Looking for small apartment styling tips for your long, narrow living room? One of the most common issues with living in a small apartment or a rental is the awkward living room. In most cases, the living room is narrow or long, which makes the space look even smaller and cramped. A long, narrow living room is also trickier to style. There is always the risk of creating a tunnel or bowling alley effect when you go overboard with the decors!
The good news is, we are sharing lots of small apartment styling tips that are sure to help you create a cozy, inviting living room. If you’re in the process of redecorating your living room, try out these interior design tips:
Clear a Path
A well-styled living room should have enough room for people to walk through. The last thing you want is for your guests to bump all into your decor or trip all over the furniture!
Unfortunately, clearing a path in a narrow living room can be challenging because of the limited floor space. I highly recommend setting the walkway on one side of the room rather than in the middle of the living area. This way, you have room for people to pass through while giving the space a comforting, cozy ambiance.
Divide the Space into Small Areas
One of my favorite small apartment styling tips for open-plan dwellings is to divide the living space into different rooms. This is a great trick for maximizing a large but awkward living space without adding walls. You can create separate areas such as a seating room, an office space, a study and/or a reading nook in one place, it’s easy!
Create separation between rooms using wall-to-wall bookshelves, rugs, carpets, lights, artworks, even different color schemes. You can also arrange different pieces of furniture to separate one room to the other. Do not place the décor in the center of a long wall if you’re trying to divide one large living space into different rooms.
Pull Furniture Away from the Wall
While it’s tempting to push pieces of furniture against the wall to stretch the floor space, don’t. When decorating a narrow room, it’s best to set the pieces of furniture cross-wise. Visually, this trick makes the room appear wider than it really is. Pushing furniture against the wall create a bowling alley effect, which throws the balance of the design off.
We also recommend setting the furniture in the middle of the room. No, this won’t make the room look choppy at all. It will create a welcoming atmosphere that’s conducive to conversations and interactions between guests, which is important when you’re trying to create a functional space.
Group Your Furniture
Rather than arranging your furniture along the length of the room, consider breaking the furniture setup into smaller groups. For instance, instead of setting the sofa against the wall, place smaller chairs or love seats width-wise in the space. In addition, do not set all your furniture to one side of the wall.
Breaking your furniture setting into smaller groups help prevent the tunnel effect while improving the traffic flow of the living area. It’s a sneaky way of maximizing the space too! Setting your pieces of furniture this way makes the narrow living space appear and feel wider.
Make the most out of your narrow, long living room by arranging the furniture in the middle and leaving the sides open. Keeping the furniture centered creates a more intimate space that’s conducive to conversations while maximizing every square inch of the room.
Maximize Your Vertical Space
Since narrow rooms tend to have limited floor space, you can make the most out of the room by using the vertical space. Draw the eyes upwards by using tall pieces of furniture such as high bookcases. This creates the illusion of height.
Complement this trick by decorating with circular or oval pieces to prevent the bowling alley effect. Round lights, oval side tables and coffee tables or round vases make the perfect décor for a long, narrow small apartment. The rounded edges soften the jarring straight lines, balancing out the opposing design elements of the room!
The Perfect Accent Pieces
The eyes are naturally drawn to the ends of a room. Make sure your eyes land on something pretty so the arrangement registers better. The right accent pieces bring together all the design elements of the room so the interior style is cohesive.
Eye-catching artworks, a quirky vintage piece, or a beautiful gallery wall art make the best accent piece for a long, narrow living room. Avoid decorating with mirrors if you can. Mirrors could make a long living room appear even longer.