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12 ways to furnish an awkward space

Updated: Nov 11, 2021

By Serena K Agius - April 3, 2019

Buying furniture that you feel confident is right for your space can be challenging. Rarely do you find yourself with acres of space to furnish as in the glossy magazines where you look for inspiration?

Often you are renovating an existing space or your new home isn't as large in reality as you imagined from the plans. How do you make sure that the furniture you purchase BEFORE you move in is going to be right for you and your home?

1. With a long narrow space, or spaces that flow around corners, it’s important to create discrete sitting zones with the furniture.

2. Rugs are a key element in defining a space this way.

3. Re-arrange your space where there may be awkward openings to create direct connecting pathways through spaces keeping zones for seating, or other activities out of the way.

4. Think about whether the zone needs a focal point. Will that be a TV, entertainment console or fireplace? If it’s not big enough for a focal point a small grouping of furniture works to either side of a circulation path.

5. Remember, storage units can go to the side or corners of spaces. They work well off circulation zones.

6. Pair small coffee tables with other central or side tables. Clustering works to good effect in large spaces. In smaller ones, make sure not to cram in too much furniture.

7. Carefully measure the width of your space. Have the major seating item such as the lounge work across the space with a circulation zone next to it. Measure the space available for your sofa by deducting 80-90cm for the circulation path and at least 50cm for a corner side table.

8. Use individual occasional chairs to provide extra seating at right angles to the sofa. These are better paired together, either against the rear wall of your space or with their backs to the pathway you are creating.

9. When shopping for furniture, keep in mind that showrooms are designed as large spaces to show a lot of furniture, so what you see will look very different in a smaller space.

10. Make sure the dimensions of the furniture fit comfortably within the space with room to move around it. Take a tape measure when furniture shopping.

11. Make sure you get the specification sheets from the retailer with the dimensions on them. Many have these on their websites or the salesperson can get them for you. 12. It can be so confusing with the huge variety and availability of furniture on the market. Consider not only your personal tastes when furniture shopping but also the architecture of your home Use this as a guide to selecting the right scale of furniture. Do a little research to find out when your home was built (If you don’t already know). This will give you a hint about the lines to incorporate into the furniture you are introducing into your home. So often I see furniture in a new or renovated space that is out of scale with the space or building’s architecture. With our current trend towards smaller spaces and more individual living it’s important to choose furniture that suits your space. Colour in furnishings is a whole other topic still to come.

If you still find it hard to make decisions because you find it difficult aligning your tastes with these guidelines send me an enquiry on the Contact Form.

I can help you with this.

Visit the Services page for more details about my specialities.

I'd love to hear your comments about this blog post and if you've put any of these tips into action. Send your comments, which may be published, via the contact form.

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