Top of the lust list is a separate formal sitting room for entertaining or, if the main open-plan kitchen and living area is where guests congregate, a separate media room where you can hide the ugliness of the television, the clutter of cords and the kids’ games consoles. Within the media room, gorgeous joinery could hide the top-shelf tech you’ve invested in, including a motorised lift for the television, so it can descend out of sight when not in use.
As the space in which you will relax and come together as a family, the minimum requirements of a living room are warmth and comfort. Plan for a snuggly sofa big enough for the whole crew – a modular, such as those from King Living, will offer flexibility – and consider putting in a fireplace, which will both warm the space and provide a visual focus other than the TV.
If the budget won’t stretch to a separate living area, consider ways to divide the room. “A tall open shelving unit provides storage and separates a large space,” says interior designer Luisa Volpato. Remove focus from the TV with a stylish feature wall. “They’re a great way to add another dimension to your space,” says Aimee, who’s planning a wall of white, narrow profile bricks by Austral Bricks in her own new build.