When I talk about my living room to-do list I always mention “that wall behind the front door” – we have a tiny house, with a narrow open floor layout, and waaaay too big windows in the living room.  I put our couch on the diagonal across the front door. Putting my furniture in that corner left a big blank odd space in the opposite corner – THAT wall behind the door (and the rocker) in the photo below:

Now why don’t I just put my couch beneath the front windows? Believe me, I tried. But it left big blank spaces on both sides of the couch AND, worse,  since the window is so wide, made the loveseat look way too small for the space.

Why don’t I just go for an actual couch then and ditch the loveseat? I had a 3-seater but the room is so narrow, and when I had a couch there my living area was nothing but the couch. There was hardly any space left between the front door when it opened and the arm rest. And since we didn’t have an entry way, getting a smaller seat opened up the pathway from the door. This has been especially helpful for dragging my son’s big school stroller and the younger kids’ regular strollers through the house.

I also thought long and hard about it and finally decided that we don’t really need a couch. All the kids hang out in their lanai playroom downstairs, or upstairs or in the shared boys’ room on the 1st floor. We hardly entertain, except for grandparents and my sister and brother-in-law and sister-in-law. And that’s not even a weekly thing. So a big couch just wasn’t necessary for our space and lifestyle right now.

I found that moving the loveseat to the corner solved two issues: it made the 2-seater look bigger and it opened up the pathway by the door. BUT! Now that spot behind the rocker and the front door looks oddly bare and off, I think.

I think I need more height there, so I experimented by dragging my Ikea Lerberg shelves (again! As I did here) to see if it would work:

Obviously the shelves are too wide, but you get the idea. I think having something tall or at least vertical there will balance off the room. I’m thinking narrow floating shelves that I can fill with little pots. Or a vertical gallery wall? Or a full length mirror? Or hang up the guitar?

Also, you can see the chunky wooden curtain rods in this photo and the too-short curtains which were hand-me-downs from my mom. They have shells attached at the bottoms when my mother was going through her eclectic-Filipino decor phase.

I definitely want to fill that spot with cacti and ant-mosquito plants, so I’m leaning towards shelves.

(P.S. The black strips by the door is anti-slip tape for rugs. I just haven’t gotten around to getting an entrance mat that I like!)

(One more: I took these photos before we got our bench, and I realized as much as I love our new bench, I also still like how sparse my living room used to look).