Discover these amazing entertainment center designs and create the perfect living room.
Whether in your living room, bedroom, or family room, the entertainment center is a dominant feature. Of course, the main attraction is the TV screen. But since all eyes focus in that direction, the area around the TV should be visually pleasing.
Your entertainment center ideas may include a piece of furniture designated for media display. Or, you may build your own DIY project to bring your favorite style to life. Some entertainment centers take up a whole wall in the room, while others consist of a simple TV stand.
Whatever you choose, your entertainment unit should coordinate with the rest of the room’s décor. For example, if your furniture includes pine or cherry wood, use the same type for your entertainment center. If your style is coastal chic, choose distressed shiplap or another rustic finish. Take a look at our favorite entertainment center ideas and see which ones work best in your home.
1. Living Room Entertainment Center Ideas
The entertainment center is usually the focal point in a living room. Accentuate this by designing a feature wall around your TV unit. Paint the wall behind the TV a contrasting color, or cover it in a simple wallpaper. A simple shelf beneath the TV provides storage for DVRs or video game consoles.
Bookcases or other shelving units are an attractive and functional part of most entertainment centers. They provide vital storage space as well as a place to show off cherished knick-knacks and family photos. To modernize an older bookcase, line the back shelf walls with shiplap or beadboard.
The classic look of floor-to-ceiling built-in bookcases will never go out of style despite the way TV console sizes and shapes change. Most include a row of cabinets along the bottom, providing ample room to store media materials out of sight. Drawers allow you to store spare remote controls, batteries, CDs, and other essential items.
2. Entertainment Center Décor Ideas
An entertainment center can be as simple or elaborate as you desire. Modern entertainment centers require sleek lines and minimal decorations. Other design schemes allow for more embellishment. If you have the room above the TV for a mirror, it can make the room look larger and brighter. You can also cover the wall behind the shelves with mirrored tiles for a similar effect.
When trying shelving design ideas, remember that odd-numbered groups are best. Use groups of three, five, or seven objects to turn each grouping into a focal point. Arrange five candles of varying heights, or three family photos. Instead of one shelf full of books, separate them into three sets and place each set on its own shelf.
For high ceilings, fill the space over your entertainment center with tall sculptures, plants, or pottery pieces. If there’s room, hang a large painting or tapestry above the entertainment center.
Continue your artwork theme when choosing shelf décor. A beach scene painting coordinates well with a glass dolphin sculpture, jars filled with sand or shells, and palm-leafed plants.
3. Built-In Entertainment Center Ideas
A built-in entertainment center takes up an entire wall in a living room. It usually centers the TV in the space, flanked by a bookshelf on each side. Fit a cabinet or cabinet/drawer combination beneath the TV to fill the space between shelves.
Traditional entertainment center ideas for built-ins usually include crown molding in various widths. A good entertainment center plan will include adjustable shelving. This is because the number and types of components you have will likely change over time.
If your living room has farmhouse décor or other rustic elements, a wood barn door is a great way to cover each cabinet. Use a sliding barn door to cover the TV when it’s not in use. A built-in DIY project can flex to suit whatever style feels most at home to you.
A modern built-in entertainment center can consist of only the bare minimums. A low row of cabinets beneath the TV may be enough storage for a small space. Leave the vertical space around the television bare or accent it with basic lines and angles.
4. Modern Entertainment Center Ideas
At its core, modern home and furniture design is a rejection of ornate decorating styles. If you are most at home in a modern space, you like minimal details, crisp lines, and simple color palettes. Modern entertainment center ideas will reflect these tastes.
Metal is a key feature in modern décor. Use clean, shiny chrome or stainless steel for entertainment center door handles and trim. Keep accessories minimal, as a lack of clutter is an essential element of modern décor. Painting or staining wood also works, but you need to sand it smooth and adhere to the color scheme.
While lines and angles are a staple, a modern entertainment center doesn’t have to be boxy. Some mid-century designs feature round elements instead of square or rectangular shapes. A simple set of shelves on either side of the screen and a retro TV stand can be all it takes in a modern space. Couple it with a restored boomerang-shaped coffee table and simple modern furniture.
5. Bedroom Entertainment Center Ideas
An interior designer can help you figure out a custom entertainment center that works for your bedroom. The amount of living space is sometimes limited in a bedroom, so a simple TV stand may be better than a full wall of shelving. However, an entertainment wall combining wardrobe and dresser storage may be the solution.
The bedroom is the perfect place to let another piece of furniture serve as your TV stand. Simply place the set atop a dresser located opposite the foot of your bed. If you’re limited on floor space, mount the TV on the wall and hang a simple shelf above or below it.
6. Floating Entertainment Center Ideas
A floating entertainment center is a sophisticated, modern way to showcase your flat-screen TV. Anchor these pieces of furniture to the wall so they float several inches or more above the floor. Floating shelves usually consist of cabinets or shelves centered around the TV.
These ideas are popular in Scandinavian, minimalist, and contemporary styled homes. They’re functional—not fancy. They’re a perfect place to show off a beautiful mahogany wood shelf or other natural finish.
A low, rectangular cabinet below the TV and a single floating shelf above it are all that’s needed to pull off this look. Watch the Shanty 2
Chic building experts show you how to create your own DIY floating shelves:
7. Entertainment Center Wall Ideas
A wall unit is an entertainment center that extends for the entire length of one wall. These can be synonymous with the built-in entertainment center ideas shared above. But a TV wall can also consist of many elements that come together into one main focal point.
When designing a wall entertainment center for your room, make use of the vertical and horizontal space around the TV. You can give the impression of a solid wall feature by painting or wallpapering the area behind your screen, shelves, and components.
Surrounding your TV with a grid-like pattern of open shelves is a simple design that works well with most design styles. Use each square to showcase a favorite framed photo, glass vase, ceramic sculpture, or antique globe. If there’s room, include a painting or some other type of art on your entertainment center wall.
9. Entertainment Center Ideas with a Fireplace
One of the most common places to put a TV unit is above the fireplace. Therefore, the fireplace becomes part of the overall entertainment center area. Because of today’s ventless gas fireplace designs, it’s easier than ever to enjoy this feature. An electric fireplace is an option if your home lacks access to natural gas.
If you hang your TV above a floor-level fireplace, you can frame it with molding that matches your fireplace trim. This elegant design choice works well in traditional homes where crown molding is already a feature.
If you don’t want to look up at the TV, you can place your entertainment furniture next to your fireplace instead. Depending on your room’s design, this may result in an unbalanced appearance. However, you can still make it work with the right design ideas. Keep your entertainment center the same color as your fireplace surround to make it look cohesive.
9. Wood Entertainment Center Ideas
Using wood for your home entertainment center doesn’t mean that you’re limited to a large cabinet or armoire. You can use wood to cover the wall behind your TV and hang a shelf above it. Place a wide, low TV stand beneath the screen and top it with some simple decorations. Using the same color and type of wood for all three elements provides continuity.
The warm, rich tones of natural wood work well for entertainment centers. Dark wood finishes are beautiful in traditional or rustic living rooms, while pale woods merge well with contemporary or beachy décor. Painting wood is a great way to revive an old entertainment center, especially in cottage or shabby chic interiors. Watch this video to turn an old wood entertainment armoire into a shabby chic hutch that could double as a TV stand:
Entertainment Center FAQs
What factors should I consider when choosing an entertainment center?
You should first take inventory of the electronics you need to store in your entertainment console. You’ll need room for your television, DVD or Blu-ray player, gaming console, music speakers, and more. You should also decide if you want your components hidden or visible.
Naturally, you should scale your entertainment center ideas to the size of your room. A large entertainment unit will take over the room, while a small TV stand can get lost in a large space. You can also makeover some pieces of furniture for an entertainment center. They should have plenty of ventilation and room for cords. Glass doors are essential for components powered by infrared remotes.
What are some good entertainment center ideas for lighting?
The right ambient lighting can turn ordinary shelving into a beautiful focal point. While you do need some light in an open shelf or glass door cabinet, bright lights distract from a flat-screen TV at night. Install simple LED strip lights beneath open shelving to provide light that isn’t overwhelming. You can also prevent this problem by using dimmable lights inside your family entertainment center.