Does Your Room Feel Like A Bowling Alley?

How can one shorten a long room without making structural changes?

A rectangular room is the most attractive and easiest to decorate, but what if it’s really narrow and long?  The example below shows ways to shorten it visually.  Horizontal lines like the striped rug, those formed by lights in the kitchen and the dark bulk-head behind make the eye stop, interrupting the length of the room while widening it — at least that’s the illusion.  Anything that delays or stops you from scanning the entire length of the room has this effect.  For example, the central stove in the photo is a well placed focal point.  If  it was against a remote wall your eyes would have to sweep the length of the room to see it.  What else can we do?

long rooms

As noted above the central stove is great but it would be more prominent in an eye-catching mirror finish with extra seating angled around it.   A tighter seating arrangement will improve conversation and redirect traffic flow.  Use of a square rug over a herringbone wood floor would bring attention to our focal point and break up the area into smaller sections, perhaps affording a second seating area under a group of pendant lights to divide the expanse of ceiling and demark the zone beneath.   It may include 1 or 2 sofas placed horizontally.   The sketch below shows how to do it.

Grouped Seating

Grouped Seating

Below: A 2nd seating group is placed next to the 1st (2 sofas back-to-back)

long sketch

Have you spotted the horizontal lines?

By dissecting 1 long space into 2 zones we’ve improved visual appeal and comfort.  We created more horizontal emphasis with each sofa and also by using 2 square rugs instead of one continued length.  Even the ceiling chandelier points to the room’s width.

Please follow this blog to get more of my pro tips!  You can also find me on twitter @designfelt .    – Sacha

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