I recently completed this Photo Design Consultation for a client. Her room was a little odd in shape, being long and skinny, but with walls making corners in awkward places. She also has a fireplace, but it's placement in the room doesn't allow for seating to be placed around it...so it kind of just sat there all alone. She also recently built-in some book shelves around her windows opposite the fireplace, and needed help decorating those. Anyway, here is what I came up with.
If you'll look at this floor plan, you'll notice that the fireplace is not centered between the walls where it sits. Also, while the windows are centered on their wall, if you stand in front of them and look back into the room, because of how the walls are, they don't match up with the center of the opposite part of the room. This makes it almost impossible to center furniture so it feels right. If you center a couch in front of the window, it's not centered in front of the fireplace and visa versa. If you center a love seat on the wall at the top of this picture, there's not room for a couch in front of the windows. All of these problems could be fixed with a sectional because of the corner piece. The sectional feels centered on the windows, even though it isn't, but it also feels centered on the fireplace, even though it isn't. It even feels center on that top wall, too!! It plays tricks on your eye, because of that corner piece built into it. So a sectional in this place was a life saver.
This is what her space looked like before. Seating all scooted back into the room near the windows, but nothing around the fireplace. This makes the fireplace feel a little empty.
Here is what I suggested. Two small chairs sitting around the fireplace to bring the seating area toward it. The sectional, as I mentioned, and a large square ottoman to fill the gap in the middle. I also added a wall of shelves on that blank corner in the back and threw in a few light colored accessories to pop against that red ontop of the fireplace. We also brought pattern into the room, in the form of red pillows.
This was her picture wall before. Aside from the furniture arrangement which wasn't working so well, the accessories she had needed some help.
Here is what I suggested. Bigger pictures, in bigger frames. Large pieces for this large wall. And a horizontal spread instead of a vertical one. Notice the pillows again, and the ottoman, sectional, etc.
Here were her built-ins before. They did a really great job building them. Now, they just needed help decorating them. This is always a challenge. To make bookshelves look good but not cluttered is very difficult. It's all about how you place things in relation to other things.
Here is what I suggested. First, curtains that span the entire window area, instead of one window treatment for each of the three windows. I also decorated her shelves for her, telling her exactly where to place things and why. It's difficult, but it looks great, once you get it right.