6 "One-Hour" Ideas to Give Your Living Room a Refresh This Weekend

These quick but impactful changes will make your living room feel like new, but won't eat up all your time on your days off

a living room with a dark blue sofa
(Image credit: Regan Wood)

Do you ever get into those moods where you want some change inside your home? For some reason, refreshing the living room comes to mind for many people as many of us spend a majority of time there. That said, we’re not talking about a full-blown remodel, however, little ways to bring new life to the space.

To help get some inspiration, we tapped some interior designers about quick ways to give your living room a refresh. The best part? All of these ways take less than an hour so you won’t be spending all day and will be left with a visible change you’ll love. Plus, if you take it slow, you won’t be spending lots of money all at once so you can gradually add to your space without emptying your wallet.

1. Change up throw pillows

A living room with mixed textures

(Image credit: Roger Davies. Design: Sara Story)

If you’ve had the same throw pillows for a few years, then it might be time to change them out. According to Natalie Papier, interior designer and star of Magnolia Network show Artfully Designed, changing up your pillows is an easy, inexpensive and fun way to change up the look of your living room sofa without having to replace any bigger ticket items. ‘Changing out pillows gives you the opportunity to try new color trends and a chance to try new pattern mixing,’ Papier adds.

Consider throw pillows from Etsy, Pottery Barn, or Wayfair where you’ll find a variety of different styles at various price points. For example, get throw pillows for major holidays that can be swapped out — Valentine’s Day, Easter, Christmas, Halloween, etc.

2. Rearrange the furniture

living room with light gray walls and black trims, matble fireplace, dark blue and light blue sofa, wooden coffee table

(Image credit: Zoe Feldman Design)

Another quick and easy way to give your space a refresh is by rearranging the living room furniture. ‘This may look like swapping out furniture from other rooms or maybe moving an accent chair that lives in your bedroom to the living room for a bit,’ says Jennifer Stephan, interior designer and founder of Jennifer Stephan Interiors. ‘Try to reconfigure the space creating new focal areas and conversation arrangements.’

That said, this isn’t really a one person job. If you plan on rearranging furniture, then you’ll want to be sure you have a friend or partner on standby to help because it can be heavy depending on what you’re moving around. Try not to go overboard with this because you might end up making your space look more tight and cramped if it’s not proportioned correctly.

3. Add a plant

A fiddle leaf fig in the corner of the room

(Image credit: Bill Abranowicz. Design: Matt Blacke)

For those succulent and indoor plant parents, add another one to your living room space to change up the vibes. Andrea West, interior designer and founder of Andrea West Design recommends adding olive trees and ZZ plants in oversized pots in a living room corner to give your space an instant refresh without complicated and time-consuming maintenance.

Even if you don’t consider yourself a plant person, give it a try as you might like the look of greenery in your space.

4. Bring in a new lighting fixture

a living room with an interesting chandelier and tan sofas

(Image credit: Matthew Williams. Design: Workstead)

Brightening up your space with some stylish lamps and other living room lighting is a quick, cost-effective way to refresh your living room. ‘Buy a matching pair for symmetrical lamps or buy a table lamp and a floor lamp to add an interesting depth of height in the room if you don’t have two side tables available,’ says Darrell Gardner, director of product development at furniture brand CORT.

5. Invest in accent furniture

white boucle accent chair with rust colored cushion

(Image credit: Molly Culver. Design: Britt Design Group)

While you can rearrange furniture to refresh your living room, you may also want to consider adding new pieces. According to Darrell, adding a stylish bench or accent chair can add life to space and also provide a convenient place to put your shoes on in the morning or prop your feet up as you watch your favorite Netflix shows.

Other popular pieces that you might want to think about adding include a coffee table, reclining chair, or ottoman.

6. Add an area rug

a living room with a large area rug

(Image credit: Adrian Gaut. Design: Crystal Sinclair Designs)

While you might have an area rug in your bedroom, there’s no reason it has to be confined to one room. Claire Paquin, founder of Clean Design, recommends bringing a living room rug into the picture to add different different dimensions and colors. Take a look at Pottery Barn or Wayfair if you’re looking for stylish, yet affordable options for area rugs that can be ordered and to your place in a few days.

Now that you have some inspiration on quick one-hour ideas to give your living room a refresh, be sure to try it out this weekend and see what you think.

Casey Clark

Casey Clark is a freelance writer from New York City who covers beauty, home, and lifestyle. She has been a writer for nearly four years and has been featured in The Spruce, Better Homes & Gardens, Oprah Daily, and more. She's constantly working to debunk myths, test trends, and review the hottest products.