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The Best Furniture and Décor for the Living Room, According to Interior Designers

TRNK’s Truss sofa. Photo: Courtesy of Retailer

There’s a lot that goes into properly decorating your living room. Not only do you need big-ticket items like couches and coffee tables, but you’ll also be looking for more personal touches like rugs and wall art to give the space warmth and comfort. To help us find the best-designed pieces (that aren’t overly expensive), we turned to interior designers for their go-to’s and, with their guidance, selected a few picks of our own. And if you’re looking for lamps, we’ve got you covered with some of our favorites.

Best sofas

Joybird Briar Sofa

Here’s a Mid-century modern-inspired sofa, recommended by Modsy stylist Tara Smith that can be customized in a variety of configurations: “It’s also offered in an apartment size for the those tight on space (but who still want quality furniture).”

Joybird Briar Sofa

Or try it in a Santiago Caramel leather. “I love this item for almost any modern and minimal style,” says Karina Lameraner, senior stylist at Modsy. “It will last forever and develop a nice patina as it gets used over the years.”

We also like this streamlined leather option from Houzz, which is made from aniline leather with a natural wood base.

Andrea Kim, stylist manager at Modsy, recommends this simple sofa from Interior Define: “It’s a really versatile, sturdy sofa, perfectly sized for any apartment or studio, with plenty of cushy seating.”

Serta Geneva 85” Sofa

Our budget pick is this Serta sofa featuring a hardwood construction and easy-to clean fabric.

Lameraner also likes Interior Define’s Maxwell sofa: “This sofa is extremely versatile within more classic and rustic styles. It’s got great depth that really allows you to sink in and get cozy without feeling like you have a giant monstrosity of a sofa in your home.” The Maxwell was also recommended by Shelby Girard, a Havenly interior designer: “The Maxwell is a personal favorite because it comes in an apartment-appropriate length, but it’s extra deep — perfect for curling up and watching Netflix.”


“If you’re a mod customer and are in need of extra storage, this is a great option,” according to Lameraner. The seat cushions lift up for extra space to store toys and blankets.

“I’m obsessed with Industry West,” says interior designer Dani Arps. “They have an amazing selection from boutique vendors around the world and their prices are very reasonable.” She recommends this Scandinavian-inspired sofa with a European white oak frame and leather cushions.

Here’s another Mid-century-inspired design with fabric cushions for a lot less (at well under $1,000).

Joybird Ainsley Sofa

Kim also likes Joybird’s Ainsley: “Here’s a well crafted modern-minimalist piece that goes well with almost any style.”

Kim recommends this swooping sofa from CB2, too: “A true statement stunner. Its curvilinear shape and tapered stainless steel legs give it a modern, elegant feel.”

Anthropologie Vera Sofa

Homepolish designer Amanda Sacy recommends this on-trend millennial pink velvet sofa from Anthropologie. “The chic curves nod to old Hollywood glamor, and the customizable color options adds a pop to the living room,” says Sacy. “Vera is versatile — she can be dressed up to fit more formal décor or transition to a more casual setting.”


Another pretty pink option in a Mid-century silhouette with golden accents.

Smith also likes this Crate and Barrel model. “This may be one of the most versatile sofas,” she says. “I’ve used it for just about every type of style, and it can cross over between formal and casual depending on what you pair it with.”

Larisa Barton is also a fan of Interior Define’s couches. Her top choice is the Jasper, a sectional that comes in a variety of configurations and sizes, with three wood finishes for its base. “For people afraid of a sectional being overwhelming, it is perfect,” says Barton.

TRNK Truss Sofa

“I recently used TRNK’s Truss Sofa in Clavicle for a project on the Lower East Side,” says Homepolish’s Ashlie Broderic. “It is gorgeous and perfectly scaled for an apartment. The unique blackened steel legs lift of off the ground and keep it feeling light and airy. The fabric is commercial grade, so even though it is twice as expensive as something you would purchase at West Elm, it will last twice as long.” Truss is TRNK’s first exclusive, in-house designed collection, and each piece is made-to-order in the U.S.

Best coffee tables

According to Lameraner, “Acrylic is your best friend if you live in a smaller space.” She suggests CB2’s acrylic coffee table. “It will open up the space while still adding an extra surface.”

For more Mid-century-inspired design, Homepolish designer Liz Lipkin recommends the Table table from Design House Stockholm, which she likes “for its clean Scandinavian design — low profile, solid oak legs, lacquered steel top — but it’s also versatile and hardworking when needed.” The tabletop is actually a removable tray and comes in two colors — great for transporting drinks from the kitchen or holding a plant or a stack of books, according to Lipkin.

For another simple, Scandinavian-design inspired option, we like this two-tiered wooden table — and its price.

Elyza Brillantes of Havenly recommends this round, smoked-glass coffee table as a good option for tight spaces. “I love that this can be styled with coffee-table books on the lower shelf that can be seen through the tabletop,” she says.

Here’s another tiered option made of oak in a cool all-black finish.

“This one checks a lot of style boxes,” according to Smith. “It’s sophisticated, minimal, glam, modern, elegant, and industrial.”

Joybird Webb Coffee Table

Another small-space rec from Lameraner: “This coffee table adds a bit of storage and is great for smaller spaces.”


An ottoman is a great alternative to a coffee table, and does double duty, like this one recommended by Modsy’s Kim: “The velvet finish on this one gives it a subtle touch of glam.”

Or go for a leather ottoman, which Homepolish designer Tali Roth recommends: “It’s a great way to get leather into your space,” she says.

This woven ottoman doubles as storage and would be great for small spaces.

Best rugs

“This is a go-to, easygoing rug that’s kid friendly,” according to Lameraner.

Kim also prefers another of Dash and Albert’s jute woven rugs, which she says is “a sturdy, durable eco-friendly rug that’s perfect for high-traffic areas.”