1. Designate zones.
In a small room, you will likely only have room for one conversation area and no additional space for furniture groupings. Large rooms can function as much more than just a large sitting area, but you might have to get creative with how to utilize best the size or shape of the room you have. Identify several possible functional areas within the room, such as a conversation zone (or two or three!), a media zone, an area for a writing desk, a console or a game table, a dining area, or perhaps a reading area.
2. Divide the space visually.
You can add ceiling beams, half walls, or pillars to divide up a room visually in semi-permanent ways, or for flexibility, you might be able to use area rugs, curtains, wallpaper, and furniture placement to help create visually cozy spaces within the larger room. Even a sofa with its back to another space, a chaise lounge, a large bench, tables between chairs, an attractive screen, large lamps, curtains, or plants can help divide the spaces.
3. Anchor the room.
Great rooms or large living areas can end up feeling cluttered if you put too many small pieces in the room without a couple of anchoring pieces. A sectional, large sofa, large coffee table, and even built-in bookcases or a piano will help anchor a room so smaller pieces can be tucked in here and there as accents if necessary.
4. Creative lighting.
No matter what size of a room you have, lighting can make a difference in how the room feels. Fortunately, there are often more windows with a large room, so daylighting isn’t as much of a concern. But shadows and dark corners can make everyone feel uneasy at night. So if you have just one center ceiling light, you will likely want to add more light with lamps. A room can look awkward if you have too many lamps, though, so here are a couple of tips for lighting a large room.
Perhaps pick two or three larger-scale lamps with similar shades and then mix in the slimmer, less obtrusive metal floor and wall lamps to bring lighting all around the room. Mixing in glass lamps can also prevent lamp overload. You can have an outlet put into the floor near the perimeter of a conversation area for a lamp cord if it isn’t convenient to plug it in the wall.
5. Use color.
Color and pattern can be used to break up big expanses of walls in a great room or cut the size of a tall wall down to a more comfortable height. Then, add wainscoting with varying shades of neutrals or colors painted above and below the molding. If you have a high ceiling, you may want to try a simple trick to cozy up your room. If you paint the ceiling a shade or two or even several shades darker than your walls (or use paneling!), your ceiling won’t seem as tall, and your room might feel more snug and cozy.