Decorating Dilemmas: Julia’s Family Room

Accessorizing a family room and adding personality

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,

My husband and I just moved into our house, and we LOVE the open floor plan but the family room is awkwardly big and hard to decorate. There is a great wall with a portion of it having vaulted ceilings, which makes it tough to arrange furniture.

We bought large furniture to fill it but now it looks incomplete — no artwork, accent furniture, etc. Help! I’m struggling as to how to complete the room.

Thanks for your help!


tv on left
looking out door
large wall view

Dear Julia,

Let’s start with a few larger pieces to anchor the focal points in the room …

For the largest wall, create a focal point with our Montpellier Mirror centered on the wall to create height and reflect natural light. Below the mirror we suggest our Louis XVI 63-inch Sideboard in Walnut topped with the Luciana Table Lamp in Mustard. Accessorize here with some of your books, family photos and one of our Preserved Boxwood Dome Topiaries.

We need to balance out all of the brown wood tones with some color so consider hanging Morning Light Stretched Canvas on either side of the mirror. The Ballard Essential Drapery Panels in Spa Linen hung on the outer frame of your windows will soften the space and add more color.

Consider popping in a few throw pillows on the sofa to bring the color pallet together. We suggest a 20×20″ Basic Pillows in Timur Orange, an 18×18″ Basic Pillow in Suzanne Kasler Stripe in Blanc and Flax, and a Landon Throw Pillow. Add a tray to your coffee table to add a little accent. A small bowl for remotes and coasters, a stack of books or magazines and a small floral arrangement or candle will add a great look to this spot.

The fireplace would benefit from a little symmetry. A great way to incorporate color and balance is to place a Benedetta Console on either side of the fireplace. You could add Woven Baskets to the bottom of the Benedetta for extra pillows, throws or magazines. The Olive Tree Topiary and Whimsical Print Art compete the grouping. This would also be a great place for a lantern, family photos or a pair of Maria Buffet Lamps with a Natural Burlap Shade.

Happy Decorating!

The Design Team


Accessorizing a family room and adding personality

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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


    August 26, 2015

    Ooh, I love the color scheme. It’s very warm and inviting.