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Rearranging Furniture in the Living Room

by | Mar 28, 2016 | Decorating Inspiration, My Living Room, My Seattle House

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Rearranging Furniture in the Living Room

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend! After a few way-too-busy weeks I finally took a couple of days to just do fun things. My sister and nephew came up for the weekend and we had a great time shopping and eating and drinking coffee. :) On Saturday my girls, sister and I had a blast making our own candles! So much fun! Candle making is definitely going to be a new obsession.

We also went to a couple of open houses in our Seattle area, just to be nosy. Even though we have no reason to be house shopping (we just got here!), I can’t stop myself!

Rearranging Furniture in the Living Room

We saw a really cute one, too (in the photos above). But while there’s always that moment when you can be tempted to fall in love with what you don’t have (especially when it is all remodeled, painted beautifully and professional staged and yours is still in its awkward not-staged or painted phase), looking at houses also affirms that we made the right choice for us. We have a long way to go to make our house feel the way we want it to, but we love our house and know it’s going to be everything we need.

Last week we did a little rearranging in our living room and dining room. I was just ready for a change, or more like it, I was just ready to feel settled. I kept putting off rearranging the room because I wanted to paint the room and deal with the fireplace first, but I’m trying to not wait for perfect conditions!

I didn’t feel like the living room or dining rooms were as cozy as I wanted them to be, so moving furniture around seemed like a no-risk way to try something new.  I’m still toying with the idea of painting our fireplace (or regrouting it) as a low budget improvement or a first step makeover (see some painted fireplace inspiration photos and my own fireplace here), but I knew the furniture arrangement could make a difference in the room now, so there was no reason to wait.

Rearranging Furniture in the Living Room

Above: Our living room at Christmas, before we moved the glass cabinet to the dining room!

To get started, we moved our glass door cabinet to the dining room. It made sense that it would be in the dining room, but for some reason we previously determined it was going to be too big for that room. We also had thought we needed to have that piece in our living room to hold lamps, since that room doesn’t have any overhead lights. But, we decided to just try moving it and see what would happen. I’m so glad we did, we immediately LOVED it in there! I’ll show you the dining room arrangement in another post.

Without that cabinet on the wall, we were free to try a new arrangement. However, without that cabinet, we really didn’t have much furniture. Our leather sofa felt a bit small as a main sofa for this room, so we pulled a few chairs around to simulate what it might feel like if we got a new larger sofa (one of the potential hazards of rearranging is when you discover that you actually don’t have the pieces you need, ha).

Rearranging Furniture in the Living Room

We wanted to make our living room cozy and comfortable, but also open and inviting. The goal is to orient this space around the view, but also to center the furniture around conversation. It’s tricky when you have more than one objective. Originally we tried our leather sofa facing the fireplace to be cozy and put the cabinet against the only full wall, but it just felt closed off and not really welcoming.

But surprisingly, when we set up a new sofa simulation with chairs facing the view, and put the leather sofa back where it was before facing the fireplace, the arrangement felt perfect. Not closed off, but cozy and inviting while still fully incorporating the view as a main focal point. It all felt right. All it took was a new “sofa” against the wall. :) A chair angled at the fireplace toward the sofas will complete the conversation area.

We’ve lived with this arrangement for a few days and so far, we love it. We still need lamps, tables and a new sofa, but now we can at least visualize what we want. We’ve found a couple of potential sofa options already and can’t wait to continue making our living room a really comfortable space!

Have you done any furniture arranging lately?

PS. We paused the Love Your Home Challenge over Easter weekend, so we will post the remaining few challenges this week! Feel free to continue following along with the challenges on Instagram!

Living Room Sources:

Leather Nailhead Sofa

Blue and White Rug

Gray Coffee Table

Related Posts:

Updates to our basement family room

Our house floor plan


  1. Cindy Franck

    What about switching the sofa with the two chairs, having the chairs facing the fireplace with a table in between the two? But I guess you need those two chairs to go in front of the window? I have two sofas ( not matching, but complimentary colors) in my living room with two chairs that have a printed fabric that includes both colors. It really does feel inviting and cozy around the fireplace. Love being apart of your process.

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      I do love the look of chairs and a table by a sofa, but for now I think we are going to try to keep the sofa there since we like it. The good thing about the sofa in that spot is it is a bit more streamlined than multiple pieces, and might even take up less space than two chairs and a table. It’s not a very wide space. Normally I wouldn’t think I’d like two sofas at right angles light that, but somehow in this room and with a chair anchoring the other corner by the fireplace, it seems to work! We’ll see as we furnish the rest of the room. It is fun to have you along! :)

  2. Mary Long

    Love your blog, and your books!! Today you shared photos of a couple of rooms from open houses you visited this past weekend. I love the chandelier over the dining table and wondered if you know the source. It is exactly what I have been looking for!

  3. Rebecca

    I am ALWAYS rearranging furniture! I started as a teenager rearranging my bedroom and occasionally my college roommates would come home to find our tiny dorm rooms rearranged! I stay home with my kids right now and I get sick of looking at the same arrangement every day. We have only lived in our home for two years and haven’t purchased a lot of new furniture yet. I rearrange a lot because our pieces from our old house don’t fit perfectly here and we aren’t in the market for new couches until our kids are all potty trained! I drive my husband crazy, it makes me happy and breathes new life into our spaces!

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      Ha, I remember those days :). My son sat on our leather couch (the one we had when he was little) with a WET DIAPER and I almost had a heart attack. Fortunately the leather recovered. Ha! It is so true that the pieces from an old house don’t always work as well in a new one, but rearranging helps make things work better and make us feel more comfortable in our space in the mean time! :)

  4. Lois Layne

    Love the arrangement. What color are the walls in your living room? Thank you.

  5. Tracie

    When we moved to our current home a larger sofa was our biggest need. In all our previous homes we never had room for more than a love seat, so a couch long enough to to lie down seems luxurious! (Who knows when you might need a five-minute nap in front of the fireplace?)

  6. Nikki

    I rearrange frequently! I say its because I haven’t found the perfect home for everything yet. Afterall we’ve only been in our house for almost 5 years. lol

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      Ha, it takes a long time, doesn’t it? I will probably rearrange this room at least five more times. :)

  7. Christie

    I think balance in arrangement is key; your sofa plan echoes the windows and balances the room diagonally. I’ve always loved that sofa too … can’t wait to see what you pair with it.

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      Thanks, yes, I’ll have to take more images of the room as we furnish it but I think you are right, it does help balance the room, and somehow it helps in balancing the fireplace, too. :)

      • Christie

        Your room is so intriguing to me, and it is probably due to the mid-century design. I keep thinking about its lines and centers and diagonals! Have you drawn it to scale on graph paper? I’d be curious to see where the off-centered lines actually line up with another feature, such as how the interior corner diagonal from the corner window might have walls that line up with the line that separates the bookshelf and fireplace (if that makes sense), or how centering your new sofa directly across from the center of the long window might create a special balance (even if it isn’t centered on the wall it is placed), or the center of your floating loveseat might be centered on the fireplace.

        • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

          Yes, it is interesting! I’ll have to analyze it more (graph paper is a good idea) but something resonates with what you said. The sofa placement across from the window and how it might create balance, and the center of the love seat across from the center of the fireplace. When we put the furniture where it is, we definitely saw an interesting change in how the fireplace felt and how the room felt more balanced! Really interesting!

  8. Linda Stoll

    Don’t you just love dragging furniture around the room ’til it’s just right? It makes me appreciate what I do own when I see it in a brand new light …

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      It’s such a great way to reimagine what you have, it’s fun (although, tiring, hahah).

  9. sharon /

    Even though your little leather sofa couldn’t carry the whole room, it’s so reliable and I love that guy! I’m always on Craigslist looking for the homerun used leather chair for us to adopt …

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      That’s true, I didn’t want it to feel bad for its failure, because I do love it! HA! It gets better and softer with age, and more antiqued by my dogs :).

  10. Corinna - A Designer At Home

    I hate doing the because it drives my husband crazy when I tell him I need a new piece of furniture off Craigslist ;)

  11. Joanne B.

    So are you thinking of a totally new sofa, like a sectional or just another new sofa to go where the chairs are now? Have you thought about just getting another of the same leather PB sofas exactly like the one you have now? Im so happy t see you did try the sofa there to take advantage of that view!

  12. savannah patrone

    This post inspires me to change things up in my home! It time for me to pull out the paint! Also, I love the accent wall in the bedroom picture! Is it black or dark blue?

  13. Joanne Taggart

    Thanks for sharing your photos Melissa. What a wonderful light-filled room with the view! And I know what you mean about not waiting for conditions to be perfect to try something. If we always did that we would forever waiting. Your glass cabinet is awesome and yes I can imagine it looks perfect in the dining room. Looking forward to seeing your photos of the room when you’re ready to post them. Also look forward to seeing the new sofa you choose for the wall. So much fun!

  14. Andi

    I just got your book The Inspired Room: Simple Ideas to Love the Home You Have and I love it!! I just stocked up on a bunch of decorating and DIY books and so far your’s is my favorite. I love your style and all of your advice you put in it. SO far my favorite advice section is how to manage everybody’s opinions. I’m right there with you, if you don’t like their style, don’t take their advice. And if you love their style, then soak up everything they say! Can’t wait for the next book to come out!

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      Yay, thank you Andi! I’m so glad you enjoy the book! Thanks for coming by to let me know, it made my day!

  15. Debbie from MountainMamaOnline

    I’m in my house just over a year now and I am still not totally settled on the living room furniture layout! Since the room is long and narrow it’s challenging…..looking forward to seeing what you finally do with this awesome space!

  16. Lucille

    I don’t know how many times we’ve rearranged the furniture in our living room (or parlor). Our house is a Queen Anne and there is no symmetry to this room. There are two doors plus an archway and a doorway! There is a fireplace and a bay window that juts out diagonally. The room is small so pulling the furniture away from the walls doesn’t work too well. Our coffee table is really too big – 3 ft. square with a marble top. Your couch looks similar to mine so I thought I must have good taste! I was really interested when I found about your new book and I thought: “I need this right now!” Then I found out I’ll have to wait till May! I’ll be interested to see more pictures of your living room with your new couch.

  17. Lisa Moore

    I loved your ideas, your blog, I’m looking for how to organize my room and found your blog, I saved in my favorites, thanks for sharing!

  18. larissa

    Rearranging furniture always creates a new look and at points it can even inspire you to change up the style, just from moving around a few pieces of furniture! Your room looks fantastic, and I can only hope to have my room look that stunning one day! I will definitely have to pick up your book so I can get started on crafting ideas! Again, thanks so much for the awesome post! Great work!

  19. Charlie Benedick

    I have tried and tried rearranging, and pulling pieces from one room to another, even lugging furniture up and down the stairs to a new room and nothing is working for me. I just about have given up. It is SO depressing to have moved so many times, replaced furniture for a different home, then find out you are moving yet again… All the while trying to make things work. Sigh. I love having my home being a warm, snugly welcoming place… And I feel so unsettled and unhappy without being grounded and secure… I guess I have some issues I need to work on. I love always hearing about what you are doing though, and I always will. Thank you for keeping us updated. You are wonderful and inspiring.

  20. Kathy Redding

    Your home looks beautiful! I try to rearrange my rooms at least once a year. It keeps thinks fresh for all of us and it’s fun to get creative.

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