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Published: Wednesday, 3/15/2006

Bringing the Sectional Out of the Basement: A Casual Trend Leads to Quality Comfort

(ARA) - Ladies and men alike don flip-flops at the White House and the office, where casual Fridays have turned into casual everyday. J.Crew, Banana Republic and Ann Taylor are selling wedding and bridesmaid gowns to women looking for simplicity and style at reasonable prices. Homeowners don t want formal living rooms; instead, they want rooms they can live in. Entertaining is relaxed, designed around friends helping to prepare the meal, not just consuming it.

This trend of casual living is translating to home decor. Folks are bringing their sectional sofas out of the basement and into what was the formal living room -- finally a livable space. But that doesn t mean these rooms are lacking in style.

Casual rooms have simple details, textured elements in fabrics and accessories, restful horizontal lines, soft upholstery, low-luster surfaces and arrangements that avoid perfect symmetry. Rectangular and softly curved elements contribute to the casual feel, says Glena Morton of About.com s Guide to Interior Decorating.

Coupled with flooring, rugs, tabletops and accessories, using low-sheen finishes in colors and textures found on the Mediterranean coast, low horizontal lines and simple, unfussy details lend a homey feel to an unpretentious interior. Blending different fibers and leather for a soft, tone-on-tone look in warm sun-drenched colors like mustard and lilac, paired with sea-inspired blues and greens or pinks and apricots pulled from summer sunsets evokes thoughts of relaxed spaces and embodies the casual spirit.

Natuzzi, the Italian designer and maker of sofas, has designed seating to accommodate this trend of Casual Living with two sectional sofa models, the Ernest sofa and the Domino model.

The Ernest is distinctly urban -- both eclectic and metropolitan. Design elements such as the rectangular shape and horizontal lines are coupled with customized comfort of adjustable pillows and unique arm details.

Domino takes modularity to a whole new level. Each section, including the asymmetrical arms, can stand alone, or together. Domino can expand and contract for endless macro- and micro-configuration possibilities. Macro Domino is perfect for entertaining a crowd, by using every module, especially appropriate for the burgeoning interest in home theater rooms and open-plan loft settings. Micro Domino uses selective components to create an understated look, ideal for apartment living or more intimate gatherings.

From a friendly get together to dinner and a movie for two, these seating options offer unfussy luxury that will make you and your guests feel at home. Courtesy of ARA Content

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