Unless you are a huge fan of this sport, I see no reason for you to decorate your living room in a way that will constantly remind you of the bowling alley. I’m not going to deny that you need to furnish this room for functionality and make it interesting at the same time.
However, I would like to point out that even though your living room is rather narrow and elongated, that does not entail that all your furniture should automatically be lined up against the walls. Sure, everybody does it! But, the real reason most homeowners turn to this solution is because they are simply not experimenting with the other arrangement options.
Following, I will present to you several tips and tricks on how you can arrange the furniture in an oblong living room. Obviously, you can’t just pretend the room has a rectangular shape and decorate it accordingly. On the other hand, you can escape the bowling alley “curse” by placing the furniture in angles, with a zigzagging arrangement or by creating an interesting focal point. Let me show you how.
- Create a new foot traffic area
If you are going to position the furniture against the walls, then it is only natural that the foot traffic area will be right in the middle of the room. Considering the shape and that you probably have a high ceiling (typical for condos and apartments), the only effect you will create is that of a tunnel.
In my opinion, the easiest way to eliminate this effect is to move most of the furniture to one side and create a new traffic area. Believe it or not, this minor modification will have a big impact on anyone who walks in: they will no longer observe the shape of the living room, but the focus will switch towards the furniture arrangement consisting of the sofa, coffee table, etc. A trick to make the shape of the room unnoticeable is to place a stylish area rug under the newly furbished area.
- The furniture does not have to be parallel with the length of the room
The secret to concealing the oblong shape of your living room comprises of not allowing people to walk right into the seating place. Besides creating a new foot traffic area, another means of achieving this goal can consist of arranging the furniture perpendicular to the length of the room and not parallel, as you – and many others – feel compelled to do. What this implies is that you should avoid elongated or rectangular shaped furnishing and accessories and go for smaller and rounded shape furniture which you can arrange as you please.
- Arrange the furniture in small, cozy angles
Another trick to dismissing the tunnel appearance of the living room implies cutting the length of the room with the help of furniture carefully arranged in angles. I would like to underline the fact that this solution works best for living rooms that are extremely long as to permit you to cut their length with at least two angle furniture arrangements. However, for smaller living rooms, reducing the length with a seating area arrangement and a small office can work out just as well. In fact, by arranging the chairs or armchairs in a certain angle you will be able to create the impression of a much wider room.
- Start using the upper parts of the walls
This is the oldest trick in the book and yes, it does have applicability in the living room as well. If you have a bookcase that occupies a rather large area in the living room then you can free up that space by disposing of it and installing shelves on the upper parts of the walls. In the eventuality that this is not possible, then you can always consider free-standing furniture. However, make sure you position them at the end of the span to prevent making the living room look narrow.
- Choose round or oval-shaped furniture
As I previously mentioned, straight lines and parallel arrangements of the furniture will only manage to create an even more elongated and narrow look and feel of the living room. A simple way to counter this effect implies acquiring pieces with rounded shapes, like a round coffee table. As a side note, you can also skip the coffee table altogether and replace it with other functional furniture, such as the ottoman, small stools, cubes, chow tables, etc.
Chad enjoys blogging about living room furniture and innovative home décor.