The Declutter Your Living Room is probably the most important decluttering project.
The living room is a multi-functional area and goes by many different names: living room, lounge, front room, sitting room, drawing room, salon, reception, family room and morning room. All mean slightly different things, but the terms are used interchangeably, well the first four are, depending on (probably) what your parents used as a description! For me, it was lounge, but for this blog post I will use what I believe to be the most widely accepted definition, living room.
The living room is multifunctional because it acts as a social place to meet and greet visitors, it’s a place of relaxation, a TV room and depending on the house, may be the dining room also. It’s normally the largest room in the house and houses the most furniture.
Hence, it’s a magnet for clutter.
It’s easy to fall into the clutter trap simply because we don’t see the clutter. You become so used to your home, you fail to see the clutter and the mess. However, we’ve all experienced that moment when a friend comes over and as you’re both sitting there drinking coffee you look around your house and see the faults: cobwebs, flaky paint, dust and mess. Isn’t funny how you don’t notice these things normally, but as soon as someone visits they become so obvious?
I know the kitchen is the hub of the house, but I think the living room is perhaps the focal point of the house and therefore you want it to look it’s best and this is where a good declutter is going to help you. Once you’ve decluttered the living room, it will be cleaner, more presentable and relaxing.
I’m not going to lie, a declutter of a living room can take some time, but can normally be achieved in one full day. My advice is get everything ready the night before to make things easier: bin bags, ladder, cleaning tools and allocate a room in your house that will be the dumping ground (dg)whilst the declutter takes place. Also, make sure you have a Plan of Attack otherwise you may find yourself randomly attacking the decluttering and not achieving much!
Short of time? Just pick out the steps that work for you.
Here are 6 steps to Declutter your Living Room
- Remove all the things you don’t like
First thing I would like you to do, is go into your living room and have a good look around. Which belongings immediately leap out at you that you don’t like? Don’t worry about their value or the fact they were a gift, just identify the things you don’t like. Now remove them into the dg and put in a neat pile.
Now go back into the living room and have a good rummage around. Through drawers, book shelves and cabinets. Identify all those belongings that are not used or needed anymore. For example, DVDs, CDs, books, magazines, cables, odds n sods. Follow the links at the bottom of this blog post if you require more guidance on decluttering these items. Place all of these things in the dg in piles: tip, charity, give to a friend or sell.
- Remove everything except the furniture
You are now left with furniture and items you want to keep. Remove all the items you want to keep and place them in a pile in the dg. If you’re going for a redecoration at the same time as decluttering, I also advice removing mirrors and pictures from the walls at this stage.
- Remove furniture / Pull out
Don’t freak! This is only a suggestion. If you have the ability to remove all the furniture into another room, I advise you do it because starting from a clean canvas normally safeguards against filling the room with clutter again. Plus, it gives you more inspiration. But if you can’t remove the furniture don’t worry, try and pull as much furniture out as you can so you can thoroughly clean under and behind.
At this point, if you can take down curtains and put them in dg to be sent to the dry cleaners then do so.
You may want to do the same with your rugs.
Roll up your sleeves and give your living room a big clean.
Include windows, window frames, skirting boards, lights, inside furniture, behind furniture, underneath furniture, mirrors, picture frames. Everywhere.
Obviously, also clean the furniture.
Polish inside cabinets, take the sofa cushions off and thoroughly hoover the sofa and polish mirrors etc.
Go into the dg and clean all your belongings you’re keeping.
- Analysis of space
Your living room is going to feel amazing now, clean, fresh and brighter. Look around and now analyse if you would like to rearrange furniture? It sometimes helps to draw out scenarios on a piece of paper. If you’ve got the energy, have a play around. Move furniture around and see what you like.
Finalise where you would like your furniture to be placed.
- The put back
Firstly, place your furniture back.
Then go into the dg and start to place your belongings back into the living room. It’s normal to not put everything back at this stage btw. After a declutter, you may change your mind as to what is appropriate to place back.
As you place items back, as per the analysis of space above, play around with where you put things. Don’t automatically put things back in the same place as before.
7. The dg
Go into the dumping ground and straight away (assuming shops are not closed) go to the charity shop to drop off charity pile. Go to the tip and dump the trash. Take the photos and place items on e-Bay and deliver items to friends.
Declutter of the living room completed well done!
You may have belongings that you need to have in the lounge but don’t like to look at.
For example, TV, internet box, cables, home office, music system. If this is the case, try to come up with inventive ways to conceal them. For a TV for example the following may be used:
- Sliding panels
- TV mirror – see Overmantels
- Pretty TV – see Samsung
- Use a projector instead of a TV. I believe a projector gives better image quality anyway.
- TV cabinet
Research solutions on the internet: Ikea, Pinterest or ask a carpenter to come over and give you a quote for making bespoke storage solution for you.
Finally, storage ideas for a living room are:
- Coffee Tables
- Book Shelves
- Wall Shelves
- Display Cabinets
- Side Tables
- Picture Ledge
- Ladder Shelves
- Window Seats with built in storage
- Ottoman Coffee Tables with built in storage
- Radiator Covers
- Built in shelves or cupboards either side of a fire place.
I hope this helped you.
For further articles in this series please click the clinks below: