Wondering how to choose artificial plants for your living room? The rise in interest in faux flowers means that there are more and more to choose from every season. So how do you narrow them down to the ones that are the best plants for a living room specifically? It’s a case of blending elegance with variegated heights and knowing which varieties to look out for.
How to choose artificial plants for your living room
Living room plants can be a really rich assortment. You’ll want to look for some classically elegant faux flowers (have a look at our selection below) to set the scene. Even if your living room is a busy family space rather than a calm, grown-up atmosphere, large arrangements of sophisticated fake flowers are a must-have – a living room is generally one of the first rooms guests will experience when entering your home, and one where you’ll spend the most time. One arrangement can be plenty but, depending on the size of your sitting room, your interior might suit having a few. If you do have multiple arrangements, you can either have the same selection of flowers in each vase, or change it up. Try to keep something consistent to tie them together though – it may be the colour, or one type of stem that you repeat in every vessel. The more thought you put into developing a plant scheme, the more your room will benefit. Much like how a garden thrives when it is considerately designed.
Plant-life in a sitting room is usually steered by your style of interior. If you’ve got more of a Scandi or Mid-Century setting with an oversized waxy-leaf cheese plant or Ficus tree planted in a woven basket, then succulents are one of the most effective artificial plants for your living room because they have the same vibe, a similar depth of colour, and a shared leaf profile. The goal is to draw parallels between any real plants in your scheme, but also to create some contrast with textures. Picture a luxury, contemporary sitting room where all the furniture and decor is sleek and glamorous. This is the perfect time for bringing in a spiky agave plant, cacti or bowl of mixed succulents. It’s an injection of texture to break things up. The contrast will also make the sleekness even more apparent.
The other consideration with indoor plants for your living room, is choosing a home fragrance that reflects one of your choices of plant or flower. For example, if you have peonies in a bouquet or an aloe succulent, you might like to choose a candle or reed diffuser with the same scent as a top or base note. Picking up on the same fragrance as you see ‘growing’ in the room will bring them to life and make them appear even more real than they already do. And, remember, other accent accessories with floral motifs or structures will help to make plants more of a theme in your living room than just a small feature.
How to arrange artificial plants in your living room
Height differentiations – that is the main consideration when choosing positions for living room plants and which to style together. For more elegant environments, choose tall plants for a living room. By keeping your stems long, it gives them the height and presence needed to stand out amongst impeccably elegant furniture and your room’s rich architectural bones. Place these on higher surfaces like console tables, a mantelpiece (if your arrangement isn’t too broad), a side table or window ledge. On your coffee table, think more along the lines of shallow vessels like low glass vases or zinc planters. A coffee table is low for a reason, so you don’t want what you choose to display on it to become too obtrusive.
One of the other beauties of artificial plants in a living room, is that you can often buy them already arranged so you don’t need to figure out stem positioning or blending. A lot of arrangements are of mixed flowers or plants to give texture, but having a single variety in one vase or pot is not something to shy away from. A tight cluster of white tulips with zero greenery is almost as elegant as you can get. It lets that one style shine with no distractions to steal the limelight away from it. If you choose to have all of your arrangements like this, your room will feel quite manicured. If this is the look you’re after, then repeated, one-style arrangements will be perfect for you. If you want to temper it and loosen your scheme, make sure any other arrangements are more mixed.
Faux flowers aren’t the only option. Fake plants for living rooms bring in a different type of greenery to the likes of bouquet fillers. Try grouping odd-numbered clusters of succulents together to boost their impact. They look especially nice on bookcases or open shelving where their small height fits in easily.
Whether it’s flowers in urns or vases, or small stoneware trugs of herbs and trailing greenery, be sure to spread any artificial plants throughout the space. Some by the window (to reflect the outdoors coming in), some closer to the door to encourage you to take plant life into the next room, and at different levels in-between – a bit like how you would use lighting in layers and across the room. By doing the same with flowers and greenery, it makes more of a statement and breathes more life into your room. Styling with artificial plants isn’t just a case of positioning them in a vessel, but deciding where they fit in your living room’s interior decoration.
Best faux living room plants and flowers
1. Hydrangeas: Their large flowering heads are made for living rooms because they’re full of softness but have huge stage presence. They’re also abundant in texture so can compete with the large-scale furniture and prints and patterns. Just as in nature, faux hydrangea come in a choice of colours from pure white to soft blue and green.
2. Succulents: Leaves that are thick and rich in colour add clearly defined shape and texture to your living room. They’re a very realistic fake plant for a living room because their waxy appearance is easy to recreate. Choose a low-bowl filled with different types of succulent packed in tightly together and try them on a coffee table or on shelving to bring life between the books. Diane James offers two succulent arrangements – both in moss-covered clay pots – one which highlights the rosette leaves of the beautiful echeveria succulent.
3. Greenery: Go for different types of greenery in your living room to keep your look varied and full of intrigue and surprise. Floral arrangements with big bursts of green sprouts like John-Richard’s wild orchid or soft layers of gentler green leaves like his amethyst and protea pot are a good place to start. Add succulents for more contemporary, deep green pockets – boxwood bushes will add a different dimension of greenery and are especially good at referencing the outdoors in your interior as they’re most commonly seen in topiary form in urns flanking front doors. Also look to Diane James’ classical vases of faux flowers that are interspersed with green-tinged petals, like her lilac and snowball bouquet or all-green hydrangea, rose and orchid gathering.
4. Tulips: Tulips breathe springtime freshness into the home, which is what makes them so effective in a living room; they rejuvenate such an active part of the home. Choose white faux tulips and they’ll look right all year long – fresh in spring and summer but appropriately frosty in autumn and winter – unlike the coloured varieties which are better suited in your home from March through to August.
5. Peonies: One of the most romantic perennial flowers around. Peonies look pretty arranged as a small posy on a side table or in a living room alcove. Once again, white works well in a living room because it pairs with any colour palette and feels suitable all year long, but you can try an arrangement that blends open, frothy heads with closed buds in pale pink like this one by Diane James. If your living room’s decor is in need of a burst of colour, you could go for all-pink. It’s a look that’s most suited to summer though.
6. Mixed bouquets: If you have one or two tall, statement faux flower arrangements in your living room, it’s a good idea to opt for a mixed bouquet. Why? Because your scheme will be more interesting with a few varieties and it’s easier to experiment with scale and shape when there are different plant species involved. This tall, tulip and peony bouquet is ideal for a living room’s window ledge or console table. The height of its trailing blossom branches gives it a romantic, wild look. For a mid-height arrangement, mixing different colours of hydrangea with the tall spires of pale blue delphiniums is a swoon-worthy combination of colours for a living room. Or for something more neutral in colour but equally graceful in shape, Diane James’ mixed bouquet with faded green snowballs and hops is a refined example of a blended bouquet that’s a fabulous way to elevate your living room’s setting.