Modern and Neutral Living Room Space

Last year, I shared the master bedroom I helped design for my brother and his girlfriend. You guys went gaga over this room and I wasn’t surprised at your reaction…it’s grand and stunning!4-post canopy bed from Restoration Hardware in this master bedroom retreat.

Many of you inquired about seeing the rest of their large condo in the city and I’m excited to give you guys an update on another space in their gorgeous home – the living room.Gray and white bedroom with leather bench from Rejuvenation.

Just as we finished up their master bedroom, I started helping them pick out some of the major pieces for their neutral living room space. We wanted to continue with the same vibes from the bedroom…modern, clean, and neutral.

We chose a paint color (Gray Owl, just like in our house), a couch, a rug, and other major furniture pieces. Slowly, all of the elements started arriving and I’d sporadically pop over to their place (they live about a mile away) to check on the progress of the room.

A modern and neutral living room space with a gray sectional, wool rug, and wood furniture. Once all of the furniture was in place, I went over there and made a list of all of the decor we’d need to find to really bring the space to life. To me, that’s the absolute best part of any room design! The accessories and personal touches really elevate a space and give it a personality. After multiple trips to HomeGoods, Target, and some online shopping…we were ready to get this space together!

Living Room Furniture

Let’s start with the big pieces in this room. You may recognize the couch because it’s actually the same one we have (except they have black legs instead of wood). We love Interior Define and after Ryan & Sarah visited their showroom here in Chicago, they too were on board for a large gray sectional.Wood bookcase from West Elm to hold pretty accessories in a family room.

The design is sleek, but still comfortable and inviting. It sits atop an 8×12 rug that is truly stunning. I love the dark charcoal color with the tribal pattern. We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again, bigger is better when it comes to rugs. If you’re not sure what size rug to buy for your room, read this post as a refresher.Tips to style bookshelves. Fill them with books, accessories, and greenery for a styled look.

We wanted a spot in here to display pretty objects, so I was so happy that there was room for a bookcase in the corner. This wood and black piece is perfection! The wood tones warm up the cool hues in this room and there is tons of storage! I love that they can hide things in the cabinets below, and also display pretty objects on top. Faux greenery adds life to a bookshelf. Leather chairs from West Elm add additional seating to this living room space.

Now let’s discuss seating in here. Ryan and Sarah entertain a lot, and we wanted to make sure that there was plenty of seating for all of their friends. Obviously the large sectional is full of seats, but we also added these 2 chairs directly across from the couch. You know I love me some cognac leather (as evidenced by my own chair), and these ones from West Elm are gorgeous. If I needed a side table in my own home, I’d definitely opt for the black one in between the leather chairs. It’s modern, sleek, and is just waiting for a cocktail to rest on top. Bench under window to create more seating in a living room.

We also added a long black bench from Arhaus under the window. While Ryan and Sarah don’t regularly take a seat on it, it’s always full of people when they entertain. Between the couch, the chairs, and the bench you can have a round circle of conversation with seats for everyone!

Let’s talk about this gorgeous coffee table. Finding a round coffee table is TOUGH and I’m so happy that they found this one. It’s big, offsets the hard lines from the sectional, and has plenty of storage with the two levels. A great round coffee table for a large living room space.

Accessorizing the Neutral Living Room

We didn’t go too crazy with accessories for this room, and instead focused on the coffee table and bookshelves. Oh, and pillows on the couch (of course!).Faux greenery on a coffee table adds some life to a neutral living room

I’m obsessed with the look of this large vase displayed on the coffee table. I found the vase at HomeGoods for a steal and added some faux greenery from Michaels. It adds some height and some greenery right in the middle of their living room. 

Trays are always a good idea when it comes to coffee table decor because you can simply pick it up and remove everything really easily. This was another HomeGoods find and I love how the wood pops against the white top of the table.

Decorating the Bookshelf

This wooden bookcase from West Elm holds accessories and decor for extra style!

The bookcase is my favorite part of the entire room. I mean who doesn’t love a spot to showcase pretty items? We tried to keep it pretty simple with books, plants, and neutral decor spread throughout. I love to sandwich hardcovered books with pretty vases and sculptural objects on a shelf.

A row of black books flanked by sculptural items makes a statement on the top shelf. A bookshelf decorated with vases and coffee table books.

While gorgeous (fashion-inspired) coffee table books ground things on the bottom shelf. Styling these took some time, but I think we landed on a nice look for the everyday. This bookshelf holds pretty items and accessories in this neutral living room space.

I’m not gonna lie, I actually did 2 photos shoots of this space because we were waiting for the art to arrive. So in some photos, you’ll notice my basket near their bookshelves (it’s from HomeGoods), and in other photos, you’ll notice this basket from Serena & Lily. Sarah bought the basket after seeing how well mine worked to hide their blankets in this room! I always recommend having a spot to hide your super comfy blankets that might not be the cutest to look at every single day. These ones get the job done! 

The Stunning Large-Scale Art

Ryan and Sarah found this gorgeous piece of art to come to hang over the couch, and it was the final item we added to the space. They ended up going with this large piece (60×40!!!) and it really ties the entire room together. 

It’s such a good size too, taking up about 2/3 the width of the couch. Sometimes people go with art that is way too dinky, but this size is absolute perfection. I also love the hints of blue and color in the art. My brother was begging or a bit more color in this room and I think the art checked off that box for him!

I’m happy to know that this room complements their master bedroom space so well. This neutral living room really flows with the modern and minimalistic look of their master bedroom.
A bookcase in the corner of this neutral living room adds character and life.

I’ll be sure to touch base when there is more to share from this gorgeous home. It’s fun to live vicariously through someone else’s house, especially since mine is just about finished.

Shop this Neutral Living Room

How to get the look for this modern and neutral living room space.

Paint Color – Gray Owl // Large Art Piece // Tribal Pattern Pillow // Black Bench // Leather Chairs // Coffee Table // Rug // Couch // Bookcase


The Year of Casey

Hey there!

I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m a Chicago gal teaching you how to design, DIY, and maintain your home…by yourself! Learn more about me right here.

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