Best Great Room Furniture for Families With Kids and Pets
It's extremely disappointing when you've purchased new furniture for your great room and discover that it doesn't work for your family's needs. The time to evaluate which furniture pieces will function best for your family and pets is before you buy it. In addition to setting a furniture budget and considering the available space in your great room, it's important that you think about your family's specific needs. This article will help you put your kids and family pets into the furniture equation before you spend any money.
1) Sectional Sofa
A sectional sofa is a practical seating option for your family's great room. Sectional sofas are available in a wide variety of sizes, price points, configurations, and upholstery materials to suit your family's needs and available floor space. Because a sectional is one continuous seat, it offers a great place for your…
1) Sectional Sofa
A sectional sofa is a practical seating option for your family's great room. Sectional sofas are available in a wide variety of sizes, price points, configurations, and upholstery materials to suit your family's needs and available floor space. Because a sectional is one continuous seat, it offers a great place for your young kids to snuggle beside you when your family is watching movies together. There is also ample room for your family pets to get cozy.
Some sectionals are available for purchase as individual pieces that you can custom design to accommodate your space requirements and family size. Choose a sectional sofa with a chaise to function as an additional guest bed for a small child. Some sectionals are also designed with a matching over-sized ottoman that is constructed to fit snugly against the sofa to create a large bed for occasional overnight guests.
When you have small kids and pets that regularly lounge and romp on your sectional sofa, choose a fabric that is easy to clean. Microfibers and faux leather fabrics are kid-friendly. Avoid fussy fabrics that require spot cleaning or don't hold their original shapes, such as linen, cotton, silk, or velvet. In addition, select a fabric color that jives with your family's everyday living. White hues aren't recommended as they tend to show any speck of dirt. Brown or black tones work well with messy kids. Darker colors also help to disguise loose hair from pets with dark fur. If you have a dog or cat with light-toned fur, choose fabric in a light gray or beige hue. Upholstery material with a pattern also tends to conceal pet hair.
2) Standard Sofa
Standard sofas also work well in a great room. Choose a casual style with cushy back and seat cushions to offer a comfy spot for your family to lounge. Pillow-top arms provide a soft pillow for your head if you or your child decides to take an afternoon nap. Steer clear of sofas with uncomfortable track arms. A futon sofa with decorative wood or metal arms isn't the best choice if you have toddlers. They can become a hazard for young children who might run into the hard futon arms or could hit their heads on them.
If you have a great room with generous floor space, you may want to consider two matching sofas for additional seating. You can opt for a single sofa or a sofa and love seat combo to oblige a room with limited square footage. When you need a spare bed, select a full-size sofa sleeper with a comfortable memory foam mattress if your great room has sufficient space to unfold the bed when needed.
A sofa with removable back and seat cushions allows you to move them around, so they aren't repeatedly sat on in the same spot. Zippered, machine washable cushion casings is a wonderful sofa feature. Remove the cushions and toss the casings in the washing machine to easily clean.
3) Coffee Table
An over-sized wood coffee table makes perfect sense for a family with older kids. A square-shaped table provides an ideal location for playing board games, working on projects, putting together jigsaw puzzles, or doing homework. The square shape and hard surface also give your family an instant dining table for eating a simple meal while watching television, or a spot to set your drinks and snacks.
Special features can make your coffee table more family-friendly. For example, select a coffee table with a shelf underneath to house books, magazines, and other reading materials. For optimal storage, pick out a storage-type coffee table with a hinged lid. Choose a coffee table with a top that resists spills and stains. Natural wood that's been treated with a water-resistant finish is a suitable option. A faux wood, glass, or tile top might also suit your family's needs.
4) Upholstered Ottoman
An over-sized, upholstered ottoman makes sense for a family with kids and pets. The padded corners of a fabric-covered ottoman make it soft and kid-friendly for any age, from toddlers to teens. A cushy top provides a convenient spot for your dog or cat to snooze the day away. At the end of a long day, an ottoman offers a comfy spot for you to prop your feet up and rest.
Choose an upholstery fabric that's easy to clean and wipe up spills. Some furniture companies will treat the ottoman with a water-repellent spray to help liquids bead up on top of the fabric as opposed to immediately penetrating the material. Store a lint roller or brush nearby to easily clean and remove unwanted pet hair from your ottoman.
Select a storage ottoman to provide a handy spot for storing items, such as small blankets, furniture throws, electronic devices, toys, games, puzzles, reading materials, or anything else you desire to have in your great room. You can choose a smaller ottoman with a removable top that flips over as a tray to hold snacks and drinks or a larger ottoman with a hinged top that you can open and close.
5) Suitable Chairs
The chairs you choose for your great room should correlate with the number of children in your family, as well as their respective ages. In addition, comfort is of the utmost importance in a casual great room. For example, a padded rocker works well when you want to rock your baby to sleep. Miniature chairs constructed specifically for toddlers offer fun, pint-sized seating for your younger kids.
Incorporate comfy recliners where teens and adults can stretch out and relax while watching their favorite television show. A chair-and-a-half is a perfect addition to a family-oriented great room and is exactly what its name implies. The size is equivalent to one full-size armchair combined with one-half of another armchair. The purpose is simple. It's big enough for two people to snuggle but doesn't take up as much space as a full-size sofa or love seat. A chair-and-a-half is also a great seat to cozy up with one or two of your small children to read them a story.
As with your other upholstered pieces, choose kid-friendly material that's durable, simple to clean, and won't easily show dirt. And, once again, remember your pets that will be lounging with the family on your chairs. You might prefer a fabric color that will blend smoothly with the hair color of your dog or cat.
6) Storage Considerations
Even though a great room atmosphere is typically casual and relaxed, you don't want it to become a cluttered, disorganized dumping ground. The solution is viable storage options. You have several stylish choices to effectively hide, store, and organize items in your great room.
Free-standing cubicle units securely attached to a great room wall provide tons of usable storage space. Slide a fabric or woven basket into each cubbyhole. Fill the baskets with your children's small toys, coloring books, crayons, homework supplies, and books. A cubbyhole is also a perfect spot for storing your dog or cat toys, remote controls, board games, jigsaw puzzles, and small electronic devices. The kids can easily pull out the lower baskets, take out their toys, and put them away.
Include a storage bench in your great room with a hinged top that is kid-friendly, like a padded, upholstered bench with a lightweight top that stays up when you open it. The bench provides extra seating, as well as a spot to stash your kid's larger toys. A small rolling storage cart with drawers offers a superb spot to hide your craft items and art supplies. Incorporate a chic magazine rack to organize your reading materials and arrange books in a library cabinet with doors.
You really do need to think a bit differently about furnishing your great room when you have toddlers, teens, young children, and pets in the family. Use the furniture tips that you read in this article to create a more functional, safe, organized, and enjoyable space for your family to congregate. Choose your favorite tips and start implementing them today.