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Q. I have added a Florida room to my home. Currently I have 2 antique wooden rockers and a square Victorian table.

What other types of furnishings should be added. Could I add wicker/rattan type chairs and loveseat?

Thanks for any information, Von

A. Von, the best way to start any design project is from an over-all view. Imagine this room as if it were a doll house and you are looking down thru the ceiling. This trick helps you to see the space as a whole.

The next very important step is to realize that choosing all your favorite pieces will not make the room work together. The elements of a room must like each other in order to achieve a peaceful balanced look.

How do you do this? What I know about Florida rooms is that they have hard surfaces, which makes them seem unfriendly. Since opposites attract, that tells me that I need to soften the space with rugs, colorful textured fabrics and larger scaled prints.

Your idea of using a love seat is good, and I would use a fully upholstered piece. This could be a second sofa or an older piece from your home with a slipcover which gives it a more casual feel.

Add cushions to your rocker to soften their appearance. Ottomans work in every room and can serve as a coffee table if a tray can be placed on top.

To achieve balance, repeat a theme or color at least 3 places in the space - like a triangle. If you have a surface you can paint on the ceiling paint it a shade of green to tie into the outside. This is not a bold move. Try it. Our sky has been many changing colors forever.

Wicker will work; however, it can be cold also. Since I do not know the details of the rockers and table it is difficult to be more specific.

In small spaces it is important to limit the changes of materials and themes. This makes the space seem larger. Have fun choosing.

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Reita Bayman

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