Cohabitation can come with plenty of challenges and furniture shopping is one of the big ones. Not only are you negotiating different tastes in décor, but if there are children and pets in the home, there are the practicalities of family life to consider too. If the mere thought of furniture shopping with your partner leaves you cold, you’re not alone.
The good news is there is a solution. It’s less stressful than a divorce, more convenient than counselling and could turn out to be quite fun. Best of all, you’re sure to end up with a stylish interior space thanks to furniture that works for your home, decor and lifestyle.
Karen Robinson, Interior Consultant, Bauhaus explains. “It’s not uncommon for couples to disagree over furniture. Perhaps he wants a butter-soft tan leather sofa and she’s arguing that it won’t be practical with the kids. Or she thinks a chair will be imposing in the bedroom, but he really wants a place to sit to put on his shoes.
With our free in-house Interior Consultant service, you get an unbiased third party that will listen to what everybody wants and guide you to the perfect furniture that aligns with your style and meets your needs. It’s about finding a compromise that keeps everyone happy. We’re not interior designers, but we have many years of experience helping people tastefully match their furniture to their home and lifestyle.”
How to use our interior consultants to smooth the way
1. Don’t rush the process.
Karen suggests first popping into the store and having a good look around at the furniture options and taking the time to meet one of the Interior Consultants. “Take a look at what we have in store and then have a chat to one of our staff members about the different prices and fabric options. I suggest that you then go home and try to envisage how any furniture you liked will fit the space.”
2. Come back to the store prepared.
It is challenging for an Interior Consultant to envisage a customer’s space off descriptions. What’s one person’s ‘beige’ is another person’s ‘mushroom’ or ‘taupe’. “We can only guide customers based on what they are telling you they like and what they think they have,” says Karen. However, she advises that there are a few ways to make this process easier. “Memory can be deceptive, so it pays to be accurate. Measure the room so we know exactly what size space we have to work with and can do a proper room plan. Bring in photos of the room so that we can see colour and style. Also bring photos of any art and existing furniture that you want to work with, or a cushion so we can get an accurate feel for colour. Colours, especially greens and blues, are tricky to recall as they don’t stay accurately in your mind.”
3. Get both partners involved.
In most relationships, one partner will dictate the design decisions, but it’s important that everybody gets to have their say. “There can be conflict when couples are choosing furniture, which is why a third party can be so valuable. It’s important that both partners are invited to share their perspectives – that way everyone feels validated and that their opinion has been heard,” says Karen. If couples are really struggling to agree, then compromise is key to a harmonious furniture shopping experience. “Couples need to have a clear idea about what their ideal space looks and feels like, and then we can work with them to find furniture that fits the personalities and lifestyle needs of both parties,” explains Karen.
Karen says that the free in-store Interior Consultant service is about going above and beyond typical customer service and not a hard sell. “We are there to give our customers all the guidance they need. Every room we do is a reference for another, so making sure we have a happy client with a beautiful home is our priority.”
If you’re looking for expert advice on finding the perfect contemporary furniture for your home, call us (09) 302 2651 to arrange free expert advice in-store with our design consultant service.
If you're after an Interior Design service that goes beyond furniture, ask to be put in touch with one of our Bauhaus Platinum Designers.
For more inspiration and ideas on mastering the art of hometime, follow us on Instagram, visit our website or peruse a 360 of our showroom
*A survey of 2,000 Americans, commissioned by the furniture company Article.