10 Simple Living Room Ideas That Will Transform Your Space in Minutes

Updated 08/30/19

The living room is arguably one of the most important spaces in your home. It's probably where your family gathers at night, where you wind down on a Saturday afternoon, and where your guests first rest their eyes when entering your home. It's only natural to want your living room to look and feel its absolute best. But while re-decorating a room is always an exciting process, it can also turn into a serious money pit quickly if you don't prioritize and maximize what you already have. 

If your living room is feeling a little uninspiring and stale but doesn't necessarily warrant a full redesign, there are tons of easy ways to transform your space without spending a ton of time or money—and it can be as simple as moving some furniture around or adding a rug. Want to give your space an instant makeover? Here are 10 simple living room ideas that are basically free.

Change Your Layout

a streamlined living room
Courtesy of Jeremiah Brent

Sometimes, all you need to do to make your living room feel fresh is to switch the layout. Is your furniture pushed up against the walls? Try floating it in the middle of the room. Is there too much space between your seating arrangement? Consider dividing your space into multiple zones, as Jeremiah Brent and Nate Berkus did in their L.A. living room above. 

CB2 Piazza Steel Grey Sofa
CB2 Piazza Steel Grey Sofa $1499

Rearrange Your Coffee Table

a designed coffee table
Courtesy of Jeremiah Brent

Is your living room décor basically done but it's lacking a finishing touch? Arrange your coffee table with books, vases, objects, and flowers to give it that magazine-worthy look.

Taschen Design Essentials
Taschen Design Essentials $60

Change Up the View

Simple Living Room
Courtesy of Elizabeth Roberts

The classic layout in a living room is to position the sofa to face the TV, but what if it was facing the window or another sofa instead?

Consider how you use your space the most and arrange your sofa in a way that makes the most sense for you.

West Elm Shelter Sofa
West Elm Shelter Sofa $1599 $1279

Re-Hang Your Curtains

Simple Small Living Room
Courtesy of Tali Roth

Are your curtains hung just below the ceiling and wide beyond the edge of your windows? If not, consider taking them down and re-hanging them. Placing your curtains as high and wide as possible will make your windows appear larger and allow more natural light to enter the room—making it look instantly more expensive.

Pottery Barn Emery Linen Drape
Pottery Barn Emery Linen Drape $119

Add an Antique

Simple Living Room
Courtesy of Charlie Ferrer

Sometimes, you just need one antique to give your brand new space a little character. Whether you find a collector's piece on 1stDibs or scour your local vintage store for something unique, a piece with a little age and patina will make your space feel more collected and elegant.

Jayson Home Vintage Round Dining Table
Jayson Home Vintage Round Dining Table $1495

Layer Your Rugs

a living room with layered rugs
Courtesy of Amber Interiors

Is your rug too small for your space? Add a larger, inexpensive natural weave rug underneath to anchor the space. Do you already have a larger neutral rug that's uninspiring? Layer a smaller antique Turkish rug on top to give your room character.

Jayson Home Vintage Oushak Rug
Jayson Home Vintage Oushak Rug $1795

Use Color Repetition

Living Room with repeated color
Courtesy of Stefanie Stein

When it comes to décor, there is a lot of power in repetition. This goes for colors, but also shapes. If you have one or two dominant colors in your living room, try repeating them in various items throughout the room. For instance, in the living room above by interior designer Stefanie Stein, the tan leather of the sofa and the teal blue of the pillows are repeated throughout in other accessories like lamps and benches.

Jayson Home Kilim Pillows
Jayson Home Kilim Pillows $175

Add Some Greenery

Simple Living Room with greenery
Julia Robbs

A little greenery will always make a room feel more put together. Whether you only have the space (or the green thumb) for a small low-maintenance succulent or you want to invest time and energy into a larger fiddle-leaf fig tree, consider adding a plant or two in your living room to give it that finishing touch.

Greenery NYC Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree
Greenery NYC Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree $440

Reorganize Your Bookcases

Living Room with organized book shelves
Courtesy of Studio LifeStyle

Do you have bookcases in your living room? Take everything out and re-organize them. Remove any items you don't absolutely love or serve no purpose, and re-introduce items one by one, starting with stacks of books and art and finishing up with smaller accessories like vases and decorative accents. And don't forget to leave white space for the eye to pause.

Skultuna Boule Small Vase
Skultuna Boule Small Vase $150

Add Floor Pillows

Living Room with floor pillows
Courtesy of Space Exploration

A couple of floor pillows can go a long way in making a space feel laid-back and layered. If you feel like your living room needs just a little more texture, try Moroccan kilim floors pillow. Not only are they an easy way to add additional storage, but you'll also love the way they look.

Jayson Home Moroccan Kilim Floor Cushion
Jayson Home Moroccan Kilim Floor Cushion $495

Next up: definitive proof that modern living rooms are warm and inviting.

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