The only thing better than having the perfect living room is making sure everyone else is jealous of it. After all, if it isn’t on Instagram, does it even exist? Designing the most photogenic living room is all about the props— ideally ones that seamlessly merge form and function. Because you need to take amazing selfies in your space, but you also need to live in it. Read on for interior design essentials that will have all your friends stopping by for impromptu photoshoots.
1. Proper Mood Lighting
Cabbage Rose Neon Sign Table Lamp from Urban Outfitters
Lighting is everything. If it wasn’t, filters wouldn’t exist. For the most IG-worthy room, you’ll need an arsenal of subtle lighting options. Think candles, Edison bulbs, and the ultimate photogenic lighting: Neon. Unlike the old days, you no longer need to shell out several hundred dollars for an oversized plaque or hope you can scramble up an old Budweiser sign from a garage sale. Tableside statement pieces are often under $100 and look oh-so-pretty in a photo.
2. Plants on Plants on Plants
Succulents from Cactus Limon
Apartment living can feel cramped and stuffy, which is why adding a handful of plants can be an emotional lifesaver. Bring some much-needed oxygen and color into your life by investing in a veritable garden of terrariums, hanging plants, indoor herbs and curated potters. Then, make cuttings for your friends so when you visit their place you still have plant props for Insta.
3. Drinks on Wheels
Clarity Bar Cart from Wayfair
Nothing screams “I have my life together!” like having a wine rack that’s actually stocked with bottles of wine so you can imbibe in sophistication. But there's something even better, and it makes for a great photo op, too: A fully-stocked bar cart. Beyond adding a splash of mid-century mod to the room and providing some helpful storage, it’s undeniably pragmatic for rolling out a last-minute, booze-filled couch party. That's when you capture those perfect plandids of you and yours casually having the best time ever.
4. If These Walls Could Talk
Composite Shapes Wallpaper from Kate Zaremba
Design-forward wallpaper can turn any drab space into an instant photoshoot, providing an amazing backdrop for selfies and group shots. Not sure if you’ll be feeling this year’s Pantone color? Worried that experimental mustard will be a one-and-done phase? Opt for removable panels so you can switch your backdrop at the drop of a hat without cramping your arm from a paint roller.
5. The Piece de Resistance
Chaise sofa from Burrow
Yes, your living room's greater purpose is looking cool on Instagram. But still, you can't have a living room without a couch. You have to Netflix there, after all. Plus a couch can provide some much needed support for selfies and more. Be sure to get a couch that looks the part, while offering maximum comfort. Btw, Burrow's USB port will come in handy to keep your phone charged while you get that viral photo.
6. Cut a Rug
Shape Study Rug from Anthropologie
If you don’t want to go all out with an accent wall, a statement rug is the next best thing. Or better yet, why not do both? You’ve watched enough home decorating challenges, you’re just one four-year degree away from being a professional! Pro-tip: Go for a rug with distracting patterns and colors so that way when you spill crumbs and wine, you can take your sweet time cleaning it up before your Instagram followers notice.
7. A Place To Put Your Coffee (and Other Beverages)
Mara table by Article
In order to have an awesome living room, you need to be able to actually live in it. And what do most people need to live? Coffee. Which is why you need a sturdy and stunning table that is worthy of the nectar that keeps you going every day, and also great for those overhead shots that get all the likes. Marble table tops are not only beautiful for showcasing artisanal pastries, but have easy clean-up for those inevitable spills caused by angling your phone for a flawless shot.
8. A Cat, Duh.
Along with being super fluffy and cute, cats are more than the ultimate Instagram prop—they often merit their own Instagram account! They also serve as nice lap warmers and emotional support animals. Find your new BFF through an ASPCA adoption center.