two sofa living room design

Two Sofas Double the Design Possibilities

The living room is arguably one of the most important spaces in a home, the place you turn to whether you’re gathering for after-dinner cocktails or putting your feet up on a lazy Sunday morning. So it’s important to have seating that does it all: effortlessly punctuates the center of the room, allows for extra guests, and offers supreme comfort. A sofa and a few chairs is a traditional choice, providing symmetry and style, but the setup can feel a bit stuffy and expected. Although a sectional sofa is the ideal choice for lounging, it can limit a room’s layout. What's the right design decision? Here, two decorators make the cases for their preferred seating arrangements.

A Vik Muniz diptych presides over a sitting room in a New York home by Robert A.M. Stern Architects. A Dune sectional sofa sits atop a carpet from FJ Hakimian.

Simon Upton

“A sectional is a less formal, but more inviting alternative to a sofa and immediately creates a laid-back vibe. Its inherent asymmetry also allows it to be tucked into a corner, making it a good choice for a room with limited wall space. In a Tribeca loft I designed, I chose a sectional for its form and function. The shape perfectly fits into the long, narrow multipurpose space, which is not only the living and dining room but also the kitchen. In order to accommodate seating for the same number of dinner table guests, the sectional's size was a necessity. It wouldn’t have been possible with a straight sofa. Most importantly, the sectional style was a deliberate choice for a laid-back family that includes two Labradors. The couple covets the spacious yet comfortable sectional to curl up and relax at the end of the day.” —

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