Family Room Ideas: 2 Steps to Plan a Beautiful Room

About a million months ago (approximately) I wrote the Ultimate DIY Guide to Decorating A Room. Sadly that guide has one fatal flaw. It only works if you actually use it.  I talked a lot about my “naked bulb (not) chic” family room in that post and well, the room has come along a little bit, but it still has a long way to go.  I have gotten actual lamps with shades, so there are at least no naked bulbs anymore.  We also bought a new sectional, the Ikea Ektorp, which you can see and read all about in the post How the Ikea Ektorp Sectional Saved My Family.  Today I’m going to actually rip open that Ultimate DIY Guide to Decorating a Room and get started on finding the rest of my Family Room Design Ideas.

Family Room Design Ideas

Family Room Design Ideas

The first step to a DIY room design is to Find What Inspires You.  I am right on top of that step.  I’ve been all over Pinterest and also Houzz to find the things that speak to me.

Guys, I’ve found the things that speak to me.  They are modern, a little Bohemian (really just more relaxed, Bohemian is almost fussy to me) with LOTS of bright colors.  One of which is most definitely yellow. But just like a burst of yellow, ok?  I’m not talking yellow walls.

Step 1:  Find What Inspires You

Let’s look first at what the room looks like now:

The Family Room is very long and somewhat narrow, so just squish these two images together in your mind to get an idea of what I’m working with, ok?

To Do #1:  Pin What Inspires You

Now, the fun pictures. Here’s all of the things that I’ve found for inspiration.

That’s my Pinterest board where I’ve saved everything that I liked.  Some of it was colors that I liked. A lot of it is gallery walls that I liked and there are a couple of walls with some interesting three dimensional applications that I thought were pretty cool.

I’ve also been scouring Houzz for inspiration.  You can use the arrows to click through the pictures!

[houzz= w=620]

Again lots of color.  Most blues and greens with pops of yellow.

To Do #2

The second to do in finding inspiraiton, is to actually pare down your inspiration.  This is where you really have to take a second look and decide what you really love and what you might only like AND what you really love but that might not work in your actual room. Once I pared down, I came up with these shots for inspiration.

Every Color Goes Together: Homes that Aren't Afraid to Mix and Match | Apartment Therapy

Image from Apartment Therapy

This room has all the color. I’ll use this as a great reminder that you can go over the top, but you better go all the way over the top if you do.  Otherwise things look unintentional. Also, I love that lamp.


I know I definitely want a wall of photos and I know that I want it to be symmetrical.  I am also very aware of the fact that I probably don’t have the patience to figure out how to hang a symmetrical gallery wall.  I do think I have the patience to figure out how to hang some picture ledges.  I like that this offers the ability to switch pictures out really easily.


I LOVE this room. It’s totally colorful and over the top.  This room tells me that the person who lives here picked each thing out of love and then put them altogether in one space and it magically all worked perfectly.  The other important thing about this room is the different zones that you see. Or, technically you can’t see, but there’s the small sitting area and then off frame, with that killer cheetah sofa is another zone.  I have this long and narrow room, so zones will be important.


This one is all about the fireplace.  I have a love hate relationship with our fireplace.  I hate the way it looks, but I love that it is a fireplace. I’ve been thinking about what to do with that fireplace since we moved in.  10 years ago.  Time to get on that.


I’m keeping this picture in my edited version of Inspiration because I love the art above the fireplace.  I also love the mismatched chairs.


I wasn’t surprised that lots of my pictures had blues and greens.  That’s definitely me.  What I was surprised at was that they almost ALL had a pop of yellow in them.  And I mean big, bold yellow.

As the yellow continued to pop out at me, I realized, that I may have found my “one thing” the thing that is something you pull the rest of the room together from.  Finding your “one thing” is a very important part of gathering your inspiration.  Usually it’s a piece of art, or a throw pillow or a rug.   A table, a solid color table, is not a usual pick.

It’s this table:


(That table is $340.  If you think I’m spending that much money on a coffee table, then you don’t know me very well.  I’ll either DIY it or find something similar for less $$.)

Normally, you’re one thing is going to have some textures or colors that you can use throughout the room to sort of pull the whole thing together.  In this case, the table is all one color.  But, it does have a vibe that I love.  It’s sleek and sort of retro modern looking, but that yellow color makes it completely not serious.  So the table is setting the mood of the room in this case.

Now, I have to admit, Step 1 is the easiest part of the process of finding Family Room Design Ideas.  Step 2, which is planning the room, I’ll be working on next, takes a little more work.  There are five steps involved and one of them includes creating a budget.  So math.  Wish me all the luck on that one.

If You Liked It Then You Shoulda Put a Pin In It!

Family Room Design Ideas


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