Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

If you follow any interior designers on social media or peruse home décor magazines, you’ve likely noticed an increase in curved furniture over the past few years. And this year, it seems that the curved lines are everywhere. From arched bookshelves and consoles to rounded sofas and curved-back chairs, rounded furniture is having more than just a moment. It’s having a grand party and we’re all invited to the festivities.

At first, I thought these curved pieces would vanish as quickly as they came in. But I was wrong, and I’ll gladly admit it. Curved furniture simply feels more welcoming than its contemporary counterparts. The simple, sleek lines that have dominated furniture design for the past several decades are being replaced with softness and whimsy, and some of the curved chairs I see lately look literally like a hug.

Whereas curved sofas and furniture were popular in the ’70s and ’80s, the alluring Serpentine sofa, designed by Vladimir Kagan, made its debut in 1950 and quickly became a status symbol in the design world.

After a little research, I learned that Kagan designed the snake-like shape to allow clients to showcase their art in their home’s interior. By bringing the sofa into the middle of the room, Kagan was able to create space for clients to view and appreciate their larger-scale works of art.

Kagan also wanted to foster face-to-face interactions and apparently compared people sitting on a straight sofa to “birds on a wire.” His creation was a semicircle that bulged at one end and snaked around in an s-shape, providing flexible group seating and a focal point for entertaining.

Today’s curved sofas are coming in all sorts of shapes and sizes, but if you’re not ready to invest in a larger piece like a sofa, rounded options are showing up in all furniture categories like side tables and bookcases.

One might argue that the global pandemic has us all craving these cozy curves, or perhaps it’s that the clean, straight lines that have been the norm for the past few decades are just simply, like a pair of jeans, cycling out of popularity. Whatever the reason, I, for one, am excited about anything that encourages a good party and lively conversation!

Christine S. Cowles is owner of Styled & Staged Santa Barbara, an interior design company specializing in short-term rental properties. She is a certified Short-Term Rental Stylist™, member of Santa Barbara Association of Realtors and Real Estate Staging Association, and a proud WEV graduate. She can be reached at

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