The modern living room has probably gone through more transformations than any other room over the years. Some of us can remember when a television set was a standard piece of living room furniture. A hundred years ago, living rooms were more utilitarian, perhaps with a sewing machine in the corner.
Today’s modern living rooms must fulfill many roles. They are often the interior design focal point of the home. But, while stylish, they must also offer you and your family a comfortable place to relax, chat and ‘be at home.’ And any guests you invite into your home will likely spend more time in the living room than anywhere else.
If you are planning to build a custom home, and you are thinking about a modern living room design, you need to consider all of these roles.
The following list will help you do just that.
Elements of a Modern Living Room
Windows and Accessories
Modern living rooms invite as much natural light as possible. When they do, they help bring in the outdoors. In turn, that makes the room more inviting, increases curb appeal and helps improve your mood.
However, considering that ‘as much light as possible’ can include large, floor-to-ceiling windows, it’s not always an easy task. The view from your living room may not lend itself to the largest option. Larger windows in southern living room exposures may also let in a little too much natural light at times. You also need to consider letting in fresh air. Well, larger windows insulate your home and are easy to maintain.
As for accessories like drapes, sheers and blinds, they will give your living room some of the versatility it needs. You may not always want to be in full light, or have pedestrians see in at night.
If you were not thinking about a fireplace, do so now. Whether wood burning or natural gas, even if you don’t use it often, you’ll appreciate it every time you do. The ambiance of a fireplace is unique and irreplaceable. Make sure to consider all the elements of a fireplace, including the mantle and surrounding millwork. If you had a wood burning fireplace, but didn’t care for the upkeep, consider natural gas. They can be quite realistic and the ability to switch them on and off like a light is very convenient.
If you haven’t made flooring decisions recently, be ready for some changes. Fortunately, considering this is the living room, you probably won’t have to familiarize yourself with all of them, including luxury vinyl options. However, even with hardwood flooring, engineered options have become more appealing recently due to thier durability and eco-friendliness. Yet other flooring options include ceramic and stone tile of all shapes, sizes, colours and designs. Carpeting is also still an option. You can add a bit of carpeting to a wooden or tile floor with areas rugs.
Again, if you haven’t designed lighting for a room recently, get ready to learn. LED lighting makes the possibilities to be almost endless. In addition to standard pot lights, you can highlight elements of the room – in a rainbow of colours – with strip lighting. Lamp fixtures can also add versatility. Whether on a floor table or wall, they can be used to complement fixed LED options so you can create any mood you need. To help give you focus on how to design your lighting, consider that you need general lighting (LED pots), task lighting (lamps on the floor, tables, wall or even the piano), and ambiance lighting (often in-direct, atmospheric lighting).
Clearly, there’s a lot to consider when designing your living room. Don’t be afraid to ask your architect, interior designer and/or custom home builder for their opinions and recommendations.
If you found this post helpful, check out our recent article How Do You Choose a Custom Home Builder?