Here’s a good article on furniture placement by Tara Mastroeni for Freshome.
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Arranging furniture can be more difficult than it seems at first glance, as anyone who has ever spent hours rearranging a room knows. However, it is possible to make your arrangement work without a lot of blood, sweat and tears. With that in mind, we’ve brought you four must-know tricks for arranging furniture like a pro. Read them over to learn these secrets.
Pick a focal point
One of the easiest ways to figure out how to create a layout for the room is by arranging the furniture around a focal point. For a refresher, in interior design parlance, a “focal point” is the first place that a person’s eyes will travel when they enter the room. It’s supposed to be something that’s eye-catching and will capture the viewer’s attention.
Ideally, the focal point will already be an existing feature in the room. It could be something like a window — especially if there’s a stunning view — a fireplace or some built-in shelving. However, if an architectural feature like that isn’t present in the room, you can also create one of your own by hanging a piece of wall art or using a piece of statement furniture.
Once you have a focal point in mind for the space, the next step is to arrange your furniture in such a way that it highlights that feature. Arrange your main pieces of furniture — and, in particular, seating — so that they’re oriented towards the focal point. The key is to provide visual clues to help draw eyes in the right direction.
Avoid the walls
The number one mistake that people make when it comes to arranging furniture is lining all of their seating up against the walls. We understand the thought behind it. It seems like this move will make the room appear more spacious. However, what actually happens when you do this is you create a cavern of dead space in the middle of the room, which makes the room feel stark and unfinished.
Instead, it’s important to move away from the walls. Rather than shoving your furniture as far apart as possible, bring it together to create an intimate grouping. Not only will this help the room look like it’s been professionally staged, but it will also help facilitate conversation and induce an overall welcoming feeling throughout the space.
Consider traffic flow
The next thing you have to consider when thinking about how to arrange your furniture is traffic flow. As you might suspect, “traffic flow” refers to the way people move throughout the room. Ideally, you’ll want people to be able to make their way around the room and to every entrance without bumping into any furniture on their way.
To figure out the traffic pattern, start by creating a quick floor plan for the room. Draw arrows to represent pathways, each coming from each entryway to the room and going to another. Then, add in furniture around the pathways. Once you’ve found a combination that works, try it out by rearranging the furniture accordingly.
Plan ahead for purchases
Finally, the best thing you can do to set yourself up for success when arranging furniture is to plan new purchases in advance. After all, there’s nothing worse than putting your hard-earned money into a new piece of furniture, only to find out that it doesn’t fit in the space. Prepare for your new acquisition by taking the time to sort out how it will work in the room.
Start by thinking about how you will arrange the furniture when your new piece is finally included in the mix. Measure out how much space you should need to place it. In fact, measure it out twice just for reassurance. Then, make sure that you have enough clearance to move around it with ease.