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Steps to an uncluttered living room by Paisley Hansen

The living room is an area where the family retreats to be able to relax and spend time together. If the room becomes too cluttered, it is no longer somewhere that you will feel relaxed, but rather, would feel anxious or unclean. Clutter can lead to bad feelings, therefore it should be eliminated from the living room (and other rooms, of course) so that the area can be enjoyed. There are several ways that clutter can be removed from the living room area, while keeping it attractive with simplistic decor.

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One way to remove clutter is to double up on the functionality of your furniture. Furniture that can be used for more than one reason, can help you keep your clutter at bay. When picking out new furniture, check out the features to see if there are any pieces that can do more than one thing for your living room.

A few examples of double-functioning furniture would include end tables and coffee tables that have shelving incorporated underneath the table top. This area would be perfect for magazines, books, television guides and any other paperwork that you do not wish to be cluttering up your room. Another example is getting a couch that will double as a table for eating snacks. Instead of having television trays in your living room for the occasional snack, use your couch instead. The middle portion of the back of your couch will fold down into a table-like surface. Some of these will also have built-in cup holders.

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Some armchairs, love seats, and couches will have trays that come out of the side of the arm of the chair. This part folds down and has an area to keep a television guide or a magazine, along with an area for your remote control so that it does not get lost. When you fold the tray into the upright position, the clutter is hidden inside of the piece of furniture.

Getting an ottoman is a great way to hide the clutter of dvds, cds, and video games from your living room area. An ottoman that has a lid, can be filled with all of these media sources, hiding them from view in the living room area.

Instead of placing knickknacks all over your living room, dedicate a few shelves for this purpose. You could also use the top of a fireplace mantel, if desired.

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Keep these things in one area, so that the clutter does not over run your room.

 Entertainment centers are a great way to hide clutter. Make sure that when you pick one out, it has several shelves and most importantly, cabinets. You will want to place as much as possible behind the closed doors on an entertainment center so that it will not be able to be viewed by anyone in the room. Entertainment centers with only shelves look hap-hazard and full of the color from different movie and game cases, rather than the uniform look of a piece of wood.

Consider adding barn door hardware to the wall in your living room to add wood doors that can slide shut when wanted. This will give your living area seclusion without having a standard door that opens into the room, using up precious space. Having a door to your living room area is a great way to truly make it feel like a getaway rather than the central location of your home. If you want to use your room for relaxation, a door will work tremendously in your favor.

When deciding on extra decorations, if you are intending on trying to keep the area simple, only add one or two simple pieces to the living room. If there are only a few pieces, they become focal points, so make them something interesting that you enjoy viewing. A large plant in one corner, a vase on top of your entertainment center, or a simple picture on your wall all will work great in giving your room some character without overpowering the room with too many items.