When updating or redecorating your home, it’s important to think of each space (or room) not only for its functional use (eating, sleeping, working), but you also need to think of the room as a “personality”. For example, the kitchen is the hardworking hub, sort of like central operations the dining room is the ultimate host or hostess and the living room, well this is a unique one, the living room’s personality needs to cater to entertaining, relaxing and daily living—sort of like the kitchen with a little more swagger.

“A “wink” is that something special, quirky and wonderful that can be added to any element of décor.”


The living room is where your home’s personality shines. From family photos on display, to cherished artwork and quirky accessories, your living room needs to speak volumes about your family while also being a great place to relax and recharge. So what are the most important elements of a living space and what are some tricks to being able to best decorate a living room? Check out my tips, tricks and favourite living room must-haves below.

Designers’ Manual

Buy a decorating guidebook, one that gives you practical advice on the living room decor basics such as paint selection, furniture arrangement… My decor bible is “Decorating is fun!” by Dorothy Draper (you can buy the book online at Chapters/Indigo for about $19). Draper’s decor manifesto, written in 1940, is a comprehensive rundown of decor basics and includes many useful pictures and diagrams. “Decorating is fun!” is also a light-hearted read and includes many amusing anecdotes.

Invest in Seating

The living room is where we unwind, where our lives unfold, and you want to do this in comfort and style. When shopping for living room seating, carefully consider the needs of you and your family. Are you more of a formal entertainer? Then I would opt for a tailored sofa like the ENOR fabric sofa power seat. The design is very chic and minimal, and its tailored design invites those sitting on it to “converse” and “indulge”. If you are looking to create a more relaxed atmosphere, I would strongly suggest a sectional. Sectionals are very much about relaxation but can equally be about style. The DENMARK and PARK AVENUE are two designs that look amazing in just about any space. I’m also a huge fan of the ROCKLAND II and WILFORD sectionals—If you are looking for a little urban appeal. Leather is also super easy to maintain!

Quirky Accessories

I want to introduce to you the MOST important design element living room can have… the “wink”. A “wink” is that something special, quirky and wonderful that can be added to any element of décor. I always try to incorporate at least one “wink” in all of the living rooms I create. What are my favourite “winks” for living rooms in 2015? The PALACE candleholder, STEEL “the shimmering ball”, Carl Lessard’s photography, the WIZZ end table (I’m truly obsessed with this!) and a SUFFA bean bag chair.

Happy decorating!

Janette Ewen, Interior stylist and The Style Blog collaborator (at Mobilia, we just LOVE everything she does!)

From her start as an MTV set stylist to her successful career as a designer, design editor, TV host and ambassador for brands such as Moet, Mobilia and PANDORA Jewelry, Janette has continually sought to entice audiences to design their own eclectic experiences and celebrate life to the fullest. Janette’s personal mantra “stay interested, be interesting” guides her exciting life—full of design, travel and creation. Janette’s adventures and passion for style and good taste have been featured in the LA Times, Nylon Magazine, The Globe and Mail and House and Home magazine.

As a design partner at Parker Barrow Design studio, Janette is “over the moon” to be creating spaces that would find a happy home in her fast-paced, whimsical life.

Janette’s fans enjoy keeping up with her adventures through her popular social media pages including Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Her blog “gojette” is a go-to for trends setters and tastemakers alike. In her spare time Janette loves traveling, rally car racing and hiking throughout North America.

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