Decorating Dilemma: Liz’s Narrow Living Room

Decorating solutions for a narrow living room

Decorating Dilemmas is a weekly column in which our stylists answer your design questions, so you can tackle your home decorating project with complete confidence.

Dear How to Decorate,

We moved into a new house last year and I’m still working on putting everything together. The space is long and narrow, so we are working on 2 separate sitting areas and I need wall decor. Can you help?

The 3 mirrors above the couch seem small. What do you suggest there?

On the opposite end, we have 2 chairs and hope to have a small sofa one day as well. I was thinking a tall, wide bookshelf might look good where the buffet table and round mirror are currently located. I want a beautiful space that is easy and casual at the same time.

I appreciate your help,


Looking toward the front

Chair and pillow fabric

White chair

view towards sofa

front window

Dear Liz,

Congratulations on your new home! We have some great suggestions for your space.

In a long narrow space, we need to think vertically. Let’s start above your sofa! Hang the Grand Palais Mirror, in the bronze finish, high on the wall, centered behind the sofa. On either side, add four of the Vintage Cloisonné Framed Prints. They’ll coordinate well with all the colors you have in the room and will help make that wall a beautiful focal point.

Consider moving your wing chair to the left side of the sofa, facing the bay windows. Across from the wing chair, replace your white chair and ottoman with a Wembley Club Chair in Wyndham Pebble stripe fabric. This fabric and frame will add a fresh texture and ideal scale in that space.

What about the Toulouse Tall Bookcase to replace your buffet table? It is a fantastic solution to add height and textural interest. For the bay window seating, we think an Olivia Side Table in Antique Brass between a pair of Griffin Club chairs in Gia Natural fill the room beautifully. A large Suzanne Kasler Gourd Lamp in Camel is a jewel piece in this area.

As a finishing touch, we love the idea of adding drapes to frame your windows. Our Ballard Essential Drapery Panels in Off-White Twill would add warmth and lightness to the whole room.

We hope these ideas will be helpful. Thank you for letting us into your beautiful home.

Happy Decorating!

The How to Decorate Team

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How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.


  1. Reply

    Jennifer skinner

    August 17, 2014

    Could I please send you some pictures of my living room and get you suggestions on what to do?

    • Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      August 18, 2014

      Hi Jennifer,

      Thanks for your comment. We would love to give you some guidance for decorating your living room. We have an entire team devoted to helping customers make design decisions in their home. Simple complete this form, and our Design Solutions team will create a plan for you!

      Happy Decorating,
      The How to Decorate Team

  2. Reply

    Barbara Dixon

    August 2, 2014

    Well am sorry of the comment I see you did just that in the beginning. Yes I like the pieces you picked out.

  3. Reply

    Barbara Dixon

    August 2, 2014

    It would be a help if you would put pictures of the pieces you want them to use….so we could see and add comments of our own… Thanks. B