If any room can be called the heart of the home, it’s the living room. While other rooms have a definite purpose, the living room is ours to adapt to our own needs. For some, it is an entertainment centre, to bring the full cinema experience into their home. To others, it is the place where the whole family comes to enjoy quality time together, or simply shut out the world and enjoy some peace and quiet. Whatever the particulars, though, all living rooms centre on one thing: relaxation.
The right colours make all the difference
To create a truly relaxing environment, everything must be in balance. This means sticking to a single colour scheme throughout, so that everything fits together smoothly. Gentle tones work best, such as greys and whites, since these are naturally easy on the eye. To really make the most of your space, use somewhat lighter colours on the walls, and opt for darker tones on your furniture. The contrast this creates will help give the illusion that the walls are higher than they actually are. This adds some much-needed breathing space, and is a great way to stop smaller rooms from feeling too claustrophobic.
That’s not to say, though, that you need to make your living room monochrome. Adding some soft greens, as in the photo above, brings a bit more colour to the room without being too distracting. This also goes great with house plants, especially ones like aloe vera and rubber plants which can naturally improve the air quality in your home. Cushions are the ideal canvas for an extra splash of colour, especially if they contrast with your sofa or armchair. Best of all, these can easily be switched up when you feel like a change. Remember, the more sparing you are with your use of colour, the more options you will have if you want to try out something new.
Smart speakers are transforming the way we relax
Of course, when we’re fully within that serene mindset, even the smallest of tasks becomes a major distraction. Worst of all is the panic that comes with losing the remote control down the back of the sofa. By the time we’ve pulled all the cushions out and finally found it again, that sense of tranquillity has evaporated. We'll need to settle in to that perfect seating position all over again- and it won't be long before the remote disappears all over again. Thankfully, smart technology is removing even this obstacle to our living room zen.
Smart speakers in particular are fast becoming an essential part of the modern living room. Using only the power of our voices, we can instantly start streaming our favourite films and series, tune in to our own personal chill-out playlists, and even answer those random trivia questions buzzing at the back of our minds. True to their name, virtual assistants like Alexa are there to satisfy our every need- they can even turn our smart lights down when it’s time for a nap.
Sit back and relax in the perfect seat
Finally, the right furniture is a vital part of the relaxing living room. A comfortable sofa is essential, since it gives us space to put our feet up and let our minds wander. However, depending on the size of the room, more than one sofa may leave things feeling a little cramped. It’s important to keep lots of open space in the living room, and remove any unnecessary clutter. For that reason, adding an armchair or two is the ideal way to gain some more seating space without over-stuffing the room.
When it comes to relaxing, nothing quite beats a curved armchair. Taking inspiration from Arne Jacobsen’s famous Egg Chair, these pieces envelop the sitter so that they can block out all distractions. What’s more, the wider back allows one to find the most comfortable sitting position, whether that’s sitting upright or curling up into a ball. Throw in a few soft cushions and a cosy blanket, and these chairs make for the perfect spot to catch up on some shut-eye.