Comfort is the watchword when it comes to family room and finished basement furniture, according to Gary O'Reilly, owner of O'Reilly's Furniture in Libertyville.
"People love big, comfy, 'cuddle up' furniture in those rooms. In fact, it seems for most people, the furniture can't be too big," he explained. "And reclining, as well as power reclining, furniture is also hot and all of these pieces can be done in either leather or fabric."
"Comfort is the single word that sells our furniture," O'Reilly asserted.
Both sectionals and couch/love seat combinations are popular in Chicago's family room market, as are couch/love seat/chair sets.
"Our traditional-style sectionals usually go all the way to the floor and feature attached or loose back cushions. The most popular color in leather is brown, although we also sell them in many different fabrics. The real contemporary sectionals have never sold particularly well with our customer base," he explained.
When it comes to couches, O'Reilly said that homeowners often choose a leather couch and love seat to go with a fabric chair or recliner and then the store orders throw pillows made in the same fabric as the chair and those go on the leather couch and love seat to draw the entire room together.
"People love that," he said.
When it comes to finished basements, the same rules apply if it is a "man cave" space. However, if the lower level is primarily used by the children, homeowners invariably go for inexpensive, but durable, microfiber furniture whenever possible.
The most-often purchased occasional furniture in family room settings today, O'Reilly said, are flat-screen television cabinets.
"People don't just want to put their 55-inch flat screen television on a stand. They want a true piece of furniture, often with wood doors, and sometimes even with built-in sound systems. They want a place to store the video game systems, game cartridges and other electronics," he explained.
"Flat-screen television tables and cabinets -- primarily in oak, cherry and alder -- have been a hot seller for us ever since flat-screen televisions came out. I sell them ranging in price from $299 to $1,599," he said.
O'Reilly's Furniture is located at 1151 S. Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville. For more information, log on to www.orfurn.com or call (847) 367-6550.