A growing decorating trend in the home is something called "techorating," a term that LG Electronics USA first coined as a way to describe a blending of modern technology with the art of decorating to create a functional, yet stylish environment. When it comes to decorating ideas for living rooms, "techorating" makes a lot of sense. I know it did for us when we had to figure out a way to work a flat-screen TV into the scheme of a newly designed room—a room that already had a soffit and a seemingly empty space on a wall where a flat screen would fit perfectly.
"The beauty of techorating is that anyone can incorporate cool, up-to-date electronics into their interior if they have the right technology," says technology and design expert Janna Robinson. "It's important to say 'goodbye clutter' and 'hello technology' while remaining true to your own style."
No matter the size of the room or living space that is techorated, Robinson recommends following these 5 important guidelines:
- Choose the right size TV. To determine the optimal screen size for your room, use this simple calculation: determine how far you wish to sit from the screen, divide that number in half, and that's your ideal screen size (remember to do this based on the diagonal not the width). If you already have a screen and want to figure out how far to sit away from it, then double the diagonal.
- Find the best TV position. Your TV picture will look best when viewed head on, so try and position your seating so you are eye-level with the center of the screen. Generally, make sure the center of your TV screen is mounted approximately 42 to 52 inches from the floor. Because of our soffit, we couldn't mount the TV without having to crane our necks. So instead my husband put the TV on a stand, which put it at eye level when sitting on the couch.
- Achieve the best sound quality. If you have bare walls, floors, hardwood furniture and windows, then you might want to add an area rug and curtains to help absorb the sound, otherwise it will sound "echo-y" and bright. (This was the option we choose in our living room.) Conversely, if your room has wall-to-wall carpeting, heavy curtains, and lots of furniture, try adding some bookshelves or even hung art to help break up the sound waves. Ideally, you want a mixture of different surfaces and materials to ensure the best sound quality.
- Hide messy wires. Some furniture manufacturers make cool and trendy pieces designed to house components, and have special channels to hide wires.
- Give everyone a good view. Try and arrange the seating so everyone has a good view of the screen. Sectionals offer flexible seating configurations and are great options for media rooms. If you have a smaller space, beanbags and floor pillows are fun, comfortable, and inexpensive options to provide more seating. They're also easy to stow when not in use. We added the aforementioned area rug to our living room so now we can watch our favorite shows while lounging on the rug.
As a final thought on decorating ideas for living rooms, Robinson suggests that you "don't make technology an afterthought; think about how you can seamlessly integrate it into your space. The idea is for it to meld into the background, not overpower the room."