by Heather O'Donovan
“We can’t have anything too fancy because of the kids”, or “We’re going to wait until the kids are older”. Too many times have I heard these comments from clients. Thankfully, with today’s options you don’t need to sacrifice style for durability.
A lot of my clients are choosing to live in an open floor plan, whether its new construction or removing walls in an old home to make it so. The Living Room of today is actually “lived in”, not the room I knew growing up where no one ever seemed to live. So why not make that space comfortable for everyone.
Here are a few ideas that will help bridge the style and durability gap:
Stain Resistant Fabrics:
Many fabric manufacturers are producing high quality and easy to clean micro-fiber fabrics that are available in luscious velvets & soft scrumptious fabrics in an array of fashionable colors. These are not your pseudo suedes of 10 years ago. The best thing: They are easily cleaned with a damp cloth. Bring on the PB & J!
Slipcovers are nothing new. However, the choice of fabrics and tailoring can have a huge effect on the outcome of your furniture. Whenever possible, opt for a custom-fitted cover instead of buying one off the rack to ensure the fit.
Glass covered coffee tables, consoles and tables:
Often times, people opt not to have a wood-top or painted coffee table, console or table in their Living Room. The threat of water-rings from cereal bowls and sippy cups is too much to bear. Also, there is the threat of scratched or damaged wood from pencil marks and Hot Wheels Grand Prixs. A good solution is a custom-cut piece of glass place on top of furniture. It enhances the look of your furniture while protecting it from all the above. Then, when you want you may remove the glass for that adult party. Although, I’ve had quite a few clients more concerned with their girlfriends & red wine than the kids.
Numerous Indoor/Outdoor fabrics for seat cushions:
Outdoor fabric is made for a reason: it’s tough, it’s treated and it’s prepared for the worst Mother Nature throws at it. Sound good? Why not bring it inside? The treated fabric is perfect for spills and “accidents”. Designers like Trina Turk and others have gorgeous designs available for indoor / outdoor use. Use it on inside upholstery and have the best of both worlds; form & function all wrapped up in a “spill proof” package.
Ottoman Coffee Table:
The coffee table is many things to many people: For Dad’s it’s a place to put his feet up and watch the game. For Mom, it’s a place to fan designer home magazines. For little Bella it’s a place to perform her stage show. It’s a very versatile piece of furniture so why not open it up for more? Why not configure an ottoman in leather or fabric that’s large enough to serve as a coffee table? Flat enough to fan magazines and set a tray with a cocktail or two, yet soft enough to put your feet up or open up seating for party guests if needed.
The way we live has evolved dramatically since the time of our youth. Make it kid-friendly but make is sophisticated also. There’s no reason you can’t have both!
So, after the kids have (finally) gone to sleep and you’ve reclaimed the Living Room (after clearing a few toys, shoes and leftover cheerios), relax and enjoy your new space, until morning…
More about the author...
Heather O'Donovan Interior Design is a full service interior design firm for residential and commercial projects. Principal Designer, Heather O'Donovan's combination of stylish modern furnishings and casual style, create effortlessly elegant interiors for her clients. She works closely with each client to ensure their home is a reflection of their lifestyle. Our broad scope of services has something for every client, from a one-time design consultation to entire homes from concept through completion.
For more design inspiration, visit http://www.heatherodonovaninteriordesign.com/
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