How to Organize a Living Room

White throw pillow and blanket organized in wicker basket in living room

The Spruce / Ana Maria Stanciu

This article is part of our series, The 7-Day Spruce Up: Your Ultimate Guide to Home Organizing. The 7-Day Spruce Up is your destination for whole home happiness, curating our very best tips and product recommendations to help you create your tidiest, coziest, most beautiful home yet.

For many families, the living room is the hub of the home. It's where you Netflix and chill, where the kids and pets play, and where old friends sit and visit with a bottle of wine. But when your living room is cluttered with books and magazines and forgotten LEGOs, it can be difficult to relax. Take an afternoon and focus on de-cluttering with this quick guide to organizing your living room. With a little time and tidying, you and you and your family can settle in and enjoy the space together once again.

Deep Clean and Donate

Old brown rug placed in garbage bag to declutter

The Spruce / Ana Maria Stanciu

As you've collected items like pillows and pictures in your living room, perhaps your pretty aesthetic has become too busy. Before you begin putting belongings away, consider what you should remove. A simple way to complete this step is to bring two boxes into your living room, designating one for donations and another for items that will go elsewhere in your home. Meander through your living room, pulling pieces from shelves and drawers. For each belonging, think about whether or not your living room is its appropriate home. If you find a houseplant you'd prefer keep in the kitchen, move it. If you discover an old board game collecting dust, donate it.

Invest in Functional Furniture

Regardless of how many family members frequent your living room, odds are storage space is something you can never quite have enough of. That's why manufacturers have designed multi-purpose furniture like lift-top coffee tables and ottomans with storage compartments underneath. After you've decluttered your living room and settled on the possessions you want to keep, consider upgrading your furniture to create additional storage spaces. These pretty storage solutions will help you keep the space practical while maintaining a minimal design.

Hide Your Electronics

Wrapped charging cord placed in small basket with smart devices next to plant

The Spruce / Ana Maria Stanciu

No one likes to see tangled TV cables or headphones piled on the coffee table. Of course electronics are important to our everyday lives, but they don't need to be on display. One of the best ways to keep your living room tidy is to hide electronics and their cords from view. Designate a drawer or basket for these items, so they're out of sight but still easy to access. For your phone, consider a charging station or tray. To organize the cluster of cables behind your TV, try a cable manager. Don't be afraid to get creative with this tip. Find a solution that works for your unique space and taste.

Give Every Item a Home

Black and white remote controls organized next to book stack and houseplant

The Spruce / Ana Maria Stanciu

Remotes, coasters, blankets: there are plenty of things you'll want to keep out and accessible in your living room. But the line between clean and chaotic is simple—each and every item must have a proper home. For your TV remotes, designate a drawer or a decorative bowl you can place on your coffee table. Keep your blankets in an oversized basket or hidden away in an ottoman with storage. Make sure everything you opt to keep in your living room has a spot of its own.

Keep Decor Minimal

Wicker basket held in front of gray couch to remove white throw pillow

The Spruce / Ana Maria Stanciu

Whether your preferred taste is contemporary, boho, vintage, or a combination that's unique to you, keeping your decor to a minimum will help you create and maintain a cohesive living room design. To avoid overcrowding, organize your decorative pieces in groups of two or three, such as three tiered candles on a bookcase or a pair of books on your coffee table. Stick with primarily neutral tones, but feel free to toss in a pop of color here and there. Incorporate a few houseplants throughout the space to add a little life (literally) to your living room design.

Stick With a Color Palette

You may be drawn to a variety of interior design styles and a range of colors, but to keep your living room looking cohesive, make sure you maintain a consistent aesthetic. One simple way to accomplish this goal is by choosing a color palette for the room. For a calming feel, stick with neutral tones like cream and beige. Add some natural materials such as wicker and organic elements like houseplants. If you'd like a more eclectic look, consider a bold color or two throughout the space. Whatever your preferred style, make sure it's carried through the living room.

Books with white covers stacked and lined evenly on shelf by hand

The Spruce / Ana Maria Stanciu

Add a Catch-All Container

You've done the hard work of donating neglected toys and hiding phone chargers, but clutter will likely find its way back to your living room over time. To prepare yourself, consider adding a catch-all bin or basket in your living room. If you opt for this tip, keep the bin small and out of sight. The purpose of this idea is not to promote clutter, but to create a temporary solution for it. When the container becomes full, it's your cue to clean and designate a home for each of those items.