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Room of the Month Interior Design Guidelines : Double Sofa Living Room

For this Room of the Month, we're looking at two different takes on essentially the same design, to illustrate not only how to use the Sheffield Guidelines to Interior Design — function, mood, and harmony — but also to show how the same furniture can have a different effect when put into a new arrangement.

Looking first at the photo here, let's consider the function of this room. Any living room has as its main purpose providing a place for people to congregate, to talk to one another, and to maybe eat and drink together.

This function is quite well served here. The two low sofas facing each other allow for six or eight people to sit face-to-face as well as side-to side. People on both sofas will have a view of the fireplace, so neither group gets the "bad" view. The table is the right distance from both sofas to serve as a place to hold drinks or hors d'oeuvres.

The wood blind window treatment, seen in the right side of the photo, allows control of natural light throughout the room. Faux wood blinds are also an economical and durable alternative to wood blinds.

The mood here is modern, lean, and spare. This is an up-to-the-minute design, the long, clean lines of the sofas reflected in the lines of the table and the area rug.

There is also an Asian mood here, not overstated, but subtle. The sofas are so low that they recall Japanese style, and the minimalist design of the art and the plants is also Asian in feeling.

Sheffield Top Tip: Finally, looking at the harmony, we see that everything in the room suits this mood. The pale green cushions harmonize in color with the plants, and in turn the line of the plants harmonizes with the art on the walls. The square shape of the table is an echo of the squares in the rug, and altogether the geometry of this room spells harmony.

One other function of this room may not be immediately apparent, but once we point it out, you won't see this room in the same way. Each of those sofas becomes an extra-wide single bed, with a quick toss of the cushions. Each is a little longer and a little wider than a standard single bed, so this room quickly and easily transforms into a guest room for two.

But that's not all; this room itself is easily transformed to another look. This second photo shows the same furniture arranged in a slightly different way. Without the fireplace as a focal point, the sofas are placed catty-corner to one another, giving the room a slightly less formal, more open feeling. With the sofas in this configuration, this feels more like a family room than a formal living room.

The window treatments in this room also differ from those in the first photo. Here, roman shades are used, giving the space a more open, airy feel, while still maintaining a degree of privacy.

And notice too the wall color. Here, the walls are a deep Chinese red, and this, along with the bamboo wall hanging emphasizes the Asian feeling of the room. The room still has the harmony it had in the first photo, and still serves the same functions, but the mood is slightly different — just enough so that the owner feels able to shift the mood of the room with just a few small changes.

-Sarah Van Arsdale

Source: Sheffield School of Interior Design
ABOUT SHEFFIELD SCHOOL OF INTERIOR DESIGN:
Founded in 1985, Sheffield is the world’s largest interior design school with more than 50,000 graduates. At any given time, Sheffield has thousands of active students all over the world.
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To shop more looks for your home décor, visit www.americanblinds.com.

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