Think outside the (goggle) box and create a calm haven with a different focus
If you want to make a statement with a room that’s set up to entertain and receive guests the old-fashioned way, arrange your furniture in a circle and unite the configuration with a huge rug underneath it all.
This is a great way of tying a scheme together, too. For example, select a rug with accent colours that are featured in other parts of the room, like this soft grey.
A beautiful fireplace is the obvious alternative focal point to a television in many living rooms. This example shows how you can set up a double-sided fire to help zone a large, open-plan space, too. As well as the practical benefits of having a fire, flames are mesmerising to look at – some would argue more relaxing than the telly!
A huge chandelier or light fitting is another way to capture attention and create a talking point.Pairing a modern fitting with a period room makes a great contrast; similarly, an ornate, antique chandelier would make a wonderful juxtaposition in a contemporary scheme. When choosing a design, generally the lower the ceiling, the smaller the light fitting should be to help keep a room in proportion (there are always exceptions, of course, but it’s a good rule of thumb).Take a look at our lighting online and we have a massive range in-store too!
Go big on interesting books for guests to flick through, and pile them high (and low if you have space or a shelf underneath) on your coffee table. This way, instead of having all your seating – and guests or members of your household – facing the telly, all eyes will be on the printed visual feast in front of them.A large, low and sturdy coffee table will allow for maximum book stashing. Rotate your tomes so people get a fresh selection every few weeks.Discover the perfect Coffee Table @ M Kelly Interiors
Who needs a plasma screen when you have a gorgeous landscape to rest your eyes upon? While we might not all be as lucky as this homeowner, whose house offers spectacular countryside views, maximise what vistas you do have by providing seating from which you can drink it all in.Minimal window dressings will help, but might not always be practical. If you need privacy, too, consider using voile drapes, half-window blinds or shutters to shield you from neighbours or passers-by while not totally obscuring the views. Alternatively, embrace a certain lack of privacy – a bit of people-watching can be good entertainment, too!Relax on the Livorno Recliner
Design your room around music rather than a focal point for a vibrant, social room. Though giant speakers aren’t always the most stylish of items – and we often do our best to hide them! – this room puts them centre stage, along with the sofa and striking art on the wall.If you prefer to keep such things out of sight, consider a wireless system that will pump tunes from hidden points in the ceiling and walls. Turn your music up loud and fill your senses a different way.
You hardly notice the lack of a TV in this space, since there’s so much else to look at, and there are plenty of ways to add interest in your living room in lieu of a telly. In this example, the owners have gone for bespoke shelving with a section of bold wallpaper, creating plenty of room for displaying art and interesting curios – good for creating a talking point when guests come over.The downlighting within the shelving unit of this sociable space is also a clever way to highlight a treasured collection and attract the eye, leading from the dining area to an inviting place to relax after a meal. This is a room designed for entertaining!Alternatively, you could colour code your books or add some large, bright artworks to create a screen-free focal point.
Rather than not having a TV in your sitting room at all, you could shift the focus, as shown here – at first glance, it’s difficult to locate the screen.Investigate pre-made shelving units you can paint black, or have bespoke dark shelving fitted to accommodate your screen and watch it blend into the background. If you prefer your walls to be light, check out the various coloured televisions now available on the market, such the Bouroullec brothers’ Serif design, and see which you could potentially match to your favoured paint shade.