We appreciate the importance of being social now more than ever before, so we've pulled together some top tips on how to make your homes more sociable and have the potential to be the ideal entertaining space to welcome guests.
Scale over size
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There's a common misconception that you need a very large home for it to be a good entertaining space, but this simply isn't true! Sure, there are limitations on how many people you can invite around at one point, but as long as you're smart with your layouts, furniture and storage - you're all set to entertain.
Scale is more important than size. Make sure you buy furniture that is proportionate to your home. I.e. we'd all love a huge dining table that seats 12-16 people, but if it takes up the entire room and you can't fit chairs in, it's not going to work and definitely won't leave room for dancing when you've had one wine too many.
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The best way to future proof your home and ensure that it can be the perfect cosy space, and great for socialising is to implement as much versatility as possible.
Sofas facing the TV is perfect for family nights in, occasional seating that can be pulled around a coffee table instantly makes the living room the perfect place to gossip over a glass of vino with friends.
Do you have a kitchen island that's perfect for lots of room when on a solo cooking mission? If you have some bar stools that neatly push under an extended worktop, you suddenly have a cool bar area too.
Zone your home
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You often hear us talking about how to zone your home, and there are so many ways to do this effectively.
Zoning your home with paint, flooring, rugs and partial room dividers are brilliant ways to easily differentiate your social home hub from your private working space.
Zoning with accessories and lighting will set the mood for the function - i.e. music posters and a drinks cabinet with some cool lighting suggests that this room is probably for socialising. Typology prints and task lighting will say: this space is strictly work only.
Go with the flow
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Whilst you want different spaces for different activities, it's important to keep a 'flow' throughout the house, especially if you wish to entertain in multiple rooms which aren't currently connected.
Section with glazing instead of doors, so not to block the connection and light, and continue similar decor throughout. This makes it clear where guests can go and where they probably shouldn't venture off to.
Connect with glazing
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As mentioned just before, glazing is the perfect way to separate rooms and spaces whilst keeping them connected. If you wish to have indoor/outdoor entertaining, then bi-folds or other glazing between the garden/terrace and the kitchen/dining/living space is a brilliant solution.
You don't need a massive extension to implement this. You could include french doors, install bi-folds or even go for a modern conservatory like the one above.
Extra bums on seats
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It's important to have lots of additional seating, or furniture that can become occasional seating at the drop of a hat, for when you do have guests around.
These can be adjustable bar stools, pouffes, footstools, bespoke benches, ottomans or just an accent chair. There are plenty of ways to include extra seating that doesn't get in the way, or need to be put away when you don't have guests.
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Setting the mood is super important when entertaining and this can largely be done with ambient lighting. Make sure you have some warmer and dimmer lighting options so you don't have to have the main or tasks lights on all the time.
Plus, comfortable seats and cosy accessories instantly make your guests feel more at home.
Fun focal point
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Depending on the entertaining space, it's always fun to have a quirky or different item or area that defines the room. This may be a home bar, a cabin in the garden next to a beautiful wood-fire oven or a projector and screen if you're hosting a cinema party!