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Multifunctional Seating Ideas to Get the Most Out of Your Space by Mackenzie Collier

Source:  A nthropologie 

Source: Anthropologie 

Unconventional seating: it's a great way to enhance your space. Utilizing pieces of furniture that are refreshing and different, but also multifunctional, opens up a world of options! Instead of having your guest sit on a normal chair, pull out a bench or ottoman that can also double as storage. Thinking about rejuvenating your reading nook? Opt for a hanging chair or cozy bean bag to make things a little more cozy. Unconventional seating is the ultimate solution for saving space in smaller homes or apartments all while making your home accommodating for more guests.

We picked a few great pieces that range from bean bags and benches all the way to unique design chairs that can be used in various homes and office spaces to incorporate movement. 

Anthropologie Edlyn Bench

This oh-so-classic bench is definitely on the list when it comes to unconventional seating. We love this one from Anthropologie since it's customizable, letting you pick from an array of fabrics, colors and finishes. This can go in an entryway, a dining table or even in the living room in place of a couch. One of our interior designers Jenna suggests pushing the bench against the wall when you're not using it, since it doubles as storage, and pulling it out when you need it. 

Source: Anthropologie 

Urban Outfitters Cooper Faux Sheepskin Lounge Chair

A '90s revival that brings back so many memories for the MCI team. The bean bag chair, for grownups, is comfy, fun, and the perfect addition to any space. Wine night, game night, movies or even reading a book instantly becomes cozy with this chair, and it is definitely on Mackenzie's Pinterest board for a future purchase. 

Source: Urban Outfitters

Anthropologie Woven Hanging Chair

The perfect way to bring a little more fun in your space. Hanging chairs are also good at creating the illusion of more space since it is of the floor, opposed to most of your furniture items. This hanging chair from Anthro is an ideal way to make a comfortable nook in your home, filled with plants and ideal lighting. Pro tip: get a floor hook instead of mounting it to the ceiling so it's not permanent and you can move it wherever, whenever.

Source: Anthropologie

West Elm Montauk Nest Chair

Okay, so this one is technically a chair, but we just had to add it to the list! The shape is so different that we can't classify it as your average seat. This chair could live inside, outside on the patio or even in a cool Arizona room. Our Project Manager Aleah thinks it's a modern papasan chair that "looks like it just hugs you when you're sitting in it." 

Source: West Elm

Urban Outfitters Trixie Inflatable Chair

Inflatable furniture, it's making a comeback and we are supporting it's revival. This takes you right back to the '90s and can be a cool addition to a teenager's room. Can we also dream about how much cooler pool days would be when floating on this...

Source: Urban Outfitters

CB2 Leather Ottoman-Pouf

Sophisticated and chic—but still a fun, and not so risky, unconventional seat. This leather floor cushion is multi-functional and an ideal piece to add to your space without sacrificing style. Use it as an extra seat for guest or as a temporary home for your favorite book or magazine. Bonus points if you have an ottoman that doubles as storage!

Source: CB2

Design Within Reach Spun Chair

When talking about unconventional seating, this chair takes the cake! It is so fun to sit in but it's still architectural and can give your space a unique or edgy twist. Take it outside to sit by the pool or grab it for movie night with the fam. Whatever you do, you're destined to have some fun it. 

Source: Design Within Reach

Tree Stump from West Elm

We at MCI love the outdoors, that's no secret! So, we had to include an alternative seating idea that is inspired by what we love. The tree stump is so underrated and a multifunctional item that's a bonus to have in any home. This little guy can be a side table one minute and quick stool the next minute. You can even take him back outside to use on the patio!

Source: West Elm

Which alternative seating do you like best? Comment below and let us know! 

March Design Favorites Round Up by Mackenzie Collier

Source:  Anthropologie

March came and went, which was a good thing here in the MCI office since we were super busy, producing fresh designs left and right! This month, we also introduced a new design service called Room Service—which has been pretty fun and exciting. March was great for design, and we're so excited to move forward and spring into April. 

Of course, like always, we end the month with a roundup of a few of our favorite things, which we featured each Friday on our Instagram

Anthropologie Tulip Chair 

This gold velvet tulip chair was our first Friday Fave for spring, and it couldn't have been a better choice! This chair from Anthro is a biomorphic design piece, which means it draws inspiration from natural patterns and organisms. We also love how it's a vintage inspired piece from the 40s, and you can customize it to whichever color and/or fabric you feel works best for your space. 

Source: Anthropologie

Caressi Colours Kitchen Taps

These fun stainless steel kitchen taps are so fun and a great way to brighten any kitchen without completely conforming to one specific color. These taps come in 12 different colors, which makes it even harder to choose!

Source: Caressi

FLOR Palm Reader Rug

Textiles are a great way to incorporate trends, and we love the use of the currently-trending palm pattern here! FLOR square tiles are perfect for any size room, and each square can be easily replaced or clean when needed. Being 100% recyclable, these are perfect for just about any home—especially those with kids! That's a sustainable design trend that we are over the moon about! 

Source: FLOR

Cathy Terepocki Ceramic Stools

These ceramic stools from Anthropologie were a favorite from Aleah, and we totally understand why. They are multipurpose and can be used as alternative seating in just about any space since they are easy to move around and can go just about anywhere. The geometric motifs and metallic accents are an added bonus. 

Source: Anthropologie

Which one of these is your fave? Comment below and let us know!

Get the Luxe Look for Less by Mackenzie Collier

We love the classics, the high-end originals—we marvel at their fine details and clever ingenuity—but we also realize not everyone who wants a cool space to live in can spend $7500 on a lamp. (Personally, we'd rather spend our money on experiences, not necessarily on things!) If you're willing to compromise on some features, you can achieve almost any look for less. Here are a few options for awesome-looking, quality products that won't break the bank... 

DWR Cross Round Table.jpeg

This Mathew Hilton table from Design Within Reach is made of solid walnut, which sounds fancy, but solid wood has a tendency to contract and expand with the weather, making it less stable at times. This piece is 59" in diameter, while the similar piece from Article is 73" oval. Both say they seat eight, but it may be a tad crowded at this table.

Article Conan Dining Table.jpg

This piece has an ash veneer stained in a walnut finish. You wouldn't be able to refinish this piece, but veneers tend to be more stable than solid wood furniture, so it's a trade off. This piece is also a touch bigger than the DWR counterpart, making it more comfortable for 6-8 people.

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"An inspired take on the modern forms of 1970s Italian design," there's no denying this Restoration Hardware chair is a sophisticated selection. It's scaled slightly larger than the West Elm version, but both are made from top grain leather (that's the next best thing from full grain leather. Top grain leather has had the top few millimeters sanded off to eliminate imperfections).

Slightly smaller than the Restoration Hardware counterpart, this West Elm piece offers the same cool industrial style at a significantly lower price. It does, however, lack the built-in lumbar pillow. If you're in the market for a $4000 chair and want the best available, RH would be the best choice. If you are looking for something to do the trick while your kids are still in their "color on everything" phase, this West Elm chair is a great option!

Design Within Reach Kelston Sofa.jpeg

This 115" sofa by Mathew Hilton for Design Within Reach has articulating headrests, which is super cool—you can adjust them to just the right angle and height for reading or watching TV, or fold them out of the way when not in use. It's also made in Italy- hence the price tag.

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This piece has the same minimal yet cozy lines as the DWR piece but at a fraction of the price. This piece is made of FSC (SUSTAINABLE) kiln dried hardwood right here in the US. It's even deeper and longer than DWR version—134" wide as opposed to the DWR's 115"—so you can probably squeeze an extra friend on here. If you can live without articulating headrests, I'd save the money.

RH SUAR WOOD LOW TABLE.jpeg

This piece is carved from a single block of sustainably harvested kiln-dried wood, which is great, but coffee tables are meant for feet and cocktails and buttery popcorn, so I'd be a tad worried about stains.

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I actually like this design better than the RH piece because lifting the sphere up a bit shows off the shape more. I also like the structured architectural base, it juxtaposes with the smooth sphere quite well. It's cement, so it will be really durable and you won't get ring marks from wet glasses.

DWR Serge Mouille Three-Arm Floor Lamp.jpeg

So if you're the kind of person who needs the BEST lamp available, this Serge Mouille lamp is the one for you. Its three arms swing freely in any direction so that you'll need never fear a shadow. It has elegant lines and exquisite hardware. And the price tag? Well...

Target Iris Floor Lamp - Safavieh.jpeg

This lamp by Target (pronounced Tar-zhay) may be less flexible and a bit smaller, but it still has that modern insect look to it that sets it apart from your mother's old Pottery Barn wood & linen deal.

RHModern CHUNKY BRAIDED JUTE RUG.jpeg

Both of these rugs are 100% jute, handwoven, unbleached, and will inevitably shed for a while. So what makes them different? This one is woven into a latex backing, while the PB version is woven into wool. Personally, I'd prefer the wool. I think the cost difference here is simply a matter of comparing the textures (this one looks more expensive), but this chunkier version may be tougher to live with.

Pottery Barn chunky-wool-jute-rug.jpg

Pottery Barn | Chunky Wool & Jute Rug ($719)

You might compromise a bit visually on the smoother texture here, as compared with the RH version, but frankly, a thicker texture is much more difficult to keep clean, so I would opt for this one anyway! Have you ever tried to clean a spilled bowl of quinoa out of a textured jute rug? No? Oh. Err, me neither.

15 Interior Design Products To Get You Through the Dog Days of Summer by Mackenzie Collier

Fun, functional, and stylish: these 15 products are guaranteed to make your summer a little more bearable. 

West Elm Jardine Expandable Dining Set

Jardine Expandable Dining Set

Take your backyard parties to the next level with this versatile, weather-resistant dining set! Made from sustainably sourced wood, this picnic-perfect table has a "rugged, driftwood-inspired finish that feels cured by sun and salty air." The set comes with an expandable table and six chairs, which makes it great for outdoor entertaining! 

Urban Outfitters Watermelon Keg Tapping Kit

Watermelon Keg Tapping Kit

When you are having an identity crisis about the fact that your keg tapping days are over and you're more excited about Pinterest-worthy party details, this fun little accessory will help bridge the gap. Plus, when you're trying to beat the heat, you may as well have a fruity drink in hand.

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Outdoor Throw Pillows

A colorful set of outdoor pillows are an inexpensive way to refresh your exterior decor. We love the Golden Girls vibe of this bright palm pattern. Pair it with the structured geometric cushion for maximum effect—the modern graphic pattern will bring it right back to 2017.

Urban Outfitters Pineapple String Lights

Pineapple String Lights

Summer design is all about being playful. What's more playful than pineapple lights?

Urban Outfitters Floating LED Orb Set

Floating LED Orb Set

So maybe your clubbing days are over; that doesn't mean you can't enjoy these colorful waterproof LED party lights for your next pool party. The magical illuminating orbs only light up when floating in water!

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Trent Wind Chime

Sight + sound. Simple, earthy ceramic matte chimes suspended from a single jute cord. Understated style and ambiance for your terraces, balconies, patios, and gardens.

Anthropologie Canyon Fringe Hammock.jpg

Canyon Fringe Hammock

You'll be in your own personal paradise lounging in this woven, island-inspired hammock from Anthropologie. We love the way it drips with netted fringe. "Finished with braided loops for hanging, it's the perfect addition to your porch or sunroom,"—and a wonderful excuse to take a load off.

Sunday Supply Co Beach Umbrella

Sunday Supply Co. Beach Umbrella

Australia knows how to beach—these vintage-inspired beach umbrellas from Sunday Supply Co. are made for shade... "The result of a lifetime spent chasing sunny days — an exclusive selection of boutique beach essentials designed for an endless summer. Conceived by the sea, residing in the sun, these unique pieces are designed to accompany every trip to the beach and create beautiful shade. Bold patterns inspired by the world around us make each piece something special for your place in the sun." Bonus: all their umbrellas come with a matching carry bag.

West Elm All-Weather Wicker Woven Lounge Chair

All-Weather Woven Lounge Chair

This is perfect to accent a bland beige outdoor lounge! Pair it with a simple chunky stool-style side table and the frozen cocktail of your choice. You'll have an outdoor oasis in no time.

Deny Designs Summer Fresh Cornhole Set

Summer Fresh Cornhole Set

Who knew lawn game accessories could be so stylish? This cornhole set by Deny Designs has a sleek baltic birch printed top and and tapered wood legs. Feeling inspired to freshen up? DIY a set of your own!

Crate and Barrel Allta Indoor-Outdoor Rug

Allta Multicolor Indoor/Outdoor Rug

For high-traffic houses, durable indoor/outdoor rugs are essential—especially during the summer, when muddy feet abound. This multi-color, basket-weave floor covering adds a nice graphic layer to a space while holding up to the elements.

Anthropologie Cabana Round Beach Towel.jpg

Cabana Round Beach Towel

A stylish and functional pool or seaside essential! This plush towel comes from a line of beach and bathware by Kassatex. "Crafted from super soft cotton velour and adorned with hand-knotted tassels for a boho chic look, our Cabana Round Beach towel is all you need for your beach escapade."

Terrain Blossom Soy Citronella Candle

Blossom Citronella Candle

Bugs be gone! Late summer evenings are much more enjoyable when the insects buzz off. These hand-poured soy-based candles come in cute containers and soften bug-repellent citronella with notes of jasmine, hibiscus, and subtle peach.

Terrain Madison James Flyaway Sticks

Orange Oil Flyaway Sticks 

Use these citrusy sticks in addition to the citronella candles to keep your outdoor dinner parties and afternoon barbecues extra bug-free. Non-toxic orange oil naturally keeps bugs at bay without harming local populations of bees.

Urban Outfitters Moxi Leather Roller Skates

Moxi Leather Roller Skates

Because why not?