Posts Tagged ‘home and garden’
Where can you put a sofa inspired by years gone by?
Established more than a century ago, Carl Hansen & Son, a Danish furniture business established more than a century ago, has produced modern furniture based on an old design. In an article posted on the Core77 blog, Hipstomp/Rain Noe explain:
“In the section of their file room filled with work by Hans J. Wegner, the Danish Modern designer, they found blueprints for a sofa he designed in the mid-’60s. And now, nearly fifty years later, Wegner’s mid-century modern piece is once again rolling off of the assembly line, in two- and three-seat versions…” [Read the full article here]
The sofa in question is a smart, versatile piece, appearing more retro than traditional. While it’s not the kind of ‘come here and relax on me’ seating that encourages the lounger to kick off their shoes and put their feet up, it can serve many other purposes adequately, in both the home and the workplace.
If you like the idea of mixing old and new, you are not alone! In fact, each one of these great examples from Notonthehighstreet.com could be a real statement piece rather than an eyesore, if placed amid otherwise contemporary decor…
The above image shows the Savannah Beige Flocked Upholstered Armchair. This awesome chair leaves nothing out when it comes to comfort, with deep set buttons at the back giving it a really warm, cosy feel. Also, the neutral tones of the upholstery will fit into many existing colour schemes.
The absolutely stunning Upcycled Vintage ArmchairÂ pictured above is another 1940′s piece, which is undoubtedly a ‘one-off’. Imagine this chair alongside contemporary, black leather sofas, pulled together with cushions in either a matching or complementary shade of red… a truly beautiful conversation starter!
The Betsy sofa above is part of a range, described as “a fusion of design elements from different periods”. One of the best things about the contemporary Betsy range is that, being made to order, you can customise the piece to suit your tastes by opting for metal or wooden legs or choosing to omit the buttons from the back. Indeed, the Betsy allows you to create something that fits into your home perfectly.
Samantha Pynn gave some good advice in the Windsor Star this week when a reader, Elaine, wrote in explaining the problem she was having with her husband, Brian, who wanted to make their patio furniture multi-purpose by bringing it indoors during the winter months when it wasn’t being used outside. Elaine wanted to Sam to let Brian know the idea was insane.However, to a point, Ms Pynn disagreed and said:
“Good looking woven tuxedo sofas, armchairs and even coffee tables can work indoors…Moving the entire woven set to the basement, however, may look like you brought your high-end patio furniture inside because you had no where else to put it.” [Read the full article here]
Having ‘a domestic’ about interior design tastes is not uncommon. Though some couples may agree the majority of the time, there are likely to be occasions where this is not the case.Ms Pynn shares a few wise words about this:
“My mother has told me many times that there are no black-and white rules in this world and that relationships are all about compromise. I guess the same can be said for decorating, too.”
The thing about the ‘C’ word, i.e., compromise, is that it’s all very well if one half of a partnership agrees to, say, a holiday that wasn’t their number one choice, because it’s done and dusted in a couple of weeks. However, when you are buying furniture, which includes major purchases such as sofas, you are asking someone to live with your choice on a daily basis for years to come… which means you have constant reminder in your lounge of how you don’t see eye to eye!
It may sound trivial because, after all, it is only a piece of furniture, but this item could easily become the symbol that highlights incompatibility in other areas of a relationship which the couple may be trying to ignore. Although the majority of relationships are likely to face tougher challenges than the odd interior design tiff, we think it is definitely worth considering how you are going to make such choices in the early days of a relationship.
We’re not quite saying ‘if you can’t live with his choice of furniture, you can’t live with the man’, but reaching an agreement on something like sofas can make for good discussion practice so you can see how your proposed partner responds generally in a disagreement situation. And, let’s face it, regardless of who gets their way, it’ll be one less thing to argue about later!
In today’s ‘throwaway’ society, if you are decorating your living room, it often means replacing sofas. Here in the UK, there are some fabulous schemes that make use of furniture that’s not yet considered to have ‘had its day’ so the less financially fortunate can take advantage of other people’s supposed frivolity.In some districts of Sydney, Austrilia, ‘council clean-up time’ sees people’s discarded items adorn the pavements for all to peruse.Not only that, but it’s now been made legal for people to pick up items that others have cast aside.
Salvage Sister Matilda Campbell observes in the Sydney Morning Herald:
“(O)ur parents and grandparents… had sheds and sewing rooms where things that were broken, out of fashion or no longer needed were fixed, remodeled and stored for use at a later date… They passed things down from one generation to the next and
“made do when things weren’t quite to their taste or standards. Do we really no longer have space or time for this, or is it that we have become so style conscious we have to have the latest in everything or be judged critically by our peers?” [Read the full article here]
At some time, it appears we got less appreciative of our belongings.However, we have to ask the question:”Since we started to take more of a detailed interest in our homes, have we created living spaces that are less homely?”
Wikipedia defines ‘home‘ as ‘a place of residence or refuge’. A residence can be wherever you lay your hat, but a refuge is somewhere that an individual can feel safe and protected.When we discard the things that make home feel like ‘home’, is there a negative impact on emotional security?
The argument for renewing rather than restoring is sound.In the past, women traditionally stayed home, so there was the time – and the mindset – to fix, rather than simply replace. Also, steps have been taken to increase academic opportunity in recent years, with the result that many people in UK society are missing those vital ‘mending’ skills that previous generations have taken for granted.
Another sound argument for new furniture is the fact that, if you know where to look, you can find good quality cheap sofas. The term ‘cheap sofas’ is no longer restricted to sofas that are cheaply/badly made, but encompasses a whole collection of discounted items waiting for buyers to snap them up to make way for new stock in the showroom. In fact, you can find some real bargains if you check out clearance sales or look for special offers online.
Posting on the Futility Closet website, Greg Ross provides an answer to the following:
“In 1966, Austrian mathematician Leo Moser asked a pleasingly practical question: If a corridor is 1 meter wide, what’s the largest sofa one could squeeze around a corner?” [Read the full post here]
If you click on the link, you will find an answer of sorts.Though this answer may be frustratingly inconclusive, the question got us thinking about where our focus often lies when it comes to purchasing a new sofa, and whether it was worth reconsidering…
On this very blog, we have been known (0n more than one occasion…) to stress the importance of measuring rooms and items of furniture you intend to keep, to ensure the sofa you are planning to purchase will fit in with your existing pieces, etc.However, what can you do if you find a sofa that’s just the right size for your room, but then find out that you can’t get it through the door or up the stairs?!?This hilarious Friendsstoryline demonstrates the point perfectly:
Rather than ascertain whether your new sofa will fit in with your existing decor, ideally you need a way to find out if your couch will fit into your home at all!Doorways are easy to measure, but corners are more complex.However, help is at hand in the form of this clever interactive demonstration from Wolfram Mathematics:
So now you know how it’s done!However, if you want to try to avoid the problem altogether, you might want to consider corner sofas, often known as sectionals because the pieces can be moved around.Although not foolproof, separating the pieces of a sofa can make negotiating corners and gaps in doorways far easier than the more traditional ‘all in one’ alternatives.
To end, let’s return to the fantastic Friends and watch this blooper video to find out what really happened on set that day…
The hilarious 21st Century Boy, Jake McMillan, wrote an article a couple of years ago on his blog highlighting the number of women in his life with OCD, i.e., Obsessive Cushion Disorder.Apparently, his own mother has no fewer than thirteen cushions in her lounge.He explains:
“These extra cushions serve no purpose, being just sofa decorations and provide no extra comfort at all. In fact, they actually cause discomfort as the cushions get wedged into the gaps of the proper sofa cushions and push them out. You end up moving the cushions to the other end of the sofa or chuck them on the floor.” [Read the full article here]
And your point is…?!?Yes, Mr McMillan, we know it’s often a good idea to chuck surplus cushions on the floor when you’re actually using the sofa in question – for orthopedic purposes if nothing else – but, to keep a sense of harmony in the home, you boys really need to learn how to put them back again afterwards!
But do extra cushions serve a purpose other than looking pretty and being annoying when you try to sit on them?Well, although we tentatively agree with the 21st Century Boy that it’s possible to literally overwhelm a sofa with cushions, we think that they do…
Cushions can be used to really pull your room together from a colour perspective.For example, if you have a beige sofa and blue walls, choosing cushions that contain a shade of blue in the same spectrum as your wall colour could make your sofa seem ideally matched with the rest of the room, rather than merely being a neutral piece of furniture.
If you like the look of cushions, but worry that you’ll make a unfortunately poor style decision if left to your own devices, you could consider buying a sofa that uses cushions to good effect, such as the Nicola 3-seater in chocolate from Sainsburys, as pictured below:
Finally, we cannot sign off without thoroughly recommending that you have a look through the 21st Century Boy’s blog.If you’re sense of humour’s up to it, his Bad Things to Say on a First Dateis particularly ‘laugh out loud’ funny. So much so, that you may well find a real date is unlikely to be anywhere near as entertaining as reading about Jake McMillan’s disastrous attempts to chat up women…