Beautiful Rustic Living Room Design Ideas

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If sitting in front of a crackling fire sipping hot chocolate while outside the snow builds up towards the window ledges sounds like your dream come true, then a living room decorated in rustic lodge style is a natural for your home.

The rustic lodge or cabin style is a cozy, warm decorating scheme that brings the feeling of the rugged outdoors inside, combined with warm wood, bold colors and primitive accents everywhere.

You don't have to live in the mountains to decorate in lodge style. You don't even need to live in a log cabin, though that would make the job easier. You just need to have a love of wood, rustic or primitive furnishings and an eye for the great outdoors.

Color Scheme

A lodge home has a great deal of wood, creating a warm, earth tone background to the color scheme. Keep the room from becoming monotonous and punch up the color scheme with touches of:

  • Black
  • Hunter green
  • Navy blue
  • Mustard yellow
  • Barn red
  • Bark Brown

Add texture and interest with touches of metal on light fixtures, decorations, trim on furniture and picture frames. Avoid shiny metals such as chrome, and go for:

  • Copper
  • Wrought iron
  • Tin
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Walls and Floors

Traditionally, a rustic or lodge style home would have log walls, but you can create the warmth without going quite that far. Wood paneling in knotty pine or cedar can substitute for log walls. Another alternative is to panel just the lower half of the walls, and paint the upper portion in a soft sage green, tan, muted brown or gold. Forego paneling altogether if you prefer, and simply paint the walls in natural, muted colors that are reminiscent of the mountains.

Wood floors are a must. Hardwood with a distressed look and reclaimed wood floors are perfect, or choose a laminate that replicates an old wood floor. Wide plank flooring with some wear and tear adds to the charm of your home.

Warm up your floors with area rugs that have a rustic country feel. Braided wool rugs with a mixture of greens, blues, browns and gold offset all the wood tones beautifully. Or choose an area rug with a woody theme such as bears, pine trees, or moose. A faux bearskin rug in front of a large fireplace provides a whimsical touch to complete your cabin style.

Furniture

Rustic furniture should be comfortable, durable and made of materials that are natural. Heavy wood or log frames, leather with metal studs and heavy fabrics such as denim, wool or cotton upholstery all suit the lodge living room.

Little touches give big impact and add shots of color. Keep a wool toss blanket tossed over the back of the couch for snuggling on cold winter nights. Add a touch of color with toss pillows in blue, green or burgundy on the couch.

Get a rustic feel with furniture such as:

  • Log frame couch with leather upholstery
  • Log or heavy wood frame coffee table
  • Glider or rocking chair
  • Primitive hutch or cabinet to display collectibles

Lighting

Fluorescent lighting is out of place in the rustic living room. Look for chandeliers made of copper, wrought iron, aged brass or antlers. Wall sconces add to the glow, along with lamps that have an outdoorsy or natural theme.

Light up your living room with:

  • Whimsical lamps in the design of animals or nature elements
  • Antler chandelier
  • Lighting fixtures that resemble twig construction
  • Wall sconces that have electrical candles
  • Stained glass fixtures with mountain themes
  • Lampshades having pinecone or animal motifs

Accessories

Accessorize your living room with a variety of natural and primitive elements. Use your accessories to add whimsy and color to your living room so that the wood doesn't feel overwhelming.

  • Choose artwork with themes of wildlife, the woods or mountains, hunting scenes or fishing.
  • Large baskets are perfect for storage and add to the ambience.
  • Candles on thick pillar holders or in hurricane glass holders create a flattering glow and give a touch of romance to your room.
  • You can create a wonderful display of rustic collectibles on wooden shelves or on a tabletop with pinecones, rusty or aged metal objects, flowers in roughhewn containers, animal figures, metal stars and carved wooden figurines.
  • Display a collection of antique milk cans, candleholders, bowls, carved wooden birds or fishing lures.
  • Old quilts look good folded in a hutch or hung on the wall.
  • Cover your windows with plaid curtains in black, hunter green, navy blue, burgundy or mustard yellow.

Whether it's in your home or a vacation rental, a rustic style living room is a welcoming retreat at the end of the day. With warm wood, bold colors and whimsical, outdoorsy touches, the rustic lodge look is suitable for any area, whether you live in the mountains, the valleys or the flatlands.

Last Updated: October 9, 2011
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About Michelle Ullman Michelle Ullman has lived and gardened in Southern California since childhood. A freelance writer, she covers topics ranging from gardening to home improvement to health issues. She also has experience as a catalog copywriter and poet. Michelle has trained and worked as a respiratory therapist and surgical technologist, but prefers to spend her time gardening, and walking with her dog. Michelle holds a Bachelor's Degree from Redlands University in Business Management. 

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