small space decor tips
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Decorating a compact living area can present unique challenges, but with the right tips and tricks, you can transform even the coziest of spaces into a functional and inviting oasis.

In fact, embracing a small space can add to the cozy and homey feel that makes for the perfect living room! So whether you’re dealing with limited square footage or awkward layouts, we’ve got you covered.

In this post, I’ll be sharing my 30 favorite tips for decorating a small living room, designed to help you make the most of every inch and create a space that feels both spacious and cozy.

Decorate with light colors like beige & white

light neutral colors small living room

Light colors like beige and white reflect natural light, making small living rooms feel larger and more open. They bounce light around the space, creating a bright and airy atmosphere.

Use sectionals that break apart to fit your space perfectly

small living room sectional

Sectional sofas that can be rearranged or broken apart offer flexibility in small living rooms. They can adapt to the layout of the space, optimizing seating while ensuring the room doesn’t feel cramped or overcrowded.

Decorate with glass or acrylic “invisible” furniture

small living room with acrylic coffee table

Opting for glass or acrylic furniture creates a sense of openness and lightness in small living rooms. These transparent pieces visually disappear into the space, making the room feel less crowded while still providing functionality and style.

Decorate with mirrors to open up the space

small living room with mirror above couch

Mirrors are a classic trick for visually expanding small spaces. They reflect light and create the illusion of depth, making the room feel larger and more inviting. Strategic placement of mirrors can enhance the overall aesthetic while maximizing perceived space.

Add shelves that look like built ins in small spaces

small living room with book shelves by fireplace

Installing shelves that mimic built-ins adds storage and visual interest without taking up precious floor space. They provide a custom look and can be tailored to fit the specific dimensions of the room, optimizing storage potential while maintaining a streamlined appearance.

Add a wallpaper accent wall to add more visual interest

small living room with light neutral wallpaper accent wall

A wallpaper accent wall can add depth and dimension to a small living room without overwhelming the space. Opting for a subtle or light-colored pattern can visually expand the room while injecting personality and style.

Add furniture decor that doubles as closed storage

small living room with storage armoire

If you have an empty space in your living room that needs some furniture, consider an armoire or console table that offers closed storage, like this example. They provide functionality without sacrificing style and help keep clutter to a minimum.

Find creative ways to use nooks and crannies for storage

corner shoe shelves for small spaces

Utilizing every available space for storage helps keep clutter at bay in small living rooms. Whether it’s installing floating shelves in alcoves or using baskets under side tables, maximizing storage potential is key to maintaining an organized and spacious feel.

These shoe shelves are the perfect example of how to get the most out of your small space, using a small corner that most people would probably overlook!

Add a disco ball to brighten & reflect light around the room

small living room with disco ball

While unconventional, a disco ball can add a playful touch to a small living room while also reflecting light and creating dynamic patterns on the walls and ceiling. It’s a fun and unexpected way to enhance the ambiance and make the space feel more lively.

Use tall shelves & wall decor to accentuate the height of your ceiling

small living room with tall ceilings and shelves above TV

Tall shelves and vertical wall decor draw the eye upward, emphasizing the height of the ceiling and creating a sense of verticality in small living rooms. This vertical emphasis helps to visually expand the space and prevent it from feeling cramped.

For example, adding shelves above the TV in this living room accentuates the tall ceiling.

Don’t be afraid to layer furniture pieces on top of one another

small living room with table behind couch

Layering furniture pieces adds depth and dimension to a small living room while maximizing seating and surface area. For example, placing your couch in front of a console table or layering rugs can create visual interest and make the space feel more inviting.

Invest in a convertible coffee table

Amazon sells these genius convertible coffee tables, that can lift up and turn into a dining table for 4-6 people. A coffee table that can accommodate different activities, such as dining, working, or entertaining, is a genius way to make the most of your limited space!

Decorate with practical items like guitars to double storage as decor

small living room with guitars as wall decor

Incorporating practical items like guitars as decor not only adds a personal touch but also serves a functional purpose. Wall-mounted guitar hangers, for example, free up floor space while showcasing your passion for music, adding personality to the room.

Use glass storage cabinets to open up the space

small living room with clear glass bookcases

Glass storage cabinets provide storage solutions without visually weighing down the room. The transparency of glass creates an illusion of openness, allowing light to pass through and making the room feel more spacious.

Embrace natural light with sheer or light filtering curtains

small living room with light filtering curtains

Natural light will make even the smallest of spaces appear larger. Sheer or light-filtering curtains like these allow natural light to filter into the room while maintaining privacy. They soften harsh sunlight, creating a gentle glow that enhances the overall ambiance of the space.

Embrace a cozy moody vibe

small living room with dark walls and cozy moody decor

This space seems to break all the rules, but embracing a cozy moody vibe in small living rooms can actually create an intimate and inviting atmosphere.

Sometimes, embracing a small and cozy vibe is exactly what you want! Darker hues, layered textures, and warm lighting contribute to a sense of coziness and comfort, making the room feel like a cozy retreat.

Choose “leggy” furniture

small living room with midcentury leggy furniture

Opting for furniture with exposed legs, common in most midcentury furniture styles, creates a sense of openness in small living rooms by allowing light to flow underneath. This visual transparency prevents furniture from overwhelming the space and maintains a sense of airiness.

Incorporate foldable or stackable practical furniture

small living room with stackable nesting coffee tables

Foldable or stackable furniture is a practical solution for small living rooms, offering versatility and flexibility. Pieces like folding chairs or nesting tables can be easily stowed away when not in use, maximizing floor space and minimizing clutter.

Use wall-mounted lighting

small living room with wall mounted lighting

Wall-mounted lighting fixtures free up floor space and add ambient light to small living rooms without taking up valuable surface area. Whether sconces or wall-mounted lamps, these fixtures provide functional illumination while enhancing the room’s aesthetic appeal.

Add a large area rug

small living room with a large boho area rug

A large area rug anchors the seating area in a small living room, visually defining the space and adding warmth and texture underfoot. Opting for a rug that extends beyond the furniture creates the illusion of a larger area, making the room feel more spacious.

Add live plants to brighten the space

small living room with plants

Incorporating live plants not only adds a touch of nature but also contributes to a sense of airiness and freshness in small living rooms. Their verticality draws the eye upward, creating the illusion of height and space.

Hang curtains high and wide

small living room with tall curtains

Hanging curtains high above the windows and extending them beyond the frame creates the illusion of height and width, making the room feel larger and more spacious. Choose lightweight fabrics and minimalistic designs to keep the space feeling airy and uncluttered.

Choose low profile furniture

small living room with low profile cozy couch

Low-profile furniture pieces are perfect for small living rooms as they maintain sight lines and create a sense of openness. Look for sofas, coffee tables, and chairs with sleek silhouettes and minimalistic designs to maximize visual space without sacrificing comfort.

Utilize storage underneath furniture

small living room with storage under coffee table

Invest in furniture pieces with built-in storage, such as ottomans with hidden compartments or coffee tables with shelves or drawers. By utilizing the space underneath furniture, you can keep clutter at bay and maintain a tidy and organized living room.

Add a gallery wall

small living room with a gallery wall

Gallery walls are a great way to personalize and add visual interest to small living rooms. Opt for a cohesive mix of artwork, photographs, and decorative objects to create a focal point that draws the eye and adds personality to the space.

Embrace a minimalist approach

minimalist small living room

In small living rooms, less is often more. Embrace a minimalist aesthetic by decluttering and keeping decor simple and streamlined. Focus on quality over quantity, choosing a few carefully curated pieces that enhance the space without overwhelming it.

Create visual interest with mixed textures

small living room with mixed rug, blanket, and basket textures

Introducing a variety of textures, such as woven fabrics, wood, metal, and glass, adds depth and dimension to small living rooms. Mix and match textures to create visual interest and tactile appeal, making the space feel cozy and inviting.

Maximize the use of corner space

small living room with corner desk

Corner spaces are often underutilized in small living rooms but can provide valuable storage and display opportunities. Consider adding corner shelves, cabinets, or decorative accents to make the most of these areas and maximize every inch of available space.

Decorate with ottomans that double as storage

small living room with large storage ottoman

Ottomans that double as storage are a smart and stylish solution for small living rooms. These multifunctional pieces provide additional seating, serve as a coffee table or footrest, and offer hidden storage space for blankets, magazines, or remote controls.

Add storage under the stairs

small living room with storage shelves under stairs

If your living room features a staircase, maximize the space underneath by adding built-in storage or shelving. Customized cabinets or drawers can be tailored to fit the available space and provide a convenient solution for storing books, shoes, or seasonal items.

By implementing the right strategies and incorporating clever design elements, you can transform your compact space into a functional and stylish area that feels open and inviting. From maximizing storage opportunities to embracing natural light and choosing furniture wisely, there are countless ways to make the most of your small living room. Whether you prefer a minimalist aesthetic or a cozy, moody vibe, the key is to prioritize functionality without sacrificing style. With these tips in mind, you can create a space that reflects your personality and meets your needs, no matter the size. Here’s to making every square foot count in your small living room!