The Design Aesthetic That Perfectly Jives With A Small Living Room

We may receive a commission on purchases made from links.

Anybody with a small living room should be careful to avoid overwhelming their space as a general rule. After all, going for an overly bold or maximalist aesthetic can make the petite room appear even smaller, exuding cramped, offputting energy. If you want to help your small living room space seem bigger instead of making that overbearing, yet very common, interior design mistake, the minimalist aesthetic is the perfect solution.

"I think minimalism and functionality go hand in hand. A minimalist-designed space incorporates an open floor plan, lots of light, and simple line furnishings that are well-built and comfortable," Sharon Blaustein, principal designer at B Interior LLC, told Elle Decor. "All these create a soothing and inviting space that has a timeless aesthetic." Not only is a minimalist style most practical for a small living room, but it's arguably the most visually appealing too. 

So, bring some calming energy into your space by keeping it bright and clean and you might even trick your guests into thinking it's a more spacious room.

Less is always more when it comes to minimalism

Buying furniture that's too big for your small space is never a good idea when aiming for a minimalist aesthetic, so look for proportionate pieces and more petite than average-sized furnishings. "You don't want furniture that is going to fill the entire space. You want pieces that still leave a lot of room so size of pieces should be a little bit smaller than usual to get the look," Genna Margolis, interior designer and founder of Shapeside, explained to Homes & Gardens. As for wall decor, Margolis added, "Do not over do it. You want to have decor on the wall without over covering the wall space." 

Therefore, in addition to looking for proportionate furniture, you should only purchase wall art that you're sure won't overwhelm the living room's small size and low-key vibes. Keep an eye out for artwork with thin, clean lines that will be a sleek addition without overpowering your minimalist room, like the Mid-Century Metal Wall Décor Gold – Project 62, currently retailing for $60 from Target

If you prefer paintings, choose something attractive rather than chaotic — "A piece of artwork that makes you feel good when you look at it," as Lindsay Sherbondy, the artist who owns Lindsay Letters, put it to Real Simple, adding, "I'll bet you'll feel both calm and invigorated." For instance, check out the Everly Quinn Framed On Canvas Painting, available for $199.99 at Wayfair. The slim painting's chic design will effortlessly complement a calming minimalist room.

It's crucial to think about the color scheme too

Not only should you consider the size and style of your furniture and wall art when decorating your small living room, but you should also try to find the best color palette for the minimalist look too. Overwhelming, dull, or unattractive hues can ruin your small-space vibe, even when the furniture and wall decor sizes are perfect. 

"Minimalist decor focuses on simplicity, often based around a neutral or monochromatic color palette with thoughtful accents of color, texture, and pattern," as Mackenzie & Co's Angela Hamwey clarified to Town & Country magazine. If you feel stuck regarding which colors to use, one elegant combination to explore is prominently beige with yellow accents and a splash of dark, muted green. 

Or, if you want something slightly more understated, you can't go wrong with a classic mix of grays, creams, and black, which combine to create a timelessly minimalist room. Even if you plan to explore a different color combo, try to use the 60-30-10 color rule when decorating your living room and stick with only three hues to avoid clashing or overwhelming the space to keep it minimalist.