What’s the Difference Between a Living Room and a Family Room?

Living and Family Room

What is the difference between the Family room and Living Room? Have you ever wondered when the partition of house rooms started was? When was the time we practically came up to divide area rooms in our own houses?

Historically the use of rooms dates at least to early Minoan cultures about 2200 BC, where excavations at Akrotiri on Santorini reveal clearly defined rooms within certain structures. In early history, the different room types that could be identified include bedrooms, kitchens, and bathing rooms, closets, reception rooms. The said Akrotiri excavation reveals built rooms connected to the staircase.

Many houses have several large rooms with specialized functions; these may include living/eating areas, a sleeping area, and separate or combined washing and lavatory areas. Some larger properties may also feature rooms such as spa rooms, indoor pools, and indoor basketball courts. The most conventional modern house at least contains a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen or cooking area, and living room.

Read Also: What is a Dirty Kitchen?

Let us talk about the two major spaces in our home: The Family room and The Living room and let us know their difference and functions as well.

The Difference between Living Room vs. Family Room

According to Carrie Long Interiors “The family room is a more casual, day-to-day place to go watch television, hang out, and spend time with your family.” “The living room is a more formal place, usually for entertaining guests or for extended family time.”

The living room is often a place to put large art pieces, such as sculptures and paintings, so it needs room to fit everything without feeling crowded. Family rooms also tend to be large, but instead of being located toward the front of the house, they’re set farther back.

The family room is less formal, both in function and furnishings and is located away from the main entrance, while the living room is usually the more formal, reserved for guests, special occasions and the display of items such as antiques or artwork.

Living Room

Edward Bok the Dutch-born American editor and Pulitzer Prize-winning author who was an editor of the Ladies’ Home In Advocate used the term living room for the room commonly called drawing room, this is in the late 19th or early 20th century and it is now a term used more frequently when referring to space to relax and unwind within household. Within different parts of the world, living rooms are designed differently and evolving, but all share the same purpose, to gather users in a comfortable space.

Living room is also called a lounge room, sitting room or drawing room, a room for relaxing and socializing in a residential home or apartment. Sometimes it is called a front room since it is near the main entrance. The living room is also called parlour room, from old French: parlour or parlor which means to speak; parlour is defined as a place set aside particularly for conversing or debating with people.

Functions of Living Room

  • The living room is the most important part of the home when it comes to decoration because it is the space where we entertain our relatives and our visitors.
  • The living room also serves as the area for family get together where indoor games, family activities and listening to music and family conversation.
  • It serves as our social function.
  • It can also serve as an extra sleeping area for visitors.
  • It also reflects our representation as owner of the house.
  • The common Things you will see in Living Room are Sofa/ Chairs/ Reclining Chairs, Coffee Table, Media Stands, Side Tables, Accent Chairs, Overhead Lightning, Table Lamps Coffee Table Books, Rug Curtains, Pillow Artwork Plants, Side Tables. and  Entertainment Units

The Family Room

The word family room was defined or came from the book Tomorrow’s House by George Nelson in 1945 it was entitled “The Room without a Name”. Georde Nelson spoke of the need in modern life for a new biggest room in the house that its function is to serve social and recreational needs of the family that serves those activities that would not be permitted in the living room.

What are the Functions of Family Room?

  • A family room is defined as an all-purpose room in the house and often has doors leading areas of the garden or terrace.
  • It is also called den, game room, record room and rumpus room.
  • It is a more comfortable setting that encourages relaxation.
  • It is the place where the family members spend time, roommates and friends.
  • Sectional sofas are often more useful in family rooms because they provide enough space for the entire family to spend time together.
  • Common Things that you will see in Family Room are TV/ built-in projector, Photo Mural, Furniture, Do-It Yourself Furniture’s, Slender Tables, Game Area, Game Tables, Indoor and Outdoor Rugs, Kids Play Area, and some Artwork.

Creating a Family-Friendly Living Room

At some point when we start to build our family and there will be kids around, the living room functions can be difficult for us to maintain, here are the tips how to make your living room to become family Friendly Living Room:

  1. Look for fabrics that are nubby or woven, as they’re more likely to hide stains and smudges 
  2. Compliment your living rooms with furniture that are 2-in-1 functions for playtime and storage. This also helps you minimize the time in cleaning. Also, leather furniture is easy to wipe down in cleaning.
  3. Building colorful, friendly kids’ interior helps to create a great atmosphere for kids.
  4. Make sure everything in your room is washable so that you can easily change your style every now and then to your preference.
  5. Keep it functional so that it looks tidy all the time.
  6. A durable and easy-to-clean rug is a must for all the kids running and playing.

What is the point of having separate space for the Family and Living room?

As a family Oriented Filipinos we consider our ties as one of our buying habits in acquiring properties or real estate investment, or maybe low-cost housing or condominiums. We make sure when we buy that affordable house and lot we ensure that it is worth serving our principle for the Love of Family.  Practically it depends on a household how to particularly delegate their home spaces whether a big or small home it is always their prerogative.

Family and Living rooms are both spaces for gathering for acquaintances, for relaxing, and for individuality too. They are both spaces that are built and created because of family. With their different functionalities, we want to emphasize that in the living room we showcase our hospitality by creating a space for our visitors, and in this space we created the ambiance of representing the relationship between the owner of the home and visitors.  In the space of the Family Room, the room is prepared for all family gatherings and it emphasizes our family-oriented culture as Filipinos because we value family and even our extended family, we value moments and we value the snapshots we could create in the family room. In other words, the point of creating spaces of Family room and living room represents our culture on whom and how we represent the values we had to our families and to those who visit us, to those who practically share conversations with us, and to those moments created by gatherings and experiences that are valued in the living room and family room.

Written by Rowena Lansang