Furniture that Moves You

They’re not your father’s recliners.

Today’s motion furniture – commonly known as reclining chairs, sofas and love seats – have come out of the rec room and into full view. Stylish and comfortable, they’ll easily become the best seat in the house.

We’ve Got the Look caught up with Senior Buyer Nancy Christiansen – commonly known (at least around here) as the “Queen of Motion” – to find out her best tips on buying reclining furniture:

What should you look for when shopping for a recliner?

Reclining furniture tends to get more usage than a regular chair or sofa. The first thing you need to
consider is individualized comfort. What that means is that every sofa will fit a person differently; a short person sits differently than a taller person. It’s important to come into the store and test out these pieces. Sit in them until you find a good fit. Look for good lumbar support and what I call “cush on the tush.” These elements become critical in reclining.

Also look for a good warranty. This is furniture that’s lived in. Anything that moves can wear out. Take a few minutes to compare warranties and see how it lives up against your lifestyle.

What are some misconceptions about recliners?

There are a lot of old stereotypes, but these are not your father’s recliners! Furnishings have taken on a very different look and design. They’re customizable, and come in different sizes, with various arm and leg treatments and fabric options. It’s not just basic microsuede any more. Recliners can fit any size or
scale room, and any décor.

What are some of the latest features?

Recliners used to be a big poofy dad’s chair that had two choices: open or shut. Today the biggest option is power. Instead of using a lever or body weight to move, your furniture can have a motor inside. A push of a button makes the furniture recline to a customizable angle. It allows for the perfect fit and comfort level. It also allows the frame of the furniture to be reworked, creating pieces that are much more stylized than in the past. Reclining furniture now has more of a living room, non-reclining look.

Today’s pieces also offer more gadgets such as heat, massage, reading lights and USB ports. Another new innovation is the docking and recharging ports. Eventually you’ll never have to get off the sofa!


What pieces might be ideal choices for game day?

Our most popular pieces are the reclining sofas that have a fold-down table and drink holder between the seats.


Get to Work

More than 37 million U.S. households have a home office. If you’re not among them today, you might soon be as more and more companies allow employees to telecommute. Whether it’s used as a business office, a place to pay the bills and surf the ‘Net or as a homework station for the kids, put the emphasis on home instead of office by choosing furniture that effortlessly mixes with your décor.

And Art Van Furniture has a home office for every home style.

If you love Contemporary, the Woodward Avenue Collection Desk is a great choice. Crafted of mahogany wood solids and veneers and finished in dark coffee, the three-drawered 60” desk features nickel hardware for a touch of shine. A lower shelf is a great place to store file boxes. Paired with a leather side chair, also from the Woodward Avenue Collection, you won’t want to shut the door on your office.

Woodward Avenue Collection at Art Van

The clean lines of the Park Glen 60” Desk make it a good choice for the Casual home. In cherry or oak, the look is open, architectural and uncluttered. With a simple, sawhorse design, the shelves can hold books, files or a printer. Pair it with the upholstered Grandbay Chair in faux leather for a classic, urban feel.

Park Glen 60" Desk at Art Van

The upscale look of the pecan Barolo Home Office Collection makes it an elegant choice for a Traditional home. The 60” Executive Writing Desk features ample storage with file drawers that hold legal or letter-sized documents and a pencil drawer that easily converts for a keyboard. Pair it with the Barolo wood-trimmed leather desk chair, with five-leg swivel base and casters for mobility. The gas lift offers a seat level for every member of the house.

Finally, the Rustic Desk Set is a unique home office option that includes two pieces: a desk and a desk console. Use the pieces stacked to create a hutch-like look. Or use the pieces in an L formation, for a workspace with lots of surface area. In Sedona oak or Santa Fe chocolate finishes, both feature slate inserts and casters on the desk for quick mobility. Pair either with the two-tone wood Westmore Side Chair or the cinnamon-finished pine Desk Arm Chair with neutral upholstered seat and casters.

Rustic Desk Set at Art Van

Whichever style is yours, remember that your surroundings can affect your productivity. Be sure to put as much thought into your workspace as you do your work itself.

Become a Connoisseur of Color

Choosing colors for your home can be very intimidating. (That’s why beige is so popular; it’s safe.) Colors can be like people: Some play well with others. Some prefer to stand out. And some look even better when combined in the right group. So, how do you assemble the right palette?

To help people make the move from beige, the folks from Pantone, a design company considered the global authority on color, created nine no-fail color palettes for 2013. Each has an array of colors that work well together; colors that you can combine or use alone.

We’ll highlight each palette separately, and first up is the palette called Connoisseur. Celebrating the finer things in life while paying respects to a sense of history and elegance, the colors of this palette are sophisticated and refined, and have a touch of understated drama. The Connoisseur palette includes monochromatic violets and orchids, liquid pink, deep mahogany, alyssum white and beechnut green, all reflected against champagne beige and silver.

If the colors in Connoisseur speak to you, Art Van Furniture can help you bring this palette home. Take a look:

Yvette Steel Sofa at Art Van
Yvette Steel Sofa at Art Van

Start with the Yvette Steel Sofa, in light charcoal. This elegant upholstered piece has modern lines and its dark wood exposed legs ground it in sophistication.

Brand Collection at Art Van
Brand Collection at Art Van

Add one or two armless chairs from the Brand Collection. With a sleek, exposed wood frame and tufted upholstered seat, it evokes luxury and style.

Rectangular End Table at Art Van
Rectangular End Table at Art Van

Now add the Rectangle End Table with its dark walnut finish and sleek nickel accents, making it a beautiful addition to a Connoisseur-inspired living space. Tasteful and refined, it works well with this palette.

Two-Drawer Nightstand at Art Van
Two-Drawer Nightstand at Art Van

Another option is our Two-Drawer Nightstand, which can be used as an end table. Covered in pearl ivory alligator-embossed vinyl and embellished with beveled mirrored fronts and crystal knobs, the piece will add drama.

Bed Bench at Art Van
Bed Bench at Art Van

Bed Bench used as a coffee table or as a seating area, adds a splash of delicate color. Its light pink button-tufted design also adds a touch of glamour.

And finish the room with a rug. The dark wood of the furniture will look perfect against the simple elegance of the Orian Louvre Camel Rug.  Or choose the clean look of the Bliss Ivory Rug, a versatile addition to your living room.

Orian Louvre Camel Rug at Art Van
Orian Louvre Camel Rug at Art Van
Bliss Ivory Rug at Art Van
Bliss Ivory Rug at Art Van

If Connoisseur isn’t right for you, stay tuned. Next, we’ll show you the Glamour color palette, which is described as paying homage to the “polished sexiness of the Art Deco era.”

How to Choose a Mattress

Walk into any Art Van PureSleep Center and that’s the question you’ll be asked. We’re not being nosy. We really care how you slept last night. That’s because sleep is one of the most productive things you do all day. Your body renews and restores itself, repairing muscles, balancing blood pressure, temperature and hormones, and consolidating memory. Insufficient sleep doesn’t just lead to “where’s the coffee?” mornings; it’s linked to health problems, such as weight gain, diabetes, heart disease and depression.

Getting a good night’s sleep starts with your mattress, and choosing the right one is like finding a great pair of shoes, it’s all about the fit. Art Van Furniture’s PureSleep Center is the only store in Michigan that can properly fit you with a mattress.

Most people think buying a mattress means lying down on a few beds in a showroom and picking the most comfortable, but that’s not how we do it at PureSleep. The right mattress needs to provide two things: proper support and proper pressure relief. And comfort isn’t always an accurate indicator that the mattress you’re lying on is providing both.

When you visit a mattress store and lie down on a bed, your muscles compensate for your posture. When you are in REM sleep, however, your body becomes like jelly, taking the shape of the mattress. If you have lower back pain, this is where it starts.

We won’t ask you to take a nap in our store … although you could! Instead, our PureSleep diagnostic machine takes out the guesswork and finds you the exact mattress you need – one that is comfortable when you are lying on it awake and one that will support you while you sleep.

We offer three basic types of mattresses: specialty, which includes foam, memory foam and gel memory foam beds; innerspring, which have the traditional coils, and hybrids, which are a combination of innerspring and foam. Within those three types, we have more than 100 mattress choices, and each does a specific job.

Other questions we’ll ask when finding you the right mattress: Are you a hot or cold sleeper? Do you have allergies or sensitivities to smell? Do you share a bed? For couples, we offer dual comfort mattresses that are customized for each person. And if your partner has a different sleep schedule, we can show you mattresses that allow for motion disturbance. Also, do you read, watch TV or work in bed? Do you have a physical condition such as high blood pressure, diabetes or sleep apnea? You may want to look at a mattress that can fit into a power base.

So … how did you sleep last night? It’s time to make the most of those eight hours.

Back to School Part 2: The Three S’s of Kids’ Rooms

In classrooms, kids get the three R’s: Reading, Writing and Arithmetic. In their bedrooms, however, they need the three S’s: Sleep, Study and Storage.

Like their own mini offices, kids’ bedrooms are where they conduct the business of growing, learning and becoming. Set up your child for success by choosing the right furnishings – pieces that help them sleep, study and store the belongings that make them special. It’s an easy task at Art Van Furniture’s Kids & Teens Collection, where we have a variety of styles from which to choose.

If you haven’t shopped for kids’ furniture lately, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to see that youth bedrooms have grown up. Less age specific and more sophisticated, pieces will allow your child to express him/herself while at the same time fitting in beautifully with your home’s overall design style. Take a look:

Petite Phillippe Youth Collection
For the Traditional style home, check out the Petite Phillippe Youth Collection. Begin building the room with one of its three bed options – bunk bed, day bed and sleigh bed – and choose a white, black or cherry finish. Twin- or full-sized bed fit any room, and an optional trundle unit is perfect for sleepover guests or growing families. The French inspired look is elegant and timeless. Create a study area in the room with the coordinating desk. Its optional hutch provides concealed storage for schoolwork and an exposed corkboard for displaying momentos. And the collection also includes a seven-drawer dresser, five-drawer chest and two-drawer nightstand, all of which provide ample storage options.

Summer Breeze Collection
If Rustic is your style, experience the Summer Breeze Collection, which offers ultimate versatility and lots of color. Finish choices include white, pine, red, blue and green, and you can select matching pieces or mix finishes for a one-of-a-kind look. Start with the twin or full poster bed, or select the daybed with bookcase. All of the beds work with the collection’s optional trundle. Then add a five-drawer chest, three-drawer entertainment center or two-drawer nightstand. The informal feel is perfect for a youth, tween or teen. And once you’re an empty-nester, the storage pieces can be used throughout the home as a buffet, entertainment center or supply chest.

Village Craft Collection
If your home is Contemporary, the Village Craft Collection offers a striking option. The cherry finish platform bed, in twin or full, is chic and stylish, and quickly takes center stage in the room. Storage needs are more than fulfilled with the matching nine-drawer dresser, five-drawer chest and three-drawer nightstand, all of which feature sleek nickel-finished hardware. A three-drawer computer desk gives the perfect homework station, and an optional desk hutch easily holds books, school supplies and more.

Greenville Collection
Finally, if your look is Casual, you’ll love the Greenville Collection, which offers simple style and loads of function. In either twin or full sizes, chose a classic panel bed or make a statement with a studio bed, which includes a bookcase headboard that offers plenty of room for electronic gadgets, trinkets and books. Both styles can be used with the optional trundle. Add more storage to the room with a six-drawer dresser, five-drawer chest and single-drawer nightstand. This collection easily transforms from youth to tween to teen and beyond, and can be dressed up or down depending upon the bedding you select.
Remember, when buying youth bedroom furniture, you want to choose a collection that will have lasting style as your child grows older. These four collections – all of which work well for a boy or girl – are just a sample of the options we have in store for you.