Buyer's Guide

Yours, by Design: Ultimate Media Room Ideas

It’s fall and you know what that means for most Texans — football season! Whether you’re a die-hard Dallas Cowboys fan or Houston Texans loyalist, creating the perfect media room for the big game is a priority. If you’re cheering on your favorite college team, from Longhorn orange to the Mean Green, you need a comfy space for some serious armchair quarterbacking.

Not a sports fan? No problem! Set up a cozy movie room for a spooky movie marathon this fall or a weekly family movie night now that school is back in session. Whether you’re rallying behind your favorite football team or hosting your teen’s sleepover, Normandy Homes floorplans provide the perfect backdrop for you to personalize the entertainment space of your dreams. Check out the ideas below to create the ultimate media/movie room.

All About the Screens

While historically the “man cave” was set up in the garage, entertainment spaces have now made their way inside the house for the whole family to enjoy. Homebuilders like Normandy Homes in Dallas-Fort Worth know that families love a space to gather and entertain while watching sports, movies, or the latest Netflix binge. Many Normandy floorplans have media room options or flex spaces and game rooms that can handle a big screen and plenty of seating.

“The media room is the one room where the screen is king,” says Normandy Homes in-house designer Christina Wilcocks. Big-screen TVs are becoming more affordable; many who want a big-impact home theater experience can invest in a quality HD projector for $1,000 or less plus the cost of a screen and speakers.

“While most families choose one big screen, the ultimate sports fan may set up multiple screens to take football season or March Madness to a whole new level,” said Wilcocks. Like the Estates at Shaddock Park model home, the drool-worthy media room flows out to an open-loft game room. You could catch all of your favorite games without leaving the comfort of your own home while slipping in a game of pool during commercial breaks.

Don’t forget about a great sound system, whether you invest in a soundbar or a home theater audio system with a separate amplifier and larger speakers. If you’re not technically inclined, hire a company to install it correctly and enjoy the results.

Media Room Seating Options

Envisioning the purpose of the room comes first before you invest in the seating. Is the space solely a media room with the need for lots of seating? Or does it also serve as a game room where you need a game table? 

Layout and positioning for TV viewing take priority in a movie room. Home theater seating is popular, says Wilcocks, with reclining individual seats and personal cup holders. Also, creating several seating options also gives you the flexibility to use the room for a guys’ night or family time. 

“For family entertainment, oversized sectionals are a big hit,” added Wilcocks. “Everyone can cozy up and settle in for a great movie night. Bean bags and floor pillows are an easy add-on for extra guests or families that need more seating space.”

A secondary seating option could include a bar area with a high-top table and bar stools right behind the sofa area, creating a great place for snacks and drinks that still offers a view of the TV. Making your movie room seating comfortable and functional is key.

Paint, Lighting, and Accessories

Dark paint colors are most desirable for dedicated media rooms, and layered lighting is a must, says Wilcocks. “Consider a dimmer switch or well-placed lamps for ambient lighting,” she advises. Room-darkening curtains or shades are a great consideration for light control. There’s nothing more distracting than having a bad glare on the screen when you’re trying to watch a movie.

Consider under-cabinet lighting, like those on the optional floating cabinet feature, offering practical soft lighting for those who need to refill their popcorn during a movie. Additionally, storage is important if you want to keep board games, blankets, or baskets of toys hidden away, but accessible. To outfit your media room to the next level, a mini-fridge and/or a bar area can make your entertainment room the ultimate gathering spot.

Media Room Mistakes to Avoid

Choosing the wrong TV size 

Make sure you consider the size of the room and distance from seating when purchasing your TV or projector screen.

Forgetting about lighting 

Too much light can affect your viewing experience, so consider heavy blinds or light-blocking curtains.

Having too many remotes 

There’s nothing more frustrating than picking up three remotes to try to pause a movie. Get a universal remote for your media center or get really high-tech with a centralized smart home control system for the TV, speakers, lights, window shades, and more.

Trying to DIY too much 

Gone are the days of hooking your DVD player to your TV with one or two cables. Technology has come a long way and dealing with all the wires, wireless connections, and installation doesn’t need to cause you stress. Hire a professional company or contractor who can install your media center in a day, hide the wiring, and have you ready to watch Sunday’s big game.

Making Your Family Room Media Friendly

If your home doesn’t have a designated media or movie room, your family room is a great place to gather for football games or movies. Most of the Normandy Homes floorplans feature living spaces right off the kitchen, which is convenient for snacks and drinks on the big kitchen island. While natural light during the day is desirable, think about installing heavy shades or light-blocking curtains to create a cozy setting for nighttime TV watching. Comfortable seating for the whole family and floor pillows help complete the space.

You can also get creative with your home’s flex spaces, like the kid’s retreat in the Cottonwood floorplan in Frisco’s Estates at Shaddock Park or the game room with an optional wet bar in the Juniper floorplan in Irving’s South Haven neighborhood.

If you’re in the market for a new home in Dallas-Fort Worth, explore our communities to find a home with all of the extras your family desires, such as a designated media room.