Decorating & Design

December 3, 2008

Media Room Design

Q. We have a very long and narrow media room, with an outlet for the television and surround sound placed in the middle of the longest wall of the room. The space has neutral carpet and paint and recessed lights equipped with dimmers. How can we make it cozy and welcoming? It is roughed in for a gas fireplace on one narrow end/wall and there is plumbing on the opposite wall. Do you have any advice?

? Kamloops, B.C.

A. Adding warm colours and texture to your media room will help make the space feel like a warm, welcoming place where you and your family will want to spend loads of time.

To create a comfortable seating area for watching movies, playing games and entertaining guests, consider purchasing a slipcovered sofa with high arms. For upholstery, choose a casual, durable fabric such as a soft brushed twill (you won’t have to worry about drink spills as much with slipcovers). If your budget allows, splurge for down- or feather-filled cushions for extra sink-into-the-sofa comfort. Be sure to add a soft throw and a few decorative pillows in complementary colours for getting cozy in front of the TV.

From your description, it sounds like you have wall-to-wall carpeting. To define the seating area, place a patterned area rug in warm tones over your current carpet. A comfortable, high-backed leather club chair placed perpendicular to the sofa would make a practical addition to the seating area and will give the room a hint of luxury. To complete the grouping, consider a large, upholstered ottoman with storage instead of a coffee table for tucking away remote controls and board games, as well as providing extra seating.

Hang a few vintage-looking movie posters in black frames on the walls to add a sense of playfulness to the space. If you are planning on putting in a sink at one end of the room, think about installing a small stainless steel bar fridge beneath for easy access to snacks and drinks.