Home & Garden

10 easy ways to upgrade your living room

Breathe fresh life into your living space

Give your living room a mini makeover—without breaking the bank. Credit: Home Depot

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So your living room is starting to look a bit too... lived in. Chances are you want the room where you spend so much time to be a sanctuary, but you don’t want to sacrifice style in the pursuit of comfort.

Luckily, elevating your living room’s look doesn’t have to be expensive—even if you want it to look super luxurious. The following are 10 easy and effective ways to upgrade your living room without completely breaking the bank.

1. See the room in a new light with a chandelier

Chandelier
Credit: Lumens / Wayfair

New lighting can completely change the vibe of your living room.

When you hear the word "chandelier," you think of an ornate ballroom or the fancy foyer of a mansion, right? Wrong! Today’s chandelier lamps are anything but fussy, and they come in a variety of styles and price points to fit any home or apartment’s decor.

We’re a fan of the sleek, modern Crosby Linear Suspension, which features five candelabra lights in glass shades, streamlined by steel bars. Or, if you're going for more of beachy, boho-chic look, the Higden 3 Statement Chandelier is crafted from a mix of wood and metal and sports hanging beaded elements that add a quirky touch to a classic shape.

2. Switch up your coffee table

Coffee table
Credit: Wayfair / Home Depot

Get rid of your banged-up coffee table, and get one of these trendy models instead.

Your coffee table is the centerpiece of the living room, so switching it out for a fresh model can have a big impact on the entire space. Plus, coffee tables see a lot of action, so scuff marks, stains and dings are inevitable after a few years.

For your upgrade, why not choose an eye-catching option like the Henjes Table? This coffee table is made from sturdy wood in a faux crate style that adds an industrial-chic vibe to any room. This model also serves as a clever space saver, with nooks for books, glassware, or anything else you’d like to stow away—clearing away unsightly clutter is another easy upgrade!

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Or, see double with this Nesting Coffee Table set with its sleek top and geometric gold legs that add a hip touch to your living room.

3. Hit the ground running with a statement rug

Rug
Credit: Nordstrom / Wayfair

Change up the aesthetic of your room with a new rug.

Similar to a coffee table, a stylish area rug can really center a room—and take a lot of wear and tear. Kick your current carpet to the curb and opt for an area rug with personality, like this Geometric Tassel Rug with an eye-catching pattern. It’s machine washable too!

Want to spice things up? Take a walk on the wild side with an animal-print statement rug like this Ayana Leopard Print option, which is sure to add personality to a neutral space. For a cozier option, you might like a shearling rug, like this Bigby Hand-Tufted Faux Sheepskin Rug—you won’t even need slippers to practice hygge at home!

4. Untangle that mess of wires

Cord organizer
Credit: Wayfair

Get those cords under control!

You know what I'm talking about—the snarled mass of wires currently snaking out from behind your TV like an unwelcome guest. In this day and age, we’re all plugged in, but we don’t need to see the evidence.

Luckily, it's easy to organize all those wires with an inexpensive product like this Web Cable Box, a streamlined case that stores and conceals unsightly wires and cables. For a smaller option, you might like this Web Cord Organizer, which separates and contains multiple wires and cords. Plus, it's inconspicuous enough to hide away behind a desk, couch, or entertainment center.

5. Decorate your walls with new shelves

Shelves
Credit: Wayfair / Home Depot

Why not decorate your walls with new shelving?

A well-placed shelf (or two!) not only saves precious space—something apartment-dwellers never have enough of—but can also do double duty as a piece of inventive home decor.

Take this Taylorsville Wall Shelf Set, for instance. Its unique shape adds aesthetic interest to a bare wall, while the different levels offer space for a variety of household objects, from books and photos to candles and succulents.

We also like the rustic look of the Urbanne Industrial Aged 2-Tiered Shelf, a sturdy option with metal pipe bars for easy mounting and two wooden shelves in an unfinished style.

6. Go green with low-maintenance plants

Plants

These low-maintenance plants will brighten up any room.

Nothing adds energy to a space like live plants, but houseplants can be hard to care for, especially if you have a busy schedule. That’s why we like air plants, which are super easy to care for, pet-friendly, and just plain cool! Plus, because they don't need soil, they can be displayed in a variety of ways. For instance, how cute is this set of charming Wall-Mounted Air Plant Holders?

Succulents are another great low-maintenance option—just give them sunlight and a touch of water once in a while, and they’re good to go. Pick an assortment you like, and pot them in this Addison Steel Wall Planter Set.

7. Invest in some textured throw pillows

Throw pillows
Credit: Home Depot / Pottery Barn

Swap out your throw pillows to give your sofa a new look.

An artful throw pillow can add a pop of color and personality to even the drabbest living room. Better yet, you can mix and match patterns for a funky, creative look that suits your living room’s decor. We like these Altair Geometric Throw Pillows, which have a herringbone-inspired pattern and come in a variety of colors.

Another option is to purchase pillow covers to zip over comfy pillows you already own. These Colossal Handknit Pillow Covers will add a touch of texture to your soda, and as an added bonus, they're soft to rest your head on.

8. Keep time in style with a big wall clock

Clock
Credit: Home Depot / Wayfair

An oversized clock is a good way to adorn a blank wall.

These days, most people check their phone when they need to know the time, but an oversized wall clock does more than just tell you the hour—it makes a statement! A unique wall clock can add visual interest to a room, and they work well as part of gallery walls, nestled among other pieces of art and decor.

For an industrial vibe, you might like the Utopia Alley Oversized Roman Round Wall Clock, which plays with negative space and has Roman numerals in place of standard numbers. Those with a farmhouse aesthetic may prefer the Oversized Reclaimed Pallets Wall Clock, made from reclaimed wood in different shades, for an elevated homespun look.

9. Raise the bar with a cool liquor cart

Bar cart
Credit: Nordstrom / Wayfair

Dial up the elegance of your room with a fun bar cart.

A bar cart will add a touch of elegance to any space, and they come in a wide variety of styles, sizes, and price points. We love the retro look of the American Atelier Wheeled Bar Cart in polished gold tones. It might not fit your entire collection of spirits, but it’s a classy way to display a few artfully placed martini glasses and bottles of gin. Plus, the wheels help it do double duty as a way to serve cocktails to guests.

A larger option like the Wiley Bar Cart allows for more storage, with two rows of hooks to hang wine glasses, a walled-in storage compartment for larger bottles, and unfinished wood and iron details for an industrial vibe.

10. Make a big statement with a tiny piece

Art
Credit: Nordstrom / Wayfair

Small decorative accents can make a big impact on a room.

It’s the little things in life! Sometimes a small decorative accent can give your living room a major upgrade. For instance, little decorative art pieces placed on shelves and end tables can add an understated-but-entirely-personal touch to your living space.

For example, these whimsical Alkera Statues are pop art-inspired dogs that are sure to catch the eye of your guests. You can also display your love for a good read with these artful cast iron Men Pushing Bookends.

Oh, and speaking of books, a splashy coffee table title like Mattel: 70 Years of Innovation and Play can add color to your living room while hinting at your interests.

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