Wall hangings, art, and photos serve as the stylistic icing on the cake that is your home. Wall art draws the eye, pulls together space, and makes your home inviting. The search and installation of pieces you love are worth the trouble because it genuinely improves your home.
While there is no set of rules in place for adorning a home, following these basic instructions will help you select the perfect pieces. Go by size, style, colour, theme, inspiration, or floor plan. The options are limitless.
Living rooms are the core space in a home. It’s that one common square where all the other squares of the house overlap. Whatever be the style of your living room, formal, informal or semi-formal, its purpose is usually to socialize and interact. Thus it’s the one space in the home that deserves a generous dose of art.
Here are 5 reasons why art is a must-have for living rooms:
- It’s a great conversation starter: Art brings with itself many perceptions and interpretations that make it a perfect ice breaker when it comes to conversations. How one interprets a piece of art also speaks volumes about one’s views and ideologies of life. In fact, a conversation about art is a great way to understand compatibility.
- It adds character to a room: It’s like the finishing touch to your living room. Its colors or lack of it, its texture, definition, and personality adds character to a room and makes it a complete picture. Depending on the kind of art you choose, you can lend a contemporary, classic or fusion look to the living room.
- It is a window into your personality: Whether you are an animal lover or a nature enthusiast, a fun-loving person or a secretive one, have unfulfilled desires or a go-getter, your choice of artwork will define your personality greatly. So choose carefully!
- Makes a lovely coordinate: One can choose artwork that complements not just the walls of the living room, but also it’s furnishing. A stunning grey cloud patterned rug goes very well with a monsoon inspired artwork. Or a colorful hand-painted cushion coordinates well with an artwork of a villager, or maybe a black and white abstract. Art offers multiple possibilities of mix and match and is a great way to make or complete your decor story.
- Allows experimentation: Art is the most versatile medium of expression and even within a frame, one can experiment with multiple mediums. Oils, watercolor, mixed media, all work very well in living rooms. Being one of the largest rooms of the house, one can also experiment with sizes, combinations, and paneling to create stories with art.
Once you have decided to invest your time, effort and money in the art (good decision!), and you know how impactful it can be to add that perfect finishing touch to your living room, it’s important to select the right artwork.
THE #1 TIP YOU NEED FOR CHOOSING THE PERFECT WALL ART
The top piece of advice every person needs to choose the perfect wall art is this: select what you like. If you see something and it does not foster feelings of enjoyment or relaxation, don’t put it on your wall. It is your home, your design, and your money being spent on wall art.
While it is common for family members to make compromises in selections, this definitely does not mean you need home décor that does not suit your style. You live in your home, so enjoy the pieces you have adorning your walls!
SELECTING WALL ART BY SIZE
When it comes to wall art, it gets tough if you are not particular about sizing. Go into your search for wall art with a size in mind for quick selection.
Looking to decorate a room? Many people find it easier to start with the larger pieces and work their way down. As you begin pulling together your space, purchases add up, and soon enough your home will be decorated to your preferences.
Here are the basics of wall art sizing, whether displaying pieces alone or together with a gallery wall, if you wish to use sizing for your defining feature:
- Oversized: These parts are 100 centimeters in length or greater. Before buying a piece this large, measure your space to see if it can accommodate it. Oversized wall art acts as a focal point of a wall or a room.
- Large: This size frame is from about 80 to 100 centimetres in length. Large wall art could serve as a centrepiece or be balanced on either side with mini or small pieces. One to two large pieces per room is standard.
- Medium: Wall art in this category is from 60 to 70 centimetres long. Some pieces can stand alone, but medium pieces also go well when grouped with one another. Keep your space symmetrical when adding medium wall hangings.
- Small: A small hanging goes well above shelving, pieces of furniture, and on short walls because it is 45 to 59 centimetres in length. Small art pieces go well in pairs or groups of three to six hangings.
- Mini: The smallest size of frames are mini, falling in the range of 25 to 44 centimetres. Think about anything the size of a piece of paper or smaller as a mini piece of art. You often see them sold as collections; it is common to see at least three to four of these sold together.
When selecting wall art, go with a general idea about the size you are looking for in a room. Most bathrooms cannot accommodate oversized wall art, just as most living rooms aren’t decorated with minis.
There are some general sizing rules to think about:
- Pictures should not be more than two-thirds longer than your sofa.
- Photos should be at least 15 centimetres above the edge of your furniture.
- A small piece of art can’t fill a big space. Group small pieces together. Works by the same artist complement each other well.
- Consider the height of ceilings when choosing size. Be sure it fills the space in length and width.
SELECTING WALL ART BY STYLE
Of all of the ways to choose wall art, decorating your home based on style might be the most natural. More than anything, selecting wall art by style is personal. A few examples of styles to use include: a focus on antique pieces, a bright, bold form, or a Bohemian look.
A secret trick is to select a fashion designer you like and mimic your home based on the style of that designer’s clothing. Is your home a Levi house or a Ralph Lauren?
Make your decisions based on what you like after applying specific parameters like size or colour scheme. Are you at a loss of where to start? Try to find a piece for each of the following categories:
- Choose pieces that match the style of your room, including the furniture you already have or articles you have accumulated along the way.
- Invest in at least one significant or oversized piece you’d love to see for years to come.
- Purchase a set, a trio, and even a group of mini or small pieces. These go great above windows or on short walls.
- Use frames to emphasize your style whether it is through matching or mismatched ones.
- Mix materials by adding wooden art or a metal sign to space.
- Add a sign with words but no more than two or three that you can switch out.
SELECTING WALL ART BY COLOUR
- Your most significant piece of artwork should have a background colour that matches your wall colour.
- Reference the colour wheel when selecting complementary shades.
- Use the same colour but in different shades. A light blue and white painting looks beautiful with a navy-blue wall.
- Only choose wall art if that exact shade is already in your room. Most spaces should not exceed four colours to look pulled together.
- Stick to black and whites when in doubt about colour. Black and white match everything while also adding to the elegance of a structure.
- Stay away from bright colours and neons as these do not always match up with neutral wall colours.
- Keep the colours in your wall art equal in proportion to their presence in the room. For instance, if your place is black and white with red throw pillows, select wall art that is black and white with a touch of red.
- Make use of mirrors to reflect art. Reflections make the room look larger and duplicate the appearance of all wall art.
SELECTING WALL ART BASED ON AN INSPIRATION PIECE
Much like designing around a theme, an inspiration piece drives all of your other purchasing decisions. An inspiration piece for a room could be a piece of art, a sofa you love, or even just a trinket with a meaning you like. One woman’s antique paperweight is another woman’s grand piano – both potentially inspire the design of an entire room or even a whole house.
Once you find an inspiration piece, follow these tips for selecting wall art:
- Use your inspiration piece to determine the colour scheme of your room. It is best to narrow it down to three or four colours. Focusing on a set scheme makes it easy to match an inspiration quote.
- Select wall art that follows the colour scheme of the room. With a set colour scheme, you can combine patterns, geometrics, solids, and more. As a general rule, introducing a new colour requires you to add it in at least two places for a cohesive room.
- Trust your natural instincts; it does not need to be perfectly matching to be a beautiful room. Surround yourself with things you love.
- Don’t forget a touch of white. The room cannot be covered in colour, or the eye does not get a break from all of your design.