The traditional three-piece suite is far too big and cumbersome for most living rooms, because if you want a good-size sofa you get two hefty armchairs as well. If there's space for only one large piece of furniture, you're far better off splashing out on exactly the sofa you -want and then adding smaller-scale chairs and stools.ow fabric-covered footstools or higher piano-stool designs can be kept out of the way beneath a table when not in use, and plain wooden stools will double as occasional tables too. And because they're not part of a set, their use is far more flexible - you can always move one of them on to a bedroom or wherever else it's needed.Don't feel constrained to stick to the three-piece suite 'triangle' either. You probably won't have much choice about where you put the sofa, but think practically about where the other chairs will look best and be most help.Consider which areas of the room will get most use, and the places people will need to reach. And don't be tempted to arrange all the seating facing the television - it makes a very unattractive focal point!Remember that if your sofa is also a sleeper, it needs to be positioned where you can fold out the bed without having to move other furniture. Don't box it in between pieces that are too heavy to shift easily.Another option when considering living room ideas is to do without a sofa altogether. A mix of chairs in different styles and fabrics looks just as good, and makes more use of the space. Or you can use a chaise-lounge or day bed as an alternative sofa.