Furniture

  • How to place furniture in a living room

     Arranging the layout of any room can be difficult. Bedrooms are somehow simpler because there’s usually a limited number of places the bed can go and the bedside tables are usually placed either side. But your living room has multiple uses and deciding where your furniture should go can be hard. There’s nothing more irritating than being faced with a room that just doesn’t ‘feel’ right and you can’t put your finger on why.

    If you feel like this, you’re not alone, and it could be the layout of your living room that is causing problems. We’ve outlined how you can rearrange the furniture in your living room to make the best use of the space.

    Measure the room

    First, use a tape measure to ascertain the exact size of the room, including the size of the alcoves and any doors or windows.

    Next, take a pen, pencil and a ruler. Using your measurements, create a scale drawing of the room. If your living room measures 10m x 10m, scale this down for your drawing and make your square 10cm x 10cm. Your drawing should include the doors and windows as well as any permanent fixtures such as a staircase or fireplace.

    Then, measure your furniture and draw the shape on a piece of card using your scale. Cut this out and this will provide you with moveable paper furniture pieces that you can move around your drawing to work out where things should go.

    Figure out your focal point

    Before you can decide on a layout, you need to consider what your living room will be used for. Is it a place to watch TV or the room you use for socialising? Is it a casual living room or will it be used as a more formal lounge? The layout could differ depending on your answers to these questions.

    If your living room is used predominantly to watch TV, the TV is the focal point and your furniture should be arranged around it. The viewing distance between you and the TV should be between two and a half and three and a half metres. The viewing distance could be extended for particularly large TVs.

    If your living room is used more as a socialising space, your sofa and armchairs should be arranged so that everyone can see and talk to each other, no matter where they’re sitting. Your furniture should have enough space around it so that you and your guests can easily manoeuvre around the room without walking into anything.

    Top Tip: Don’t put all of your furniture flat against the wall. It’s better to keep your furniture closer together when possible to create a more intimate space.

    Remember to leave space for any accessories that may come with your seating area such as side tables or lamps. You don’t want to relocate your sofa only to find that your lamp won’t fit in the corner you wanted it to.

    Adding accessories

    Now you’ve decided on a layout for your furniture and have moved everything into its correct place. You may have noticed that you now need to buy certain items to complete the space. For example, is there an armchair that’s placed too far away from the coffee table so people cannot put their drinks down? A small nest of tables next to the armchair would be a good solution.

    You can place lamps in the corners of a room to brighten them and create a feeling of more space.

    How to arrange furniture in a small living room

    If you have a small living room, you may want to arrange your furniture to make it feel bigger. Here are some recommendations.

    Use mirrors

    Mirrors are a wonderful way to visually increase the size of the room without having to physically extend it. Mirrors will reflect the other half of the room, making a room feel double its size. They can also be placed opposite a window to provide additional light and make a room feel brighter.

    Additional storage

    Many small homes have very little storage, which means clutter can build up and make your home feel smaller. To get around this problem, you could invest in multifunctional furniture. For example, you could buy a large coffee table that has a lid that lifts up for you to put DVDs/electronics in and, instead of purchasing an L-shaped sofa, you could buy a normal sofa with a footstool that you can store things in.

    Avoid bulky furniture

    Bulky, oversized furniture will only make your small living room feel smaller. Instead, choose small-scale furniture, like a love seat instead of a full sized sofa.

    Scandinavian design uses very sleek, simple furniture and is a good style to choose if you have a small home. Most of the furniture is on legs so you can see the floor underneath which makes the furniture item appear smaller than it is.

    Blue sofa in Scandinavian style living room with parquet floor Photo by Jarek Ceborski

    Note how the small chair can barely be seen because it fades into the background so much. You’ll also notice that you can see the flooring under the sofa and the unit on the wall. If the unit came right down to the floor, it would make the room feel instantly smaller.

    The curtains are positioned as high up on the wall as possible. This makes the ceilings feel taller and the windows bigger.

    Arranging your small living room is all about making spaces appear bigger than they are and investing in clever storage solutions. To find out more about how you can arrange your furniture in a small living room, see the helpful illustrations from  Home Edit.

    Fern xx

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  • The Colour Purple

    This isn't the English variant of Alice Walker's 'The Color Purple' but an introduction to the vibrant and eye-catching colours of 2019 (a wildly less serious topic)! The style over last year has drifted to more standout colours and creating seamless  matches instead of different shades of grey.

    Still worth a mention as it is an incredible read!

    The crunch of leaves beneath your feet

    Hot colours to look for are currently autumnal, burnt oranges, light browns and burgundy. These can make beautiful feature colours but also have a safe feel as they are quite mellow and easy to look at. A typical example is the flood of tan overcoats you see on your smartly dressed colleagues.

    The colours represent natural bright environments

    Translating this onto the interior design scene, we hope over 2019 to see more feature walls and smartly patterned throw cushions. Be braver with your colour choices but, as always, try to keep it palatable. Our general rule of thumb is no more than three colours in one room (with a bit of slack for white, black and grey as a fourth) and no more than 3 patterns. Patterns are hard as some can sit nicely together whereas some can completely disagree, use your judgement and style to make your pick.

    Living Coral

    Starting 2019 you may also see the label 'living coral' thrown around a lot. This is because Pantone named it colour of the year and if you get chance, you should check out their post about it. It shows how well this colour can be used by expressing it through the page, fonts and imagery. There is an especially beautiful video showing its natural presence under the sea.

    2019 colour of the year The colour really does shine alongside pale blues

    The vibe is not too dissimilar to the flush of autumnal colours also rearing their heads. Both exhibit a relaxing undertone, not too aggressive in appearance. This however has a more floral, tropical atmosphere than the warming, spicy flavours of the oranges. I would encourage experimenting with this pallet to see what makes it shine. I would warn that pastels fall in and out of fashion whereas seasonal colours remain timeless.

    amazing use of colour Perfect example of the colour scheme, featured in Livinator

    Furniture to finish the look

    Use this modern colour inspiration to enhance your existing decor. As always with warm colours, a farmhouse or natural wood aesthetic makes a lovely homely environment. We would love to see someone take our Cheltenham range and use this scheme to add depth.

    somebody please dress this in fluffy bedding

    As a newly featured range in our catalogue we are interested to see what our stylish customers can achieve with this versatile look, especially playing with the painted finishes available. In our opinion it would suit Autumnal colour schemes with hints of copper around the room.

    taupe finish tallboy The taupe finish is a favourite of mine

    This aesthetic has been experimented with a lot recently to great success. As a more contemporary suggestion, check out some of our weathered pieces. These can add character to a more polished look, going hand in hand with the casual timeless aesthetic of dark reds, oranges etc.

    grey colour scheme A fine example is our weathered chic bed

    Alternatively, our Etienne range boasts a few gorgeous weathered finishes!

    Fern xx

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  • Trends: Summer

    I know, Summer is just a season … well arguably much more than just a season … but it most definitely does mess with the stylish funk of everyone’s interiors and so we will call it a trend. Suddenly we have to think of bright colours, glare, ventilation, preventing fading fabrics and garden furniture!!

    Credit: Holloways oakridge Find similar pieces at our website!

    Lighting

    As always, we must stress the role of lighting in a classy environment, however, with the skies a little clearer and the Sun a little brighter we are sure you will start to notice southern facing windows (assuming you live in the northern hemisphere) getting brighter and more hard hitting upon your rooms.

    Summer rays can really become annoying Summer rays can really become annoying

    This impact can seriously hinder your suave style by creating shadowy corners and eye-burning reflections. Make sure to place mirrors out of direct sunlight (also preventing that odd patch of light from the reflection) and perhaps keep darker pieces out of the light to avoid that searing hot seat.

    Fading

    As you can tell, one of our focuses is how the Sun becomes too intense and messes with everything.

    look at that fading!! look at that fading!!

    It doesn’t take as long as you think for your furniture to discolour or darken in intense sunlight. This is natural and will inevitably happen to everyone... But Keep an eye out for anything you will need to look fresh, sitting in the heat as you can add a few years to its life by avoiding those rays.

    A good placement of furniture to prevent fading A good placement of furniture to prevent fading

    Outside!

    Despite all the beaming rays and stuffy rooms, this time of year is amazing and it welcomes the return of lazy days outside on the garden furniture.

    Take a stroll outside and garden! Take a stroll outside and garden!

    Select a few comfy pieces from our range of outdoor furnishings, decorate with some accessories and finish with ice cold lemonade.

    Tan isn’t just for you

    A Final thought; tan colours, beiges and neutrals are everything right now, they exude class and an edgy modern style. Be sure to explore some of these new trends over the season as they work splendidly in the warm weather to give a holiday feel.

    101st post! Fern xx

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  • Contemporary or Modern?

    Interior design is constantly changing and progressing through styles of each era. The beauty of this is that it creates a varied range of crafting techniques and genres of style to choose from. Contemporary can be seen as the style of the time and modern is the newest style.

    Notting Hill - Living Room

    Contemporary to Classic

    All of our ranges were modern at some point, whether that be in 18th century France or today’s England, classical and modern furniture typically embodies the era it was made in. Looking at the best loved classics of today, you can only admire how they were once edgy, adventurous pieces embodying trends and new ideas.

    Essentially, modern is today’s contemporary and a lot of contemporary styles have gone unnoticed simply because they aren’t favoured by a modern audience. Those that are become ‘classics’!

    camille Camille French Style Upholstered Bed

    What to look for

    Whether you go for the more modern inspired or the cultured, you must theme your interior consistently and avoid jumping between eras … unless you are a master of interior design and somehow pull this off, in which case please send us a photo once you do! So choose pieces which work with the style you have gone for, ideally ones with cultural similarities.

    Notice a lot of our chairs feature cabriole legs which work particularly well with the French inspired tables we offer!

    dorset_contemporary_french_armchairs Dorset Upholstered Armchair

    Modern

    On to the battle between the styles, this edgy new age design technique will make you feel fashion forward and is to the taste of the majority of people (hence it takes its place as the modern style). It is arguably the more adventurous but offers a greater payout as you could be at the front of the design revolution of the 21st century.

    Eclectic-Modern-Interior-Design_1

    Contemporary

    When we talk about contemporary we really mean classic, it is commonly called contemporary because it is era specific yet here we need to distinguish between past eras and the modern era. Alternative to the modern era, our classic pieces boast an abundance of tried and tested culture. They are able to bring such a strong sense of character to a room with familiar styles made famous by their respective eras.

    antoinette_collection_french_sleigh_furniture Antoinette Classic French Style Sleigh Bed

    You can make it work

    Each era boasts its own style; each has gone down in history either as famed and recreated or simply a period of exploration. It is your choice which you want to be part of, either celebrating success in the contemporary pieces and styles we provide or using them to bring a new sense of life to your interior. Either way, fashion continues to grow and vary so be part of the change and offer us your opinions on the mirrored, modern designs you can find on our website!

    Share your thoughts! Fern xx

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  • Spring in Your Step

    Certain to bring a smile to your face is the arrival of spring! Easter eggs are lining the shelves and the chill of winter is beginning to subside. We adore our seasonal rhythms here at Crown French Furniture, not only because it goes hand in hand with new pieces for our catalogue but because it inspires change everywhere!

    Colour Schemes

    We go on about colour schemes because they are always changing, not just with the seasons but with the trends. This offers a flow of fresh ways to decorate your interior and keep things exciting!

    Bright floral colours that jump out at spring. Bright floral colours that jump out at spring.

    Spring is the most creative of the seasons in our opinion, it entails a vast range of vibrant colours as well as new ways to play with them. Many uses of colour just aren’t as well loved in the colder or even hotter months, one of our favourites is pastels. Being able to decorate with light toned colours allows for a whole new interior to emerge, multiple colours can be combined within an interior using pastels as they don’t become over engaging or contrast too strongly.

    pastel tones pastel tones

    Layout

    Every so often everyone decides to rearrange the furniture, most people hold unwritten rules such as the head of your bed being away from the door but whatever you abide by, it’s nice to see a change in our environment. With spring cleaning coming along it also allows some thorough dusting and reorganisation.

    shuffle that sofa around shuffle that sofa around

    For a freshness to a room, look at shuffling the seating or the position of bookcases, nothing too major but it will feel like a new room from an alternative perspective.

    Lighting

    Use the new found sunshine to highlight any features you want to pop in your interior, whether that be accessories placed to catch the shine or a bigger piece with a beautiful colour you want to come through.

    make use of your windows make use of your windows

    Fern xx

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  • Show Some Love

    Preparing for mother’s day can be a nightmare, between getting your own lovely mums a special something and helping your youngest choose a gift for yourself, it’s hard to feel appreciated. There are ways to relax and feel celebrated for whatever role you play as a mother.

    Enjoy yourself! Enjoy yourself!

    Relax!

    This is a celebration of you! You deserve to be able to relax so whatever responsibilities are stopping you day-to-day from achieving this, either brush them under the rug or ensure they won’t inflict stress on the day.

    Love your life decorative sign. Love your life decorative sign.

    Treat Yourself

    So what if you buy your own presents from your son or daughter, at least you’re going to get what you want! Whatever treatment you get on mother’s day, don’t feel obliged to let everything be done for you. Appreciate what comes your way but make sure you have an enjoyable time for yourself. Your family know you, but they aren’t mind readers, break out your favourite album or go for a run. Whatever is going to make you feel free is there for you to do.

    Go to the spa ... just go Go to the spa ... just go

    Remember It

    Celebrate with a small gift to keep around the house or a family photo. Mother’s day isn’t the most important date on the calendar but it is still significant for a close family to feel like they’ve accomplished something and are appreciated. If they know it means a lot to you they will likely get into the spirit a little more each year.

    Display some proud family photos as a reminder! Display some proud family photos as a reminder!

    Breakfast in Bed

    The staple of a good mother’s day is breakfast in bed, so get the cupboards stocked with all of your favourites and make sure your family know what you would like. No point having an English breakfast if you’ve started a new health kick.

    Our beautiful Velvet Chesterfield bed. New in store!! Our beautiful Velvet Chesterfield bed. New in store!!

    Oh and make sure you have the bed.

    Celebrating Every Day

    It doesn’t have to be mothering Sunday for you to appreciate the love that you give and receive as a mother. Being a parent is a blessing and despite the hard work, you always know you have someone that loves you.

    For the corner stone of the family For the corner stone of the family

    Happy mother's day! Fern xx

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  • Stick with it

    The excitement of the new year has worn off and you begin to look at your resolution with more sober eyes. Old habits die hard and new ones are even harder to get going! We hope you’ve taken on the new year with all the ambition you dreamt of last December and held strong with your resolutions.

    30 Day Mark

    Common knowledge is that the first 30 days are the hardest, typically it takes 3 weeks for an act to become a habit so at this point you’ve made it!!! If not, then who cares! The main part of the resolution is to try something different, if it doesn’t work for you then why change yourself?

    Congratulations to those who have made it! Congratulations to those who have made it!

    Some habits are good to kick, but certain things make us who we are as individuals. The best resolutions we can make are ones which help our progress in the things we love such as spending time with family or learning a new skill!

    Be True to You

    Everybody has their own lifestyle and inspirations, if your new year was dedicated to drinking less coffee but you have trouble staying alert through your day then maybe you need a revision.

    Everybody's weakness ... Everybody's weakness ...

    Check out our inspirations on out Pinterest page, we frequently share interesting and inspiring articles on everything from interiors to Asian cuisine.

    Our Point Being…

    Don’t force yourself to change, if you’re shabby chic furniture or a contemporary piece, stay as you are. The best outcome here is that you’re looking good for Valentine’s day and now can return to not caring about the long term. Enjoy today … Enjoy caffeine and fast food.

    Make 2017 yours! Fern xx

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  • Autumnal Vibes

    In short, the rain has hit us hard and it has put us in the mood to get autumnal. That means very little to most people, but to us here at Crown French Furniture it means new colours, new accessories and yes … some new clothes for ourselves!

    It’s not Christmas … but it’s still hot chocolate weather

    It has to be said that the autumnal colour scheme is one of our favourites, forget your white & red winters or the bright colourful spring! We like the underdog, the casual and underrated beauty in using warm colour to decorate your home. It just fits, and we want to bring this beauty into our furniture. We do this through our bespoke services which allow for a range of new combinations and unique pieces to bring a spice into interior designs.

    autumnal bed Our Sophia bed with an autumnal theme

    Our Sophia bed is exclusive and one of the most exquisite beds we offer, but enough about our “standard” bed, we are getting excited by the personalised items! And this is our pride when it comes to bespoke packages, always a flawless outcome and with such a versatile aesthetic we can’t wait to see some beige, brown or even orange headboards come through our doors and bring some seasonal flare along with them!

    Maybe it is Christmas?

    There is no sign more festive than Christmas stock in every window display, sadly we haven’t reached that stage yet but it is closer than you think! Not so long ago we had our new accessories arrive and yes, they may be a little … decembery … bur who cares. If you could see them you would be just as excited as we are and pay no mind to the date, it has to happen some-time. We have all realised how early the Christmas decorations come into stores and it has become a bit of a tradition that we get the idea of trees and advent calendars before its even November!

    From us here at Crown French Furniture From us here at Crown French Furniture

    Keep an eye out for our new stock, it’ll be worth the wait! Fern xx

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  • The Beauty in the Wood

    A rich textured grain is a beautiful thing and can be used exquisitely to bring a natural and fresh look to your interior, however, used wrongly it can provide a clash of tones and a mess of confusing aesthetics.

    So keep a keen eye out when selecting wooden pieces as it is vital to blend the materials together seamlessly!

    Zero Diversity

    In the realm of wooden interiors or those furnished as such, you can never go wrong with a staple wood. One consistently used timber that provides the textured grainy look without needing another to contrast, favoured examples of these are oak, for its lighter tones, and mahogany, tried and tested, a true classic.

    Antoinette Range, Mahogany Wood Antoinette Range, Mahogany

    Solid oak furniture has seen a rise in recent years, with large scale shops specialising in the wood, and it’s no surprise as it offers a familiar light colour with wood knots to give it a more natural look. It is a front runner as it is not overpowering and pieces can be solely constructed from the wood and still look sleek and sophisticated, it also goes exceedingly well with silver, steel or chrome metals which fashion superb handles in our Tuscany range!

    Tuscany Range, Oak Wood Tuscany Range, Oak

    As a contrast is the stand alone, unmistakable appearance of mahogany, the wood that has been used across every range and every style, and for good reason! It is a strong and incredibly durable timber which is a priceless asset when choosing pieces that you hope to maintain for years to come. From all mahogany dark toned furnishings that exude a powerful masculine presence to the white painted, hand carved pieces it is a truly extraordinary wood with a beautiful grain and texture, one which we love to work with and chose for our Chateau range.

    Chateau Mahogany Wood Bed Chateau Mahogany Bed

    Mixing the Grain

    A delicate procedure if there ever was one in the realm of interior design, mixing different flavours of wood and creating a multi-tonal masterpiece within your living space’s harmony can be catastrophic if done carelessly.

    Mitz Takahashi, oak and mahogany wood Mitz Takahashi's Oak and Mahogany Wood Sideboard

    So your aim is to create harmony between contrasting pieces, it can be beautiful, it can be a show stopping display of your interior expertise and so we do not want to discourage it. Here goes.

    Our advice on blending different woods in one room!

    1. Keep it fun, there’s no point in adding a splash of fair if you naturally stay between the lines. This can cause a contrast of interests in your home and having one room as a sleek, by-the-book recipe interior and another as a mix of this that and everything in between is a no go! 
    1. Keep it Light, different textures are good, they are celebrated in fact! We must tread carefully however and only allow so much change in one room. Otherwise we end up with items that clash harder than Crocs and a little black dress … now wouldn’t that look stupid. 
    1. Keep looking! It’s hard to find what you’re looking for, especially in different ranges of wood, but persevere and you will be thankful when you find the perfect piece and so glad that you didn’t settle for that rotten thing that “almost works”.

    As always, wishing you a keen eye and something to buy!

    Fern xx

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  • Mid-May Madness

    Hello! It's finally bank holiday weekend/ Monday and for once it's supposed to be good weather!!

    snowdon-lp

    Some of our team will be taking small breaks over the week, I know one of my colleagues is planning on walking mount Snowdon in Wales, hopefully he'll take some photographs for us. A few close friends of ours will be at Radio 1's big weekend festival by now kick-starting their summer with a festival. Which reminds me Glastonbury festival is only around the corner.

    Back to reality a few of us are planning on seeing family and going out for meals while I know my main focus will be getting my home and garden up-to-date - I'm sure you know the drill, getting the spring cleaning finished and the plants planted in the garden until I'm satisfied and ready to start my summer with a friendly social gathering. If you have any plans feel free to comment by clicking on the blog and scrolling to the bottom.garden_glam

    If you are in my boat and need to sort out the garden (again this year) my tip is - even if you feel you need to start from scratch, it really isn't always as bad as you think. Sometimes all you need to do is refresh what you have to recapture that beautiful area you had when you first created it. A new coat of paint on the fences, decking and even the furniture can be enough to rejuvenate your garden. Also grab some floral cushions and a couple of throws to really glam it up a little!

    If you need any new garden accessories of furniture you can always check out our collection online:

    http://www.crownfrenchfurniture.co.uk/outdoor.htm  

    http://www.crownfrenchfurniture.co.uk/accessories.html

    There are plenty of decorative items and stunning furniture to ensure your home has a fresh summer look...

    Have fun whatever you end up doing!

    Fern xx

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