Minimalism has been popular for a while now—Pinterest is saturated with sparse but stylish minimalist rooms, and I’m sure a few stunningly sleek examples have popped up on your Instagram feed. Typically, you’d expect a trend like this to wax and wane over time, but minimalism has proven how adaptable it can be at jibing with a variety of decorating styles and rooms.
Minimalism itself is rooted in the principle of ridding your life of clutter
and focuses on simple living habits
, including continuously curating your space to have a few meaningful items rather than constantly accumulating more things. This design philosophy also hinges upon cleaner, more sustainable, and more efficient ways of living and functioning.
When it comes to interiors, you’ll notice that most minimalist rooms
feature shades of white or lighter neutrals, and to correspond with these palettes, decorative accents and furniture also lean toward subdued, quieter tones, too. Shapes and silhouettes are clean and smooth, and you won’t find clutter or excessive amounts of flourish. This being said, the light-soaked, perfectly tidy minimalism you might be used to seeing has become more of a canvas for color
You likely won’t find something like a houndstooth couch or stacks on stacks of books in a minimalist living room, but now you might see a bright color here and there or a few inconspicuous patterns being added in the form of a rug or throw pillows. While these spaces may not follow the classic textbook definition of minimalism, they still hold onto the important tenets of this design philosophy—clean, clutter-free, simple living.
Whether your living room is small
or large, you can implement as much of a minimalist feel as you see fit. Ahead, we’ve rounded up a collection of minimalist living rooms that will pique your interest and inspire you to test the waters of simple living.
1. Just the Personalized Basics
While everything in this New York room is exactly what you’d find in the typical living room—chairs, couch, TV, lamp, etc., you can tell that each piece was intentionally curated and provides personality to the room without being loud or colorful. The faux zebra area rug is also a fun touch that still works within this minimalist scheme, since after all, it essentially still adheres to a classic black-and-white color scheme.
2. Rustic Meets Minimalism
Minimalism sometimes gets a bad rap for looking sterile, but this style isn’t solely reserved for all-white, cold spaces. There are plenty of minimalist living rooms that feel cozy. Case in point: this Barcelona living room. If you mix textures and add a few natural touches to your room, the overall feel will be warm and welcoming, even if your room embraces blank space with just a few key furnishings and details.
3. Artsy and Quiet
The unintrusive pop of color from the mobile hanging in this chic Valencia home
is the perfect example of how to use brighter shades in accordance with minimalist principles. Warm-toned wood accents are also helpful in making this gray space feel a bit more homey without losing its simplicity.
4. Light-Soaked Minimalist Living Room
A few well-placed patterns and plants help this lovely Brooklyn living room
maintain its balance between Cali cool and Scandi simple. Once you get the basic foundation of your living room laid with furniture, you can build on the decor scheme from there, adding small personal touches to make minimalism work for your space.
5. Bold Color Minimalism
Look no further than this Culver City home
for proof that you can use deep, dark colors and still give your room a minimalist vibe. The key is not overfilling your space with furniture and keeping shapes simple. In the case of this space, a gorgeous soapstone coffee table turned statement piece certainly doesn’t hurt either.
6. Ultra Tidy Minimalist Living Room
In larger spaces, a lot of people get intimidated by white space and try to decorate every square inch, but this professional organizer’s Virginia home
shows that this is not necessary. The fun, curvy shapes of the lamp, pillow, table, and chairs provide plenty of personality to this space in their own right.
7. Playing With Proportions
Manipulating negative space, as seen in this Dutch living room
, proves how minimalism can be the furthest thing from boring. The interplay of the little fireplace, tiny cuckoo clock, small television, and framed posters creates tons of visual interest while also giving the living room a bit of an art gallery vibe.
(Image credit: Amber Interiors)
8. Texture-Heavy Minimalist Living Room
There is nothing boring in this space designed by LA-based firm Amber Interiors
. Though seemingly simple, the space is full of intrigue thanks to an overload of textures—everything from earthy leather and faux fur to nubby linen and live-edge wood.
9. Regal Minimalism
Designer Eileen Kathryn Boyd
is known for her more-is-more approach when it comes to color, but in this minimal space she played with subtlety and shape instead of a harmony of hues. The slight curve of the sofa and the sophisticated palette leave little else to want.
10. Cali-Cool Minimalist Living Room
Form and structure were the guiding principles in this neutral home assembled by designer Jessica Helgerson. Her clever implementation of circles throughout the room keep the eye in constant movement while the complementary textures beg to be touched.
11. Minimalism With Patterns
The contrast game is on point in this home designed by Brian Paquette
. The richly tactile brick wall sets the stage for its softer counterparts like the plush sofa, soft wood coffee table and brushed brass accents, proving that a simple room can also feel quite layered and lively.
12. Minimalist Living Room With Bold Statement Pieces
The guys of Consort
opted to keep a low-profile when fashioning this minimal living room. By keeping the various seating heights at about the same eye level, the space is inviting and sight lines are open. A single oversize mirror is the only wall decor needed.
13. Ultra Airy Minimal Living Room
Here’s a way to make a white-walled room look far more purposeful: paint the moldings and any other architectural detail (like the fireplace in this room by Studio DB
) a light gray to create just enough contrast to keep things interesting (and echo those color choices throughout the selected furnishings and decor). With just two simple hues, this design team made quite an impact.
14. Quiet Living Space With a Splash of Color
At first glance, this living room by Studio Lifestyle
(who designed the home for actress Hilary Duff
) doesn’t necessarily come off as “minimal” but look again, and you’ll see that there isn’t actually much going on in here. With just a few key furnishings and lighting, you can create quite the design story with minimal fluff.
15. Color-Blocked Living Room
When it came to creating this living space, designer Ashley Darryl
kept it simple, but punched it up with thought-provoking art and a bit of color blocking. The white shell of the space provided the perfect stage for that killer blue velvet sofa and black, green and blue books create their own statement on the adjacent shelving unit.
16. Playing With Tones
Sometimes, a tone-on-tone room can be even more interesting than a space with a million things going on, like in this room designed by Brad Ford
. His subtle neutral inflections keep your eye constantly engaged and primed for discovery.
17. Frosty Minimalist Living Room
For a space that has minimal colors, there’s so much to discuss! New York designer Sasha Bikoff brilliantly weaved a cool, almost icy palette that is still pretty inviting and filled with endless texture and sculptural wonders.
18. Minimalist Outdoor Living Room
When you’ve got a view like this, who needs more than a place to sit and take it all in? San Francisco designer Nicole Hollis
clearly agrees, as she kept this room simple and unstuffy to let the vistas do the heavy aesthetic lifting.
19. Gilded Minimalist Space
While you might be thinking “wait, this room isn’t remotely minimal” (and you’re not totally wrong here), there is a lesson to be learned from Greer Interior Design
for a minimal space: all you really need is one element to take a room from subtle to daring. Strip away the gold leaf wall treatment, and you’re left with a darling sunroom.
20. Luxe and Tactile Living Room
Structure was the name of the game in this Scandi-style living room space designed by South Florida firm Olivia O’Bryan
(featured in Luxe Interiors + Design
Palm Beach). The right angles on the sofa and arm chairs are perfectly in line with the linear architecture and then the tufted bench is thrown in for fun, movement and contrast.
21. Wood-Laden Living Room
Leg game = strong! This streamlined space designed by Austin’s Claire Zinnecker
is all about the rise of the legs, leaving everything sitting upright but feeling relaxed in the bleached wood.
22. Black and White Minimalist Space
shows off how cool it is to be square in this gorgeous Manhattan living room where angles are anything but boring. A touch of polished brass lends a cool ’70s vibe to the otherwise monochrome space.
23. Simple and Sharp Living Room
Pared down but perfect: Designer Benjamin Vandiver
prove that it’s not the amount of stuff in a room, but the quality of pieces that make an impact.
24. Beautifully Beige Living Room
Tone on tone on tone was the course of action taken by the interiors team M. Elle
to assemble this tranquil space. While full of a healthy helping of decor, the one-note palette keeps things simple on the eyes.
25. Living Room With a Splash of Greenery
The serene Utrecht apartment
of Sarah and San is quit sparse, and maybe the most minimal of all the rooms in this list, but somehow—thanks to some greenery and textiles—it still feels warm and inviting.
26. Curved and Geometric Minimalist Living Room
Tilted, slanted, swivel and swinging—movement was the driving force in this Jenny Norris
27. Cozy Meets Brutalism
What else does a living room really need, aside from a pair of oversize sofas to sink into at the end of a long day? According to this killer space designed by Leanne Ford
, not much!