Blending single styles into a home for two

Sunday, July 10, 2011

When furnishing your first place together, Mike Young, co-owner of Patrick Furniture in Cape Girardeau, suggests starting with the living room and dining room, where you and your guests will spend most of your time.

"A lot of couples start off with hand-me-down furniture or just take what they had when they left home," he says. "They typically start off shopping for new living room furniture -- a sofa with a matching chair and ottoman."

As for the style and color of your new furniture, Young says there are plenty of options to make you and your new hubby feel right at home. If you don't see exactly what you want in the store, remember that some stores have special order capability -- simply find a piece of furniture you like and then choose the fabric and wood to suit your style and budget.

"There are a lot of styles out there that are not gender specific. They're not too frilly or too big and masculine. You can make a lot of compromises, stylewise," says Young. Right now, Young is seeing a lot of solid-color sofas, especially in neutrals and earth tones like taupe and sage. The trend is to buy solids and decorate with unique pillows, rugs, tabletop pieces and wall art. These accents are a great way for each partner to add a statement of personality to the living room, he adds.

When it comes to the bedroom, every new couple should start with a good foundation.

"The most important piece of furniture in your house is the mattress. You sleep for a third of your life, so comfort is very important," says Chris Hutson, co-owner of Hutson's Fine Furniture in Cape Girardeau. There are tons of mattress options out there, and Huston says the best way to find one is to spend time lying on the beds, feeling the differences among them, and deciding what works for you.

Shopping for furniture might even be a great bonding activity for you and your spouse. John Stephens, manager of Slumberland Furniture in Cape Girardeau, says his No. 1 shopping tip for new couples is to do it together.

"A lot of times we have one partner come in shopping by themselves, and they have a hard time making a decision," says Stephens. "If both partners are involved, it saves a lot of time."

This article originally appeared in iDO, a semiannual bridal magazine published by the Southeast Missourian. To receive iDO at home, call 335-6611 or 800-879-1210 or email cellis@semissourian.com.

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