey corner sofa and footstool

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

If your small living room ideas are based around a long, thin space, then it can be prone to feeling rather corridor-esque. Dark sofas will enhance this, so look for a pale L-shaped design to both open up the space and create a useful and cosy corner.

'If you're looking for a sofa to stretch out on while saving space, a corner sofa with a low back can help make a room feel bigger,' points out Gisela Lancaster at Sofology

Choosing the best corner sofa set-up means there will also be more room for extra seating by way of large floor cushions or a footstool. 

46. Draw attention to the windows

window frame painted yellow with two armchairs in front

(Image credit: Crown Paint)

To let as much light in as possible make sure there is nothing obscuring your windows. Painting the window surround can help to draw attention to the source of natural light, which aids the feeling of space.

Also, remember to keep on top of cleaning windows, this will lighten and brighten up the room beyond.

47. Distract the eye with characterful furnishings

small living room with leather sofa and fireplace

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

While banishing clutter might help a small living room feel more open, if you're a fan of the cosy, lived-in look such a pared-back scheme will do little for you. But small doesn't have to mean bare and characterless.

Try the classic combination of dark leather furniture and traditional fireplace; there's nothing like it for creating a warm, cosy environment.

Add a mixture of accessories, a combination of well-loved pieces and shiny new items which you can find for less using home decor discount codes. In an interesting, character-filled scheme, no one will be thinking about how small the room is.


How to maximise small living space?

'If you are short for space in the living room, adding some height to your key pieces of furniture will help create an airy, open feel to help enlarge the room,' advises Patricia Gibbons, Designer, Sofa.com. 'Not every piece needs to be elevated but adding legs to your sofa would be most effective for bringing in the illusion of space. There is something about being able to see more floor which creates the feel of spaciousness especially when you aren’t spoiled for it.'

And in terms of a flooring choice, David Snazel, Hard Flooring Buyer at Carpetright offers this advice, 'For small rooms, a light wood finish floor with a single plank design will help create the perception of space within small living room ideas. In a broken plan layout carry the same flooring through from the kitchen to conjoining areas to create a consistent flow between the rooms. Chevron wood flooring can be especially effective running from a narrow kitchen into a separate dining or living space to help these areas feel harmonious. '

How to decorate a very small living room?

It's all about making clever choices when buying furniture for very small living room ideas. 'Linear furniture designs with a minimal profile are ideal for smaller rooms,' explains Rachael Fell, Furniture Buying Manager at Habitat. 'The open lines of a wire metal coffee table gives the illusion of more space as the surrounding scene is visible through it. Look out for designs that incorporate shelving into their silhouette to maximise storage capabilities.'

And when it comes to colour, be brave and go for that bold shade you love, regardless of the size of the room. 'Some fear that adding a deep or bright colour to a small room will make it appear claustrophobic, opting instead for light neutrals to keep the space open,' says Helen Shaw, UK Director, Benjamin Moore

'However, when working with a small area, dark colours cleverly absorb the light of a space, making the division between walls appear blurred. This ‘blurred edges’ effect adds depth and dimension to a room, making it appear larger.'

Go big with your small living room ideas, space should never be an obstacle to creating your dream home.

Rebecca Knight
Deputy Editor, Digital

Rebecca Knight has been the Deputy Editor on the Ideal Home Website since 2022. She graduated with a Masters degree in magazine journalism from City, University of London in 2018, before starting her journalism career as a staff writer on women's weekly magazines. She fell into the world of homes and interiors after joining the Ideal Home website team in 2019 as a Digital Writer. In 2020 she moved into position of Homes News Editor working across Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc, Real Homes, Gardeningetc and Ideal Home covering everything from the latest viral cleaning hack to the next big interior trend. 

With contributions from