1. Encourage eye contact. “When we make eye contact, we bond — and talk. Place the seats in your family room so you can look at one another — not just at the TV. Think of it as a family “eye circle.””
2. Offer a mix of seating choices. “People with different personalities prefer to arrange themselves in different ways. The two parallel sofas here are a great way for extroverts to hang out. Additional seating lets introverts take a periphery seat and engage when they want.”
3. Protect people’s backs. “People gathered together are always a little distracted if it seems like someone can walk closely behind them, even if they’re at home. Make sure everyone’s back is protected in the family room so everyone can relax. High-backed chairs, console tables and architectural details work great.”
4. Plan for separate activities. “Even during together time, everyone may not want to be doing the same thing. To keep everyone in the same room and happy, create several action zones. This room has a “together space” centered around the sofa, a separate chair where someone can sit and read, and a table where someone else can draw, craft or do a puzzle.”
5. Keep heads at the same height. “We tend to act subservient to people we are looking up at and tend to dominate those we look down on. Make sure there are enough seats in the room for all family members to sit in with their heads at roughly the same height above the floor.”
7. Keep heads at the same height. We tend to act subservient to people we are looking up at and tend to dominate those we look down on. Make sure there are enough seats in the room for all family members to sit in with their heads at roughly the same height above the floor.
9. Make some pieces movable. “People from different cultures prefer to sit at different distances from one another, so make sure that visitors to your home have at least one seat that they can easily scoot a little closer or farther from others. The yellow chair in this room can be easily relocated.”