As a stylist your job is to give objects and spaces a personality – to create a context that highlights the piece and makes it, well, more interesting and beautiful. We’ve done this ‘1-object-4-ways’ before (One Bed Four Ways, One Bookshelf Four Ways, One Dresser Four Ways, One Credenza Four Ways) and for the book we shot ‘One Sofa Four Ways’.
Now, I typically wouldn’t leak such golden material out into the world but Redbook already did (thank you!) so I get to repost it. They only ran 3 of the ways because of their page space, but I’ll give you a sneak peek into the fourth now (and then obviously buy the book, too, won’t ya?).
That’s me . . . showing you what the number four looks like with my hand. I didn’t plan on this shot so I wasn’t exactly wearing a cute outfit and hair and makeup wasn’t done, but we snapped the photo and now it’s in the book. Remember when I didn’t have an extra 30 pounds on the front of my body?
*Side-note: We’ve been teaching Charlie to say that he is 2 years old – figuring it would take a couple months to get that down. To illustrate the fact, he shows you the number 2 with his ‘two thumbs up’. It’s painfully cute.
The goal here is to show you how styling gives your furniture personality. That sofa doesn’t reference any sort of style (besides ‘contemporary’ maybe), and yet once it’s placed in these scenarios it’s transformed and feels like it belongs.
“70’s Inspired Glam” – with an extremely girly bent and certainly has some Palm Springs dappled in. The key to this kind of flexibility (if you want that kind of flexibility) is to get a sofa that is really simple and streamlined. It’s way easier to layer ‘crazy, ‘ ‘fun’ and ‘vintage’ on top of simple, than to do the opposite.
“Mid-Century Folk” – with a Pacific Northwest vibe. I love every single thing in this shot for different reasons. Notice how there are just a few tones – browns/blues and orange/yellows and they bounce around the room equally. It’s a collected assortment but combined it feels pulled together and cohesive.
“Casual Traditional” isn’t normally my jam, but I love everything here, too. When traditional is done in a pulled back, softer way I can really get behind it. Think washed linens and worn woods instead of fancier finishes.
*Sidenote: When we shot this we knew that the mirror was too small above the sofa so we intended to Photoshop it to be bigger – then we forgot. So, for the record, yes, that mirror is too small.
“Warm Contemporary”. That word, “contemporary, ” gets a bad rap because it can often look generic, but if styled with some more interesting objects (the leather pouf, the trunk, the modern art and amazing chair) it can look pretty darn interesting and it can have a big audience.
When we shot this we decided that doing it all the same angle could look redundant, plus some of the furniture just looked better from a different angle, but of course now I wish that they were all the exact same angle so that it could be giffed out a little less chaotically. No matter, I’ll still gif it for you:
Here is what the whole spread looked like in the magazine, below. The crediting is different, only because they wanted things to be more source-able, and more affordable.
The real question: WHICH ONE IS YOUR FAVORITE???? Comment away, folks. And to see more of these styling tips grab the book, STYLED.
*Photography by the lovely David Tsay, styling by myself and Scott Horne.