Question. What is your favourite room in your house? I’m guessing that some people will say the kitchen, which in many houses is a hive of activity. Some of you may say the bedroom – the place where you finally get to relax and sleep off the stresses of the day. But I think most of you may well have said the living room – the true heart of a family home. This is the room where you watch TV together, relax in front of the fire together, and generally spend most family time. Yes, the living room is certainly an important place for most families. And, if we’ve agreed that the living room is the most important room in the house, then maybe we can also agree that the sofa is the most important piece of furniture in that room.
Because, even in the most minimalistic living rooms, a sofa will take pride of place. It is an iconic item of furniture – think of Gogglebox without those settees to lounge on, or The Royle Family without that slightly threadbare sofa they seemed to spend their whole lives sitting on. But, in terms of sofa that is both classic and classy, there can only be one choice – The Chesterfield.
The Chesterfield is the oldest form of sofa, dating back to the 18th century, and supposedly named for Philip Stanhope, the 4th Earl of Chesterfield. With this in mind, it makes sense that many of the designs of Chesterfield that prove popular are distinctly vintage in their look, in deep maroons and brown and tan leather – giving a real feeling of opulence and wealth to them. These look fabulous if your style is retro elegance, add a few chosen antiques into the mix (and I don’t mean the husband!) and you get a warm and homely look.
It would be wrong to dismiss the Chesterfield as just an antique style throwback however. Remove the trademark leather buttons and leather finish and you get an utterly modern piece, totally fresh and most definitely 21st Century. You also need to look at the other elements of your living room in order to keep the look modern. A solid wood floor in a lighter shade keeps the look minimal, giving it a more Scandinavian feel rather than an antique look. You can make the look of the flooring much softer by adding a scatter rug in a neutral shade, or one that matches the sofa.
Other accessories that will make the room look fresh and modern include using scatter cushions on the sofa that add to the comfort, adding soft lighting that will give the room a subtle glow, or using candles for both scent and atmosphere.
Make your sofa the centre of your room design, and then build around it in order to create your own personal, cosy space. Opt for classic pieces, and your style will stay in style long after fashion pieces have faded.