Know your Sofa

Here’s a quick guide to some of the most common types of social seating, from couches and sofas to daybeds and settees, and a few of the most popular styles of sofas.

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 Settee

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Upholstered, in a Neoclassical French style. Settees, as a rule, more closely resemble a chair than they do a sofa. With an upholstered back and seat, and padded arms like a French fauteuil, the settee is comfort and refined style for a social setting. Their popularity grew as chairmakers in the 1600s grew more confident with their skills.

 

Cabriole sofa

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Is named for the sinuous curve of its back and legs, and is a petite, refined seat that was a fixture in French salons. The key is in the back: it’s got an exposed wood frame, often with carved detail, that makes one continuous line from the back into the arms. It’s an extended version of the French bergere, and has no back cushions—only a loose seat cushion.

 

Camelback sofa

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Was a Thomas Chippendale original, named for its elegant sloping back that’s high in the middle, then drops to the same height as its subtly rolled arms. These seats are completely upholstered with exposed wood legs, and feature stuffed seat cushions but a taut, smooth back. Once you know this silhouette, you’ll see it everywhere. Classic, refined, and beautiful from all angles.

2-chair-back settee

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Was the first type of social seating to develop completely separate from the old-fashioned medieval settles. It was essentially two chairs fused together, and ranged in styles from Queen Anne walnut chairs with upholstered seats to Colonial American wagon chairs with rush seats.

Empire-style sofa

EMPIRE SOFA

The iconic, cornucopia-armed Empire-style sofa . These behemoths often include bolster-style cushions on each end below their dramatic arms, and have lots of carving on their exposed frames and (sometimes precarious) curved legs. Look for Asian or eagle motifs, and animal’s paw feet.

 

Daybed

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Has come a long way from its origins: it was essentially a wooden chair with an elongated seat stretched out over 6 legs, a form that died out in the 18th century. Nowadays, it has a more versatile appeal, going from social seating to luxurious lounging in a pinch. Chaise longues took their place, and a stylish variation, the recamier (pictured below) features a high, assymetrical side.

 

 

English rolled-arm sofa

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Is a 19th-century classic with versatile, casual style. The arms, in comparison to other sofa silhouettes, are compact and recessed. All-over upholstery, from the tight back to the plush seat cushions, make it a perfect, go-to piece for kicking back.

Recamier

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Is a specific style of chaise longue that has a regal edge: its asymmetrical high side makes it ideal for reclining in style, and was named for Madame Recamier whose portrait was famously painting doing just that.

Chesterfield sofa

Chesterfield

Has an all-over tufted, quilted look, often covered in leather. The dramatically rolled arms are the same height as the back, originally kept low so that men could sit in them without wrinkling their coats.

Tuxedo sofa

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Has all the pomp of the Chesterfield, but with a sleek and modern silhouette: its high, straight arms and squared-off back are all the same height, it lacks back cushions, and it features decorative tufts (although, often just one row).

 

Lawson-style sofa

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Is comfortable and casual—a classic that puts the sitter’s needs first without sacrificing good proportion. Unlike the English rolled-arm version, its back cushions are separate from the frame, and it has low, taut arms and feet often covered with a skirt.

Canapé

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Is like a mini-Cabriole sofa, a French-style loveseat with a carved, exposed frame and a continuous back-to-arm shape. It rose to fame in Rococo France under Louis XV, and grew streamlined with the Neoclassical lines of Louis XVI.

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Interior Design Trends for 2014

TRENDS

1. Macramé and fiber-art wall hangings:

SONY DSC“It’s sculpture for your wall that adds texture and replaces wallpaper or fine art you can’t afford,” said Ms. Burnham. “And we haven’t seen it since the 1970s. I think it’s time.” Early adopters include the Ace Hotel chain and architect Barbara Bestor.

 

 

2. Window sheers:

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The popularity of heavy drapes is drooping. “Everyone wants greater transparency and more light,” observed New York designer Celerie Kemble. And “sheers are no longer granny-ish and polyester,” said Los Angeles designer Kim Alexandriuk. “The new ones in linen and wool look rich.”

 

 

3. Corduroy upholstery:

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“It’s the casual alternative to velvet and the preppy version of chenille,” said Ms. Burnham, whose library sofa is olive-green corduroy. Mr. Harte, who used Etro’s “hip and vibrant” purple corduroy on a gold-leafed bergère, is also a fan: “It looks really cool on formal chairs.” The wider the wale, the gutsier the statement.


 

 

4. Venetian marbled-paper prints:

marble-montageFound on the end papers of old books, these intricately swoopy patterns evoke “the romanticism of a bygone, pre-digital era,” said Mr. Wood. Mr. Bullard noted that the prints are seeing a renaissance on “everything from the chicest of wallpaper to finely silk-screened linens and gold-leafed porcelain.”

 

 

 

5. Deco hues:

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Color has been nudging gray and greige out of the picture, but, for many decorators, bright primary shades can still feel uncouth.

Happy Thanksgiving

Here are some tips for hosts and guests to help make your Thanksgiving both happy and memorable.

For the host
The key to a stress-free Thanksgiving dinner is to plan early. Once you commit to yourself to hosting, the first thing you need to do is invite every single person you want to come to your dinner. Even if your friends and family are spur-of-the-moment types, they very likely commit to their Thanksgiving dinner plans by the first week of November, Invite anyone and everyone you would want to have at your dinner, and then let them tell you if they can make it or not.

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Developing a theme is a fun part of event planning. Use it as your guide for all decisions from invitations to party favors. A theme can be as simple as selecting a color palette that is used in all the details. Create an original center piece by filling vases with cranberries or kumquats, and then add water and flowers in complementary shades.

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Think outside the dining room. If weather permits, set up a table on the front or back porch. By mixing things up, you are increasing your entertaining space. Consider renting chairs or tables just for the night, cover rented chairs with formal slipcovers for a beautiful addition to your holiday table and decor.

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Plan some entertainment for guests to enjoy. If inviting children have a tv, playroom, or coloring book activities. The kids can write their own stories about Thanksgiving and then read them after Thanksgiving dinner. Or, if you have company, the kids can read their stories while everyone is waiting for dinner to be served. For adults, consider having music and other entertainment on hand for everyone to enjoy while mingling.

For the guest

Arrive on time. Yes, it is a day of feasting, but that turkey is going to be done at some point and your hosts are trying to plan around that magic moment.

Contribute to the meal If you have special dietary needs, it is very gracious to offer to bring a dish that meets those needs. There’s nothing more awkward than arriving to a dinner and not being able to eat much. You don’t want the hostess to feel badly.

Bringing your host a small, thoughtful gift shows your thanks for all their work. While a good wine or a nice cheese is always a great idea, something more creative is always nice. Being a good guest means socializing – don’t obsessively check your e-mail or Twitter. That said, you should of course take photos of what you’re eating, and who you’re with.

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Offer to help with the clean-up. Family or non-family, this is one day where it is a great idea to pitch in.

For all

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Enjoy your time together; while this step isn’t about preparation, it is more important than the others. The holidays only come around once a year, and Thanksgiving is a time to cherish those around you, and give thanks for having loved ones near.
Remember to say “Thank You”.
It is Thanksgiving after all!

Happy-Thanksgiving-from-improveit-360

Halloween is almost here!

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This week’s blog is a bit early because… it’s just about Halloween! The time of year to dress up, get and/ or give candy, and for those unfortunate few that give kids healthy snacks and floss, the time of year when your house gets either egged or ‘redecorated’ with toilet paper. And when you’re having and going to all those costume parties, how are you going to protect your beautiful furniture? Well here are a few tips to not only protect your own home, but to guide you when visiting others homes as well.

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1. First of all, if you have any irreplaceable accessories or artwork you’re worried about, wrap them, pack them, and pull them back out after the holidays. That way, you can rest assured that no one is going to pick them up, knock them over, or bump them off the shelf.

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2. If the party is at your own home, make sure you provide plenty of party supplies (ie, cups, plates, and LOTS of napkins). You can even stash napkins and towels in discreet locations around your home for those accidental spills (because they always happen!).

3. If the party is at someone else’s home, remember that they may have put a lot of time and energy in to decorating their home, so you need to respect their home as if it were your own.

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4. DON’T TP or egg your friends and family unless they’re in on the joke!

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5. If you spill something, clean it up. It isn’t rocket science, and you wouldn’t want someone to try to hide a mess they make in your home would you?

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6. When decorating your home, remember to use tape that will easily come off the walls, and don’t use products (like silly string) that might stain your walls or your home. I remember spraying this all over my parent’s home one year, and then having to repaint the entire room because it put horrible spots on the walls and floor!

Don’t forget to have fun and enjoy yourself! Accidents will happen, so don’t stress out over them; be prepared, but don’t let spots and spills drag down your entire evening! Do a quick clean up and move on. If you have to, go back to it after the festivities. Enjoy the night and have lots of tricks AND treats!

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Shopping for Sofas

Everyday we see clients looking for the perfect sofa for a new house, room, or a replacement for an old or cheap sofa. It is hard to decide on the perfect one by seeing it in a showroom and having to imagine if it fits into your room or your routine. So here are some hints for you to find the perfect match for your home!
First, think about where the sofa is going to go. Have all the measurements and either pictures or sample of fabrics and finishing of other pieces that will be in the same room. Is the sofa for a living room or family room? Are you going to use it everyday or just when you have guests? Have those facts figured out before you go shopping for your sofa.

Size
There are so many different sizes and you need to know which one fits you the best. So, if you want a couch to be long enough for a nap, you need to go for at least 90″ length. The depth should be 40″ – 44″ depending if you and your family have longer or shorter legs and how many throw pillows you want. But a 90″ x 40″ is perfect to just curl up while watching a movie and take a nap. A 19″ seat height is also very comfortable. But seat on a few different ones to see the perfect height for you. If the sofa is for a living room that is not used that frequently, you can go for more antique styles that are less deep but still comfortable. If you have a 8″ ceiling, go for a low sofa that will give the impression of the ceiling being taller. If your home has a high ceiling, use a high back sofa that will make a presence in such a spacious room.

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Fabric and Finishing
Choosing the fabric can be tricky. Think about your style and the style of the room. Do you need something more calm to go in your entertainment room with other preexisting pieces? Choose a solid color as your curtains and walls. That will make the room calm and will give you space to innovate with the throw pillows. Choose a different pattern for your throw pillows and bring a new look to your house. They are easier to change if you get tired of the pattern. But if you want to take a risk and get a sofa that adds a lot of personality to the room, use mixed patterns. One idea is to have a frame and back with a solid color, cushions in one pattern, and the pillows in another pattern. That will be an exciting piece that shows you can take risks!

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If you are thinking about skirt or bare legs for your sofa, you need to have some facts in mind. Skirts will allow you to add lighter pieces with exposed legs to the room without making it too much. And you can add a 1.75″ trim at the base of the skirt in a different texture and color slightly darker than the body of the sofa to give it contrast. But the legs will give more personality to your couch. You don’t need to match the wood of the leg of your sofa with every other piece you have. A room that matches too much is boring. You can use different colors of legs in your sofa and coffee table as long as they go together. Use your personal sense of style to know what goes with what. Those details are what makes your house your home.

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Another detail is, do you love tuft sofas like we do? They give it that extra something. But if you have kids and pets, don’t forget that it can keep a lot of the crumbs or dirt left behind. It is more high-maintenance.

Quality
When shopping for sofas, don’t forget that you get what you paid for. The are no miraculous factories or products that can offer cheap sofas that will last you 10+ years. The frame of the sofa is very important and it is what will make it last for a long time. It needs to be made of hardwood as kiln dried maple or solid mahogany, for example. One way of testing the frame of the sofa is to lift one of the front legs 5″ to 7″ from the floor. The other leg should lift as well to prove a sofa with a sturdy frame. If the leg is still touching the floor, the frame is weak.
The cushions should also be good quality to last you long. Cheap sofas have cheap cushions that will go down and have your butt print after a year. Always look for sofas that are filled with down. A mix of down and feather, but with majority of down, can also make very comfortable sofas. A cushion filled with down will last you without needing replacement for a long time. Just choose softer or firmer according to your taste.
When choosing a good quality sofa, think that the piece will last you a lifetime and you can just get new upholstery every now and then to change colors, patterns, and textures, and you will have practically a new sofa at your home.

Those are our Divine tips to buy a great sofa that will compliment your home and last you a long time.
Do you have other hints that you want to share with the readers? Comment in our post and let’s hear about it!

Easter decorations, colors to celebrate!

Easter have so many meanings for different times and religions, but they all come together in one term: Passover. The word Easter comes from the Latin Pascae, Greek Pascha and the Hebrew term Pesach. Different cultures celebrate Easter for different reasons. Old civilizations, as the Greek, would celebrate the passage from winter to spring usually on the first full moon of the flower season. The Jewish celebrate the Passover when Moses led them through the waters of the Red Sea, freeing them from Egypt. And the Christians celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ usually on the Sunday after the first moon of Spring. The Easter bunny is related to this date because it represents fertility, that for old civilizations meand better life conditions and species survival. In Egypt the rabbit meant birth and hope for new lives. For Christians eggs used to be forbidden during Lent (forty days preceding Easter Sunday) and they were brought to the table on Easter day painted red to represent Easter joy. Different cultures celebrate for different but similar reasons. But we all enjoy  Easter with a special meal followed by chocolate eggs surrounded by family and friends!

Easter decorations

So, this Sunday, decorate your home with your favorite flowers and don’t be afraid to go overboard with colors! If there is one day that you should have different flowers and colors at your home, it is Easter Sunday! Set a beautiful table, cook your favorite meal, but don’t forget to hide the chocolate eggs! Let’s celebrate Passover, Spring, health, family, LIFE!

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Divine Interiors will unfortunately be closed for Easter Sunday (we are also going to celebrate!). But we will reopen on Monday, April 1st, at 10am. Come see us!

Have a Happy Easter!!!

Welcome!!

Hey there! Here at Divine Interiors we are passionate about making houses feel like home with class and comfort, focusing on our clients style. Our extensive collection allows us to customize our products to satisfy every clients needs. And here in our blog we want to share our experiences and ideas, but most important, hear about your opinions, hints, style, and make this a place to share experiences!

Just like you we enjoy getting home to a house that showcases our personalities and makes us feel proud of the hardwork we put in everyday life. Our home is where we can be ourselves fully and just enjoy the important things in life and build our memories.

There are some amazing blogs that inspire so many people to take care of their homes and be excited to go home everyday and find a cozy place to relax, and we want to be part of that! We couldn’t be more excited to be part of the blogosphere and start sharing our experience and knowledge with everyone that appreciates home like us!

welcome to divine interiors