Swooning over fainting couches
- The San Francisco Chronicle, 12/06/2009

So you're the romantic type. You've watched "Love Actually" more times than you can count and have been known to cry at cell phone commercials.

Sure, it's part of your charm. But you're really not that different when it comes to decorating. Even the most romantic person can make poor design choices - and the result is a home that makes you feel, well, passionless.

Some furniture, however, is designed to sweep you off your feet - and the recamier, or "fainting couch," is one of them.

Recognizable for its regal, sensually curved back, the recamier provides a stylish place to swoon, weep or ... watch TV.

One option is the Azure Recamier from Horchow (horchow.com), which is upholstered in serene polyester the color of an October sky and retails for $2,599. Its maple wood legs, finished in a dark cherry color, raise the sofa to a height of 34 inches (it is 94 inches wide and 33 inches deep).

Don't despair if the price is too steep for you. There's also the Antoinette Fainting Sofa from Urban Outfitters, which is sold online for $575. The wooden frame is supported by spindle-shaped legs and covered in a tufted cotton velvet that comes in Caribbean blue, chartreuse, red and carbon gray. Should velvet disagree with you, a charming red bird pattern and green floral print are also available.

At 71 inches long, 32 inches high, and 28 inches deep, the Antoinette is smaller than the Azure Recamier. But either one of these elegant options will add a little romance to any room.

$2,599 Horchow Azure Recamier  

$575 Urban Outfitters Antoinette Fainting Sofa