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10 Decorating Ideas for an Asian Inspired Living Room

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You don't need to buy a new set of furniture, repaint the walls or rip up the whole flooring in order to create an Asian-style living room. Incorporating Asian décor items with what you already have will bring about the oriental essence just as wonderfully. Consider the following items and pick a few that will aesthetically fit the look and arrangement of your living room. BUT don't randomly stuff them all into one little space, as people might mistake your place for a Chinatown pawnshop.

Asian-Style Paper Lantern


It is a tradition in China to hang up red lanterns during a joyous festival, whereas in Japan, people prefer simple white lanterns with auspicious paintings or symbols. So before you pick the color, think about what type of atmosphere you want to promote in your living room: cheerful, peaceful or both. If your ceiling is low, forgo a ceiling lantern and opt for a free-standing one instead.

Bamboo Blind


Simplicity and harmony are the heart of Asian décor. Dress your windows with earth-tone bamboo blinds and say goodbye to ruffled draperies. This type of blind can blend in with any wall color and give the room a sense of airiness.

Asian Scroll Painting


What screams "oriental" louder than exquisite Chinese and Japanese scroll paintings? For an Asian-inspired living room, this wall décor item is a must-have. Hanging a large scroll painting on an accent wall will lend a stunning focal point, whereas rows of smaller ones will add more warmth to the ambience.

Bamboo Place Mat


Who said place mats only belong in a dining room? Decorating your coffee table with bamboo place mats is a cheap and easy way to highlight the oriental theme. Just make sure the color of the mats nicely coordinates with the shade of your table.

Laughing Buddha Statue


The laughing Buddha is a symbol of joy, kindness and prosperity. For an oriental-themed living room, a laughing Buddha statue sitting large and tall in a corner will make a magnificent focal point.

Straw Mat


A boring carpet won't do any good for Asian theme decoration. Try using a large straw mat as an area rug to define the seating area or highlight a piece of furniture. Or you can also cover the whole floor with several straw mats by connecting them all together and holding them in place with carpet tapes.

Oriental Parasol


Skip this section if you believe opening an umbrella indoors will bring bad luck! Oriental parasols are famous for their intricate designs, but they won't be able to boast their beauty unless you open them. Displaying a lovely parasol on top of a large cabinet or propping it against a piece of furniture on the floor will create a charming visual interest.

Asian-Style Tea Set


What make Asian tea sets stand out from the western ones are the dainty tea bowls or handle-less tea cups ornately painted in the oriental style. Even if you're not planning to serve tea in your living room, an old-fashioned tea set is still a great bric-a-brac to represent Eastern cultures. A porcelain tea set speaks of luxury and sophistication, but clay or cast iron one can also be just as lovely.

Shoji Room Divider

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For a multi-purpose living room, a shoji room divider is a nifty décor item to have. Delicate and light, it helps define different areas without making the room appear cramped. And since it doesn't need to be hanged up or nailed down, a rearrangement can be done conveniently.

Tabletop Zen Garden


A zen garden is not lush with bushes, trees and flowers, but filled with rocks, sand and gravel. Instead of a pond with water lilies and colorful koi, there is only a large body of sand raked into the patterns of waves and ripples. This type of rock garden is uniquely Japanese, and you can bring it right into your living room to promote a peaceful atmosphere and the idea of simplicity.


Om Paramapoonya (author) on March 18, 2012:

Thanks, louromano!

louromano on March 18, 2012:

Nice hub ! Very nicely written hub and beautiful pics

Om Paramapoonya (author) on February 20, 2012:

I'm glad you like these decorating ideas, pstraubie. And yep, a lot of these ideas reflect the philosophy of Japanese décor. :)

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on February 18, 2012:

This takes me back to when I lived in Japan. We adopted so many of the Japanese ways. One of which I keep to this day; no shoes inside.

I adore the whole Asian flare in décor you have shown us here. Thanks for sharing.

Om Paramapoonya (author) on January 15, 2012:

Snakeslane, many thanks for your kind words. I'll try to continue writing good hubs :)

Verlie Burroughs from Canada on January 14, 2012:

Hey Om Paramapoonya, from what I have seen of your writing you are a very wise person. I always enjoy reading your helpful 'Hubs'. Keep up the good work.

Om Paramapoonya (author) on January 11, 2012:

hehehe....Thanks for dropping by, snakeslane. I'd be happy to help you with your living room makeover. As for the life makeover project, I'm not sure if I'm qualified for that! :)

Verlie Burroughs from Canada on January 09, 2012:

Nice hub Om Paramapoonya (as usual). I have all these items except the scroll print, but they are mixed in with everything so there is not an Asian feel to the room, more like a dog's breakfast, but I digress. If I won the lottery I would like to commission you to make over my living space, oh what the heck, makeover my entire life. Thanks for lovely work. Regards, snakeslane

Om Paramapoonya (author) on January 02, 2012:

You're welcome. Glad you like these Asian décor ideas.

SUSANJK from Florida on January 02, 2012:

I love your ideas. I love the idea of adding an Asian influence to my space. Thanks for the ideas.

Om Paramapoonya (author) on November 10, 2011:

You're welcome, HomeDIY. Thanks for your positive feedback.

HomeDIY on November 09, 2011:

I never would've thought about making my living room with an Asian feel, but I can see that simplicity can be beautiful as well. Thanks for the post

Om Paramapoonya (author) on October 08, 2011:

Hi, thanks for dropping by, cyoung. I'm glad these pictures have inspired you. :)

Chad Young from Corona, CA on October 06, 2011:

Great ideas! The pictures gave me some great ideas and I can't wait to try them out. Thanks for the great hub!

Om Paramapoonya (author) on September 12, 2011:

Thanks for the read and kind comment, Cyndi. :)

Cynthia B Turner from Georgia on September 12, 2011:

Such simple, inexpensive ideas that could give a room a whole new look. Your suggestions look as if they could work in other rooms, as well. Thanks.

Om Paramapoonya (author) on August 27, 2011:

Thanks! :)

MyFavoriteBedding from United States on August 26, 2011:

Love the shoji room divider! It is an item that you don't see much in homes, but could be so useful and is so pretty! Great hub!

Om Paramapoonya (author) on August 24, 2011:

Thanks, Joe. Have fun decorating your house. :)

Zach from Colorado on August 23, 2011:

I liked your hub very much! I already have some of the paper lanterns, but I had forgotten of the Zen rock garden. I voted up and useful. Thanks

Om Paramapoonya (author) on July 29, 2011:

Hi, Cassidella. That is so true! I have a shoji screen in my house, and it's just so easy to decorate any room with it. Right now it's in my bedroom but I think I'll put it in the living room at some point. :)

Cassidella on July 29, 2011:

Om...really like all of your ideas for Asian design, but the screen is so versatile and could be worked in so many ways!

Om Paramapoonya (author) on July 29, 2011:

@prasetio - Thanks a lot for dropping by, prasetio. Have fun redecorating your house. :)

@Sweetie - Thank you. :)

sweetie1 from India on July 29, 2011:

Very nicely written hub and beautiful pics

prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on July 28, 2011:

This was so beautiful. I love design and I have a plan to make over my new house. I hope this could be an inspiration for me. Thank you very much, my friend. I love all pictures above. Vote it up!


Om Paramapoonya (author) on July 27, 2011:

@Princessa - Thanks! Glad you like these little ideas. :)

@Bobo - hehehe wanna see your "zooaquarium" It actually sounds kind of cute. Share some pics on FB si. :)

Bora BKK on July 27, 2011:

i like Table Zen Garden ar, will try that!

Now, i have a kind of Zooaquarium (terrarium?) wih a herd of buffalo models hehehe

Wendy Iturrizaga from France on July 27, 2011:

I love the style, simple and yet very elegant and relaxing. Thanks for the ideas.

Om Paramapoonya (author) on July 25, 2011:

@marellen - Yes, some of these are really cheap. Thanks so much for dropping by. :)

@Pamela - Thanks a lot for your support, Pamela. :)

@Cardisa - Cool! Glad you like this decorating style. :)

@randomcreative - Thank you. :)

@Cee - Yeah, I actually think decorating with a Buddha head is kind of creepy, too. Thanks so much for the read! :)

@akirchner - Thanks a lot, Audrey.

@Earth Angel - hehehe thanks. :)

@Eiddwen - Thanks. Glad you enjoyed this hub. :)

@BkCreative - That's great. I have a laughing Buddha statuette in my living room, too. I love his big smile and huge belly. :)

BkCreative from Brooklyn, New York City on July 25, 2011:

I've always loved the clean look and natural materials used in Asian homes. Oh, and I definitely have the laughing Buddha - this brings me much good luck.

Thanks a million$$$ - and rated up!

Eiddwen from Wales on July 25, 2011:

Hi I enjoyed this useful and very interesting hub. Here's to many more to share.

Take care


Earth Angel on July 24, 2011:

Hardly at "pigsty" my dear! Fabulous ideas! Thank you for sharing! Blessings always, Earth Angel!!

Audrey Kirchner from Washington on July 24, 2011:

Love Asian decorating and you covered it all~! Very lovely and so simple!!

Cee on July 24, 2011:

Great idea! I like that everything is affordable. I hope lots of people follow your suggestions. What bothers me most is when they decorate their places with Buddha's heads and say that they love Asian culture! Seriously??? That is my pet-peeve, I guess. Your ideas are much much better :)

Rose Clearfield from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on July 24, 2011:

Great, inexpensive ideas!

Carolee Samuda from Jamaica on July 24, 2011:

Very good tips Om, I like the Asian feel.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on July 24, 2011:

Attractive decorating with such beautiful simplicity and this can be done at a very reasonable price. Nice hub.

marellen on July 23, 2011:

Om....really wonderful ideas that are not that costly.

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