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“The soul of a southern home is grounded in graciousness and comfort. A southern home just wouldn’t be southern if comfort was not fundamental to the design process.”

~ Kimberly Grigg, Secrets of Southern Design

Every person who walks into a southerner’s home is made to feel like family right away.  We want you to gasp at the beauty of our rooms and yet a minute later snuggle in as comfy as a kitten on the sofa.  We want you to relax and put your feet up but also to serve you tea with our finest china.

This living room is all about a central gathering space.  It is the central space of the floor plan, and as such I thought it would be fun to place a roundabout settee right in the center of the room.  The ceilings in the room are very grand, yet the room (believe it or not) is actually quite small.  The last photo in this post really give a more clear perspective of the actual size of the room. The furniture arrangement proved difficult, partly because the piano was a necessity.

The roundabout ended up being the “important” piece in the room, as it provides extra seating while still contributing to a certain “movement” to the room.  That is a crucial element to the aspect of comfort as well.  It’s not just about squashy down filled cushions and butt tested furnishings.  It’s also about carefully addressing the bones of the room structure, as well as a furniture plan that allows for ample interaction both when you gather as a family and when you entertain.  This room has been proven to function well for large gatherings (many of which I have been fortunate enough to attend), as the seating is perfect for groups as well as intimate conversations. The angle of the room in the photo below gives a clearer perspective of the actual size of the space.

What is the one big secret to creating successful southern rooms?  Don’t take yourself (or the room) too seriously! Keep your sense of humor, remember to laugh and trust in the process.   A good rule of thumb to always follow is to ask yourself, “Could I live in this room”” and  “Does this room really show my personality?” When we southerners are brave enough to let our hair down and allow our personality to show, our rooms will thank us for it.

(Blog exerpt taken from Secrets of Southern Design, available for purchase at

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