What's in your formal living room? Suggestions?

posted 1 year ago in Home
  • poll: What's in your formal living room (or would be, if you had one?)
    Piano : (9 votes)
    10 %
    Second set of furniture, sofa, chairs : (24 votes)
    27 %
    TV : (6 votes)
    7 %
    bookcases/library : (17 votes)
    19 %
    desk / computer : (4 votes)
    5 %
    pool table : (4 votes)
    5 %
    mini bar/ wine bar : (8 votes)
    9 %
    we have furniture here but rarely use it : (9 votes)
    10 %
    we use the formal living room often : (7 votes)
    8 %
  • Member
    5518 posts
    Bee Keeper

    Well I only have one room as a living room.  But if I had the space for a formal living room I probably wouldn’t furnish it with more furniture that likely would never get used.  I think a pool table is a great idea.  We have one in our basement.  The bookcases sound great too if you have a lot of books.  Only put a piano if you play regularly.  As someone who plays, I hate seeing people use the instrument as decoration.

    Member
    7821 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper

    We always had a living room growing up, but also a formal parlor.  No TV in a parlor; more of a place to visit, where we would put the Christmas tree.  We always had a piano, shelves with family photos, nice furniture.  The living room was another set of furniture and a tv and more book shelves.

    Member
    6826 posts
    Busy Beekeeper

    Uh, well we have a living room & then a family room [also a breakfast nook, kitchen & dining room, which are all separtated].

    Our living room has a large tv, sofa & loveseat, lots of family pictures, & dvd shelving. It’s pretty typical. We use this room for typical tv watching/lounging.

    Our family room has more decorative artwork on the walls, a sectional sleeper sofa, fireplace w/ tv above it, shelving units built into the walls. We use this room for entertaining, all of our gaming systems & things are in it. There’s also a college sized fridge, foosball table & decorative end tables in it.

    Member
    4287 posts
    Honey bee

    We have both a family room and a living room. The one in the front of the house is set up with a couch, chair, tv, etc, but it’s not “formal”. The room in the back of the house (which we use a lot more often) has our computers, a giant TV and a loveseat. It’s more of the uhh…man cave style I guess lol, but it works for us.

    Member
    4692 posts
    Honey bee

    My experience was a lot like cbee‘s (: If we have a formal living room when we buy a house I suspect that it’ll have the same types of things and be used the same amount.

    Member
    1771 posts
    Buzzing bee

    I don’t have a formal living room, but if I did, it would be wall-to-wall bookshelves. I have always wanted a library :) get a few comfy chairs and lamps in there, make a kid’s reading corner for my daughter… it would probably end up being my favorite room in the house.

    Member
    424 posts
    Helper bee

    I’ve never understood formal living rooms.   Growing up in the north all my friends families had them.  They always had fussy furniture and white carpet (and many of them had awful plastic coverings on the furniture) and as kids we were never allowed to set foot in them.  I’m pretty sure the adults never even used them.   What a waste of space and furniture.  Same with formal dining rooms, but that’s a whole other rant.

    In our last house, we technically had one but since it was my husbands bachelor pad before I moved in, it had a pool table and dart board in it.  In this house, we don’t even have one.   It’s much more open concept and has a big open area with the kitchen / breakfast table / living all together.  So we have one couch / TV set up down there with nice but not fussy furniture and there is another family room upstairs by the bedrooms.  I’d think of that room as a Florida equivalent to a basement family room since we don’t have basements here.   Upstairs we have another tv, carpet, comfy but not as cute furniture and eventually there will be a play area for our daughter when she is old enough.  So I guess we do have two living areas but neither are formal and just for show.   If it were just my husband and I still, we would probably have something else up there like maybe another pool table or library, but with a family on the way the extra space will definitely get used.  So I guess that is another thing to consider before buying a bunch of furniture- if you plan to have kids in the future would you use it differently?

    Member
    7039 posts
    Busy Beekeeper

    We don’t like to have a tv looming in the main living space, so our main living space just has couches, lamps, side tables, etc. We use that for hanging out with friends, reading, etc. Then we have a second setup with a sectional and large tv that’s our den (and doubles as a guest room for now).

    i love the bookshelves and piano idea (if you play).

    Member
    5761 posts
    Bee Keeper

    Right now we don’t use our formal living room very often, so we are opening up a wide passageway between the formal living room and the family room in order to improve the flow of the first floor for entertaining. The formal living room, when finished, will have a big down cushion sofa, a chaise, 2 modern wingback chairs, a natural fiber rug with a cowhide rug layered on top, an industrial cart coffee table, some sort of kickass lighting (tbd), an antique glassfront bookcase, and french doors on barn door casters. Since we already have a library, it will be an additional space for entertaining and a place for me to escape when the guys are having a Halo/ MW3/ movies I hate marathon in the family room. But it’s not a high priority room, so all of that will have to wait for a few years.

    Member
    336 posts
    Helper bee

    The house we are undercontract with has both a large family room and a formal dining room. We are going to transform it into a home office by putting a wall to wall desk looking towards the front of the house (ala YHL) and by putting L shaped couch and bookshelves on the opposite wall. 

    Member
    3958 posts
    Honey bee

    We had a formal living room growing up. It had the “fancy” furniture and we basically only sat in there for holidays or when my parents had company.

    Member
    5323 posts
    Bee Keeper

    We technically have 3 “living areas” but they are all directly off a main living area. When we first toured the house the owners set up all 3 rooms to be seating rooms, but we changed it up. 

    The main room is our living room (couchs & tv) the second room is right off the main living room and I call this our fireplace room. We don’t have any furniture there, but I want to do two big chairs and make it like a small formal library/seating room with the fireplace, this is also the room where the Christmas tree goes. 

    The other room, is more like a sunroom, and we have a pool table & our bar set up in there. Initially, I wanted to have something like younghouselove and put a daybed in there, but that would mean 3 seating areas for 2 people. And the pool table/bar set up works better.

    So to answer your question, I say go ahead with the pool table for your other living area! :)  

    Member
    1468 posts
    Bumble bee

    I know someone that has a pool table in the room that’s meant to be their formal dining room.  It’s one of the coolest rooms I’ve seen.  :)

    We don’t have a formal living room in my current house but we do have a library with another full set of furniture (sofa, loveseat, side tables) and bookcases.  After we renovate DH’s house and move into it we plan on having a library there too.  We read…a lot.  :)

    Member
    10364 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper

    I grew up in Texas, where formal living rooms were popular. People usually had “nicer” furniture for fancier entertaining.

    Now, I live in a place where “formal” living rooms don’t exist due to housing prices/sizes. You’re lucky to have a 1000 sq ft 2 bedroom here, so no more formal living room!

    BUT, if I did have two living areas, i’d make the “formal” one the main living area w/ a tv, and the 2nd one a workout room for now, and after kids i’d turn it into a play room/hang out room for the kids.

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