Dwell’s Favorite 406 Living Room Design Photos And Ideas

The living and dining room look out to the central courtyard, promoting indoor/outdoor living. Here, five doors slide into a pocket in the wall to create a nearly 23-foot-wide opening on one side looking into the garden. Another set on the opposite side enhances cross ventilation.
Ben Koush has amassed a collection of new and vintage furniture that complements the few pieces he designed himself, like side tables and art stands in the living room.
The curved ceiling was built from layered Austral Plywoods hoop pine plywood sourced from Queensland plantation forests. The flooring is blackbutt timber.
"We really wanted the rest of the house to be quiet in order to showcase the shipping containers as art objects," says Davis. "So, we used a very simple materials palette: lots of big windows and doors to bring in light and open up to the yards; heated concrete floors, polished to reveal the aggregate; basic IKEA cabinets; sheetrock painted a gallery-like white; and some touches of light, natural wood to add warmth and texture."
"Light is the most important part of a successful living space," Naughtin says. "We utilized double-height glazing with operable windows and large doors to maximize the intake of light and achieve a strong connection to the outdoor space." European oak storage in the living space matches that in the kitchen for a continuous flow.
At Alex Strohl and Andrea Dabene’s Nooq House in the Rocky Mountains of northwest Montana, highlights include a suspended fireplace, cathedral ceilings, and expansive windows. "The windows are my favorite feature. I've loved seeing the colors change in the fall, snow in the winter, and bears in the spring," says Andrea.
The sitting room is an updated homage to the past that references the home’s history while keeping a distinctly contemporary vibe. "However, she did want to make one room that felt old," explains Yun.
A collaboration between YUN Architecture and interior designer Penelope August, a renovated, 19th-century townhouse with landmark status used to be an egg and poultry distributor. Now virtually unrecognizable, the parlor floor is the home's open-plan living area. A formerly defunct fireplace was reactivated and clad with a custom-made, limestone mantle.
On one side of the house, a white central staircase leads to a split-level landing the Robertsons call "the reading room." "We needed a place to hang out and for the kids to read," explains owner Vivi Nguyen-Robertson. Awaiting the birth of the couple's son, she relaxes in a built-in reading nook in the library.
The sunken living room is just one of many grade changes inside the structure. “We were adamant that we didn’t want something domestic,” says Andrew. “We wanted something surprising, that was hyper-animated, and that, when you moved through it, changed all the time.” The sofa, designed by the couple and Levenbetts, is upholstered in cotton velvet. The Habibi side tables are by Philipp Mainzer for e15, the fireplace tools by Fort Standard, and the doors by Fleetwood.
A custom walnut-and-steel coffee table from Jobe Fabrications anchors the living room. Fenton and Fenton armchairs are paired with a Texas Leather Interiors sofa. Drophouse Design crafted the fireplace copper wrap, and Thomas Studio and Foundry treated the metal to create a unique copper patina that matches the kitchen hood fan. Limestone is part of the exterior landscaping, but makes its way into the home as well to act as the base of the fireplace. Each piece is seven feet long, and puzzles together.
The concrete hearth at the fireplace has angled sidewalls and a bevelled edge.
The Franklin stove adds an authentic touch to the updated cabin.
The Deep Thoughts Chaise from Blu-dot sits atop a rug from Rugs.com.
Our experts advise on choosing an area rug by pile, construction, size, and placement—and how much it’ll cost.
Floor-to-ceiling shelves and storage bookend a cabinet that conceals the television.
The living room is furnished with pieces by some of the greatest names in vintage design, such as Hans Wegner, Eero Saarinen and Charlotte Perriand, and also more recent pieces from the 1900s by Philippe Starck, among others.
Zachary designed a new cabinet in walnut to anchor the room. The wood tones are a warm counterpoint to the butter-yellow sofa. The coffee table belonged to the owners.
The addition of the antiqued mirrored panels amplifies natural light that the living room receives from the adjacent sunroom.
There are many textures at play in the living room—the board-formed concrete ceiling, the light brick wall, wood paneling, and the terrazzo floors. "The texture of the timber is reflected in the concrete," says Peake. The lightwell adds an additional internal light source and another spot to insert greenery. The Vibia Palma wall sconce from Koda Lighting is affixed to the wall over the sofa.
The multicolored cushions were designed by Acuña and fabricated by Viviana Cortes.
The oak cabinet in the living room was another secondhand find. “It had the exact measurements of the wall,” says Annemie. “We just needed to hang it.” The throw blanket is from La Femme Garniture while the pillows and pendants are custom.
Given the home’s tight and efficient footprint, the architects sought to use simple materials and strategic moves to delineate different spaces and uses. The lower ceiling height of the living room, for example, distinguishes it from the dining area, which has a taller ceiling.
The dining table is a custom design by architect, Pete Kennon, and paired with 412 Cab chairs by Cassina. The chandelier is from Melbourne-based Industrial Designer Christopher Boots.  <span style="color: rgb(204, 204, 204); font-size: 13px;">Photo by Derek Swalwell</span>
The cream-colored bricks continue to the interior and reinforce and indoor/outdoor living experience. The vintage Stilnovo wall light is from Nicholas & Alistair.
Oak slats in the living room echo the timber slats that enclose the entry courtyard. The black-marble Empire side tables are by local furniture brand Seer Studio, and the white-marble Tulip table is by Eero Saarinen for Knoll.
A vintage Bertoia Bird chair and Bertoia Wire chair offer sunny seating alongside the living room. "We love drinking coffee every morning in our window nook," says Tyler.
The rear garden, visible from this living court, includes a vegetable patch, fruit trees, and lawn for plenty of play area.
“This house for me is about contemplation,” says Adrian. “You come here from the city and the place is saying, ‘Hi, meet yourself again.’”
This 4,500 Square Feet house was designed and built for a family of four. It is situated at the intersection of two large farm fields and a small naturally occurring basin in Sagaponack, New York.
When designing her weekend getaway in Valle de Bravo, Mexico, architect Fernanda Canales knew the remote nature of the plateau and erratic weather conditions would prove tricky. In addition to withstanding the harsh climate, the house would need to also be self-sufficient. To embrace the beauty of the landscape while being open to sun exposure, the home wraps around four courtyards. Brick and concrete with high thermal mass create the foundation; its red hue and rough texture are juxtaposed against smooth concrete and wood inside. A unique facet to the home are the arches in the roofline—barrel-vaulted ceilings span the family room and all the bedrooms.
To add more space to her petite Florence apartment originally designed by Roberto Monsani, architect Silvia Allori incorporated fold-down furniture and storage into the white laminate walls that also support bookshelves.
Rustic, Scandinavian-style The Hut, in Ohio, is a true family affair; the sustainable cabin, covered in cedar shingles, was built by architect Greg Dutton and his brother and father. Inside, views are amplified through a 25-foot wall of floor-to-ceiling windows.
Throughout the house, there are a number of details that are clearly "Lautner." Working with Goldstein, the architect was given the opportunity to design custom furniture pieces, which is something he didn’t normally get the chance to do. His angular, minimalist style was carried throughout, including in the custom leather-and-concrete sofas spread throughout the living room.
In this renovated midcentury in Seattle, the living room’s fireplace has been powder-coated orange to complement the vintage furnishings, including a test bomb discovered at an antiques mall.
Resting along the crest of a volcanic crater on the little-known island of Nisyros in the Aegean Sea, Villa Nemésis marries the mystique of ancient Greece with modern design.
Rug designer Nani Marquina and photographer Albert Font created their home in a peaceful corner of the Spanish island of Ibiza. In their living room is a pair of kilim-covered chairs by Philippe Xerri, a chest of drawers by Piet Hein Eek, and a handmade Tunisian rug that provides bursts of color amidst the overall color scheme of white, ecru, and cream.
Infused with traditional materials and aesthetics, this open-plan home in Japan strengthens the bond a young family has to nature and to each other.
The master bedroom has access to the netted play nook through a whimsical door that punches through the upper part of a wall. A repurposed street lamp from Copenhagen is suspended from the ceiling.
Halfway through a pregnancy isn’t exactly the ideal time to buy a house. So after spending months scouting San Francisco’s Victorians and turnkey cookie-cutters—and almost defecting to the East Bay—Lorena Siminovich and Esteban Kerner decided to put the hunt on hold until after their baby was born. But then one afternoon Kerner, a design director with Old Navy, logged on to Craigslist on a whim. He saw a below-market listing for a single-family home in Noe Valley, their neighborhood of choice.

With crumbly brick cladding, peeling rust-brown paint, and rotting garage doors, the house lacked curb appeal. But the Argentine couple was drawn to the interior. "It was amazing and strange at the same time," says Kerner of the 1,485-square-foot, multilevel, midcentury maze. "Mind-boggling," adds Siminovich. "It was just a knot of doors and a series of insane stairs to nowhere."
The living area features a weathered metal fireplace, warm wood furniture, and travertine floors sourced by Destefano Marble & Granite.
Within the walls of this updated 1920s Spanish Colonial home is a world-class art collection that includes the work of James Turrell and Jenny Holzer. The abode was meant to contrast with the creative couple’s main residence in San Francisco—a Victorian on a steep hill. The Los Angeles getaway, designed by Síol Studios, was renovated to embody indoor/outdoor living while maintaining the original charm with beautiful bones and arched windows. The placement of the art was an organic process—some were designed in place, while others were placed afterwards such as the Barry McGee surfboards in the dining room.
When glass dominates a home, the result is a borderless residence that syncs with its environs, creating a stunning, new visual and psychological sense of space. See how these glass homes use the versatile material to create ambiance and connect with the outdoors.
All of the exterior furnishings are from Fermob. The wood-burning fireplace anchors the open living-dining space.
A custom sofa was installed on the far side of the bathroom for even more space to relax.
The mountain abode is nestled on a quiet street a mere 10 minutes from the slopes, and it shares its lot with a gathering of large trees. The house also comfortably accommodates up to 10 people, so it's perfect for hosting friends and their families.
The four-bed, four-bath home of Peter and Sarah Diamond and their two adult children is uniquely situated in one of the most remote areas of the Berkshires: Mount Washington, Massachusetts.
After searching for the perfect plot of land on which to build their dream home, a couple instead opted to purchase a "Rummer" home -- a typical example of a low-key midcentury modernist house constructed by a local developer, Robert Rummer, in the 1960s. The five-bedroom, 2,400-square-foot post-and-beam house was strongly reminiscent of California Eichlers, and exemplified the couple’s ideal layout, but was in serious need of a major renovation. The revamp maintained the great expanses of glass, wide-open interiors, and indoor-outdoor living, and added new white concrete floors installed, fixed the radiant heating, updated the kitchen and bathrooms, and new landscaping.
Native Texans and married designers Elizabeth Alford and Michael Young came home to roost 10 years ago, when they ditched big-city life in New York for a ranch house in Austin. The couple immediately knew that the home, originally built by architect Jonathan Bowman in 1957, would need a remodel, but realized that a complete restoration would be too costly and perhaps "not that satisfying" for the designers to work solely within the existing structure. So they stripped it down to the footprint and rebuilt, shaping a family home that would reflect both the hypermodern lives they left in New York City and the deep-rooted cultural heritage that comes with growing up in Texas.
In defiance of its oversized neighbors, this sustainable 753-square-foot home in Perth, by architecture firm Whispering Smith, maximizes its small footprint through built-in furniture and textures of concrete, reclaimed brick, tile, and white metal. Devoid of walls and doors, the streamlined spaces flow into one another, and connect to the ample rear courtyard.
In the living area, sofas and a chair by Piero Lissoni for Cassina join a floor lamp by Michele de Lucchi for Artemide.
The refined architectural detailing is finished with natural textures and subtle color shifts, from clay brickwork to rose linen accents, creating a robust yet calming home.
Lovely details in living room
Loft Space
The sunken lounge was designed with "slowing down and appreciating the environment" in mind. A custom-made, built-in sofa wraps around the space, bleeding into the stairs and a custom wood display shelf. Not having a TV was an intentional choice. "We wanted the client to be able to lie back and watch the clouds and the sky, to have conversations, to read a book, to play with their pets," says Knights.
The fundamentals of Emmanuel de Bayser’s Berlin apartment toe the line of cool, muted modern design. Yet there’s a trick at play: by adding distinct shots of color, de Bayser gives every room its own richly hued rainbow and, in doing so, creates a personal paean to the more playful side of midcentury design.
Architecture doesn’t have to mean building anew. Sometimes, it can mean removing things in order to rediscover an authenticity that centuries of meddling has obscured. In Milan, the private residence of Vincenzo De Cotiis is one such project; an homage to the raw beauty of an 18th-century space, which reflects the architect’s overarching fascination with aging objects.

The modern living room is one of the busiest spots in the house. It is where family and friends alike gather to share stories, watch movies, read, and unwind. As you'll find in the projects below, there are endless ways to configure a fresh living space with modern options for chairs and sofas, sectionals, end and coffee tables, bookcases, benches, and more. Innovative fireplaces add a touch of warmth.