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a home + living guide for the post-college, pre-parenthood, quasi-adult generation

01.08.2001

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what goes where?
furniture arranging 101 | 1 2 3 4
continued from page 2

Big things first
Start with the big stuff first. In the living room thatíll probably mean the entertainment center/TV cart* or the sofa; in the bedroom, your bed; in the office, your desk. The logic to this is simple: the bigger the piece of furniture, the fewer potential places thereíll be that can physically accommodate that piece. Once youíve got your major items in place, the smaller furnishings will mostly fall right into place. Placing the sofa, for instance, tells you exactly where the coffee table should go as well. Positioning the bed tells you where your nightstands ought to go.

*Where to put the TV: In all probability, your TV will be going along one of the walls. If it all possible, donít place your TV directly opposite a window Ė youíll pretty much guarantee that youíll never watch it during the daytime, as the glare will drive you bonkers. (Having said that, let me admit now that my TV is, in fact, directly opposite the window Ö sometimes thereís just no other option.)

More things to consider Ö
1. Donít neglect function:
Functionality is as important as aesthetics when it comes to good room design. Think about what you want to be doing while youíre in that room. For example, sofas and chairs should be a comfortable distance away from the TV. If youíve got a tiny little TV, get those couches up close; a huge monstrosity of a boob tube, set the seating further back.

2. Close is cozy: One of the biggest mistakes people make, when setting up their living rooms, is to place the seating too far apart. Think about conversational distances when youíre planning Ö if youíre sitting on sofa A, where do you want your guests to be sitting to make conversation feel natural? In general, it doesnít work to place two sofas on opposite walls, facing each other square-on, because thatís a strange set-up for conversing Ė it kind of makes you feel like youíre in a doctorís waiting room, or sitting on a subway, right? Placing the sofas perpendicular to one another feels far more cozy.

3. Step away from the wall: Most people think that the best place to put the furniture is flat up against the walls Ė that way you get maximum open floor space, right? Well, kind of, but sometimes all that open floor space isnít a good thing. While itís true that if youíve got big bulky furniture in very tiny spaces, youíll often have no choice but to place your furniture against those walls, in larger spaces, thatís often the least inviting way of arranging your stuff. By placing everything against the wall, youíre left with this strange empty space in the middle of the room that makes all the objects on the edges feel isolated.

yup, more good stuff this way!

---------------------------> lounge . nourish . host . laze . home.