Check out these communal spaces because there’s inspiration plus practical ideas for almost every style and home!
(This article was last updated on 16 Dec 2021.)
Whether big or small, living rooms are an essential space for any home, but if you’ve never designed one (or are planning to do so), it can be tough to figure out every single detail on your own.
From seating arrangements to what types of built-ins to get, we tell you what makes a living room work by taking you on a tour of not one, but twenty of these practical and comfortable communal spaces!
1. Jurong West Central 1 by Forefront Interior
It might be one of the basics, but having sufficient seating is the key to a functional living space. After all, the living room will probably be where you’ll be spending most of your time at home, even when you aren’t having guests over. So, why not take a page from this Jurong West HDB flat on how to integrate different seats (a sofa, stools, and even a platform) for a comfortable, casual environment?
2. Cantonment Close by Third Paragraph
We’ve got breezy seaside vibes from this coastal-inspired flat with a blue-and-white theme that’s totally on point! Plus, it’s also proof that getting creative with seating arrangements can help maximise a living room. Here, a bay window seat – flanked on both sides by built-in shelves – transform what would have been an empty nook into a sunny reading corner.
3. Northshore Drive by Design Identity
What’s there not to love about the MUJI look? It’s everything that a cosy-minimalist aesthetic can encompass, with pristine surfaces, warm wood accents and Japanese simplicity all rolled into one. This 5-room BTO at Northshore Drive even has a tatami (okay fine, carpet) style platform, perfect for entertaining guests – or simply to lounge around over a cup of tea.
4. Jurong East Street 21 by Mr Shopper Studio
Wood accents are great for adding visual warmth to any space, so why stop at the floor and walls? Cladding your ceiling in this natural material makes for a gorgeous living room feature, plus it draws the eye upwards and makes a small space look much longer and taller than it actually is.
5. Bidadari Park Drive by Archive Design
Furniture, colours, and materials aren’t the only design elements that you can play with to create a living room that matches your taste. In this Bidadari Park Drive HDB home, lighting plays a big role in setting the mood of the living room by allowing it to switch between a more contemporary, naturally lit setting to a darker, nostalgic old-school atmosphere.
6. Bidadari Park Drive by The Alchemists Design
Want a feature wall but dislike how bulky they can be? Well, if this Tampines North home is any indication, you can have your cake and eat it. Recessed shelves along the length of a minimalist whitewashed wall can be used to add colour and visual interest to a home – and all you have to do is fill them up with your favourite collectables!
7. Henderson Road by KDOT
Being conscious about built-in placement is another way to get maximum functionality out of your living room. For this Henderson Road home, interior firm KDOT managed to fit in not just a storage wall, but also a small, but functional dining space into the front of its living room. Meanwhile, a well-placed partition shields both communal areas from any prying eyes.
8. Punggol Walk by Swiss Interior Design
At first glance, this Punggol Walk home’s living room might seem like it’s midway through its makeover due to its barebones design. But make no mistake, this is a perfect example of a no-frills space that embraces minimalism with the help of clean-lined fixtures, accented only by low-profile cove lighting that lends a decorative glow.
9. Punggol Central by Butler Interior
It’s safe to say that in most homes the living room and study are each spaces of their own (understandably for peace and privacy). However, if you’re really into the idea of an open-concept floor plan, separating the two rooms with just a half-height wall – sans the usual glass partition – is one way to achieve an overall ‘larger’ communal area.
10. Punggol Sapphire by The Interior Lab
Glass windows might be ubiquitous features in any modern home, but in this living room these fixtures are put to good use, both as see-through partitions and as industrial accents that contrast nicely against a backdrop of white. Obviously, they don’t provide total privacy, but that’s kind of the point when you want a chic way to demarcate your living room and study without blocking them off entirely from each other.
11. Strathmore Avenue by MET Interior
Aside from creating a distinctly gentle vibe, another benefit of using softer tones for your living room is that they don’t overwhelm the rest of your space. Take this Strathmore Avenue home’s living room for instance – here, soft pink makes for a whimsical, but sophisticated statement colour that complements all sorts of decor elements, from warm wood to metallic accents.
12. Tampines Avenue 7 by Fifth Avenue Interior
Depending on your home’s floor plan, it might be possible to turn your living room into a ‘connector’ space that links it to the rest of your rooms – be it the kitchen, cosy corner or a bedroom. The perks of adopting this seamless layout? You get a spacious communal area that looks and feels welcoming regardless of where you are indoors.
13. Pinnacle 16 by Weiken.com
Achieving the rustic-glam style for your living room is one way to make it feel both natural and chic. And the easiest way to incorporate it is to first start off with a palette of warm grey and white, as Weiken.com did for this condo apartment, before layering on wood accents as well as elegant, clean-lined furnishings to complete the look.
14. Seaside Residences by A Blue Cube Design
Whether it’s lookalikes (porcelain, laminates) or the real deal, marble has long been a decorative material that is used to convey class and elegance. So, if you wish to impress your visitors or simply want to return home to a beautiful living room, consider cladding your walls and floors with this veiny, timelessly elegant surface.
15. Tampines Avenue 9 by Meter Square
Who needs to visit a cinema when you have got your own theatre at home? This cosy family abode has one – and you can take a closer look at how its living room/entertainment centre, as well as the rest of its spaces, were renovated here!
16. Sumang Lane by Fineline Design
One living room design trend that has been growing in popularity recently is the standalone TV wall – and for good reason!
Doing away with the traditional arrangement of having living room built-ins (read: TV, shelves, cabinets) positioned against a wall allows for more creativity and freedom in layout planning. For instance, you can maximise space by building a study table behind your entertainment centre.
17. Choa Chu Kang Street 51 by Renologist
Yet another way to put a standalone TV wall to good use is to install a swivel system that allows you to have a clear view of the screen everywhere, whether you are seated comfortably on your living room sofa or just chilling by the window.
18. Depot Road by Arche Interior
While they are less commonly seen in home settings, ceiling TV mounts can provide even more flexibility than a standalone media centre because it’s possible to adjust your screen to an even greater degree, whether it’s by tilting it vertically or to the sides. Plus, taking away a (bulky) console will give you even more space in your living room!
19. Boon Tiong Road by Ovon Design
Doing away with a sofa and TV aren’t the only things that make this white-and-wood themed living room unique. ‘Kindergarten’ by day, it’s got a home library and settee shelves built at a low height so that its owners’ young children can easily access; ‘movie theatre’ by night, it’s got a projector and screen for wide-screen entertainment.
20. Dover Crescent by i Chapter
Sometimes, it just isn’t possible to fit in an impressive media centre in a living room if you have only a small amount of wall space to tuck/mount your electronics against, like in the case of this Dover Crescent home. The next best alternative? Get a natural wood console that fits snugly between both ends, and don’t forget to accent with some healthy greens and earthy colours too!
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