Divide and Conquer: How to Furnish a Long, Narrow Room

Divide and Conquer: How to Furnish a Long, Narrow Room

Divide and Conquer: How to Furnish a Long, Narrow Room

If the only thing differentiating your living room by a bowling alley is the lack of red lines and pins, then you understand how hard it can be to decorate a long, narrow area.

How do you fill the room without seating people too far apart? How do you prevent normal-size furniture from looking dwarfed? And just how do you create the space work as comfortably for 2 as for 20?

“Consider what activities you want to take place in that area,” suggests interior designer Amy Luff in Margaret Donaldson Interiors at Charleston, South Carolina. “Do you want a dedicated TV spot? Do you need a game table? Or do you prefer a dialogue area? That will give you a jumping-off point for how you might break up the space ”


Sometimes the best way to take care of a long, narrow area would be to split it into two seating groups. Which will let you fill the space without giving up normal-size furniture. It also will give you the chance to customize each area for another activity or degree of familiarity.

Strive floating bits in the middle of the room, and be sure to keep a consistent color palette and fashion, so the space feels harmonious. Throw some occasional chairs into the mix, so guests may pull up a seat when they want to combine a group.

In this example Jeffers Design Group created a large, formal seating area and supplemented it with a small, informal grouping designed around a central ottoman. That way just two people may sit in this area without feeling consumed by the distance. The very low club chairs prevent the back distance from feeling cut off from the remainder of the room.

A long living room often demands more than 1 sofa. There are three from the area here! The strategy works because the two opposing sofas fit, though they occupy separate seating areas. (Imagine how active that this would have looked if all 3 couches were different.)

The java table is extra large to accommodate the room’s scale, as is the wing seat in the corner. The latter’s elevated stature helps break up the furniture airplane, so all of the bits are not the exact same height.

Portable chairs, such as the green pair seen here, let guests to pull up a seat anytime they want to combine a conversation.

Margaret Donaldson Interiors

With doorways in each of the far corners, it was important to accommodate circulation on both sides of the room. The alternative: floating furniture at the center.

The centre table divides the seating group in the match area, while matching rugs, upholstery remedies and wood tones help unify the distance so it feels just like a single composition.

Alix Bragg Interior Design

Although both sides of the room share a common colour palette, the side adjoining the kitchen has been designed with rougher materials, such as leather, because it becomes more use.

Architectural components — such as the archway bisecting that room — may be helpful in breaking up a big area, as may bookcases and folding displays.

Do not overlook the opportunities a ceiling can offer. Installing a recessed ceiling over one or both parts of an area can help define seating areas within an open plan.

AND Interior Design Studio

If your area is narrow and long, but not especially large, you may still eliminate a single grouping. “Simply add a few chairs using a round table between them, and that means you have another place to go,” states Charleston designer Alix Bragg.

In this example a table and chairs are put behind the back sofa; more chairs reinforce the principal seating group. A daybed takes the location of another sofa, allowing views into the space and creating the seating group seem more welcoming.

Thom Filicia Inc..

In this New York living area, designer Thom Filicia opted for a single seating group but corrected the scale, utilizing an extra-long sofa and placing two matching coffee tables side by side.

Fieldcrest Builders Inc

Two couches are floated in the center of the living room and placed back to back, using a console table . Hanging fixtures help define each seating group within the open plan. As an alternative, you could just use a chandelier at the dominant grouping, to give it more prominence.

A circulation path hugs one wall — a fantastic alternative for narrow rooms. Allow a width of 30 to 36 inches for simple passage.

Urbanspace Interiors

In this Austin, Texas, living area, a free-form sectional is a modern variation of adjoining sofas. 1 side faces a romantic seating area; the other adopts a more casual space furnished with ottomans that could double as seating.


Nothing fills space just like a grand piano!

Along with being long and slim, this living area also has a ceiling. The hanging lights do a great job of decreasing the ceiling’s perceived height, so the space does not feel really daunting.

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