Home Decorating and Staging
Insider Secrets to a Beautiful Home

Family Room Furniture Placement

Family Room Furniture Placement

Family Room Furniture Placement

Some people like to move their furniture a lot. Others like to find the best placement and never change a thing. Whatever your style, you will enjoy your family room more if you can bring it into balance.

Balance is a physical thing, but it's also a feeling. It's peace, harmony, contentment. It's a sense of pleasure you get when you walk into a room. And there are actual steps that professional decorators use to create that feeling.

The most comfortable and inviting family rooms have common characteristics:

  • Comfortable seating with something pleasant to look at.
  • Inviting groupings that encourage a conversation with friends or family.
  • Convenient place to rest a beverage, no matter where you're sitting.

Keep these principles in mind when arranging your furniture, and the following tips will make more sense. Soon you will begin to see a pattern. By copying the pattern, you can create a fantastic family room anywhere, anytime, using what you already own. And when you decide to purchase new furniture or accessories, you'll know exactly what you need.

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Top Ten Family Room Furniture Placement Tips

  1. Find your Focal Point. What do you most want to look at in the room? Usually it's a fireplace. Or it might be a view. If your room doesn't have a natural focal point, create one with art, a bookshelf, or large cabinet. Your TV is not a focal point. But since most people have one, place your TV as close to your focal point as possible. 
  2. Start with your Largest Sitting Piece. Put your sofa directly across from, and facing your focal point. Keep sofa away from the wall (if possible).
  3. Add a Side Chair or Love Seat. Place this piece of furniture next to the sofa, at a right angle (just like the picture above). 
  4. Add More Seating as Space Allows. If you still have room, you can add another chair or pair of chairs diagonally across from the right angle you just created. 
  5. Add Tables. Add a coffee table in front of the sofa. And an end table next to the chair or love seat. Make sure that no matter where you sit, you have a spot to place a beverage. Sofa tables are great if you have the room. 
  6. Evaluate and Shrink or Expand. Is the furniture too close together? Try moving it out more. Is it too far apart? Bring it in closer. Can you move freely around the room? If not, take something away. Is furniture distributed evenly around the room? Check the Golden Mean, and the 60-30-10 Rule.
  7. Add an Area Rug. An area rug that's large enough for the furniture grouping to sit on, will look best. If you want just a splash of color or texture, choose an area rug that fits the inside shape of the furniture grouping. Anchor the rug just under the sofa to "ground" it and keep it from slipping.
  8. Add Lighting and Dimmers. Add at least three lamps (table and floor lamps), and place them in a triangular pattern around the room (if you drew a line between the lamps, it would create a triangle). Put dimmers on all overhead lights and plug table lamps into wall dimmers. Choose large lamps with large shades, and attach them to sitting areas. They will look beautiful in the daytime, and add enormous charm in the evening. 
  9. Hang Art and Mirrors. Art and mirrors add the color and sparkle that makes a room sing. Fit your art, or groupings of art to the shape and size of your walls. Hang mirrors so they reflect something beautiful, like a window or a pretty part of the room. More hanging tips in Abstract Landscape Art.
  10. Layer Accessories and Add Plants. Surround yourself with the things you love. Grouping them by color and subject will have a greater impact. Vary the sizes (large, medium, and small) and stick with odd numbers of objects. Add pillows and patterns. Include at least one healthy plant, a floral arrangement, or a great piece of greenery.

One-Day Makeover

You can easily transform your family room in one day.

  • Set aside a whole uninterrupted day. Get some friends to help.
  • Take lots of "before" pictures to document the transformation.
  • Move everything out of the room first (including everything on the walls) so you have a clean slate to work with, and you're not tempted to "make things fit."
  • Group art and accessories by color in a holding area.
  • Follow the steps.
  • Take "after" pictures.
  • Celebrate and enjoy your new room!
  • Send us before and after pictures and we'll feature a special page about you and your One-Day-Makover.

Architects, interior designers, and more ∨

From Shabby Chic home decorations to contemporary furniture and the perfect wall mirror, browse thousands of decorating ideas to inspire your next home project.
Browse top designers interior portfolios, from high-quality cookware set and decorative dinnerware sets to ideas for remodeling bath and kitchen.

Dining Room Furniture Placement 

The most common mistake when decorating a dining room is filling it with too much furniture. Before extending your table full out with all the leaves and adding a china closet and buffet, consider the size of the room and how you want it to feel. Too much furniture feels cramped and stifling.

Beautiful dining rooms are just as much about feeling as seeing. The best dining rooms are comfortable, inviting, and stimulating. Top Ten Tips for creating a beautiful dining room. 

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Alex Hinst is the author of Home Decorating and Staging and owner of Alex Hinst Designs, located in Denver's Historic Highlands.

Alex Hinst Designs has hundreds of success stories in both private and investor home renovations and is dedicated to helping you create your perfect home.