02/02/2012 08:50 am ET | Updated Oct 11, 2012

Living Room Decorating Tips (VIDEO)

While the kitchen may be the heart of the home for many people, the living room is often the main area where most entertaining and conversation happens. A well laid out living room caters to that idea and makes the space a comfortable gathering spot for family and friends to lounge and relax. And according to this video from The Nest, there are four essential things to consider for the perfect living room.

To start, it's important to figure out the furniture arrangement in the living room. There are several ways sofas and armchairs can be arranged in the living room to help induce conversation. One of the most common furniture arrangements is the L-shaped layout. This consists of a either two sofas or a sofa and two chairs placed along two walls in the living room, forming a L shape, which immediately makes the living room feel more intimate. The L shape plan also brings all the seating in the living room closer together, which makes it the ideal space for hosting and conversing with guests. However, our personal favorite is the facing plan as it's a layout that guarantees conversation between people with sofas and chairs, and ultimately guests, facing each other.

Next, focal points are an essential part to the living room these are the pieces that will make the room stand out and look balanced. In most homes, the piece that anchors sitting areas in the living room is the coffee table. It's both an easy and necessary piece of furniture in the living room as it brings the space together. Good to know: glass-top tables give the illusion that a room is larger than it seems, so consider centering it in a smaller space, or try going with nesting tables, which have great versatility and are excellent coffee table alternatives that can easily be used as side tables.

But keep in mind proportions, low tables should be grouped with smaller seating while larger couches and armchairs will likely require a taller table. Aside from coffee tables, captivating artwork or a fireplace also serve as excellent focal points in a room, and we personally love the idea of an oversized painting displayed above a fireplace or one that takes up an entire wall in the living room.

For finishing touches, pepper the room with single chairs and side tables, which are pieces that can help create unexpected conversation areas and reading corners. Try placing an armchair next to the fireplace own as a cozy accent or simply flank a sofa with two different style side tables -- or even nesting tables -- which will bring some added personality into the living room.