Lovely Living Rooms
Vaulted farmhouse style
Timber beans and a concrete fireplace surround help ground the 20-foot vaulted ceiling in this Illinois farmhouse-style house. See more photos from this home.
Maximizing the view
This living room in an Egg Harbor, Wisconsin, house puts the focus on its lake view with a wall of windows and glass doors as well as a muted, natural palette inside. The family feels as if they're living outside whatever the season!
Knotty pine walls, 18-foot ceilings and exposed rafters frame the backdrop for casual, comfortable furnishings at this Lake Michigan cabin. Above the fireplace, an industrial pulley raises the art to reveal a TV. See more photos of this beachfront hideaway.
Seeing the light
A Saint Paul couple modernized their 1913 Craftsman home by lightening its surfaces and opening its spaces. They replaced rear windows with French doors in the living room, improving backyard views and access. They also plastered a brick fireplace and added a light, sleek 9-inch-deep plywood mantel.
Vintage finds highlight this room. The old door leaning against the wall is one of the Chicago-area homeowner's favorite pieces because its back is an awesome blue color; depending on the time of year, the door can be flipped for a new look. An antique chandelier offers a one-of-a-kind look, too.
White walls and unfinished beams form a natural canvas for a collection of folk art and antiques in the soaring space of this Ohio living room.
Lines to outside
Kerfed paneling and a long mantel create horizontal lines that lead eyes to the outside world in this Chicago-area home, a renovated 1959 ranch house.
Architectural salvage pieces add character to this Illinois living room. An old arched window graces the top of an armoire, and a chippy old column provides a perch for a lantern.
The patterned carpet in this Indiana living room beautifully hides dirt and spills. "The life in this house doesn't come from busy patterned fabrics or lots of color," the homeowner explains. "It comes from people, which is why the only statement the decor needs to make is-relax!"
Bold and beachy
Water views and vivid Lilly Pulitzer fabrics sparked the bright and cheerful color palette in the living room of this home on Lake Michigan. Zippy lime green enlivens the room's soothing blues.
The living room adopts the 80:20 color rule. Creamy neutrals cocoon the majority of the space, letting the designer get colorful with a few accessories.
Bright aqua walls accent white woodwork. Rattan furnishing plays up a seaside theme. Setting furniture at an angle keeps things casual--appropriate for a shore setting.
The living room in this Michigan home looks both inviting and tailored. To achieve a balance, traditional-style furnishings sport casual linens and serene colors-neutrals with greens and blues pulled from outside. Wood panels, instead of drywall, reflect the aesthetic, as does the white-stained oak flooring. Sunlight floods the room through skylights and clerestory windows, making the cavernous space feel simply cozy.
In this Minnesota living room, bargain chipped-paint furniture brings low-maintenance style, while one-of-a-kind finds take on new, fun uses: An enamel casserole dish becomes a flower pot; a 1950s salon hair dryer gets new life as a floor lamp; patchwork feed sacks cover a pillow on the sofa. Upholstering vintage iron patio chairs with red-and-white feed sacks makes them indoor-ready.
Wood-look wallpaper and weathered textures warm this family room, their rustic tendencies tempered by gold accents. In-swing patio doors usher in the outside. Decorative barn doors double as a window treatment, sliding closed for privacy.Buying guide
Mix modern and vintage
Combine furnishings from different periods, such as French antiques with contemporary pieces, for collected-over-time interest. "You never want your furniture to look like it arrived in one day," says St. Louis designer Amie Corley. Inspired by a Parisian photo shoot in Vogue, Amie painted her living room walls two shades of aqua.
It is only natural that at night a fire in this massive stone fireplace in this Lake Michigan cottage would be the focal point. But pale walls and a cupola with working windows above keep the focus on the fireplace even during daylight.
Top of the class
Two large baskets under a sofa table not only add storage but also class to this lovely living room.
Simple furnishings and accessories keep the focus on the architecture and light in this airy, modern Door County, Wisconsin, living room.
Bold color impact
Dark brown walls provide a dramatic backdrop for this sophisticated room with its mix of intense colors. Focal points include an abstract painting, vintage rug and a family heirloom wing-back reupholstered in red.