RIGHT SIZED: THE BEST STYLISH UPHOLSTERY FOR CITY LIVING

by Marisa Marcantonio

After years of attending High Point Furniture Market, trade shows and visiting showrooms galore, I have had plenty of time to hone my eye for upholstery. I find my tastes have changed over the years, and currently I am really liking tight-backed sofas and chairs, and pieces with a cleaner silhouette. I am in the process of an apartment overhaul and carefully considering everything I choose. As I think about what I would like to live with, I have taken a deep dive into the subject.  Examining proportion, pitch, length and depth in small, right-sized sofas and upholstered chairs, I seek pieces to complement city apartment living. Tight back, loose back, the reverse, tufting or not, roll arm or straight, exposed leg or skirt? Here is what I have come up with, and as you can see, there is no shortage of great pieces that fit the bill. I hope it will help you when making decisions for clients and your home. Being that the sofa is often the star of the living room, it is an important, considered purchase.

The only hard part is choosing! 

TIGHT BACK SOFAS:

 Photo courtesy of Century Furniture

The Berry Sofa from Century Furniture has a chalk white leg and long seat cushion that I love. Pared down chic.

Photo courtesy of Wesley Hall

If you prefer two cushions, here you go. Wesley Hall does a loose seat tight back version, 1742-77 with deep sink-into cushions.

  Photo courtesy of Lee Industries

The 1009-2 Loveseat from Lee Industries is adorably right-sized.

 Photo courtesy of Cisco Brothers

The Geranium Sofa by John Derian for Cisco Brothers with a high arm and minimal decorative accents is reminiscent of an early American design.

 Photo courtesy of Century Furniture

The Oscar de la Renta designed Dutch Sofa for Century Furniture. I sat in it today at NYDC 200 Lex and I love it.

 Photo courtesy of Lee Industries

A nice thick, long cushion to sink into for naps on Lee Industries 3278-11 sofa makes it a contender.

 Photo courtesy of Cisco Brothers

The Meadow Sofa from John Derian for Cisco Brothers can take lots of pillows.

 Photo courtesy of Kravet

Kravet's Tulane Sofa with nice turned leg and roll arm with tight back and seat for perching is perfect for one stop shopping- get your fabric and upholstery all in one showroom.

Photo courtesy of Drexel Heritage

Drexel Heritage's Tisbury Sofa with a roll arm and two pillows is another great option.

 Photo courtesy of Century Furniture

Century Furniture's Oldfield Sofa with a cross stretcher base and casters comes with two bolster pillows.

Photo courtesy of Wesley Hall

Ooh more bolsters! High sides and a tight back on the 1840-72 settee from Wesley Hall for those that want a piece with an historically-evocative silhouette.

  Photo courtesy of Hickory Chair

Hickory Chair's Monroe Sofa by Suzanne Kasler has a loose seat, tight back, exposed leg and curved arm.

 Photo courtesy of Mr. and Mrs. Howard

Sherrill Furniture's new Mr. and Mrs. Howard line is easy to love, as is this pared down chic two seater sofa with clean roll arm and light wood base with turned legs.

EXPOSED WOOD LEG SOFAS:

 Photo courtesy of Lee Industries

A straight arm and loose seat and back on a Lee Industries Apartment sofa mean movie watching comfort. If skirts are not your thing, this has enough interest going on at the base.

Sink into a three seater, The Pelham, with loose seat and back from Kravet. A Lawson sofa is always a good way to go for a more masculine look.

 Photo courtesy of Jonathan Adler

The Templeton Apartment sofa by Jonathan Adler for some mid-century flair.

LOVESEATS:

 Photo courtesy of Hickory Chair

A classic two seater, the Colefax Sofa from Hickory Chair. The addition of the tape trim at the bottom adds that extra special detail.

 Photo courtesy of Lee Industries

 A nice two seater with straight arm from Lee

 Photo courtesy of Hickory Chair

Mariette Himes Gomez designed this girly Boudoir Loveseat for Hickory Chair with a sweet pleat

   Sometimes a small kidney loveseat is just the thing.

Oomph's new Tini Loveseat would work at the end of a bed as well as in a second seating layout in a larger room.

Currey and Company has this nice Lancaster Swedish Settee for tete a tete's.

 Photo courtesy of Century Furniture

The Elkins Tufted Settee from Century Furniture is tailored and old world.

 Photo courtesy of Kravet

The La Salle armless sofa from Kravet is great for the foot of the bed. Cushiony cozy too.

Photo courtesy of Wesley Hall

A tight seat and tight high back on Wesley Hall's 700-54 settee makes it a good piece for a hallway. The curved apron is a nice touch.

TUFTED SOFAS:

 Photo courtesy of Hickory Chair

 Hickory Chair's Marler Tufted Apartment Sofa is a classic and refined for a sitting area or a nice add on in a bedroom seating arrangement.

Photo courtesy of Wesley Hall

Another classic tufted choice, Wesley Hall's 1740-77 sofa.

 Photo courtesy of Lee Industries

Tufted with a tight seat this sofa 1331-03 by Lee Industries is gracious and the tailored skirt gives it polish.

SITTING PRETTY:

Photo courtesy of Dwell Studio

Dwell Studio's Mallory Chair has a touch of mid-century modness with tapered leg and cut out back.

Photo courtesy of Jayson Home

Milo Baughman-inspired, The Clarke Chair from Jayson Home rocks.

 Photo courtesy of Lee Industries

I like the mid- century- meets- arts- and- crafts lines of this Lee Industries 1290-01 chair.

TUFTED BACK CHAIRS:

 Photo courtesy of Hickory Chair

Cozy for reading, Hickory's Holly Chair designed by Mariette Himes Gomez is like a tufted marshmallow. I mean that in the best way--

 Photo courtesy of Century Furniture

The Hawk's Ridge Chair from Century Furniture upholstered in a great color velvet is a good fireside chair.

 Photo courtesy of Beeline Home

Cozy time with a throw and a book in Beeline's T42 tufted reading chair has me dreaming.

 Photo courtesy of Lexington Home Brands

Lexington Home Brands take on a classic bridgewater chair, The Augustine.

 Photo courtesy of Mr. Brown

Mr. Brown's Lounge Chair has a nice deep seat and a few tufts for good measure. The curved back and slim arm are very appealing.

 Photo courtesy of Drexel Heritage

The Julian Chair from Drexel Heritage with tufted square back and loose seat is long on English charm and a workhorse.

SLIPPER CHAIRS:

 Photo courtesy of Drexel Heritage

Diminutive charm with the Elkins Chair from Century Furniture.

 This little darling, The Mini Chair from Oomph is the perfect pull up chair. Piping trim adds a little more oomph.

Photo courtesy of Century Furniture

Beyond. The new Charleston Slipper Chair from Charlotte Moss is part of the Century Icons program in specific showrooms around the country.

 Photo courtesy of Drexel Heritage

With casters, the Cabot Chair from Drexel Heritage will fill in nicely when guests arrive.

TIGHT BACK CHAIRS:

Photo courtesy of Century Furniture

Century Furniture Emma Chair is like mini wing chair.

Photo courtesy of Wesley Hall

Perhaps you prefer an English-inspired armchair on turned leg with turned arms. Wesley Hall's 783 Chair has you covered.

Elite Leather has a version too, The Flores, created by Nathan Turner for them.

 The Pierre Chair from Beeline Home has a splayed arm and curvy back that adds some movement and personality in an upholstered piece. This one had me from hello.

 Photo courtesy of Hickory Chair

I am just so taken with the cut corners on the Boyd Chair and it's upholstered leg from from Hickory Chair.

 Mr. and Mrs. Howard for Sherrill Furniture had a slightly deco rounded arm that worked well with a turned wooden leg and base.

 Beeline Home's Azure Chair is polished with a tight back and exposed chalk white leg. I like that it is really upright. Does that mean it will make my back feel better? Gosh, I hope so.

 Photo courtesy of Hickory Chair

This go anywhere Virginia Chair from Suzanne Kasler for Hickory Chair with a small roll arm and tight back is good for the tall folk, i.e.,  not me!

 Photo courtesy of Hickory Chair

Hickory Chair's March Lounge Chair from the Gomez Collection is the epitome of refinement.

 Photo courtesy of Cisco Brothers

 Cisco's Tulip Chair by John Derian has just the right amount of curvy detailing at the top of the back and always grabs my attention when I see it.

 Photo courtesy of Lee Industries

A curved back and loose seat on 1846-01 for a bit of polish from Lee Industries.

 Photo courtesy of Julian Chichester

The Virginia Chair from Julian Chichester has a nice profile and fit arms.

BRIGHT NOW

by Marisa Marcantonio

Right now we are being wowed with wonderful bright hues, from punchy primaries to electric fluoro brights. The array of loud color is amazing-- a rainbow is peeking through for an early spring. Be it color blocking, stripes, or just saturated and unabashed, bright is so right now.

A wall of color at West Elm separating red, yellow, green and blue.

Photo courtesy of Kate Spade

Paint the town any color you want, as long as you pick a color. Say thanks for a colorful night with Paint The Town Notes from Kate Spade. Mais oui.

Photo courtesy of Stampa

Artist Sirichai's #17 Tongue is a nod to the great graphic 1960's pop art. He worked for fashion minimalist Geoffrey Beene, can you tell? Check out Stampa for their stable of fresh artists prints available with or without a frame.

Photo courtesy of DVF

An all-over red and white confetti pattern makes this DVF Square Dot tray a party-must.

Photo courtesy of Jonathan Adler

Throws always do the trick on the back of a sofa. This mohair number from Jonathan Adler in spring green is smile worthy.

Photo courtesy of Currey and Company

Better off red with Currey and Company's racing red Lombard Chest.

Photo courtesy of Pantone

A world of color is at your fingertips with Pantone Universe. Their espresso cups in reds and pinks will surely brighten your day.

Photo courtesy of West Elm

The lemon yellow of the Martini Table from West Elm is a tart treat.

Photo courtesy of CB2

For your favorite knit wit, a knitted pouf in electric pool blue from CB2.

Photo courtesy of Dwell

Stripe it rich with Dwell's chic cotton and wool Draper Stripe Rug in persimmon.

Photos courtesy of Anya Hindmarch

The Mini Grace bag in a color grid I am endlessly inspired by British handbag designer, Anya Hindmarch. Every season she finds cultural, architectural and artistic influences that act as her muse. These color - based vignettes she has created for her newest saturated collection incorporate found, everyday objects to tell the color tale beautifully, in a cabinet of curiosities way I just love.

Show your love for the big apple with a glittering green minaudiere.

With a pop of white to accent all the crazy color, the Huxley Tote tones things down.

The classic Nevis Tote in playful multi-hued rubber is beachy keen.

WHERE DO I PUT MY DRINK DOWN? WHY A DRINKS TABLE OF COURSE!

by Marisa Marcantonio

You often hear interior designers talk about drinks tables. These are easy to access at the ready chair - side spots that serve as the perfect place to plant a drink, book or reading glasses. Here is a round up of diverse drinks tables that serve a purpose and look great while doing it.
Photo courtesy of Century
The influence of horns, be it antlers hung from the wall or horn inlay, seems to be sticking around. Warm antique brass and creative use of the antlers in the Chairside Table from Century makes the popular motif seem fresh again.

Rich complex glazes and unique garden stool forms keep Emissary ahead of the curve. This new ovoid silhouette with a raised top is a nice new addition.

Photo courtesy of Arteriors
A brass tabouret table that resembles a drum with x-detailing looks incredibly chic, like an antique find.

Photo courtesy of Arteriors
The three legged Sanibel table with a slim gold leaf base and beveled black marble top has sleek French 1940 lines. From Arteriors.

Based on an 18th century naturalized rocaille style table with a tree base, Beeline Home's Albero Drinks Table is the perfect perch for a cold one. Williams is known for her drinks tables and has an appreciation for their functional qualities.

Available in a zingy green lacquer or (fire engine red), this ribbed Column Drinks Table is a diminutive darling from Beeline Home.

I always love anything wrapped in lacquered linen, so no wonder this coral Festoni zig zag table grabbed my attention!

Currey and Company debuted their highly anticipated Marjorie Skouras collection at market with these sexy shell inlay Bix side tables in a blue green mother of pearl with silverleaf legs. Ooh lala.

Global Views introduced a round marble side table called the Arabesque with Moorish cut out details.

Artesia was feeling the same thing, with their hand carved sandstone version called Soraya. It seems this is the sincerest form of flattery, since both these pieces were influenced by Stephanie Odegard's marble classic in the same vein.

Like a slick of shiny red lipstick, this red laquer Flip side table from Currey and Company is all dressed up, ready for any occasion.

Taking it's cue from 1950's bamboo outdoor furniture, this small cerused side table with a glass top from Gabby has an interesting circular composition.

Photo courtesy of Made Goods
The Enzo side table is a solid companion from Made Goods that is available in a chic tortoise looking Penn shell or lighter Kabibe shell finish.

Photo courtesy of Made Goods
With a lot of shimmer, the Bea ceramic side table in a glazed gold finish from Made Goods adds quiet glamour.

THE OLD BALL AND CHAIN: ROUND PENDANT HANGING FIXTURES

by Marisa Marcantonio

The good kind of ball and chain that is. Lately I have been struck by the re-emergence of the spherical shaped pendant hanging fixture; they seem to be everywhere. Lighting is really coming into vogue in it's own right, with many young designers emerging on the scene.
Here are several examples of great fixtures in a range of materials and styles that differ in wow factor but all do their job well. Are they replacing the oh-so-femme chandelier?

Photo courtesy of Marjorie Skouras
The Marjorie Skouras Honeycomb Lantern is supported by suspended chains. It is available in a wide variety of colored glass inlays. I love the faceted ball it is very Epcot meets Biosphere.

Photo courtesy of Mallett
The Meta Collection from uber high end antiques dealer Mallett showcases contemporary designs. The Diamond's Are a Girl's Best Friend hanging lantern by Matali Crasset has enough faceted sharp angles to keep you mesmerized; you will want to stare at it for hours.


Photo courtesy of Urban Electric
The Dover Ball from Urban Electric was designed by Michael Amato. It fuses old world craftsmanship with traditional and pared down clean lines.

Photo courtesy of Currey and Company
Bling bling! Add some razzle dazzle with the crystal globe Roundabout Pendant from Currey and Company.

Photo courtesy of Horchow
I am sort of over capiz except when it is used in this way, resembling a flower in full bloom. From Horchow.

Photo courtesy of Charles Edwards
The Octagonal Ball Lantern from my always favorite Charles Edwards is a knockout.

Photo courtesy of Vaughan
Light glows beautifully when cast from alabaster. The Greenwich Globe from Vaughan has Greek key detailing, a classic chain link suspension and a beautiful shape. From Vaughan.

Photo courtesy of Schoolhouse Electric
Love birds and flowery designs by artist Amy Ruppel are painted on the limited edition Folk Birds pendant from Schoolhouse Electric.


Photo courtesy of Currey and Company
The Wiggins Orb from Currey and Company mixes rough luxe materials burlap and wrought iron for a chic rustic look. It also vaguely reminds me of Around the World in Eighty Days--I love this piece.

Photo courtesy of Remains Lighting
The Sorenson Lantern from Remains Lighting is netted in a handwoven wire.

Photo courtesy of Circa Lighting
Thomas O'Brien's Hicks Pendant from Circa Lighting is more of an egg shape with a brass top half. It is great for an industrial toned project.

Photo courtesy of Shades of Light
Looking for a classic orb in clear glass? Here it is! The Industrial Pendant from Shades of Light is affordable and classic. It also comes in brushed nickel.

Photo courtesy of Restoration Hardware
Channelling olde England? The Victorian Hotel Pendant from Restoration Hardware has sectioned panes of glass and a detailed border in gleaming nickel. Regal indeed.

Photo courtesy of Pucci
French jewelry and furnishings artist Herve Van Der Straeten's metal work always amazes. His pod-like pendant fixture from Pucci International is a jewel in the crown.