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Organic Modern Living Room Reveal and How to Replicate the Key Elements


Check out how our organic modern living room makeover, learn what the style is, and see how to create the look in your home.

This post contains sponsored and affiliate links for your shopping convenience to brands I love. All thoughts and opinions are my own. You can read my full disclosure here.

Welcome to the New Year New Room Refresh hosted by Casa Watkins Living. The other participants and I are sharing our reveals today after making over a room of our choice in a month!

Modern organic living room decor with a german smear fireplace surround, pottery, modern face vase, candles, and neutral furniture.
Modern Organic Living Room Decor

Our Cozy Organic Modern Living Room

You can read more about the challenge, my plans, before pictures, and progress posts below.

  1. Modern Living Room Mood Board
  2. Is it cheaper to reupholster old furniture or buy new?
  3. Easy Floating Mantel Facelift
  4. DIY Textured Paint Vase and Planter Makeover
  5. Organic Modern Living Room Reveal! (you are here)

From the beginning of this challenge, I knew I wanted to create a more modern look for our living room but still wanted it to feel cozy. After pulling the room together and doing a little more research, I realized I was creating an organic modern living room for my family.

What is modern organic style?

Organic modern design is mixing natural/nature-inspired elements into a modern style. Think clean lines but cozy organic furniture, wood tones, nature-hued accents, textiles in organic fabrics (cotton, linen, velvet), and subtle or bold pops of color.

Green and neutrals in a cozy modern living room corner with a built in bookcase-media stand on a german smear fireplace, large art, and gold glass display cabinet filled with pottery.
Green and Neutrals in a Cozy Modern Living Room

I explained at the beginning of the year how most of our house is colorful, maximalist, bold, and has lots of eclectic and global accents. It was important for me to tone down the living area where we spend most of our time but still make it feel cohesive with the rest of the rooms.

I believe I accomplished just that!

Elements of Organic Modern Style

  • A simplistic layout. Select a few modern furnishings with clean lines for an open and airy layout.
  • Wood tones. Add warmth with natural wood tones in furniture and decor.
  • Minimalist decorating accessories. Include elements like earthenware and clay accessories, organic textiles, and second-hand finds with organic or modern silhouettes to add interest.
  • Modern or nature art pieces. Try graphic modern prints to oil landscapes and abstracts in soothing hues.
  • Modern rugs. Organic and graphic patterns, neutral or nature-inspired colors
  • Textiles with texture in organic fabrics. Subtle patterns and colors or black and white prints but less is more.
  • Soft lighting. Optimize natural light and have the soft glow of candles ready with good reading light and overhead light using eco-friendly LED bulbs.
  • Greenery and outdoor treasures. House plants in modern planters and stone vases with clippings are modern nature-inspired decor along with seashells and pinecones intentionally placed in a minimalist fashion.
From Farmhouse to Tradition Modern Mantel

How to add a modern organic interior design to your home

It isn’t necessary or always practical to start from scratch. Repurposing what you have and shopping your house are two favorite ways to implement a different style or try something new.

  • First, look around your room and think about what you could do to get a more minimal and modern look. Maybe with a fresh coat of paint? Or added architecture?

I had already done a faux german smear technique on our fireplace surround after we moved in but had always wanted to change the farmhouse floating mantel into something more modern and traditional.

A couple of corbels, a wood embellishment, and black paint completely transformed it, and only cost a few dollars.

A german smear fireplace opening with a brass peacock screen and black ornate floating mantel for organic modern interior design.
Mantel Details Closeup
A view of our modern orgnaic interior designed living room with neutrals and greens, Jonathan Adler decor, black floating mantel, fireplace with german smear.
Organic Modern Interior Design
  • Decided what furniture you want to use, switch from another room, or purchase new or second-hand. The end goal is for an open and airy layout appropriate for the size and style of your home.

On a whim, I found a pair of round bone inlay tables at an antique store for $40/each. Turns out they were from West Elm but are no longer in production. I removed the small accent tables, stools, and a side table/chest that we had in the living area in favor of the modern and clean round tables.

A black inkdrop rug from Ruggable with west elm side table, z gallerie coffee table, and lula and georgia green velvet sofa in a modern traditional living room with organic vibes.
Open Modern Living Room with Cozy Vibes

Other furniture changes I made were purchasing a beautiful burled wood console table and finally getting professionally reupholstered a pair of chairs we found in Japan that we love and didn’t want to part with.

A beautiful burled wood console table sits behind a green velvet sofa.
Burled Wood Console Table

I selected a cozy neutral fabric with an organic chevron pattern in it that has a little bit of green to pull in the velvet sofa. It’s perfect! You can read all about that process and the decision to reupholster in this story.

Green and neutrals with a gold display cabinet of Japanese pottery and Asian chair sits in the corner of a modern living room makeover.
Green and Neutrals in a Modern Living Room

Normally I wouldn’t spend so much on a room makeover but it was coincidental that we had already been saving up for those two changes. The living room has slowly been transforming in the four and half years we’ve been here.

  • Use an area rug in a modern organic pattern or graphic print. Take the opportunity to try a new furniture layout with the area rug as I mentioned above. Make it open and airy by pulling out seating or completely changing the arrangement.

We live in a small single-story ranch with 8-foot ceilings but have an open layout. I like to maximize it as best as I can! Using a large area rug helps defines the space and makes it feel bigger.

I did this by having the fireplace opening and not the tv (even though it is all on one wall) be the center focal point. I selected a 9×12 area rug sponsored by Ruggable to create a larger living area and it is probably the most dramatic change for my room refresh.

A black and white inkdrop Ruggable area rug in a cozy and modern living room setting with a built in bookcase on a german smear fireplace with a brass peacock screen.  Eclectic and modern decorating accessories.
A Organic Modern Living Room with Subtle Touches of Color

The appeal of a washable rug has kept Ruggable rugs on my want list for years now so I reached out to them. I was surprised by their vast collection and enjoyed browsing many selections of different styles, colors, and sizes ultimately deciding on a striking graphic print called Jonathan Adler Inkdrop Black and Ivory.

Black and white striped rug with a barrel chair with sage green pillow next do a small gold and glass cabinet with pottery.  A z gallerie mango wood and chrome coffee table showcases a jonathan adler perpetual vase face.
Large Original Painting by Local Artist

It came with two rug pads that lay side by side and hid easily under the rug which was very easy to lift and place with help from my husband. The top of the pads is like velcro so the rug lays completely flat and smooth.

I’m super excited to have a new rug in our living room and it ties in other pops of black and white like the pair of wingback chairs across the way and the zebra print in my office. Ruggable has provided a special discount for my readers below!

Special offer:  Use code UPTODATEINTERIORS10 at Ruggable to get 10% off your order.
A pair of blue velvet with Genevieve Gorder black and white velvet Crane fabric sit in a living room corner with jeweled toned wall and decor colors.
Black and White Crane Fabric
  • Consider removing extra throw pillows and blankets and switching out busy and colorful patterns for neutral and modern prints and fabrics in creams, whites, black, olive, sage green, and terracotta.

This was a super easy change for me. I just found sage green pillow covers to use with the pillows I already had and a Christmas-gifted white throw blanket because it is 20 degrees outside!

Open living room layout in a small single story ranch style home.  Green vevlet sofa with modern furnishings and rug. A cane cabinet seperates the living room from a small dining area with blue chairs and pink floral curtains.
Organic Style Living Room
  • Add organic modern accessories with minimalist styling and natural elements.

“Shop” your house for modern and organic decorating accessories like pottery, modern sculptures, plants, candles, and lighting.

Consider repurposing vases and planters or other decors to fit into the organic modern style using an easy DIY like my textured painted vase and planter below.

An easy DIY textured paint vase sits on a black floating mantel with a beautiful oil landscape painting and other organic inspired decor.  A german smear fireplace surround adds texture.
Natural Modern Decor on the Mantel
A large snake plant in a large planter.
Natural modern decor with plants!

Shop antique and thrift stores for vintage items instead of big box stores when you can. It is such a great and easy way to add character and interest! A friend gifted me this salvage solid brass gear that looks gorgeous after cleanup.

A salvaged brass gear is used as modern decor on coffee table books and burled wood console table.
Salvaged Brass Gear for Modern Decor

Simplifying the coffee table decor and other flat surfaces was an easy way to achieve the style too. I found a perpetual head vase designed by Jonathan Adler at a local antique mall that I couldn’t wait to display.

Perpetual face vase on a stack of books on a coffee table in a organic modern style living room.
Perpetual Face Vase

I decided to keep our Japanese pottery collection in the living room and switched out a few things on our bookcase from other areas of the house for more cohesion.

Our Japanese tea and sake pottery collection displayed in a glass and gold cabinet.
Our Japanese Tea and Sake Pottery Collection
A built in bookcase on a german smear fireplace surround features beautifully styled decor in blue and green hues.
Intentional Greens and Blues on the Bookcase

Candles and soft light from lamps can do wonders on winter days and evenings. My battery lights were upgraded with beautiful remote control tapers and I added a table top lamp to the console table.

A modern organic living room with warm candle light, black and white striped rug, brass peacock screen, and modern decor.
Organic Striped Modern Rug
A natural modern burled wood console table in front of a white and cane cabinet adds texture to a modern and organic living dining space.
Natural Modern Sofa Table

There are still plenty of plants in our living room but I simplified the grouping in front of the bold bird painting.

Plants sit under a large striking picture of birds in bright blue and green.
More Walking Space

I hope you enjoyed seeing how I added organic modern elements to our living room but kept it cozy. It went from eclectic cottage to more traditional in the process and I love that. What are your favorite ways to modernize a room?

Modern Living Room To-Dos

It was a simple refresh but it feels good to have it 100% done!

  • Fireplace mantel makeover with corbels and ornamental molding painted
  • Reupholster a pair of barrel chairs found in Japan with neutral fabric by a professional $$$$
  • Purchase burled wood console table from CB2 $$$
  • Add second-hand modern accent tables $$
  • Add mcm style with salvaged brass gear and a thrifted perpetual face vase $$$
  • Simplify tabletop styling
  • Repurpose a large gold planter with DIY textured paint treatment and vase
  • Add a new area rug!
  • Refigure layout

EEK! I can’t wait to catch all of the reveals. Grab a bevvie and join me!

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