Living Room Ideas

36 Ways to Effortlessly Create Space in Small Apartment Living Rooms

Living rooms are supposed to be practical and beautiful. They are the heart of the home where laughter and good memories are made. But how do you turn your small, drab living room into a place where light dances on your chosen furniture, where color, charm, and ambiance paint that perfect picture?

If you are constantly arranging furniture, struggling after years to pick out that perfect color curtain, or even embarrased to invite your friends over, fear no longer. We have put together a list of 36 of the most popular designs on Apt2B. If you become inspired from one of these photos, we believe you truly cannot go wrong.

Simply Lush

Take the plants out of this room and what do you have? Beige walls with a matching area rug, sheer curtains, and a dark couch. Replace the furniture with any wooden table set, and it could be your living room. The difference lies in the plants. Perched near the window, the plants not only add color, but also life. They bring that nurturing touch to an otherwise mediocre room, turning it into a simple, modern home.

Photo Source: Logan Collection

Two Birds with One Stone

An example of shoebox living at its finest: here we have the elegant coffee table, and its transparant qualities open up the room. The sectional is cozily nestled against the wall nook, resting peacefully against the radiant window. The spot looks like a great place to curl up, read a book, and daydream. Then behind the couch we have a work space, perfectly contained, extremely practical, and aesthetically pleasing to the senses.

Photo Source: Lexington Collection

Grayscale Done Right

The blend of colors in this living room create a space that just works. The linear carpet holds your attention just long enough for you to get your bearings, then your eye catches the pictures on the wall, which is framed by the pop of simple elegance in the geometric pillows. But the brown coffee table, the only of its kind, contributes that much-needed bold splash of color, like a glowing evening campfire.

Photo Source: Tuxedo Collection

Sandwich the Colors

The chic effect of this room is made possible by the contrast of colors: there is the pale pink couch eyebrowed by the white blanket, and sandwiched by the silvers of the wall and the carpet. The minimalist design is further accentuated by the coffee table. The coffee table balances out the room with its soft inlaid wood design, held up by the uniquely designed table legs, and its iceberg construction.

Photo Source: Delilah Collection

A Woven, Golden Radiance

Such a bold colored couch could only work in this room where it is hugged by a patchwork of pillows and blankets. Though nothing exactly matches, everything goes because of the white center coffee table making eyes at the pale gray paint. The asymmetrical, white geometric design focuses your thoughts and grounds your attention. The room, which is practically begging for color, is relieved by the soothing rug, the blue lamp, and the avant-garde wall painting.

Photo Source: Scott Collection

A Mixed Berry Smoothie

Here, we see everything matches. The eye goes to the pink pillows, and then the pink in the painting. We become distracted by the blue, and our eyes guide us to the pillows, and then the windows. The cooler colors are warmed by the light through the sheer curtains, the pale glow of the furniture, and the flowers in the center of the coffee table. The wall trim ties the room up in a neat little bow.

Photo Source: Melrose Collection

The Street-Side Encounter

Captivated by the accent wall, the rest of the room hangs in sustainable balance. The white fades into itself, bathed by the glow of the light through the windows. But it is the two dark pillows on the sofa that make it work. Here is the rock the room has been needing, for it holds steady against the linear carpet and the variety of chairs and perfect nick nacks.

Photo Source: Harper Collection

Up in the Clouds

This room is bathed in light, and the neutral colors run the show. You can see there is room for the geometric variety. The long coffee table is topped with a circular tray, and the stair steps in the carpet invite coziness. The squares in the pillows rhyme with the window pane, yet it is the rounded sectional that truly balances the room and diverts the eye to the wall shelves.

Photo Source: Monroe Collection

The Desert Oasis

This cheerful room is artsy by design. The unique bubbly light fixture floats like a cloud above the cacti. The mirrage of color on the wall matches perfectly with the colors in the furniture, pillows and blankets. And only a glass coffee table would tie everything together in is transparency. The small living space could not handle anything else, and it does not take away from the beauty created by the decorated wall.

Photo Source: Monroe Collection

It’s Electric!

Shot through by a bolt of lightning, this room simply dazzles. Blue on gold creates such a contrast that the rest of the room disappears as if just a backdrop. But this room holds a simple elegance brought about by the spaceous coffee table, the rack, and the minimal wall hangings. Warm in its own right, this living room both refreshes and invites.

Photo Source: Scott Collection

Take Me Home

Like a strong shoulder to rely on, this bold accent wall protects, enlivens, and breathes happiness into the room. It is the focus, asking us to be still and observe, like the woman painting in the picture on the next wall over. The furniture is arranged in one direction, and that single golden note harmonizes perfectly with the radiant light fixture, the rack, and the upholstered coffee table loveseat.

Photo Source: Logan Collection

The Rainforest

This room thrives with the lush dampness of the rainforest. The cool couch floats peacefully beneath a creeping vine, and is framed in the light of a glass door and picture windows. The rustic and vintage furniture bring warmth and coziness to the room, and the layout of the couch against the bookshelf literally creates the entire living space.

Photo Source: Logan Collection

Island Couch

The living room is a place for conveniality. Some people like to stand, others like to sit. Here this couch is strategically placed in the middle of the living room, which leaves a comfortable resting spot against the half wall back behind the couch. Yet there is still enough space in front of the couch for a board game or some yoga. The dark blue feels like home, brightened up with the cheer from a colorful pillow and framed by the red of the room beyond.

Photo Source: Lexington Collection

Garden Living Room

Here you see nature prevails. The dark metalic teal couch just honors their place. A simple geometric rug adds coziness to the room, but the plants are what make the space a home. It is as if you are nesting in a jungle, even the coffee table resembles a leaf. Light from the windows is cast about, as if coming through the branches of the trees. And the plain white walls provide the serenity that accompanies any living room done right.

Photo Source: Lexington Collection


Here you see oranges, reds, yellows, blues, greens, pinks, and whites, all dancing for attention in the kaleidoscopic setting. Lamps cast their glow from their tops, the geometric rug holds the colors in its simple pallete, and the space behind the couch suggests a bold confidence that only a designer could produce. The couch nestles up against the windows, creating the perfect opportunity to enjoy the natural light come daytime.

Photo Source: Tuxedo Collection

The Aquarium

Framed by the outdoor setting as seen through the windows, this living room is an ecosystem of its own. Brown and linear pillows complement the tropical plant, and the couch is just large enough to create the living room, but not so large as to detract from the comfort that comes with having space. Different shades of brown really bring this room together, along with the innovative furniture that only adds elegance and charm.

Photo Source: Delilah Collection

A Snowy Winter Night

It is as if you could be ice skating on a romantic date. The mirror frames a peek of the plant, and is emphasized by the glow of the simple, elegant and beautiful gold raining lamp. Colors merge one with another while the geometric rug dances a duet with the space-saving coffee table. A vintage couch fits snugly with the space provided, and invites you into the room for a lone peaceful evening.

Photo Source: Delilah Collection

Rays of Feather

The gentleness of this room is brought about by the flattering of pillows and fluffy carpet. Almost two-toned, the room basks in the light of a corner lamp that brings left together with right. A piano perches on the other side. The entire room is designed for the talented and humble musician who plays for the serenity of others. The beige color pallete creates the space for the living room to unfold.

Photo Source: Delilah Collection

Land Slide

More space to fill means design with intention. This living room is the epitome of friendship, as the couch stretches across the length of the space and connects the two heads of the room together. Plants surround the perimeter and provide gentle scenery against the glow of natural light that pours through the blinds. The cushioned bench beneath the window uses the space to the maximum, and the hearth rests protectively in the distance.

Photo Source: Delilah Collection

A Rose Colored Lipstick

This room could not be more balanced if it were not for the choice of the black and white avant-garde wall painting and geometric window curtains. The splash of green from the plant holds together the differing shades of pink, white and gray to form a neat bouquet of roses. Yet the color yellow is woven throughout the entire fabric, as if the sun were winking at the sunflower in the meadow.

Photo Source: Delilah Collection

The words are in the story

This well-balanced room is arranged with vertical space in mind. A plant and sculpture perch atop a book shelf. The window against a cement wall is both an artistic and liberating ode to contentment. Colors of brown, gold, orange, gray, blue, and green come together to form a warm masterpiece dominated only by the space it creates.

Photo Source: Delilah Collection

Face the sun

It is as if the entire room can feel the sun on its face. The tiny stool in the outlook gently captivates the couch, and the lamp gazes peacefully towards the natural light, which is masked by sheer curtains and drop blinds. The black and white geometric rug provides the needed contrast to keep the room firmly planted on the ground while a day dreamer may float in the clouds. This living room brims with coziness, made possible especially by the splash of red from an arm chair.

Photo Source: Delilah Collection

A Cozy Corner

Create your spot by surrounding it with light, color, and personality. This room does just that. Blanketed by the glow of natural light through the window and balanced by the comfort of a lamp, the couch rests peacefully against a taste of nature. The blanket basket makes this room a living room, as any guest can now curl up with a book, feet propped on a pillow, and doze off. The linear rug provides just enough excitement to keep the imagination running free.

Photo Source: Delilah Collection

The Mountain Home

Layered by earth tones in browns, deep browns, tans, and deep reds, this living rooms connects itself with both the great outdoors and a cozy office space. Couch and coffee table are close together to emotionally connect the room’s personality and practically. Blue-gray and ocher pillows, and tan blankets and potted plants add the necessary warmth.

Photo Source: Scott Collection

A Wooded Paradise

Here the leather upholstered coffee table connects you to the couch and the rest of the space, and also invites a taste of the outdoors. An environment of transquility is created by the arrangement of the couch against wood walls and large glass windows. Shadows cast about the room are balanced by the natural light and the stillness of a creeping hanging plant. Where colors do not dominate, texture does, as evidenced by the suede, the glass lamp, the wooden stools, and the dog bed.

Photo Source: Scott Collection

Laddering the Walls

This room reminds one of blowing the petals off a dandelion: the pictures float easily on the plain white wall, spotlighted by the peek and glow of the natural light through half curtained windows. A couch sits respectfully against these windows, honoring memories of years gone by. A simple and minimalist approach rests in the very bones of this living room, evidenced by an elegant and spaceous coffee table and a single plant, which floats in a glass vase.

Photo Source: Scott Collection

A Snowy Hillside

White couch on white love seat on white carpet dotted with brown as if leaves were popping up through the blanket of snow. Accented by the brick fire place and a mirror above, the room breathes of open space and fresh air. The black and white contrast adds crispness and cheer to an otherwise chilly room, but the true splash of color comes from the brown, red, and touch of green that lay scattered throughout the stunning created space.

Photo Source: Scott Collection

Industrially Complex

Here the couch floats above its wooden trim, yet hardly makes an impact in the high-ceiling room. Yet vertical space is clearly considered, as a simple and elegant rack reaches up and is topped with artwork, ceramics, and a hanging plant. “I woke up this way” is implied by the forgotten blanket draped over the edge of the minimalist couch, but the action is in the slated paneled walls and the wicker chair. The tan color breathes life and freedom into an aesthetically superior design of space.

Photo Source: Harper Collection

Accent Wall

A truly one-of-a-kind living room, brought about by personality, fashion, and taste. A simple couch and rug set-up, complemented by a balanced color scheme of reds, blues, whites, and browns… they all bask beneath walls that complement one another in layout and pattern. Yet the room is checked complete by the arm chair and the table set, because they turn an otherwise typical living space into one of authenticity and romance.

Photo Source: Harper Collection

The Panorama View

This room is divided in half by a lamp and coffee table, yet the room is perfectly imbalanced. One side of the sectional couch rests up against a table, which is set beneath the window. The table provides the perfect arm rest and spot to rest a cup of coffee. Practicality meets minimalist design.

Photo Source: Monroe Collection

The Pizza Pie

Talk about passion, this room brims with cheer and creativity. A dip in the ceiling adds character to an otherwise overwhelming room. An organizational scheme perches above a desk area, decorated with a food theme, yet this theme simply works. The glow from hanging lamps magnify an entire sectional. The entire room is balanced by the arrangement of pillows, and the parallel lines between couch and coffee table. The natural light creates and commands the entire room.

Photo Source: Monroe Collection

Ship’s Quarters

Lines and angles create the space in this living room, yet the furniture make the space a success. The gentle slope of the couch matches the curve of the walls. The shapes are steadied by the love seat up against the windows. The two rooms in one are differentiated not just by color, but also by practicality. A natural abode awaits amidst plants and unfiltered light, and a cozy setting reflects in the mirror atop the textured hearth.

Photo Source: Monroe Collection

Surface Area

Energy just seems to bounce from one surface to another, landing on pale tans, deep browns, red browns, golds, greens, and whites. The chairs are arranged to where conversation and laughter can fill the room, and plants appear as guardians of the natural light that filters in through the blinds and the windowed door. The space fills itself with an earthy tone, set aside from the rest of the house by a demaracation in the ceiling.

Photo Source: Aiken Collection

Picture Perfect

Attention focuses intently on the great outdoors, but is brought almost immediately to the clash of color between the rug and the couch. It works. Bold in design and practicality, this living room has access to its own space, to natural light, and to a fireplace. The open layout is inviting, clean, and minimalist, yet the space is perfectly balanced by the variety in color, furniture, and style.

Photo Source: Jensen Collection

Cozy is My Name

Tiny spaces provide the perfect opportunity to create space, as this living room so wonderfully does. Yet color is key, for the whiter tones invite light into the room, causing brightness and accentuating the vertical heights. Every nook and cranny is maximized by the strategic location of a mirror, or the happenings of a small plant. And while the streets below could be the center of attention, the room directs your gaze to the circular shapes which gracefully and tactfully balance the room.

Photo Source: Catalina Collection

A piece of the mind

Greens and oranges balance this living space, as does the variety in height and texture. The moveable wall divider is pure decoration, for without it, the room would be lacking in comfort and character. The subtleness of white and pink match that of the geometry in the rug, and all come together to create a living room filled with pieces that might otherwise never be together.

Photo Source: Morowa Collection