Wednesdays are our day to focus on our readers – your questions and dilemmas, your input, your contributions of ideas, solutions, techniques. Please feel free to jump in and share your decorating ideas, successes or questions.
“I have ordered a large sofa (98″ long by 34″ high). I found 2 leather chairs that I love but they are 30″ h X 32″d X 33″w. Are they too small to go with such a large sofa? Do chairs always have to be taller than the sofa?”
The short answer is ‘no’, chair backs do not need to be taller than the sofa. The chairs you like are a fairly standard size. Because there’s only 4″ difference between the chair and sofa back heights, the room will have a very linear look which is more contemporary/transitional. A room is more interesting with a variety of heights so to add some of that variety, you have a couple of options. You can play up the fireplace and mantel with a large piece of vertical art, you can add an armoire or tall entertainment center or you could take draperies all the way up to the ceiling.
This chair and sofa are approximately the same height and note how the vertical elements of the room combine to keep the room interesting.
When considering furniture placement, the two chairs combined are 66″ wide, add a side table of 24″ and 4-5″ between each chair and the table and the length of those pieces would total 98-100″ which is the same length of the sofa. Put the 3 pieces at right angles to the sofa and you’ve created equal legs of an “L” arrangement. An alternative would be to place them across from the sofa, anchoring one end with a tall armoire or the fireplace to create a “U” arrangement.
To visually shorten the sofa, highlight the center and neutralize the ends. Use no pillows at the ends (or use very simple, blending ones) but then use a couple of oversize dramatic pillows toward the center. Or, drape a lovely patterned throw at the center of the sofa.
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