We previously explored various flooring options available for an interior church design. Another element to consider sits on top of that flooring and provides comfort to all who visit your church building: specifically, furniture. In this article, we provide some considerations on selecting types of furniture for various spaces. By budgeting and planning for furnishings early in the master planning process, church leaders can ensure that every inch of their church building is both functional and inspiring.
Café Furniture: Creating Welcoming Spaces
The café is a hub of gathering, conversation, and shared moments. Furniture choices for this space need to amplify that purpose. Our first photo example shows how the choice of café furniture can shape the atmosphere. High and low tables, carefully configured, create an inviting environment.
Higher tables appeal to some people because they make it easy to stop and connect with others or set down their cup of coffee while having a quick conversation. However, not everyone finds the higher surface advantageous. Shorter people, along with older and younger ones, may find traditional height tables more comfortable. A strategic mix of high and low options is advised to accommodate the diverse needs of the congregation. Also note that shorter tables are rectangular and not round. It makes it easy to push them together, allowing for flexibility in seating arrangements.
Main Gathering Areas: Ottoman Innovation
The café isn’t the only place where people in your church building will get together. Other gathering areas deserve attention as well. This picture showcases an innovative use of ottomans instead of traditional coffee tables in a main gathering location. The choice of ottomans offers flexibility, allowing people to easily pull them apart, in this case, for additional seating for up to four more individuals.
Creating Flexible Spaces
The last example shows how a space can offer flexibility for other purposes. Here, a small area with a living room feel is located right off the café. It’s an inviting space for people to hang out, read, or gather in small groups. But by closing the curtains along the entrance wall, the space can also be used as a small and private meeting place.
It’s important to plan furniture choices early in the design process. Make sure to consider all the places where people can congregate, where they can sit and visit, or share life. Then look for options that allow flexibility and stretch the budget.
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