Grandma's Floral Sofa is Back in Style—No Reupholstery Required

The classic print is back and better than ever.

White Living Room with Pink Sofa and Chairs
Photo: Carmel Brantley; Design: Ellen Kavanaugh; Styling: Matthew Gleason

While few can argue the appeal of Joanna Gaines's all-neutral farmhouse style, there's nothing quite like the nostalgic comfort of Nana's floral couch. Thanks to grandmillennials, a term used for mid-20 to late-30 somethings with an affinity for antiques combined with a desire for self-expression, chintz-like floral patterns are back and dare we say, better than ever?

These printed pieces are made contemporary with fresh color palettes, overscaled patterns, and clean-lined shapes. However, lest we forget our floral sofa roots. Interior design duo Cate Dunning and Lathem Gordon of GordonDunning in Atlanta explain, "As Southerners, we grew up surrounded by florals and chintz, so they bring a layer of familiarity, cheer, and specialness to a space that we will never tire of."

Today, patterned sofas are a chance for creativity and individuality, and choosing one for your home is the ultimate self-confidence flex. Kayla Sweigart of the Columbia, South Carolina antique store, Little Green Door, opted for floral couches in her own colorful living room. She explains, "I had been looking for the perfect settees for our pink room, so when I found the vintage floral pattern, I knew I had found the ones." The reason, says Sweigart, is that the bold pattern adds more oomph, "The floral design definitely brings them up a notch in design compared to a boring solid color."

Striking florals are the antithesis to humdrum neutrals, and as Dunning and Gordon say, a direct rebellion to the drab colors of years gone by. "After a couple of decades of beige, neutral, and grey, we think we are all ready for our homes to not just be places of respite but spaces of comfort, and spaces that tell the stories of those that live there," says the team. A home should tell a story, and a centerpiece like a beautiful floral sofa is a great way to start the conversation.

Besides being a timeless and glamorous choice, floral sofas serve practical purposes too. You've never seen an imperfection practically melt away as easily as it does on a floral couch, "They are the perfectly posh way to hide stains. Is that a dollop of jelly or a petal? A floral sofa is the family-friendly option with panache," says Dunning.

A few other reasons may have contributed to the return of your grandmother's favorite pattern. Perhaps it's the punchy sets of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and Bridgerton, or maybe it's the aptly named nap dresses by Hill House Home, created using botanical prints and unexpected patterns. Regardless of where the resurgence came, florals for spring (and beyond) seem to be groundbreaking.

Whether you're seeking a stain suppressing sofa or a chance for interior design expression, a floral pattern is what you need to sharpen your home's swagger.

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