As I continue to tour you around my dream house…code for  showing my reader(s) rooms that I really like, I now enter the living room.  The living room in recent years has been called the great room, the family room, the bonus room, the parlor and a few other terms.

I love the sunny, fresh feel of this living room.  I’m not sure I could ever paint my wood floors white but I love the look.

Older homes usually have a living room space and a family room or den space.  In Southern California the newer homes were designed with a “great room” instead of the 2 separate spaces traditionally carved out of the floor plan.

Image via Apartment Therapy.  This is a small space but I love what they did with it and have always wanted brick wall.

Our home was built in 1968 and is a fairly smallish tract house.  We originally had a living room and a family room and fortunately our family room was designed in such a way that it is adjacent to the kitchen as well as the fireplace.

This is our mantle…it looks like I was listing a little, sorry about that.

So as I explained HERE we switched the living room with the dining room and renamed the space “library” or reading room, since that is where I most often sit to read.

This used to be our living room…

This was our dining room

If I could make one change to my family room it would be to make it about 5 feet wider…since the wall we would push out (if that was even a possibility) has the fireplace on it that won’t be happening.

This is such an open and airy room with an amazing view.  {Sarah’s Summer House, HGTV}

It’s a cozy room and I like it most of the time.  I thoroughly enjoy the fireplace in the cooler months and we use the room daily.

Isn’t this gorgeous?  I love the crisp, clean feel of the black and white.

Image via Traditional Home

One of my favorite accessories…a doggie!

Image via Tracery Interiors

I love this living room.  It’s inviting and looks like it would be comfortable.  Maybe that’s the advantage to keeping both a “living room” and a “family room”, there wouldn’t be a need for a television and you could arrange the furniture for comfortable conversation without concern that the chairs and sofa are facing an entertainment center.

Isn’t this clever, an over-mantle where no fireplace exists?  I think this is a sweet vignette for the corner of a living room or family room or library.

Image via Michael Whaley

Paladin windows {sigh} Is there anything more to say?

I have always thought a day bed was something that would serve a library or study well…I mean doesn’t reading make you sleepy sometimes?

I hope you have enjoyed my tour of living spaces.  What items do you feel are essential to the well dressed living / family room?