• Jocelyn Ridgway

5 Simple Decorating Rules for Furniture Placement.

Updated: Jan 13

It occurred to me recently when I went to a clients home to discuss some new ideas for layout and style that furniture placement does not come naturally to most people and simply re-arranging your furniture can make a massive difference to the feel of your space.


Ask yourself, is your furniture still in the same place that the removalist put it? Have you put your sofa against the biggest wall just because that seems logical? There are some simple ways to get a brand new look and feel without spending a cent, here are some simple rules!


1. Choose a focal point.

It doesn't have to be a TV that's for a start although it can be. It could be a fireplace or beautiful window with a view. Choose a focal point and stick with it.


The focal point here is the fireplace and secondary the TV, notice the furniture away from the walls too!

2. Don't push furniture against the walls

This is a biggie! The size of your room will obviously dictate this rule but give your furniture some breathing room. There is absolutely no reason why your sofa has to be hard up against a wall, even bringing it out by a few centimeters can make a huge difference, it will make the room feel larger. Of course if you have a large room make sure you bring all the furniture into the center creating conversation areas leaving several meters between the wall and furniture.


Some great examples of a small room, even here then have been able to move some furniture out from the walls.

3. Create conversation areas

Even with a television in the room, not all chairs have to face it. If your room is smaller and you have space on either side of the TV that can fit a chair facing your sofa, this can create a great way to entertain with friends and makes it easier for conversation. Or think about putting two armchairs next to each other on the side of a sofa instead of in front. Finding that right balance is key. Using the right rug can also help define spaces, make sure either all or at least the front legs of all your furniture is sitting on it.


4. Consider the traffic flow

Make sure it's easy to get around, you don't want people stubbing toes or tripping, if you are concerned a space is a bit tight, try a round or oval coffee table to help soften the space and make it easier to navigate. Ideally you should have about 50 cm in front of any sofa or armchair and a coffee table but close enough to reach. Side tables should be either the same height as the armchairs arm or lower and within easy reach as well.


5. Lighting

For me lighting is everything. Too many houses these days are filled with down lights. These are expensive to run and create a flat overall light with no highlighting. Standard lamps in the corner of a room next to an armchair is a great little spot for reading a book late at night. Lamps create warmth and indirect light that is calming and eases you into bedtime. They also create atmosphere for parties and small gatherings. Make sure you get warm bulbs!


Beautiful lamp lighting, book ending this sofa.

So you can see, there are some very simple ways to change the look of your space, for my client last week we broke up her L shaped outdoor sofa into a smaller sofa and two armchairs together all facing each other creating a conversation area rather than all facing the same way. This made room to bring an outdoor table around from another hidden corner to near the kitchen windows, making an incredible difference to how they are going to live and entertain out on their deck.


Sometimes it just needs a fresh set of eyes on your current furniture to maximise their potential! Little Bowerbird is currently taking on new projects, if you need help even just looking at your current furniture and spaces to see how they can work better for you, head to our new time packages page. These are services we provide in specific time blocks so you know exactly what you will be getting and how much it will cost. We'd love to help!

Joce x

Principal designer/director

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Little Bowerbird Interiors, Brisbane, Australia | EST. 2009