A well-curated mix of decorative elements in a living room helps show off your style and personality. When adding these elements, the personal mantra of KAVITA MATHUR, founder of online treasure trove Red Velvet Designs, is to “retain a passion for design and colour, focus on the details and, most importantly, be courageous – create a space that is truly you.” Here are some key décor items that Kavita uses in her living room design – from carpets to ginger jars – and some tips on how to choose the right pieces for your home.
Choosing the right pieces
As Kavita points out, the “good old days” of a living room only being used to host a tea party or lavish dinner are gone; in modern times, we stay true to its definition and use the room as a place to live. It’s a multi-functional space; as such, you’ll need to consider both comfort and aesthetics in your design – and that means choosing the right pieces, and in the right colours, patterns and styles.
Designing your living room – tips on accessories
A carpet can serve as the foundation to your living room, allowing you to build your look there. It’s an opportunity to pull in colours that set the tone for the rest of the room’s palette and further inspire your design direction.
Selecting the correct texture of carpet is crucial: silk for a rich look, wool for comfort and ease of maintenance, or earthy like jute for an allnatural look. While placing a carpet, make sure it extends under all the key pieces of furniture. If this isn’t possible, it’s okay to have the front legs of major upholstered pieces on it and the back legs off. However, all the legs of smaller pieces should be on the carpet. The number one mistake people make when decorating with carpet is getting ones that are too small in size.
Carpets are a great way to inject playfulness and fun into the room, so embrace colour and pattern while shopping.
We often forget this necessary detail, yet while recessed lighting is a basic component to brighten any space, lamps are a key to creating the right ambience in your living room.
In particular, table lamps are the easiest way to highlight a dull corner – you can place them on an end table or even a sideboard or console that sits against the walls. This is the perfect placement of a table lamp, so it doesn’t shine directly into your eyes. An adequately scaled table lamp highlights the elegance and sophistication of any room. And the element of design itself can add a huge amount of texture to your living room, depending on which material you opt for – ceramic, metal, glass, fabric and so on.
#3 Ginger Jars
The living room tends to get heavy traffic, so it’s a prime place to showcase your style preferences. Furniture definitely plays a part, but the accents take a critical role in defining and highlighting your style.
A ginger jar is a chic and versatile option. What’s great about chinoiserie ginger jars is they can go almost anywhere – not just on coffee tables, but on consoles or inside cabinets and bookshelves as well. For example, put them on top of a favourite stack of coffee table books or couple them with other treasures to provide a warm, lived-in feel. Combining patterns, colours and heights can work well too. Their versatility is my favourite aspect; you can put them in clusters, use one as a flower vase, or add one as a filler in a particular spot.
These are one of the most understated décor pieces in a home. Far from only being used as a source of illumination, candles can instantly add a mystical look or a serene ambience to any room with their fragrance and colour.
Safety comes first: never leave burning candles unattended, and always place them on a heat resistant surface, away from any fabrics. Candles are ideal to decorate coffee tables. Mix and match with hardcover books and little flower pots and – voila! – you’ve got yourself the perfect coffee table. Using candles in jars is most convenient but if you’re experimental, try lanterns, hurricane stands, votives or candelabras to make a statement.
There’s nothing better than getting cosy on the sofa to watch your favourite film or snuggling up with a good book, all wrapped up in a throw. A common sight in many modern living spaces, throws come in all different sizes, styles and colourways. So it’s easy to find one that will complement and enhance your existing décor, and add warmth or oomph to your home.
A throw can instantly add texture, colour and dimension to your couch. When choosing, keep in mind the material; it can be cotton with bold patterns or knitted wool for comfort and snugness. The most popular way to style a throw blanket is to drape it over your couch in a messy or neat fashion – both look fab for a casual laidback look. A throw that has been neatly folded can be placed over the arm of your couch or ottoman for a more elegant, put-together look.
A word on colours and patterns: Kavita says that 2022 is a year of “delicate greens, clarifying blues and earthy tones, and bold yellows and reds”. As for patterns, she says that “going maximalist is the trend”.
Browse and shop Red Velvet products at Shop 74, G/F, DB Plaza, Discovery Bay and online at redvelvetdesigns.net.
We hope you found this article interesting. See more home design and styling tips in our Homes section.
This article first appeared in the Summer 2022 issue of Expat Living magazine. Subscribe now so you never miss an issue.