Just like in fashion, layering in terms of interior design is the art of finding the right combination of colors, textures, and shapes to give richness to a space. There are many reasons to add depth and character to a room: layers can enhance the feeling of comfort, create visual interest, or camouflage less flattering areas.
The living room is the focal point of any home, from which all the other design elements will take inspiration. The beauty of layering comes from the unique combination of furniture pieces and decor, so it’s impossible to come up with a one-size-fits-all formula. Living rooms and style preferences can vary from person to person. However, there are basics you can master to help you achieve the look you want. We sat down with Becky Smith, designer and owner of The Linen Duck, a boutique furniture store in Columbia, TN, and talked about the three essential elements of a perfectly layered living room.
Q: So, we want to add layers to our living room to give it a style update. Where do we begin?
Becky: Start with the biggest pieces in terms of height and width, also known as the foundational pieces. These items will ground your room and address the functionality of your space.
Whether you’re going for a minimalist, modern, vintage, or a maximalist look, seating will always be important. Choosing the right-sized sofa in a fairly neutral palette will allow you to add accent pieces that add visual interest, such as chairs with textured upholstery.
Next, choose complementing cabinets, consoles, and coffee tables. These items typically address storage solutions and task surfaces.
Q: How can a bare wall look more vibrant and interesting?
Becky: Spice up a bare, neutral wall with wall art! Depending on your living room’s design theme and available wall space, you can go for paintings, tapestries, framed DIY pieces, or photographs. Larger walls can be treated as a gallery wall filled with large-scale pieces; small-scale art on a vast wall will leave the room feeling unfinished.
Our designers at The Linen Duck use unique architectural finds and mixed media as decor for rooms with large walls. Mirrors and framed monotone prints, on the other hand, are great options for colored and wallpapered walls.
Q: How can we use accent fabrics to create a warm and inviting atmosphere?
Becky: From colorful patterns to textured neutrals, your choice of accent fabrics will depend on the overall look you want to achieve. Use it on curtains, pillows, and throw blankets to give your living room a much-needed style boost.
If you find an accent fabric you like in a boutique furniture store, request a swatch and drape it over a piece of furniture to get a better idea of how it will look in your space.
As with anything, consider your lifestyle when selecting accent fabrics. You might love the feel of suede or silk, but it could easily be damaged by energetic children who might be prone to spills and pets who love to chew just about anything. High-traffic areas such as the living room will need fabrics that could better withstand everyday wear and tear.
We carry a wide selection of accent fabrics, performance fabrics, and upholstery from premium brands such as Rowe, Robin Bruce, Bernhardt, Universal Furniture, Gaby, Norwalk, and Bassett Furniture.
Here’s a tip: Take a photo of your redecorated living room as soon as you’re done. Seeing the finished look on a screen lets you be more objective about the look of your living room. Have fun rearranging as necessary. Again, there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to layering; what’s important is you like what you see and it gives you joy!
All items shown and options similar to what is seen here are available at The Linen Duck, a boutique furniture store located at 109 E 6th Street Columbia,TN.