This Summer, Make Your Old Furniture and New Home Work Together

Moving into your new home is often a dream come true. There are times, however, when you move into your new home and furniture that looked great in your old home seems a bit off. Seeing it in a new environment can make it look dated or misplaced, even if in relatively good condition. Furniture can also feel like the wrong size, either drowning in or dwarfing the new room. Occasionally, the style of the furniture doesn’t seem to work in the new home, whether it’s traditional pieces in a modern setting, or mid-century modern furniture in an older home. Below, we outline some tips to try before going to the expense of replacing all of your furniture to better fit your new home.

If your furniture is in good repair, but looks a little shabby in its new setting, have upholstered furniture cleaned. Send cushion covers to the cleaner (remember to remove them from the cushions first!), or have a professional steam cleaner come in and take on the job. Inserts for sofas and chairs are available for purchase, which will help restore the shape of your furniture to a newer-looking condition.  For dull wood finishes, often they can be restored with a quick cleaning, and for items with chipped or flaking paint, simply repaint them.

If your upholstered items had significant staining or tears in them, consider reupholstering. However, If you know your way around a sewing machine, reupholstering can be easy and inexpensive. Before starting, be sure that you carefully remove the old fabric to use it as a template for your new fabric. If you would rather not go that route, having the pieces reupholstered is always an option, or have custom slipcovers made for it at a fraction of the price.

If you find that your new living or family room is significantly larger, and your furniture seems small by comparison, do not push it against the wall. Move it to the middle of the room and anchor it with a large rug. Set up a separate a reading corner, a game nook, or whatever will serve your family’s needs the best. Use artwork and décor to draw the eye; the empty, or negative, space will highlight it.

By contrast, if your furniture seems too large, you may want to reassess the arrangement. Push larger items closer to the walls, and utilize vertical space as much as possible. Try moving large side tables behind the sofa so they work as a console piece. If rearranging doesn’t work as you expect it to, pull out one or two items, like a side table or an ottoman.

If, after rearranging and removing an item or two, it still feels too congested, see if you can lighten the room visually. Hang curtains so that they frame the windows, rather than cover them, and hang them higher than the top of the window. Doing so will make your windows seem wider and your ceilings taller. Adding mirrors between windows or across from them will make the room look and feel more expansive.

If you’re wondering how to make your mid-modern furniture work in a 19th century or earlier house, turn to color to solve your troubles. Use it as a binding theme, so choosing traditional accessories in the same color family as your modern upholstery and accents like throw pillows, throws and rugs will tie it all together. Highlight the architectural details, like molding or fireplace mantels, and find one older style piece of furniture that you like to help blend the styles.

If you have old-fashioned furniture in an aggressively modern home, use color in the same way. Work in modern accent pieces like lamps, decorative items, and throw pillows in colors that work with your upholstered furniture. Find one or two more modern pieces, like side tables to help bring the look together. The goal is to make the mixing of styles look like an intentional design statement, so embrace your conflicting styles and make them work to bring your home to life.

With these tips, your old furniture can look just as great in your new house as it did in your old home. Are you looking to move into a new home? Stevens Worldwide Van Lines wants to help! With our network of Agents across the United States, we can get you where you want to go. Simply head over to our website and request a free, in-home estimate right from our homepage!

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