Long family room furniture arrangement

Long Living Room Ideas - Narrow Room Design Tips


Interior Design

Living Room

by Eleanor Büsing

published Sep 22, 2018

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Long, narrow living rooms (or family rooms) can be a chore to lay out and decorate, not to mention live in. Nobody wants to feel like they’re entertaining in a train carriage or watching TV in a hallway. But with some layout tweaks and a few visual tricks up your sleeve, you can learn to love your long room. Here are five ways to lay out a long, narrow living room, plus some bonus tips on how to really rock the space.

1. Create Separate Zones

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Often, long rooms are a blessing in disguise, because they can serve as open-plan spaces. Instead of having one larger-but-awkward living room, why not create a smaller living area, plus a den, study area, or breakfast nook?

In the sketch above, we have a traditional TV area (which you can create with a smaller sofa to save space)inte, plus a cozy den-like conversation nook, complete with surrounding wall-to-wall bookshelves to really delineate the space. You can also zone these separate areas with rugs, lights and/or color so it feels intentional.

2. Alternate your Furniture Groupings

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If possible, try to avoid having all your furniture on one side of the long wall. By alternating furniture groupings, as the space above does, it forces the traffic flow to take on an “S” shape, and avoids half the room just feeling like a straight hallway. It’s a sneaky way to ensure you actually use more of the space.

3. Arrange Things Across the Space

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When working with a long space, it’s best to arrange things cross-wise when possible, which visually pushes the walls outward, making the room seem wider.


How to Fix 4 Common Furniture Mistakes

Instead of one sofa against the longer wall, the space above uses two shorter ones, placed width-wise in the space. This visually pushes the walls outward, a trick that’s repeated with the console table behind the sofa, and the long bookshelf on the far wall.

4. Work with the Middle

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Just because a room is long, doesn’t mean you need to fill it all with furniture. The space above centers the furniture arrangement in the middle, leaving the sides as open, but not dead, space. This works particularly well in a symmetrical room, when the furniture can be centered around a window or fireplace.

5. Utilize an L-Shaped Sofa

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A proper corner sofa, even more so than one with a chaise, can really use the space in a long room well. The room above uses one, and several of the other tips above, to create a usable layout. Notice how the furniture arrangement at the other end of the room (two chairs, a side table and a console) mimic but flip the shape of the sofa, too.

How To Arrange Furniture In A Long Living Room

These design tips will show you how to arrange your furniture – the right way  – to create a cohesive layout that feels stylish, cozy and looks pulled together!

Is your living room long? Arranging furniture in a long living room can be very challenging!

If your living room resembles a bowling alley, use these clever design tricks to open up the space and arrange your furniture the right way!



Create Zones

Don’t clump all your furniture in one grouping because this will emphasize the long look of your living room.

The goal is to make a long living room look cohesive and pulled together.

Treat your long living room like an open concept space and create separate furniture groupings into separate zones.

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How Do You Divide A Long Living Room?

Divide and separate your living room furniture into two or 3 separate zones or groupings.

This will help spread furniture throughout the length and eliminate any bare spots.

You can create a tv watching zone, a zone to play board games or read.

Or you can create a small dining zone, or small office zone.

See: Inexpensive Ways to Make Your Home Look Expensive!

2. Furniture That Fits

A long living room can be impossible to arrange if your furniture is bulky and large.

So it pays to invest in the right pieces that are more compact and streamlined – like apartment sofas that are smaller scale than regular sized sofas.

Click on the images below to shop beautiful apartment size sofas:

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Also avoid too many furniture pieces which will make the long living room look cluttered and can hinder walkways.

If you need extra chairs for the occasional big family get together (Christmas, Thanksgiving), buy some stacking chairs like these and store them in another room. Pull them out when you need them!

3. Pull Furniture Away From Walls

Placing furniture up against the walls will emphasize the length of the living room.

Pull the pieces out from the walls a bit so the focus is on the furniture and decor – not the long length of the room.

4. Focus On The Middle

Another strategy is to focus on the middle of the space and leave each end open.

Open doesn’t mean empty.

Arrange your furniture in the middle of the  space.

Add a bookcase to one end, a console table with art or a mirror above it or a large faux plant to add interest to the ends of the room.

5. L Shaped Sectional Sofa

Adding an L shaped sectional to one end of the living room not only offers lots of seating but it also utilizes a long space well.

6. Incorporate Walkways

Instead of arranging your furniture so you walk down the middle of it, arrange your furniture together and create a walkway around it.

This is especially important around the TV because you don’t want anyone to walk in front of the tv while someone is watching it.

This can be done by placing a sofa along a wall and placing two chairs across from it. Leave the walkway behind the chairs and the opposite wall.

Passageways should be at least 3’ wide to allow appropriate space to walk by furniture.

This is especially important if one or both sides of the passageway is a wall or tall cabinet

If the passageway is between lower pieces, like a sofa, chair or console table,  slightly less floor space is required because the space above the furniture is open.

7. Measurement Rules

Keep these measurement rules in mind while arranging your furniture.

8. Use Circular/Curved Furniture

Circular, curved furniture will help break up the long lines of a long living room.

Add a small circular table and 4 chairs as a board game table.

Use rounded tub chairs instead of angular chairs.

Use an oval or round coffee table instead of a rectangular one.

9. Paint Color

Paint a long living room one light neutral color to open the space and make your furniture arrangement easier.

White, cream, light beige and gray are the best color choices.

Agreeable Gray & Undertones & Coordinating Colors

BM Simply White

The advantage to using a light neutral paint color is that it will allow you to change and mix your accent colors!

You don’t want to complicate things even more by selecting a bold paint color or dark paint color that is going to emphasize a dark tunnel effect.

10. Maximize Vertical Space

Drawing the up will help minimize the length of the living room.

Add a tall cabinet, tall bookcase or etagere, floor to ceiling drapery (hang the rods as high as possible!)  or hang a photo gallery wall that goes close to the ceiling.

11. Area Rugs

Add an area rug for each of the zones to separate them and add texture and pattern!

12. Console Table

Add a console table to the back of a sectional, sofa or 2 chairs that are open to the room, to separate that conversation zone and create a cohesive look.

They also provide a surface for table lamps, display space and can replace an end table.

Tucking two ottomans under the console table is also a perfect way to incorporate extra seating into the space.

13. Curtains

Add curtains to all of the windows in a long living room to soften the walls.

Make sure the rod is hung as high as possible to draw the eye upward.


Sight Lines

Sight lines are extremely important in design, especially for long living rooms.

A sightline is what the eye sees from one end of the room to the other end of the room and into adjoining spaces if there are any.

You don’t want the sightline to look cluttered or choppy.

You do want the sightline to flow and be pulled together and cohesive.

Do this by repeating accent colors and metallic finishes throughout the entire living room.

Keep all of your lighting the same metallic finish.

If green is your accent color, repeat it in the different zones of the long living room.

15. Plants

Add plants and tropical trees (real or faux) like this gorgeous faux olive tree or fiddle leaf fig tree will help to soften the look of the furniture.

They will add interest, create focal points and help the long living room look less stark and sterile.

16. Declutter

Create the illusion of more space in a long living room by decluttering. It will actually make a space feel wider and more cohesive.

Use clever living room storage ideas to remove toys, knickknacks and other unnecessary items, your space will instantly feel bigger and more beautiful to be in.

Make sure your furniture has storage capabilities as well. Tuck remotes and books into end tables with drawers, a console table with drawers or a coffee table with drawers.

Here are some other questions that get asked when arranging furniture in a long living room:

How do you rearrange a long living room?

Edit your current furniture to eliminate pieces you don’t use.

Purchase furniture that fits your living room if your pieces are too bulky.

Create 2-3 separate zones with each having a different purpose.

Can you put a couch in front of a window?

In a long living room it may be necessary to place a sofa in front of a window.

Yes you can place it in front of a window- IF the sofa back is not too tall and doesn’t block the window.

Also you’ll need to place the sofa out a bit from the window so that drapes aren’t pressed into the wall.

With these design tips your furniture will be arranged the right way to fit your long living room space!



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A narrow, elongated room is not uncommon in our homes. In addition, in such rooms there is often one window, because of which the lighting of the space suffers. Before you decide how best to deal with the "pencil case", you need accurate measurements.

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3 meters or less?
The width of a narrow room is a critical indicator. If a room is three or more meters across, there are quite a few options for arranging furniture. If it remains in the region of two and a half meters or even less, you will have to get out.

MWAI Architecture and Interiors

Narrow living room
Arranging a living room in a narrow room is perhaps the most difficult task. All family members gather in the living room, so there should be plenty of seating. Your choice - long sofas; it is even desirable that they be longer than usual. Strict lines of perspective will be smoothed out and the room will appear more rectangular. nine0005

The opposite wall can be decorated with shallow hanging shelves or built-in storage. And if the width of the room allows, you can even install a couple of chairs opposite the sofa. It does not matter that they will close the approach to the cabinets - if necessary, the chairs can be easily moved. But such a solution will allow you to conveniently settle down for family communication.

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Make Interiors

It is reasonable to divide not only a narrow, but also a long room into several zones: for communication (armchairs by the window or a desktop), a sofa + TV. Quite often, narrow elongated rooms have an alcove - according to the situation, they have a bed or a built-in wardrobe.

Juliette Byrne

If the length of the room is not enough, you can do without armchairs. Then compact puff tables will serve as an additional place to sit.

You can use a corner sofa to make up for the lack of seating. The lighter the model, the less its visual weight. If the same sofa were in rich, contrasting upholstery in relation to the walls, it would seem gigantic. Consider the visual weight of objects! nine0005

Question: Why does the interior seem overloaded? The main thing here is that the floor is clearly visible - this creates a feeling of free space.

Bright accents will also help visually adjust the volume of the room. Look at the photo above - thanks to the bright yellow details, the living room seems bright and spacious. nine0005

Interiors By Agostino's

A room with a window near the door can also be converted into a compact area with living room functions. In this case, an alternative to a long sofa is a soft group of chairs and a table. A great option is to furnish such a room with structures in the style of the 50-60s of the last century: visually light, on high wooden legs and with wooden armrests. Complement them with a shallow chest of drawers-credenza, as in the photo.

► Narrow living room


Narrow bedroom
If the width of the room is more than 2.6 m, then the double bed can be placed across the room with the headboard against the wall and placed closer to the window. If the width is about 2.3 m, then you will have to forget about a large bed in the bedroom, unless you make it built-in from wall to wall or not be content with a "one and a half" - a narrow double bed 140 cm.

In the case when the bedroom is very small , try to expand the end wall with a headboard with decorative techniques: for example, decorate it with mirrors or wallpaper with an optical effect. nine0005

Narrow Bedroom Design

Interior Marketing Group

There is another way out: to save inches for passage, discard the bed frame, order the heaviest and thickest mattress and put it on a low base as is usually done in hotels.

A thick mattress in a stretch sheet will look like a full bed, but at the same time you will save at least 15 centimeters on the frame of the bed itself. There should be at least 40 cm left for the passage between the wall and objects, preferably 50–55 cm.

Photo on the topic ...
► Design of a small bedroom

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Task: design of a narrow bedroom

Beau Intérieur

If the passage is located between the bed and the wardrobe, then this is the distance big. In this case, it is more convenient to place the bed along the room close to the wall and headboard towards the exit.

As an option, you can make a high headboard combined with shelves. This cabinet will successfully zone the space. On the other side of the closet, you can organize a mini-wardrobe or put a small table for a laptop. nine0005


It may be successful to have a built-in structure that leaves no passages between the bed and the wall at all. However, this option is more suitable for young people. For older people (they often wake up at night), getting out of the depth of the bed and climbing back will be inconvenient.


Built-in designs offer many options: in a narrow bedroom, you can provide an additional pull-out mattress or a wardrobe in the headboard. nine0005

Turchenko Natalia

In the photo: the bedroom is so narrow that the bed could be placed either across (as in the photo) or with the headboard to the window (the hostess was uncomfortable). The passage was deliberately narrowed - the bed rests against the ledge, which allowed the sofa to be placed from the side of the kitchen (see plan)

AIBD - American Institute of Building Design

Narrow children's bedroom
Reception of a symmetrical arrangement of objects often saves narrow rooms. Especially children's bedrooms for one or two children. Children are usually not embarrassed by the small distance between the beds. Moreover, they are happy about this and will jump from bed to bed with pleasure in the absence of adults. nine0005

Important: If the location of the window allows, it is better to place two beds opposite each other than on top of each other (on the upper floors of loft beds it is usually stuffy).

► Narrow children's room for two children

Olga Shangina | Photography

Photo idea: a bed in a narrow bedroom often has to be moved with the long part against the wall. Designers in these cases turn it into an ottoman - a sofa with an orthopedic mattress: we remove the linen and use it like an ordinary sofa

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Narrow cabinet
In cabinets, you can use the same symmetry rule with respect to the window, only for built-in cabinets and surfaces. If both shelves and surfaces are the same width, this will visually balance the room. Yes, perhaps the table would like to be wider, but even this, less than 50 cm wide, is quite enough.


If the window is not located in the center of the room, but closer to one of the walls, then it is logical to make insets only on one side, but in this case it will be possible to increase the depth of the working surface. Built-in tables make it easy to bypass load-bearing columns if there are any in the room. nine0005

Clifton Leung Design Workshop - CLDW. com.hk

In rooms where the width varies from window to door due to load-bearing structures, several workstations can be marked out: one along the window, the other along the wall. A very useful thing if there are two people actively working from home in the family and it is inconvenient for them to share one table.

Yana Ivanchenko

Narrow dining room
Oddly enough, but a narrow room with one window may well be a dining room if the kitchen and cooking area are nearby. The main thing here is to choose the right table. If you need a non-standard narrow version, you can look for ready-made tabletops for desks (they are already dining tables) and complement them with designer legs. Or make a table to order. nine0005

Teresa Sapey + Partners


Deckers Käfferlein - Architekten mit Leidenschaft für gute Architektur

Narrow room (39 photos) design ideas and furniture arrangement

What to consider in interior design?

First of all, let's understand the terminology: a long narrow room is a room where a short wall is 1. 5 or more times smaller than a long wall. For example, bedroom 5*3, living room 6*3.5, etc. will be considered elongated rooms. nine0005

Important! The width of a long narrow room is more important than the length: if it is less than 3 meters, it will not be easy to organize the ergonomic arrangement of furniture.

The photo shows a bright armchair at the far end of the hall

The first thing to consider in the interior of a narrow room is the wrong ratio of its sides. The task of the designer is to bring the space closer to the correct shape - a square. How to achieve this will be explained in the following sections.

See also

Design of a narrow bedroom (photos, layouts, how to arrange the bed)

The second important aspect is the location of windows and doors. Most often, in standard layouts, they are located opposite each other along short walls. Although this layout is not the most convenient, it is perfect for zoning a narrow room.

If window and door openings are placed on long walls, this opens up more design and furniture options.

Choosing the right color scheme

The design of a long, narrow room relies on color to transform it for better or for worse. To prevent the latter from happening, pay attention to the advice of designers.

The smaller the area of ​​the room, the lighter the palette should be. Choose white, beige, gray light colors for the main walls and ceiling, it is better to make the floor medium in saturation.

The photo shows a narrow white kitchen with a balcony

Make one of the short sides brighter or darker in comparison with the rest - it is advisable to choose the one located opposite the entrance. Visually, it will look closer, and the room - wider. nine0005

Tip! If there is a window opposite the door, replace the wallpaper with contrasting curtains - they will also correct the narrow geometry.

Another working diagram of how to renovate a room is monochrome. When all the walls, ceiling and main furniture are made in the same color (white, gray, sand, pastel), the boundaries are blurred and the geometry is distorted.

Decorating tips to make a room look bigger0005

Life hacks that have already been tested in many interiors will help to make a narrow living room or other room visually wider.

  • The flooring is laid across - the seams along the short walls visually stretch them left and right. Carpets and rugs are also chosen with geometric cross patterns.
  • Wallpaper with horizontal stripes is glued exclusively on the short sides, long walls are decorated with companions in a suitable shade.

The photo shows an unusual wall design in the living room

  • Perspective, on the contrary, is used precisely on the long side: photo wallpaper or an original pattern with a point going into the distance erases the boundaries, makes the room “endless” and allows you to forget about its features.
  • Don't forget the simplest but most effective technique: reflective surfaces. Mirrors and gloss reflect light and create a natural perspective. A mirrored headboard behind a bed or sofa visually expands the space. The same effect creates a glass coffee table, glossy facades of the kitchen. nine0229

Zoning Recommendations

Surprisingly, partitions and borders will make even a small narrow room look bigger. Separation as an idea for a narrow room is not just possible, but must be used! You can beat several zones not only with the help of a partition.

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Podium in the interior (70 photos)


It is convenient to organize a sleeping place, office, dining area on it. The difference in levels will increase the area, because the sections on the podium and without will be perceived separately from each other. nine0005


Different shades in the wall or floor decoration, a bright carpet on the floor emphasize the desired areas. In the living room, it can be a wall behind the sofa, in the bedroom - a dressing table, in the nursery - a play space.


Interior items suitable for zoning a narrow space:

  • rack with open shelves;
  • functional pencil case or cabinet;
  • sofa;
  • table.

The shelving unit is ideal for nurseries, the sofa is often used in living rooms and studios. If you need to equip the kitchen separately from the hall, set the table across. nine0005

The photo shows the use of a podium and perspective in the bedroom


Read also

How to arrange a narrow living room?

The abundance of lamps, which differ from each other over different areas, also visually divides the room. How much should be analyzed using the kitchen as an example: an overall bright chandelier is hung over the dining table, and inconspicuous tires or spots are hung over the working area.


There is also a physical separation of the premises. Screens work best in rooms that need to be zoned into two completely different areas: a bedroom and a living room, a hall and a kitchen. nine0005

Railings should not be solid, blind - choose light structures with gaps: like a pattern cut by a router, cells, etc. They will cope with the task of differentiation, while allowing light, sound and sight to penetrate.

Modern interiors feature glass walls with metal frames. Inside, they can be closed with curtains, and when you don’t need to hide, the curtains can be easily opened and again “combine” the room into a single whole.

Tip! By the way, curtains can also be used separately: soft drapery elegantly divides the space, and the design itself suggests the possibility of open and closed use. nine0005

How to arrange furniture?

The main mistake made by many in the layout of a narrow room is the arrangement of furniture along the walls. If you are not dealing with a passage room, give up this idea - otherwise the narrow living room or nursery will look like a wagon, and not a cozy living room.

To properly arrange furniture in a narrow room, start with an inventory and check if you really need a lot of items? Every attribute counts. Competent minimalism in this case is relevant at least because the more free space, the wider the room will look. nine0005

Read also

Design of a narrow kitchen: layout, decoration, furniture arrangement, photo

The second nuance that deserves attention is the size. When choosing items to furnish a narrow room, take a few compact ones, instead of one overall.

Example: a small sofa and a couple of armchairs instead of a large corner one, a dining table with individual chairs instead of a massive kitchenette. The only exception is the bed. In the room of a married couple, she, of course, should be solid. nine0005

When thinking about the shape, use a circle if possible: this applies primarily to tables. If you take a rectangular table, set it transversely to the long sides.

The very arrangement of furniture involves the maximum use of the center of the room. It is permissible to put a sofa across, armchairs - on the contrary, it is also better to place the bed with a headboard against a long wall.

An important role in the overall perception is played by the design of far corners or niches: they should not be empty. Place a decorative screen, a tall floor lamp, hang curtains or a picture. nine0005

How to organize lighting correctly?

See also

How to create a harmonious design for a narrow bathroom?

The first rule of light: there must be a lot of it! And you should start with a balcony and a window. Keep them as open as possible, you can refuse curtains altogether, or replace them with horizontal models (for openings on short walls): blinds, Roman blinds.

For windows on the long sides, on the contrary, the framing is vertical and unobtrusive: ordinary curtains to match the walls without unnecessary decor will suffice. nine0005

In artificial lighting, an unambiguous “no” is said to the central ceiling chandelier, replacing it with several small spots and adding lamps on the walls and tables.

Tip! A few sconces with bright lamps along the long sides will help expand the room and get rid of the oppressive feeling.

The photo shows a lot of lamps in a spacious living room

What to do with curtains and decor?

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How to create a harmonious design of a rectangular kitchen? nine0005

The topic of curtains was covered in the previous section, but it is worth noting once again: for a window on the short side, choose contrasting and horizontal models, on the long side - vertical ones to match the wall.

The same goes for the rest of the decor. Accents will help visually bring the plane closer to the end of the room: bright paintings, carpets, accessories.

If you need to decorate a wall that is longer, take neutral, unobtrusive style elements.

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