Generally speaking, the stronger the contrast between your sofa and armchairs, the subtler accessories like cushions, throws and rugs need to be. You don’t want everything talking loudly at the same time.
If you’re the kind of person who likes to change things like cushions and throws regularly to freshen up your room, it can be easier to go with plain upholstery throughout. This gives you more freedom to reinvent your colour scheme by adding new accents.
Curtains are another important element. If your sofa and armchair contrast, select one aspect of their design as a focus for the windows – note how the oatmeal-coloured curtains in the living room shown tone with the Emma linen print on one sofa. It looks light and fresh, but if they co-ordinated with the green velvet, the effect would be much cosier. This can be helpful to think about when swapping curtains for the winter or summer.
Another option for adding a contrast to your room is with a footstool. Like armchairs and occasional chairs, they’re an easy way to introduce pattern or colour without making it a big, dominant presence. Take the mustard Arthur footstool in the living room pictured – it lifts an otherwise neutral scheme with a bold accent (note how it echoes the golden tone of the artwork on the mantelpiece, too).
You could also cover a footstool in the same fabric as cushions to create a theme that unites all your seating.