If we asked you to describe your personal style in a few words, chances are, you'd reference a few different aesthetics and design trends. And while that may sound like it could turn into a wacky, inconsistent mix, it can all work together well. It even has a name: eclecticism, which is all about expressing your style authentically.
If you like a little of everything (or you've inherited a little of everything) and find beauty in offbeat, unexpected combinations, eclectic style is for you. For design inspiration, we rounded up 20 eclectic living rooms that are bursting with character while mastering cohesion and balance.
Introduce Edgy to Traditional
If you're drawn to the laid-back beauty of low-key pieces, but you also want to exude more formality in the living room, take notes from the above. The storage basket, floor plant, colorful rug, and crocheted throw pillow all scream free-spirited, yet the clean-lined sofa (which picks up on the gorgeous periwinkle paint), abstract wall art, and gold tabletop décor dress things up.
Play With Texture
From smooth marble accents to the pebbled feel of the sweeping area rug, and cool glass coffee table, texture abounds in this eclectic living room. Combining various textures adds both visual interest and a lived-in feel.
Mix Different Styles
This eclectic space is like your favorite "business in the front, party in the back" outfit. The beautiful woven lounge chair, glossy low-slung coffee table, traditional vase, table lamp, and sofa all make it feel formal and sophisticated enough to host VIP guests.
But then the abstract, large-scale, casually displayed photography instantly introduces a surge of edgy energy.
Create balance and a more seamless flow with throw pillows in similar hues to the rest of your décor.
Mix Up Your Lighting
Lighting inspired by different eras and cultural movements makes for an offbeat living room. Here, a standing globe lamp gives off midcentury modern vibes while the two red table lamps feel more 1970's mod.
Let California Style Guide You
If you love the look of eclectic living rooms but aren't sure how to accomplish it at home, take note from the space above. A staple of California eclecticism is worn leather. Think sling chairs and poufs. Layered textiles, plush throws, and contrasting materials are all quintessentially eclectic, too.
Skip the Maximalism
Eclecticism is often mistaken for over-the-top maximalism, but that's definitely not always the case. In the living room nook above, just a few pieces can go a long way. The antique gilt mirror, casual jute rug, handsome chaise, and über-feminine purple and pink quilts all exude a very different vibe.
But set against the bright white farmhouse-esque space, they work together beautifully.
Play With Color
With dainty silhouettes, pastel yellow perfection, and just the right touch of whimsy, this living room vignette is what Wes Anderson–inspired interior dreams are made of. The traditional French settee is very Marie Antionette, which is simultaneously reinforced and undermined by the realist photograph above it.
There's a nod of nostalgia for a bygone era, as it captures something with modern technology that is distinct from the past. The silver tabletop décor also confirms the modern sensibility.
If you're starting the design process from scratch, pick one statement piece and decorate the rest of the room, building off that piece's color scheme and texture. Our suggestion? Start with the sofa.
Dare to Be Whimsical
Don't feel beholden by tradition or stuck within a specific "look." If you feel like painting your living room ceiling, go for it. In this example, we like how colorful and patterned throw pillows liven up the space. And how the abstract wall art is juxtaposed against a natural setting seen from those glass sliding doors.
Anchor Your Space
This living room is really working those gorgeous high ceilings, perfectly symmetrical columns, and large windows, which flood the space with sunlight. The grand chandelier, antique frames, and dressers all pick up on those qualities, while the coral décor and jute rug add a bit of a beachy feel.
Go for Contrast
This floral couch and spotted area rug look intentionally quirky, which is what eclectic style is all about. A modern light fixture and beachy window treatments in a natural material make this living room one-of-a-kind.
Don't Shy Away from Pink
The sofa setup looks like it could belong inside of the painting, with a similar gold, beige, gray, and pale blue color scheme as the painting above it. Then, the color palette becomes dominated by contrasting magenta and bubblegum pink shades. It all works together because of the leather caramel sling chairs, gray coffee table, and salmon-hued floor lamp.
Try a Gallery Wall
Don't be afraid to arrange photos and other artistic pieces you've amassed over the years side by side. This art gallery blends colorful illustrations, moody sketches and drawings, and photos in frames of different colors and border widths.
Keep It Contemporary
Eclectic decorating doesn't have to entail wild print-mixing. Don't get us wrong, we love a good floral throw sitting adjacent to a leopard one, but if that's not your cup of tea, try playing with different shapes and materials while sticking to one anchor color.
As evidenced above, you can stay true to a tight color palette while still featuring a ton of design traditions for plenty of excitement and intrigue. Though the Victorian era architecture lends itself to more traditional pieces, the mod armchair, casually leaning contemporary art, chic slipcover sofa, vases, modern coffee table, and pendant light all look right at home.
Choose a Non-Traditional Rug
This living room has a lot of unique elements going for it—blue couches, fuzzy throw pillows, that large-scale giraffe, for example. However, it's the area rug in an unexpected starburst shape that really stands out.
Paint the Walls White
We love how this space incorporates rustic-chic pieces that exude history and personality while still managing to look grown-up, refined, and photo-ready. This is accomplished through thoughtfully placed decorative items, the eye-catching traditional figurative portrait, and fresh white paint.
If you find yourself in possession of multiple area rugs in different sizes, opt to layer them for a unique and styled look. Patterned window treatments in a soft hue complement rather than compete with the rug's pattern.
Step Outside of Your Comfort Zone
While the staple pieces in this living room are rooted in Scandinavian and midcentury designs, the accents each introduce more modern and minimalist styles. This really comes to life in the lighting choices, from the artful floor lamp, the pendant over the dining room, and one in the living room. The neutral color palette helps to keep things consistent.
Stick to Neutral Walls
In an eclectic living room, opting for a neutral wall color sets the rest of the space up for creativity, like a blank canvas. Mix-and-match textures and colors, and place storage and other items in unexpected places. Take, for example, the woven basket tucked into the fireplace, or the focal art piece positioned just off-center.
Display Collected Items
Eclectic style often depends on combining elements from different sources. One way to illustrate this in your living room is to curate areas where you can display any combo of inherited objects, cherished souvenirs, and other mementos.
Combine Formal and Casual
We love how the chandelier pops against more relaxed elements in this open floor-plan living room and dining room area. A mix of metal, upholstery, and wood looks pulled together. Greenery adds a fresh element by bringing the outdoors in.