Last week I had a fun and quick re-design job for an open living room dining room area. My client had recently inherited quite a few new pieces of furniture from a relative and had purchased a new sectional sofa. She was left with a mix of furniture in her open space that wasn’t functional and didn’t flow. I quickly assessed her needs as follows:
- more living room seating for guests
- a more functional and useable dining room area-for entertaining and daily use
- integrate new furnishings with existing eclectic style
- more seating for outdoor patio
- too cluttered/crowded feeling
Before the dining table was under the windows and when being used it obstructed the flow of the room. The chair next to the china hutch rarely got used and two additional chairs in the living room were pushed up against the wall across from the sofa and therefore felt quite separate from the living room space.
We relocated those chairs to the screened porch to make more room and give the outdoor space additional seating. The two large pieces of furniture on both ends of the rooms created a heavy feeling and on one end partially blocked light from a window. First, we moved the TV cabinet over to fill the large wall across from the sectional. This allowed more light in through the previously blocked window and made room for two additional seating areas on both sides of the tv cabinet using a couple of chairs and occasional tables already in the space. We also moved the sofa a bit to create space for the china cabinet on the wall behind it. By moving both the chair and the china cabinet we opened up the entire back wall (closest to the kitchen) for a clearly defined dining space that has ample room for entertaining.
The newly arranged living space has more seating but also feels intimate and cozy.
The room now feels more open and less cluttered and there are still two distinct spaces for living and dining.
Whenever I do a space re-design I advise clients to live with it for at least a week before deciding if there are things they really don’t like. As creatures of habit we get use to our things in a certain arrangement and it might feel awkward at first having things moved around within the space. Luckily in this case the client worked with me to move things and she seemed really happy with the results immediately. The following day she responded to an email I sent with this response; “I love it so much! The room feels bigger and I like my “things” more now too in the new arrangement.” This was a two hour project and the only expense for the client was my consulting/space planning fee. We did not buy one single thing!