Cozy isn't a style but a feeling, the homey ambiance of a room that makes us want to curl up, relax and cocoon ourselves from the world. A living room might feel cozy because of its architecture and proportions, like a snug Victorian sitting room or cottage interior. Or it might feel cozy because it's furnished with plenty of comfy seating options for friends and family; decorated with warm colors; layered with fluffy pillows and soft throws; filled with books and personal objects; softly lit or possessed of a real or faux fireplace. There is no single recipe for what makes a space feel cozy—that depends on your personality and individual tastes.
The built-in window seat in this 1920s bungalow living room is cozy all by itself, but vintage furniture, burgundy velvet drapes, a comfy throw and mismatched throw pillows amplify the feel-good factor. It doesn't take a big budget to create a cozy living room, just a little bit of heart.
Here are some wide-ranging examples of how to create a cozy living room no matter what your budget or style.
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Find Comfort in Traditional
Traditional living rooms prioritize comfort and familiarity, which are two ingredients that this cozy room has in spades. A vintage cognac brown leather club chair, an overstuffed sofa and armchairs, an Oriental rug, soft, warm lighting, built-in shelves for books and objects and a vintage gilded mirror over the central fireplace create the kind of unpretentious cozy living room you will want to come home to every night.Continue to 2 of 14 below.
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Incorporate Cozy Antiques
This cozy living room has antique wood furniture, hardwood floors and ceiling beams, soft gauzy tie-back curtains, comfortable, elegant seating with soft lines and a warm, neutral palette of beiges and tans that is easy on the eyes and the spirit. Two wingback chairs and a sofa upholstered in beige linen, antique floor lamps with a graceful silhouette and warm homey lampshades and a chandelier with candleabra bulbs create a serene, intimate living room that is cozy day or night.Continue to 3 of 14 below.
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Add a Sprinkling of Scandi
This Scandi-style living room has a fresh, airy feel with its all-white walls and wood flooring and tall undressed windows. But it's also a cozy place to hang out and relax thanks to a long overstuffed couch festooned with a jumble of mismatched pillows; a simple woven rug; a tall bookshelf packed with reading material; an armchair and ottoman with mid-century lines and a whimsical suspension light anchoring the space.Continue to 4 of 14 below.
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Add Some British Flair
This cozy London townhouse living room is the perfect oasis from all that rainy English weather, with its crown moldings, cocoa colored walls, granny chic overstuffed sofas, mismatched table lamps, and trio of horse-themed oil paintings. Pink pillows are a perfect retro match for the brown walls and a pale carpet and rug to keep toes warm completes the picture perfect traditional English cozy vibe for the ages.Continue to 5 of 14 below.
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Mix Modern With Cozy
This living room seating area from Seattle-based OreStudios is modern, warm, natural, and cozy thanks to a graphic boxy floor-to-ceiling bookshelf anchored by a simple black fireplace; natural materials like wood paneled ceilings and hardwood floors; a jute rug and comfortable upholstered seating. Pops of color from the books, a blue upholstered armchair and throw pillows keep the neutral space feeling lively and inviting.Continue to 6 of 14 below.
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Throw in Some Comfy Velvet
Never underestimate the power of a big soft enveloping armchair to make any room a little bit cozier. In this snug living room, a dreamy rose velvet upholstered armchair is the star of the show and the seat that everyone will covet. Add a pretty vintage rug, plenty of art books on the shelves and coffee table, and simple framed print art on the walls and you've got an effortlessly cozy living room seating area that is perfect for reading or hanging out with friends and family.Continue to 7 of 14 below.
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Create an Air of Sophisticated
A sweeping view through floor-to-ceiling windows lends a sense of light and grandeur to this sophisticated living room from Seattle-based OreStudios. Elegant, cozy touches make it feel extra inviting and livable, from the light wood panel ceiling to an upholstered leather ottoman/coffee table, a raft of throw pillows in soft, warm colors, a plush Berber rug, and a curvy sculptural armchair that looks like a cross between a sheep and a cloud.Continue to 8 of 14 below.
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Make a Cozy Corner
In this spacious open concept living room, a cozy, laid back seating and TV watching area is anchored by a comfy rug, a sofa and armchair with mid-century lines in matching warm tan suede upholstery, mid-century-inspired coffee tables, a bright mustard yellow upholstered ottoman, and a contrasting royal blue accent wall to take your eye off the TV when you're not binge-watching your favorite show.Continue to 9 of 14 below.
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Test Out Cozy Slipcovers
The stark black and white color scheme of this streamlined living room gets a cozy twist by covering the sofa and armchairs in simple matching white cotton slipcovers that soften the feel of the room. Accented with a red lamp, a cowhide rug, and gauzy white curtains on the windows, it's a serene space to cozy up in.Continue to 10 of 14 below.
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Highlight Cozy Ceiling Beams
In this Wiltshire, England home, a classic fireplace and rustic ceiling beams turn a living room with vaulted ceilings into a cozy space made for family gatherings. A pair of large sofas scattered with plenty of pillows and throws in jewel colors invite lounging and a seating area for two with antique armchairs and a dark wood table makes a perfect spot for tea.Continue to 11 of 14 below.
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Feature a Piano
An upright piano gives this simple, uncluttered apartment living room with a Scandi-style neutral palette and modern furniture a cozy vibe. A few house plants, a simple painting above the overstuffed, rounded sofa with Moroccan pillows, and a fringed throw in shades of gray and white add texture and a comfy note while keeping the space feeling light, modern and fresh.Continue to 12 of 14 below.
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Build Homey Bookshelves
This grand living room in a London terrace apartment is classically elegant, with its high ceilings and antique furniture upholstered in silky cream-colored fabrics and imposing crystal chandelier. But the room feels undeniably cozy thanks to a dramatic floor-to-ceiling wall of built-in bookshelves that adds color and an old-fashioned sense of homeyness that can be missing in our ever more digital and immaterial age.Continue to 13 of 14 below.
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Show Cozy Feminine Touches
This South London family living room is pretty and undeniably feminine, with walls, wood floors and furniture, antique mirror, tall vintage candleabras, and picture frames painted out in shades of off-white. Part of what makes it feel cozy is the tight arrangement of sofa and armchairs around a non-working fireplace that has been filled with a raft of pillar candles.Touches of green evoke the garden just outside and keep it feeling fresh.Continue to 14 of 14 below.
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Warm Up a Blue Palette
It doesn't take much to make this traditional English living room feel cozy, with its built-in bookshelves packed with classics and its period fireplace that looks great whether or not there's a fire burning. Painting the whole room blue is the kind of eccentric move that makes it feel instantly cozy. Add a distressed leather sofa and a warm brown fur throw perfect for cuddling up or napping and you've got the kind of cozy living room to daydream your cares away in.