Step 0: PURGE! There is no point in creating a design for a space when you have items within it that are no longer serving you and are taking up valuable space.
Make a list of the feelings you want to feel in the room. If you want to feel cozy and at ease in a space, you’ll want to focus on intimate seating groups, addressing the scale of what’s on your vertical walls so they don’t feel overly tall and bare, and bringing in soft textures. If you didn’t list how you want to feel in the space, you might start getting distracted by the shiny things--literally--which would communicate a more glamorous vibe...not that a glam room is anything to turn your nose up at!
Make a list of the activities which need to take place in the room. It sounds obvious, but instead of focusing on bringing in the furniture you need in the room, it can get easy to just go on autopilot and think things like, “I will need a coffee table and a love seat and a sofa and blah, blah”. What if you want to routinely focus on puzzles and you rarely have more than (2) others in the room with you at any given time? Then you might not need a sofa or a loveseat, or a coffee table! Maybe this should be a room where the main furniture are simply 3-4 swivel chairs that surround a round table--which is large enough for a 1000+ piece puzzle. The function of the room needs to dictate the furnishings of the room!
Make a list of what needs to be stored in the room. The types of casegoods (tables, cabinets, etc.) that are in the space should only be there to serve a storage purpose. Of course that doesn't mean they can't be beautiful, but putting pieces in areas just because you need a filler is silly! You can do that with art or a house plant.
Note that storage can mean open storage like frames on a ledge or a lamp on a table, or closed storage like games or toys in a cabinet. So, decide how many table lamps you need and how many toys and game there are to be stored, and THEN make decisions about the number of and type of storage casegoods you need in your room.
Of course there are other steps, but these are the foundational starting steps for creating the room of your dreams! Learn more steps in my Chic, Kid-Proof Living Rooms course and feel free to join my free, where we discuss more tips and steps for Chic, Kid-Proof Rooms. Thanks for stopping by!