Style & Design Editor Cindy Trimble Addresses the New Need for Comfortable and Lasting Residential Seating
Following the pandemic where so many homeowners were locked inside their homes there seems to be a shift in the focus and style of seating for homes. Prior to Covid, the overall design trend was to bathe homes, interiors and exteriors with a coat of light gray tones. Furnishings were a blend of dramatic modern styles mixed with some eclectic transitional pieces. But for the most part, the focus was on the style, or “form” of furnishings and in particular, furnishings that were featured on the covers of retailer catalogues or in lifestyle magazines and websites. The focus was more on the “form” of the piece and not necessarily the “function.” With people staying home so much and really using their furnishings, especially seating, there was a realization that the style or the “form” of furnishings may not be the most important characteristic! Eureka!!!
Our studio has been flooded with clients crying out for more “inviting, comfy and cozy” furnishings and seating. They want seating that has style but is also inviting and supportive to sitting on for long periods of time. The age-old question for the design industry has been what should dominate: form or function? There is no question that today, most homeowners want function. They are willing to let go of a little “style” (or form) if the piece is functional and supportive of their needs.
Homeowners were sent home due to the pandemic lockdowns, then many remained home to continue their work for over a year. This “stay at home” culture has begun to spur a transformation of our homes. Many rooms in our homes became makeshift offices that needed to support us is a new way. Homeowners remained in casual attire all day long since they were no longer required to get “dressed up” to go to their workplace. With comfortable attire and staying in their homes all day long and many times sitting on the same chair or sofa most of the day, the desire for cushy, comfortable furniture has risen. There is a new casualness that has engulfed our world and our homes. We realized that our existing furniture was not designed to support us for the extended hours we are now experiencing. Cushions crushed and flattened with no way to re-fluff them. Our swank and stylish seating has not performed or supported us as we would have thought. Many big-box retailers sell seating with a single choice of filling that looks great when it arrives, but after a few months becomes tired and worn looking. The new trend is to fill our homes with inviting, comfortable, cushy, well designed yet supportive seating.
How to achieve this functional, comfortable style is the question. There’s an assortment of cushions that can be incorporated to suit one’s needs. There are different levels of foam, but foam will crush over time. The down filled cushion has been the go-to for the ultimate cushy, supportive feel, but many have allergies to down, and down requires a constant re-fluffing of cushions to keep the feathers distributed. Several manufacturers have created new cushions that replicate how mattresses are made with inner springs. Springs provide long term stability and can be wrapped with a variety of materials including cotton batting, a down blanket or a down alternative material blanket making them soft on the outside but stable for extended use. We have found this seating has performed well over 5-8 years of continual use. ACLM
Cindy Trimble, ASID, RID is owner of StudioTrimble, Inc. based in Blue Ridge. She is NCIDQ certified and a Georgia Registered Interior Designer and member of the Georgia State Board of Architects and Interior Designers.
Cindy Trimble,StudioTrimble, Inc.
Photography by Brooke Thomas.