Decorating: 3 Secrets to a Beautiful Living Room

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Your new living room is a huge blank canvas ready for you to fill it with beautiful color, comfy couches, perfect window treatments, and sophisticated wall art. In such a big space it is important not to get overwhelmed. Create a timeline for decorating your new space, and it will come together piece by piece.

It Starts with Color

Do some research, find out what the rules for painting are in your new home. Are you allowed to paint the walls? Do you have to paint them back to their original color, or just give them a couple coats of primer? If your apartment community has strict rules about returning the walls to their original condition there is an easy solution. Paint an accent wall. Choose the longest or most uniquely shaped wall in your living room and paint it a color that pops! If you choose a smaller wall, choose a bold color. If Paint Swatchespainting the longest wall go with a deep color to add depth. Make a trip to the paint store and bring home possible color swatches. Tape them all over the room to see what looks best on which wall. Wait a full 24 hours and take note of how much you like the colors throughout the day. As outside light changes, inside colors may appear brighter or darker. It's important to choose a color that you love all the time for your blank canvas. Hang on to the color swatch containing similar colors, because you're going to need it to bring the rest of the room together.

Now, the Window Covering

How is the natural light in your new living room? If it is overwhelming, you may want to choose a thicker window covering for this space. If you like the light that the new room provides, you can give the space and open feel and add a touch of color with sheer curtains. Choose a lighter color out of your paint swatch and find sheer curtains to match the walls.

Decorated Apartment End Table

What kind of a window do you have? If the window is small, you may want to hang a long piece of cloth over a curtain rod at the top (this is called a valence.) If the window is large, it maybe be better to go with curtains that sit length-wise and just brush the floor. Take an extra step when hanging your curtain rod—put the curtains onto the rod and have a partner hold it above the window at different heights to see what placement works best for your new space. Get some pretty ties, fasten the curtains to the side at an angle, and smile because you're starting to love your new space.

Fill Your Space with Furniture That Works

What shape and size is your living area in your new home? If your dining area and living room are a combined space, try using a couch and chaise to section off the space to create a cozier living room. In a smaller space, a single couch along a wall with a small accent chair in a corner might be more appropriate. If your new space is temporary, consider renting furniture or shopping at thrift stores for a temporary furniture fix. If purchasing new pieces, be sure to buy pieces that can be used in your next, more permanent home. For example, if your living room only requires a small couch try purchasing that piece at a chain furniture store so that if you move on to a bigger space a matching loveseat and ottoman can be purchased. Furnish your space with pieces that you love, and you'll feel at home in no time.

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