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#AskElle: Furniture…Functional & Fun!

When selecting the right furniture, one of your goals is to create a warm and inviting space in which you, your friends and family will feel welcome, be comfortable and relax. Ideally, the furniture layout should create a social atmosphere with LOTS of conversation and laughs.

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Images via Elle Hunter

So…how to start. Ideally, you should decide on the function of the room or space first. This will help determine what kind of furniture will be needed and how many pieces are required. Budget, your personal style (or room themes), and floor measurements are considerations before you go shopping. Try not to purchase pieces that are oversized, as you do not want to block traffic patterns and flow. Doorways and entrances will also need to be factored in when determining traffic flow.

Next, you should identify the shape of your room. There are 5 room shapes basically — rectangle, square, oblong, ‘L’ shaped and odd angled. The shape of the room is best determined by observing the lines where the walls and floor meet.

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Images via Elle Hunter

The third step is to determine the focal point. Your home may have several focal points but there should be one feature that stands out the strongest; this is the jumping off point you should keep in mind. An ‘architectural’ focal point is part of the structure of the room – usually a fireplace, a view, built-in wall units or even a large wall, are under this classification. If you do not have an ‘architectural’ focal point you can create your own focal point; it could be a media area, a sculpture or a dramatic wall hanging. Or pick a feature wall and have a picture gallery or large artwork showcased or any other ideas that pop into your imagination!

When designing the layout of your furniture in your living room, family or great room, try placing the largest seating piece directly opposite the focal point. Then add other furniture, for instance in a rectangular room, you could place a loveseat at a right angle to the sofa. Or alternately if you prefer a more formal look, ‘mirror’ the furniture on either side of the focal point, for symmetrical balance. A designer tip, the pieces should be spaced around the room, not always against the walls if possible, as you want people to weave around the furniture not just walk straight through the area…like a doctors waiting room! Do not forget…it is supposed to be a social place.

Now bring out the appetizers and refreshments and enjoy your ‘new’ place.

Bringing all the Ellements of Re:Design to you!

Elle

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Dominique HankeDominique Hanke (31)

Editor-in-Chief / Marketing & Advertising
Dominique is a designer, stylist, fashion writer, and milliner. Her work has been seen on the runways of Vancouver, New York, and Paris and has appeared in local and international media. High-profile clients have included Katie Cassidy (Gossip Girl, Arrow), Erin Cebula (E.T. Canada) & Miss America, Mallory Hagan.

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