Wide Load: Is Bigger Furniture Better?

Wide Load: Is Bigger Furniture Better?

From supersized fries to SUVs that seat three generations, it's no secret that many Americans believe bigger is better. During the building boom of the '90s, houses in the suburbs got bigger. Way bigger. And suddenly traditional furniture seemed a little too puny. Enter the era of enormous.

How enormous? Just compare this Briarwood chair, which measures 50" wide, to Le Corbusier's iconic LC2 sofa, which is one inch wider and meant to seat two.

Since I live in a petite bungalow that dates from the '20s — around the same time Le Corbusier designed his compact sofa — I can't imagine filling my house with some of the furniture on the market today, like the massive sofas and coffee tables available at Restoration Hardware, which reports that its fall line was inspired by the baronial spaces of 18th-century France. Because excess and frivolity ended so well for the likes of Marie Antoinette, right?

Have our bottoms gotten so much bigger? Is oversized furniture simply more comfortable? Check out this great read in the New York Times and let us know what you think!

(Image: Photo collage by AnnaMaria Stephens, furniture pics linked above)

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