Finding the perfect print, canvas or poster for your living room can be tricky. Picture this: you’ve spent the last however long curating your space - from picking your perfect sofa to laying out a new statement rug. Once all the big pieces are in, it’s time to focus on the finishing touches, which is one of the most fun parts of decorating a living room.
Decor’s all about the details, and what you choose to put on your walls is no exception. Choosing wall art is all about knowing your space and your style really well. Having a clear vision will help you hone in on the right artwork for your living room, and there are a number of ways to land yourself a perfect piece. Here’s how to get started.
1. Know your space
First up, the boring stuff. Mastering your measurements is super important when choosing artwork for your living room. There’s nothing worse than getting a frame up on the wall to realise it doesn’t quite fit or looks the wrong size. If you’re adding artwork to an already furnished living room, try to locate opportunities for adding a focal point.
Oversized wall art looks great when hung above a sofa, and smaller pieces work best within a gallery wall or on a shelf. If your living room is small, try to avoid too many busy patterns and instead, opt for a few bigger frames. Doing this will help it feel uncluttered and more spacious as a result.
2. Define your personal style
Unlike other home decor how-to’s, artwork is one of those things that’s really personal. There are no hard and fast rules a what styles work and don’t, and that’s part of the fun when choosing wall art for your living room. If you do have a defining interior style, you can use this to steer your decor in the right direction.
For mid-century modern living rooms, go for retro patterns. In Scandi-inspired spaces, fine lines and abstract shapes are popular. If you’re not sure what your style is or you’re searching for a specific look, get to know the right terms and you’ll be able to search for artwork of that style much more easily.
3. Consider your colours
There’s a lot to consider when decorating your living room, including what colour your artwork will be. To avoid clashing, take a look at your current or desired colour palette before diving into making a decision. If your place is already full of warm tones like red, orange and yellow, continue the theme with different tones.
Alternatively, contrasting artwork will create more of a s statement, which usually works best with large pieces. Avoid trying to ‘match’ your artwork to your room and instead, focus on colours that compliment the rest of your decor. Nod to furniture with similar tones, or use subtle hints of colour in your living room artwork to add interest.
4. Choose a medium
If you’re choosing art for your living room, it’s a good idea to familiarise yourself with different mediums. For the non-creatives out there, this essentially means what the art is made out of. Is it an original painting or illustration? Is it mixed-media with fabrics and other materials? Or is it a print (a copy of the original artwork)? All of these options have varying price points, so you should consider this when budgeting for living room wall art.
Originals are usually the most costly way to buy art, but with things like paintings, you’ll get all of the texture and finer detail. If this isn’t within your budget, prints can be a great way of getting the art you love without breaking the bank. In every case, art is always an investment piece, so you should aim for the top of your budget to get the best quality - especially with larger statement art.
5. Get your lighting right
Getting good quality artwork for your living room is always an investment, so it’s important to make sure you get your lighting right. Lighting has the power to make or break your art display. Make the colours, details and textures of your artwork stand out by creating the right lighting. Use picture rails with spotlights above, or place your artwork in places where the ceiling light will reach it.
Consider where the light is within your living room from both windows and artificial light, and work around this when choosing where and what to hang. Good lighting in your living room matters for loads of reasons, and artwork is one of them.
6. Choose your frames carefully
To frame or not to frame? This is totally dependent on the type of artwork you’ve got for your living room. Some art like canvases looks great out of a frame, and sculptural pieces don’t need one. If you’re investing in a print or original piece on paper, a frame helps to create a focal point, contrasting with the wall behind.
Details matter, so your aim should be to try and incorporate similar tones and textures in your frame to that of your living room style. In mid-century modern spaces, nod to teak with mid-wood frames. There’s no hard and fast rule here though - experiment with what works for your space. If you want this part done for you, consider ready-to-hang artwork that comes with a frame for a fuss-free option.
7. Trust your instincts
Wall art is subjective, and it’s key to keep in mind that what you like might not be what someone else likes. There really are no set rules for choosing artwork for your living room, and sometimes i a matter of experimentation. Move pieces in and out of your room, swap them a from other rooms and shop around until you find something you love.
Take inspiration from your r decor, art pieces you see when you’re out, and wall art you see on your socials. Ideas are everywhere, and with a little searching, you’ll be able to find a piece you truly love that you’re proud to hang in your living room.