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Furniture

Sofa Inspiration with Viyet

I’ve been hitting the drawing board a bit lately, cooking up ideas for custom sofas that I’d like to bring to reality one day.
I need one for my own long and narrow living room, Sarah is overdue a new sofa too and most recently TEOT’s bff Amy has shown some interest in something specific for her home that is currently just a tad crowded with a sofa that scales too large for her room.
Whenever I start thinking this way, I’m quick to look to the past for furniture design inspiration. It’s important for me to understand the aspects of sofa design, as they have morphed over the years.
Sarah told me about Viyet some time ago- a lovely site for home decor where you can bid on consigned high end goods. It’s similar to Chairish but they have a minimum value and well, we think its a bit more buttoned up.
So for this part of the process, I’ve been digging through the vintage furniture website, to find a few old design classics  for inspo… and so maybe I’ll talk about why.
Milo Baughman
There are plenty of examples besides the one below, of great sofa designs by Milo Baughman, but I do love the burlwood frame on this one.
I selected this one for Amy, to call attention the slim deck and slim arm rest design of the mid century. A slim deck is becoming a must have for me when it comes to my love affair with sofas. If you look around at big box and catalog design stores known for the sofa designs, more and more are headed this direction. Sarah and I had a funny conversation with another TEOT bff, Amanda when she showed us the 8 foot long Crate & Barrel sofa that she was going to buy. It was on sale for well under $2k and she was adamant that it was the sofa for her. But Sarah and I both shook our head and begged her to reconsider…. b/c it was a fat-deck contemporary that we’re pretty sure is going to look dated in less than 5 years. If you don’t know what I mean by fat deck, here is a look at one.
The thing about designing a new sofa with these slim proportions for me, is that it harkens the timelessness of midcentury design. The silhouette mixes in seamlessly with so many styles and the essence of a smaller scale provides you with an opportunity for clean floating lines that don’t take up too much visual space, yet you can still provide a roomy seating area, plenty of area to sit down and sprawl.
On the downside, most midcentury sofas that have actually stood the test of time, have a scratchy upholstery in a nubby texture and often times the foam is long overdue a reconditioning. We ARE huge fans of reupholstering and reconditioning a sofa with great lines, but you will likely spend as much as it may cost you to buy a fat deck Crate and Barrel sofa. You can see that we recently did just that with our TEOT sofa, seen here.
At any rate, we look to these kind of lines as a part of our imagining for a sofa for Amy.
Meanwhile, for my own home… I’m looking to the Seventies, the official decade of the at home lounge. This inspiration suits my modern day compulsion for Netflix binge sessions on the couch, as well as the versatility that our young homies need… to pull apart the room to make way for Wii tournaments and puppy wrestling matches.
Now, it’s not that I’m necessarily advocating so much for the TOGO as a modern day solution for my home. I think that choice might be a bit too on the nose to decorate around for MOST homes. BUT, I AM advocating for the soul of the Togo. It is modular, casual, deep, comfortable and it promotes a versatile living experience that I can really get behind. It’s casual luxury, it’s laissez faire, its super cool. Achieving this level of je ne sais quoi in a modern way would get me really excited.
George Smith
For Sarah, our pursuit of the perfect english roll arm is still going strong. We’ve designed and built one custom version that we think came pretty close, but in the end we sold it off as a prototype with the idea to keep chiseling away at the right proportions. But we have definitely talked about this before. We want a classic George Smith vintage style, just like Sofia Coppolas, slightly modernized and somewhat more affordable than the real thing.
Version two is underway now and frankly, I’m not sure what to expect since we started with a entirely different manufacturer this time. It’s being benchmade in Hickory, NC where I grew up.
This classic style is a designer go to b/c of it’s casual yet refined nature. We like ours with a more of a cadillac line, deep, low slung, long and ready to ride the whole fam through all 8 of the Harry Potter movies.
There is much to be said for looking back, before we look forward. Borrowing the aspects of vintage style that we love and modernizing to suit our very own spaces.
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Streaming on Sofas

Remember this new meme that Sarah and I started… and by meme I mean, blog post feature where we pick our a fav fantasy sofa on which to perch while we marathon a recent television obsession? We do it sheerly for the purpose of being able to talk about television in a home decor related way here on this home decor blog!!!?

Yay. Let’s dive into episode two!

 

 

sven-mr-robot-sofa-tv-teot

Mr. RobotBryght Sven

Very 1984, but this time we’re revolutionizing and taking back society with the help of high level hackers. Dark, technologically charged and constantly questioning the share or — rather overshare of our lives and ourselves on the internet. Mr. Robot is dark, intense and it sometimes leaves us wondering what reality is.

 

 
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TogethernessRoger + Chris’ Basel

Die-hard Amanda Peet fans and fans of the Duplass brothers will certainly enjoy this HBO comedy/drama. I feel like every show that I watch about thirty-somethings is examining fidelity and identity or the loss of it and this show is no exception.

 

 

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The People vs. OJ Simpson + Ethan Allen’s Melrose

In June of 1994 I was 13 years old, a little young to understand all that was happening but I was aware. This was a great series and it was fun to do some fact checking along the way. A must see this year. I can’t wait to see the actors that played Marcia Clark and Chris Darden playing other roles in the future. A companion show of sorts is the ESPN 30 for 30 called June 17, 1994. The short film intertwines the O.J. Bronco chase with record setting sporting events, it was a crazy week.

 

Want more smart TV marathon suggestions!? Want more fantasy seating options while streaming? Here’s episode one of Streaming on Sofas!

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the perfect English roll arm sofa

Betsy and I have been talking sofas. Reason being…I was thinking about putting my dirty well-loved Petrie on the shelf and getting a…Belgian Classic Slope Arm when Restoration Hardware was running a legit year-end sale on their in stock furniture.

I waded in to a sea of online reviews and read other people’s sofa journeys and rambled on about it via email, text and on the phone to Betsy. She listened, for the most part patiently, as she does. I texted my neighbor who has a petite track arm that stands up well at 3 years of age to two small children, no pets but no major spills. “I hate to bug you about this again but did you say you got the brushed linen in fog” She knew exactly what she’d purchased because she had the receipt! Her only regret? She didn’t get the luxe depth.

The conversation between Betsy and I shifted, as it most often does when I talk to anyone about sofas, to the english roll arm sofa. Betsy said, you’ve always known you wanted a roll arm–thats what you should get. But I’d have to settle because the perfect roll arm that is financially feasible and easily accessible eludes me…it eludes most.

Design junkies know these images,

sofa coppolaSofia Coppola

Jenna Lyons English Roll Arm SofaJenna Lyons

sofa pinkAnn Mashburn

 

and the image I’m fixated on,

sofa bulow

 

sofa bulow2I tell Betsy that Pavoncelli’s children in the Town & Country feature are laying on the perfect sofa. Betsy isn’t easily convinced but she wants to pour over it with me.

 

This is some of what that conversation sounds like,

“Well it’s a tight back. I can’t tell if the back has a seam and if it’s a single seat cushion or two because of the magazine binding” We can’t find the whole flat image on the internet. “It’s down-filled, I think it’s pretty safe to say the seat cushion is down-filled. Is it George Smith? Well AD says that Markham Roberts likes George Smith.”

I love the sofas of both George Smith and George Sherlock. They are what others try to replicate. Why don’t I invest in one? Well…because they are $12,000.

 

But what happens to these sofas that are seemingly perfect and supposed to last forever? What happens when they are sat on and loved and napped on for a good long while–say 20 years or so?

Well Grandma saggy buns comes to mind,

sofa saggy buns
The cushions are starting to take a dive at Ashley Putnam’s place,

sofa putnam

 

One of the authors of the Everygirl, has the Pottery Barn Carlisle in her Chicago apartment but the cover looks a bit askew and the seat cushions look a little broken down. My Petrie seat cushions look very similar and it’s 9 years old. The Carlisle is a roll arm sofa that a lot of folks go for, it’s relatively affordable and it’s good looking. I thought it was a sure bet until I sat on one and then I quickly put the brakes on. Sorry PB, painful but true.

sofa everygirl PB
A well loved George Smith three-seater once for sale on 1st Dibs,

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This two seat Smith is on sale for $6500 on Viyet, BTW you should cruise Viyet if you haven’t yet. This sofa turns nine this year. It looks good don’t you think, wonder if she’s had work done? Ultimately the legs are too contemporary.

Screen Shot 2016-02-02 at 10.59.10 AM

Perfection doesn’t yet exist and by perfection I mean the perfect sofa that we can afford, that is a beautiful roll arm silhouette, that is well-made and can be reconditioned over time, something that will last. This is all assuming that you’re in to roll arms. Maybe you’re in to slipcovered track arms and if that be the case well then we can still talk.

 

 

 

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Trestle Desks

I have some telecommuting friends and one of these friends has a new work from home gig and needs to carve out a work space. I’m thinking she should consider a trestle desk because well it’s kind of simple– they are affordable, timeless and chic.

Case in point,

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My favorite example. It’s all about accessorizing, customizing and adding great art. Shelving won’t hurt either.

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How is everyone putting these together? Mostly with IKEA’s Klimpen system, which you can customize with different finishes on the top and the legs. Here’s a little roundup with some other trestle options, some with a little more storage.

trestle desks

Target trestle desk/ PB Teen Storage Trestle Desk/ PB Teen Project Trestle Desk/ IKEA Klimpen Desk

 

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