Friday, May 23, 2008

show stoppin' sofa

I have always maintained that updating the pillows on your sofa is one of the quickest, most economical ways to change the look of your living room. I like to do it every four months or so to create a look and feel for each season. Places like TJ Maxx and Cost Plus World Market have a super variety at affordable prices. If you are handy at the sewing machine, and could spend a little time making new covers, then your options for personalizing your sofa are infinite! This is a crash course in mixing prints and textures to create an inviting place to sit everyday.

Start with a blank slate, so you can vizualize the look you want to create. I am happy to have a very neutral sofa so I can bring in texture and pattern through the fabric on the throw pillows.

The first pair of matching pillows creates a feeling of symmetry and provides a fabric design that repeats the color scheme of the room. If your sofa itself is covered in a patterend fabric, I would suggest that you start with two solid colored pillows, and introduce prints in the next step. This way you won't overwhelm your sofa.

The next pillow should add a new texture and pick up one of the colors from the first set. I chose the apricot silk pillow which coordinates with my accent wall color.

A fourth pillow might bring in a new shape like round or lumbar, for variety. This pillow might also introduce a new type of pattern. For example, if you started with a small stripe, maybe this pillow has an oversized, off-center, single flower on it.

Lastly, I like to drape a solid colored throw over one end of the sofa. Even in the summer,I get chilly when sitting and reading here. To me, a soft throw makes the sofa feel more inviting and less formal. If you don't like the draped look, fold it neatly and center it on the back of the sofa or tidily drape it over one arm.

A well dressed sofa can be the focal point of the room if your space is lacking a physical one, such as a fireplace or an ocean view. Give this formula a try in your own home, and email your photos to me at!

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