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Rearrange for a New Look

As the holiday season gears up — and you plan for family and friends — you may want to get creative when it comes to preparing your home for guests. Sometimes the smallest changes can make the biggest impact in your home. Plus, you may not have to spend a dime to fall in love with your home again.

Rearrange the furniture

One of the things that could be holding you back from really loving your home is that perhaps one or two (or all) of the rooms don’t work well. Maybe the functionality is a little off or it’s just awkward to move around in. Maybe you need to clear more room for holiday decorations, dining space and guests. Or maybe, you’re just tired of seeing everything as it is. In any case, rearranging the furniture is a zero-cost solution to try.

How to do it Interior designers will measure a room and draw out the furniture, note all the outlets, windows and doors, etc. and then map out the traffic patterns of the room, before drawing a floor plan.

For beginners and just the average joe, use a more hands-on approach. One that uses a little muscle power but makes it very easy to visualize how the room will look. Move around in your space to view it from various angles and really get a feel for how the space will function for you and your visiting guests. Enlist the help of a strong spouse or friend if you are not comfortable or able to move furniture yourself.

Where to start It’s important to note that your room should be mainly empty. The only things in the space should be the larger, purposeful pieces that you determined were necessary for the function of the room. No little bits and pieces, no accents. Not even any artwork or lamps! Just the big stuff. If needed, remove all the small stuff, and place it somewhere safe temporarily.

Identify the room’s focal point You need to choose a focal point to decorate around. This is one of the most important things you can do in a room. If you have a focal point, and you keep the rest of the room simple, you will keep your space from feeling overwhelmed and chaotic. This is easy if the room you’re decorating has a large fireplace or picture window to situate the furniture around. The focal point is essentially chosen for you. However, it takes a bit more effort if there is no built-in focal point.

Here are a few focal point ideas for you if you must create one for yourself:

  • A bedroom’s focal point could be the bed/headboard.

  • The focal point in a family room it could be the television/media center.

  • In a dining room, the focal point would be the dining room table.

Choose only one focal point for a room. Move it to the best possible place if it’s movable so that when you walk into the room the focal point draws your eye towards it.

Arrange the furniture Rearrange the large furniture pieces to suit the space around the focal point and for the current purpose of the room. If the room is large, or has several purposes, set up zones like a conversation area or somewhere to play board games and do puzzles and a reading nook.

Try to arrange everything so that the space feels open and welcoming. Often it helps to stand and look at it from a doorway. Step back and look at the room as many times as necessary to decide if you’ve chosen a good arrangement. Consider how the space will function during the holidays: sitting area for conversation, or dining area for ease around table and seating.

Here are a few guidelines to keep in mind when choosing your furniture layout:

  • Keep 15 to 18 inches of space between a coffee table and a sofa.

  • To keep traffic flowing well there should be a minimum of 3 feet around the most prominent objects in the room, such as behind dining room chairs. Major walkways need 30 to 48 inches of space, but minor ones can get away with as little as 24 inches of space.

  • You can safely use one over-sized item in a room to add drama without making the space look crowded or cheap. But the other pieces should properly suit the scale of the room. Don’t buy a matchy-matchy set of oversized couches and the coordinating coffee and end tables, for example. Scale can be very tricky. Employ an extra set of eyes if you need help with this.

  • If you plan to watch television in the room, seating should ideally be placed away from the TV at a distance of three times the diagonal measurement of the TV. For example, if you have a 40 inch television the seating should be about 120 inches away.

  • If you have a small room, place the major furniture pieces along the walls, but avoid doing so if the room is larger. Placing at least one piece of furniture at an angle will go a long way to creating a designer look in your home as well.

  • Symmetrical furniture layouts are easier for beginners but can look more formal than asymmetrical layouts.

  • You will need access to electrical outlets for electronics, so be sure to keep them in mind when deciding on your arrangement. Of course, extension cords or power bars may also be utilized.

  • If you have to put a piece of furniture (couch or bed) over a heat register, that may be okay. That’s why they make special floor register vent covers that blow the air forward instead of straight up.

Just remember to choose a focal point and go from there. Make the space work for you, your guests, and your holiday events. You can always change the layout later if it’s not working for you. You literally cannot mess this up in a permanent way!

Choose one room that you don’t love as is. Rearrange it using the method above. Step back and live with it for a while. If you find that the room still doesn’t work well for you, you could always rearrange it again!

Source: Home Made Lovely

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