How I renovated and styled a small living room

Can we normalize small houses again? I love seeing renovations and getting ideas for making our own home a nicer place to spend time in. Our surroundings matter SO much to our overall quality of life and I’m always looking for ways to freshen things up. But often times the homes I see online are massive and honestly- they seem unpractical. This particular living room was small, so I thought I’d share with you how I tackled this small living room makeover and stayed on a budget. I’ll try to provide links to everything that I used, but if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask!


It was bad. The walls, floors and windows were all structurally ok- but that was it. I emptied the room, gave away the book shelves and painstakingly removed every single one of those planks on the wall. I patched and sanded A LOT and that process seemed like it took forever. Originally the room had a coat closet in it, that had been turned into a makeshift office spot. That all had to be ripped out. The room also has 2 large windows not shown that face the front of the house.

It was a lot of work but eventually I had a beautiful clean canvas ready to work with. Once I got the room painted I was excited! It was time for the fun stuff. You’ll see from the standing AC units and heaters scattered around, that this house also had to have all new HVAC systems installed as well.


Can you believe that’s the same room? The paint color that I chose for our small living room makeover room is Sherwin Williams Alabaster and you guys- it is SO perfect for a small room! It’s honestly the most perfect off white color ever. It’s bright and light, but also warm and cozy. Peaceful and soft but light and fresh.

small living room makeover

Here’s a side by side before and after. Quite the transformation, huh?

For this small living room makeover, I needed to choose items that would not overwhelm the space but would allow it to handle a lot of use.I layered two carpets to help soften up the room and add a layer of comfort. I like the sound absorbing properties of rugs as well.

small living room makeover

The sofa I chose is from All Modern and is currently under $1000 in the Presidents day sale, which is a steal. The fabric of the sofa is amazing for stain resistance- even a red wine stain came right out. I loved the look and practicality of the picture ledge so much that I eventually added another on to it.

I loved the look of this coffee table to keep things modern but still a little rustic. The table was a little hard to put together but at a very good price point. When it was finished it’s a solid, heavy piece.

small living room makeover

The little fireplace was a last minute decision on what was a big, blank wall but I love it! To make it look less like a “little fireplace up against a wall”, I built a base for it to sit on, so that it would look a bit more authentic. I just built a plywood box and then covered the box in this faux stone. It can be removed at anytime for a totally different look.

The biggest splurge in this room was for the Samsung Frame TV. I highly, highly recommend this TV! Being able to keep artwork on the wall instead of a black box is such a game changer! FINALLY a TV made for someone other than a sports fan! There are thousands of art pieces to chose from and you can change them anytime you want. The screen is also non reflective and the cord is hidden, so it really does fool most people. I absolutely adore this TV!

Remember the scary makeshift closet/office? (Cloffice?) To add more seating and storage in the room (and to add some interest)- I turned it into a little reading nook. A plywood, floating seat allows for storage underneath and then I made a cushion to fit. I added a little bookshelf on one side and these sleek dimmable lights that were under $50 for 2. The paint color is Sherwin Williams Bohemian Black. This little feature really pumped up the wow factor of this small living room makeover.

For the windows, I chose these formal faux linen drapes in the color “Birch”. These look and feel like high end draperies at a fraction of the cost. They have a nice heavy weight to them that makes them fall beautifully. I hung them high and wide using a more modern looking curtain rod. The armchairs are out of stock, but similar style and price is here. To help with the no coat closet situation I added a few decorative hooks and this modern coat rack near the door. (P.S. there aren’t 2 ladders in the room- I eventually decided on a large mirror between the two chairs!)

small living room makeover

What do you think of my small living room makeover? Do you enjoy this type of content? I hope it inspires you to tackle a project or two to freshen up your space. Let me know if you’ve recently done some renovating or are thinking of changing something up in your home. If you have any questions please ask and thanks so much for reading.

You may also like this post on my Skincare Routine over 50

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Small living room makeover