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LR DR furniture arranging evening-- this looks better, right?

15 years ago

Spent the evening shoving furniture around. I think I am getting closer and am ready for feedback about major items.

The house is oddly shaped, so let me get you oriented. In the pic below, I am standing on the stairs. You can see the white front door on your right. The red print on the bottom right is a chair near a corner fireplace.

Here is the fireplace red chair. The room to the right of the front door is a red den.

Standing where the front door is, this is what the DR looks like. It is an "L" off of the LR.

And a closer view:

Here are a couple pics of the LR:

And a pic of the fireplace and stairs from the LR

From the last time you saw this, here are the key changes. . . most of them were in response to your suggestions.

I moved the DR cabinet to the right corner.

I moved a plant stand from the LR to the DR (the LR misses it, though).

One make-shift paper shade sits on the DR chandelier. (I am trying to envision changing its shades to make them larger and similar to the shades in the LR.)

I moved a small red chair and round glass/iron table (previously by the fireplace) into another room and put a larger red chair and floor lamp there.

I changed the lamp to the left of the piano.

The white vase on the LR floor is a placeholder for a future small round table/garden stool.

Thoughts? Commments? You all have been such an amazing amount of help.

Comments (42)

  • 15 years ago

    I love the new look in the dining room. The cabinet looks much better in the new spot - not so cramped. The plant stand is perfect there. It fills in the spot without making the room start too seem crowded. That corner needed some height and the plant looks so light and ethereal there.

    Now, give the table just a teeny eight of a turn so that the legs are pointing to the walls and the chairs have their backs to the corners. The table is a tad 'off' and that is distracting. It's an easy fix.

    How about a little table on the large wall to the left of the tapestry, under the light switches. A half round would look nice. Do you have something like that in another room?

  • 15 years ago


    Your rooms are lovely..... Have you tried putting all 6 chairs around the dining table? I think it might make the dining area look a little fuller and more substantial. Just a thought!

    Looks great!

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    anele - I tried the sofa on the wall with a chair at each end of the sofa, facing each other, but the problem with that arrangement is that it leave the room feeling a little lopsided. Most all the furniture, except the piano and the small cabinet near the 1/2 wall, is on one side of the room. Having the two chairs in the window helps to balance everything better. I'm not sure the table I have between the chairs right now is the best for that space. It is taller than the arms of the chairs and does kind of get in the way of conversation. I'm going to be on the lookout for a better table for that area. I agree that the wall behind the sofa will be a challenge. hill - you are right about the sofa blocking too much of the window and your comment about open, inviting and balanced are exactly what I was hoping to achieve. Here is the room today with the furniture in place and the rug added back in. It is not the right size or can I get away with it anyway? It is centered on the window and the sofa. See how the chairs are on the rug, but the sofa isn't? Another view (ignore the desk and audio equipment on the left). I I know I need to add a table to the left of the sofa. Most likely the table that was here originally (now sitting between the chairs) will come back to this location. Now I need to work on placing lamps, pillows and other accessories. Thank you to everyone who helped me get to this point.
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  • 15 years ago

    I absolutely adore your living room. You've put it together so nicely. I love the warm, comfortable, non matchy-matchy style you've got goin.

    While I like the tapestry somthing about it being on that wall looks off to me. I almost think you need somthing shorter and wider on that wall...or maybe something on either side of the tapestry?

    You have a beautiful home....looks very inviting to me!

  • 15 years ago

    You own very nice pieces. I would add your 5th dinningroom chair to the set, around the table and then call it good! Once you add the chair, the dinningroom will be full. Classy!!!

  • 15 years ago

    Thank you everyone for your encouragement and patience. This LR/DR has come a long way since I first started frequenting this site.

    Dillydally. You are right about the turning the table a bit. It does look better! I am going to look around my house for a little table to put where you suggest  or see if I could find an inexpensive half-round (black or dark cherry).

    Amac and Nicole -- Sometimes we have more chairs there. The last time I posted pics, though, everyone suggested that I try to limit it to 4 on a daily basis. IÂll try five again and see how it looks now that I have rearranged the room.

    molly and rocky -- You are right that the tapestry isnÂt perfect for this space. My family really really wants it up there, though, so . . .. I wonder if the table that dillydally suggests would anchor that side of the room better and make the tapestry work. Alternatively, I could tape some pics on the wall and see if that works.

  • 15 years ago

    Your home looks charming and inviting! One thought - could the curio cabinet in your dining room be set at an angle across the corner?

  • 15 years ago

    debb -- sure. that's how it was before I started changing things! Do you think it is better this way?
    Earlier pic

  • 15 years ago

    "I wonder if the table that dillydally suggests would anchor that side of the room better and make the tapestry work."

    I think so. The wall with the tapestry is much longer than the wall with the doors and needs more on it. The room is too small for a hutch or buffet on that wall. The room is also very open to the other areas and not defined by an archway or anything to make the space cozy.

    A piece of furniture on that wall will balance things. Something with "presence" but keep it lightweight by choosing something on feet or legs. By placing it under the light switches it will help define the dining area as being separate but not crowd the table.

    Maybe even a low child's dresser that is not very wide and not too deep.


    Or something like this smaller DVD storage unit that would not take up much space.


  • 15 years ago

    I like your rooms a lot. Very pretty. I too would add the 5th chair to the table. A smaller chest or table placed to the left of the tapestry would finish that wall. I might move the tapestry up a bit so that the top is at same level of windows.

  • 15 years ago

    How high should the table/desk be?
    My instincts are to try to mimic the style of the planter in the DR corner, but that is very limiting.
    In term of what I have already, it's mostly side tables that are 22 to 24 inches tall.
    For example, I have the metal and iron table that you see close to the front door in the very first pic
    (plus a coordinating 24 inch round table in the same style). Because they have glass tops, they would be very handy near to DR. But wouldn't they be too low?
    I also have this kind of silly marble chess table (that I could repaint), but it's about 18 inches square and doesn't have great presense.

  • 15 years ago

    The room looks very nice, I would love to see the two red and white chairs in the LR in front of the window with the table and lamp between them. I would remove the black chair from the LR entirely and either put the rocker by the fireplace or the tan chair. I would find some way to incorporate more red (same as in the chairs) into dining room.

  • 15 years ago

    i think it looks a LOT better than it did, sure you might want to tweak things here and there but it is much better, still a lot of chairs around the piano room, you might lose one of them..but it is much better.

  • 15 years ago

    I know the general rule is to not separate matching chairs (or in my case, different chairs with matching slipcovers), but when I try to bring two red chairs together the dominance of the pattern seems too much.
    In this pic for example, I have two red chairs close to one another (not the layout you suggest, but close). Doesn't it seem too much?

    Also, note I have three slipcovered chairs: large, medium and small. This pic shows the baby and and mama chair, so the amount of red is actually less than the layout that I am currently playing with (which has the large and medium size chair in the LR and the baby in a room to be named later.)

  • 15 years ago


    I agree that your beautiful red chairs look better separated. The room looked so calming before. You've got a great thing going! Who plays the piano in your family?

  • 15 years ago

    Four of us can play, but three of us have developed an inferiority complex listening to the fourth (teenage son) play.

  • 15 years ago

    I did not realize there were three red chairs to work with. You are right of course, having two red chairs in the piano room is too much making it look unbalanced.

    But, the one in the piano room and the one by the fireplace are soooo similar both having rolled arms and high straight backs, and both have beige pillows on them. This makes the fireplace chair sitting there all by itself look like a spurned lover. It looks like it should be part of a "set" and looks a bit disconcerting like when salt and pepper shakers getb separated.

    Have you tried putting the "baby" chair there by the fireplace? It matches, yet it's styling makes a whole different statement.

    You could then go so far as to really differentiate the two chairs by putting a different color pillow on the 'baby' chair by the fireplace. Maybe a deep aqua color from the painting above the fireplace, or maybe black, keeping the beige one on the chair in the living room.

    The baby chair looks better when viewed from the side than the one that is there now does. The one there now looks leaning in back. The 'baby' chair has styling that is more similar to the styling of the dining room chairs, straighter and more clean lined, and would help transition the rooms.

    Would this work? Or is the 'baby' chair already destined for a spot in another room and cannot be changed?

  • 15 years ago

    Spurned lover  love the image. All three red chairs are available for use and relocation.
    Here is the "baby" chair.
    It used to be by the fireplace along with a 24 inch round table.
    The feedback I got was that this cluttered the fireplace too much.
    Yet the baby chair alone looked too little for the space.

    Here is the mama chair. It is much wider and somewhat
    taller. I donÂt have a good pic, but the lines of this chair are the nicest of the three.
    Kind of a Gatsby style.

    The daddy chair is shown in the very first pic of this
    discussion. It is slightly less wide than the mama and
    taller. Its lines are the least interesting.

    The pillows on the red chairs are soft yellow, the same
    trellis design fabric as the back of the dining chairs. If
    I leave a red chair by the fireplace, I like the your idea of a black cushionÂmaybe even something similar to the
    black cushion on the couch.

  • 15 years ago

    hmmm...I love the first picture you posted, it is very calming; however, I think the two chairs together could work by removing the lamp and putting the green plant in the middle and by moving the ottoman in front of one of the chairs. There's a lot of energy going on the room with the chairs together and the trick is to neutralize the color.

  • 15 years ago

    Have you thought about bringing two of the red chairs to be by the fireplace, either beside it as you currently have chairs there, or even pulled out in front and facing the fireplace? And then anchored by a rug? That might make the fireplace more than a pass through, which is what it seems to be now.

    Then you could take the chair that you have reupholstered, and put it in your living room where the red chair was, with a table and lamp in front of the window.

    You could even perhaps take the round ottoman and put it with the red chairs in front of the fireplace, which would make a really nice reading or talking place in front of the fire.

    Just wondering. I am partial to fireplaces and you have a beauty!

  • 15 years ago

    Hmmm...I will give these a try. My instinct is that they may not work, but my instincts are often wrong. Thats why some company invented those little slider disc so that we can move furniture around!
    The key thing with my LR is that it isn't big -- just a little over 13 by 23, so busy patterns easily over take it. Also, the views outside the windows nice. But barb, you are correct that the arrangement kind of turns its back on the fireplace. I'll take pics if it looks hopeful. Thanks for your feedback. It is amazing how much we learn from one another!

  • 15 years ago

    Hi deltabreeze,

    Just want to say that I love your room. It looks so interesting, well designed, lovely, and REAL at the same time. No staging here....just a warm, friendly space that speaks volumes about its owner and occupants. Your piano looks gorgeous and it's so great that it is used often. I'm not good at furniture arranging but the only thing that comes to mind for me is that I wouldn't rule out using the two red print chairs in the same room. They don't overwhelm the space to me, and you could use some of the fabric (if you have any) to make some pillows for the sofa or use a red throw on the sofa to achieve some balance. If it suits the room's function; i.e., you could use another comfy chair in the space, I'd work with it. Love your rocker, the ottoman, accessories, I could go on and on! Oh, and also like the curio at an angle in your DR, and agree that you could add a chair to the table and you'd be done. This may have been answered before, but I also wonder if you've considered a rug for the DR. Not really necessary, but sometimes they are nice for absorbing sound and you could put a beautiful round rug in there. All in all, we're "gilding the lily" as my dad used to say. The space is great as is; change isn't necessary but is always kind of fun.

  • 15 years ago

    I haven't read all the posts so if I'm being redundant, I apologize.

    I like the first photo. I don't care for the 2 flowered chairs next too each other by the window because it's much too busy.

    I also think the dining room table looks better with no cover or table cloth.

    You have some lovely things. Pretty house.

    Sorry I can't be of help. I'm not good at rearranging furniture on line. I have to be there in real life to get a feeling for the scale.

  • 15 years ago

    I also haven't read all posts. I just scrolled from the first picture you posted, which I thought was beautiful, down to the most recent. I think putting the two red chairs together is floral overload. The one red floral chair is a nice addition of print and color. I'm sure it breaks some decorating rules, but I'm happiest when I don't know all those rules!

  • 15 years ago

    I don't dislike the two red chairs on the same side of the room. In fact I like the symmetry of it. But I think your solution is you need some red on your sofa to balance it. How about red pillows or a nice red throw? I would put the red art you have over your piano over your sofa. The lamps look a little orange on my monitor, compared to the chairs, is that accurate?

  • 15 years ago

    A vote for the first photo's arrangement -- calm and cozy! And yes! a vote for the spiky plant in the white pot for the shorter iron plant stand!

    And I do like the tall dark plant stand in the dining room -- it seems to balance the visual weight of both the tapestry and the cabinet! :)

    And I like to see all of the dining chairs around the table - which leaves a spot for a chair on the left-hand side of the fireplace .....

    Jan (no help whatsoever ..... LOL!)

  • 15 years ago

    Thank you all for your patience. This room has come a long way due to all your suggestions. I love oceana's suggestion about moving the piano art to the wall over the sofa. Unfortunately, there isn't enough space (the piano art is over 40 inches wide). I understand what oceanna and jjam (and many of the rest of you) have written, though, that the couch needs some more red on or around it. I am thinking about adding a small red pillow.

    Oceanna, the lamps really are a very close red (and goodness that was hard to find!)

    What else I am thinking about-- a long ways back on this thread, dilly dally suggested that I put a table or something under the light switches on the DR wall (see thread pic #3). I am looking at small serving carts/trolleys right now. I am looking at larger lampshades for the chandelier.

  • 15 years ago

    Beautiful rooms!
    My first thought also was to use both red chairs and the round ottoman over by the fireplace, and add some red pillows or a throw to the couch.
    I am a compulsive furniture mover, though, and need to try many options before I decide. ;)

  • 15 years ago

    Deltabreeze, you started another thread with me, and that has fallen away because it has taken me so long to get back to you - I apologize.

    I wonder if you could answer a few questions for me about how the space is used. I gather the piano is used every day, so that is a very important piece in the space.

    How many people are normally seated in the living room? How often is it used?

    Is the dining room where you eat daily, or is it an occasional dining space? How many people are seated there on a regular basis? Do you use the french doors in the DR regularly to access the outside?

    I think you have a lot of great pieces, but right now it lacks cohesiveness. The feeling is just a bit like you ran through the house and pulled out all the available chairs to hold a meeting in the LR. I am not suggesting everything has to match, but I think having one red chair, one rocker, one beige chair, one windsor chair and the couch all in a tight circle doesn't do any of them justice. Having the dining chair and a red chair at the fireplace feels disconnected, like you couldn't find another place to keep that extra dining chair so it just landed there.

  • 15 years ago

    Have you ever tried both red comfy chairs at the fireplace with a small round rug and something/s very small to hold glasses when reading by the fire? Like a mini room to its self? Then the beige armchair next to the piano. All the dining chairs in the dining room, trying the connecting spaces a bit more opened to each other?

  • 15 years ago

    Les, Thanks for your thoughts. You have a keen eye. Yes, the piano and LR is used every day. Usually, we have 2 to 4 people in the LR, so we could ditch the black chair (except when company comes). Earlier (as you can see from pic below), I was keeping the black chair by the fireplace/front door (as a place to drop packages). We eat in the DR once or twice a week (typically 4 people). We also use the DR table for projects, reading and such. In terms of the french doors, we have much better access to the yard and patio from the nearby kitchen, so the french doors are opened only for parties. I agree about the room's lack of cohesion and am searching for ideas.

    Bodica and timber, When I move the red chairs together, the pattern is just too strong for me. Also this side of the room is much, much smaller than it appears. It really couldn't accommodate two large chairs and an ottoman, unless I move the couch. This old picture shows the amount of space we have. The black front door is open in the pic and the couch is right by the black rocker.

    Everyone, thank you for your patience and help and suggestions.

  • 15 years ago

    Delta - Someone from here suggested an ottoman similar to yours for my LR and I just wanted to comment that I really love it. I'm not good with arranging. I needed help from the people on here for my LR but I also wanted to say I like the red chairs apart and that you have a lovely home!

  • 15 years ago

    Delta I wanted to ask, where did you get your "mama" chair? I like the lines. I also liked the placement in the photo right above the post from amac. And I adore that ottoman.

  • 15 years ago

    Goodness you all! I think the last two comments summarize the groupÂs split opinion on this LR DR space.

    Half of you think the space is headed in the right direction, but that the furniture needs rearranging and editing to give it more coherence. You would place the two dominant red print chairs closer together, add red to the couch, and cull some of the mismatched stuff (the rocker, black chair, tapestry. . .)

    The other half of you are less bothered by the mismatching and think the room just needs something to tie it all together, such as a DR rug, serving table in the DR, or window treatments.

    I am somewhere in between the two groups. To my mind, because the room has so few colors, mostly just yellow, goldish tan, crème, red and black, the mismatching generally is o.k.(and is what we can afford!) I do think, however, that some changes are needed to bring more coherence. This is what I am thinking now.
    (1) Leave the chairs apart, like spurned lovers. Reuniting them just feels like too much red pattern in a not-large room.
    (2) Get the black wood chair out of the LR (maybe putting it back by the fireplace instead of the yellow DR chair.)
    (3) Stain or replace the octagonal table in the LR to make it blend in better.
    (4) Add a small black serving cart (on wheels) for the DR under the light switches to better demarcate this DR and for functionality.
    (5) Change the lampshades in the DR chandy to mimic those in the LR.
    (6) Reconsider, maybe, my general antidrapery bias.

    In terms of cooper and sheshareeÂs questions. . . .the ottoman is a pretty old one from LEE. I got it used. I am very happy with its style, comfortable, and its maneuverability. The chair is 16 years old, made by Century and was called it Gatsby style. I donÂt see it on their website now. The chair has a tight seat and back and pretty exposed legs. Because its cushions are tight, it takes a slipcover well.
    Any more comments/suggestions?

  • 15 years ago

    (1) Yes.

    (2) Yes. Then pull the black chair and the baby chair in, turned facing each other. Add a small rug to anchor.

    (3) Low priority. Not really necessary.

    (4) Get something stationary. A wheeled conveyance piece may be too "busy".

    (5) Low priority.

    (6) If you do not need them and don't like them, don't buy something you will hate all the time "just because".

    You home looks really lovely and the tweaking made it more restful and pulled together. You have great colors and nice lines to everything. I looks like a real home where people enjoy themselves, not staged.

  • 15 years ago

    OK, I have a thought that may be totally off the wall, but I just can't leave that fireplace hanging out there.

    How about moving the dining table to in front of the fireplace, and making the present dining room a sitting area, and your present living room, a music room? Move the round dining table in front of the fireplace, and move the couch in the living room to the long wall in the dining room. Think about a long low coffee table or ottoman in front of the couch.Then move your red chairs to either side of the piano.

    Experiment with placing your other chairs where they will fit best.

  • 15 years ago

    Ah, Barb and I are thinking on the same wavelength!

    I too wondered about putting the DR table and chairs in front of the fireplace.

    I would move the piano to the wall in the DR where the tapestry is and make that the music space. Then use the beige armchair in the corner where the cabinet is now, with a table and lamp to make a comfy listening seat. The rocker could go on the other side of the french doors. The smallest red chair could be placed on the side of the piano closer to the light switches on that wall. Don't feel compelled to center the piano on the wall, but rather center it in the room space.

    The couch could move to the wall where the piano is now. End tables on either side. I would put two of the red chairs at right angles to one another, on the left side of the room as you would be facing the couch. The round table with lamp between them. Then on the shorter wall you could use the black chair, kind of where the rocker is currently. I would be interested to see if the curio cabinet would fit on the short wall space to the right of the window, again near where the rocker is now.

    I would move the tapestry from the current location to over the couch in the LR.

  • 15 years ago

    Barb and Les, If only the room was just a bit longer!

    We actually set a round table in front of the fireplace whenever we have dinner parties for 16 (8 by the fireplace and 8 in the DR), so we have experience with part of the layout you suggest. (We can accommodate parties of 12 or fewer in the current DR, by adding a leaf.)

    I show below why we have been reluctant to use this layout on a more permanent basis. If you see something we are missing, though, please let us know. We really value your input.

    To understand the space limitations, I need to point out that while the room is 23 feet long at its max, the living room is less than 18 feet long on span that runs to the fireplace. This 18 feet is comprised of (1) under 10 feet along the couch wall, (2) a 5 foot wide opening to the front door and (3) 32 inches of a little wall before you run into the fireplace. Thus, a 56 inch round table here, plus dining chairs would protrude far beyond the fireplace area, and take all the walk area. (The current DR is 10 fee wide and is very tight.) This would mean that, to get to the stairs, kitchen or bathroom, you would need to walk through the LR, making the LR smaller than it is now.

    My sense is, at the end we would end up with a very nice music room, but a dining room table that is very close to the front door and a small LR. Currently, although the layout is funky, the DR is pleasantly situated with a view of the garden and the LR works. The fireplace area, however, admittedly is pretty funky. . . .

    Any other thoughts?


  • 15 years ago

    You've made some wonderful changes, and your home looks very inviting.

    I think the black chair by the fp works much better than the DR chair.

    Do you ever put something in the white vase next to the LR red chair? If not, it might be nice to have a circular glass top as a place to put a drink.

    Not so sure you need to add a red pillow to the soda, but perhaps a predominately red fringe on your cream pillows may be a nice touch. Perhaps add one round cream pillow with a red touch in the center of it and/or a red border.

    As an non-drape person myself, if you prefer the clean, open look, why change?

    I'd not be inclined to darken the octagonal table. Most interesting homes have a blend of pieces that seem to speak to a family's history rather than a matched room that shouts I just went to the store and bought their display.

    Would you consider one large drum shade for the DR chandelier? If you like that look, a 5" to 6" soft white mini-pleated shade would look great. You may have to shorten the candles if the current ones are too tall. Also, please consider putting the chandie on a dimmer if it's not already.

    Finally, don't know if you decided to forego adding a piece to the DR under the light. If you do get one, it probably needs to be at least 30" or more. The 18" or 24" would not work well. I prefer not having every spot filled, so I'd only add a very shallow depth cabinet if you find one you can't live without. Have you tried the tall cabinet back at an angle yet? If you prefer it straight, maybe try centering it in the space.

  • 15 years ago

    Yes, the room is coming along -- thanks to everyone's help.

    Black chair -- I will see what I can do to move it back. I really like having a 5th DR chair in this space, but I agree that the place I have it doesn't make sense.

    White vast -- your comment is perfect. I was assuming that I would find a small wooden table, but I could order a 12 inch glass top and glue is (somehow???) onto the vase. If I weight the bottom of the vase, it would just be a fine side table.

    Pillow -- what ever red I add, I want it to be little. I really like the sharpness of the lamps and, while you can't see it easily, there is a red den visible from this location.

    Drapes -- I think I am just responding to peer pressure.

    DR piece -- hmmm at leat 30" wide? I will mock something up and tabke a look. And yes, I did put the tall cab at an angle (someone's suggestion) and it looks better.

  • 15 years ago

    I actually liked having the two red chairs together, i think when you had them side by side you just needed to remove the black chair from inbetween them, or put them both by the fireplace..the idea of the dining room table in front of the fireplace is another intersting concept for sure are getting a work out..honestly, the piano are just has too many chairs in there..i think the sofa and the 2 red chairs are enough or maybe with the white one, but all the rockers too..just way too many.

    you should always try to have a table next to every seat, or in front of such as coffee someone sitting can sit down a drink or book or whatever.

    myself i would do one of two options with the red chairs..put them together with a table between in the piano room, or put one on either side of the fireplace..with a small table on the outer side of each ..or if not a table..a trunk, dresser, or a stack of books, something to be able to sit a drink on.

    i think i prefer the sofa to the right of the piano and the 2 red chairs to the left..a table between (not the green game table, doesn't match)..

    then maybe the rockers on either side of the fireplace or the dining table in front of the fireplace..not sure if that might be too crowded??

    if the rockers are by the fireplace it would make a cozy reading nook, then you might want either a table and lamp with each or a floor lamp with each..possibly the game table and two chairs to make a game area by the fireplace.. but not the red chairs with the green table..

  • 15 years ago

    My sense is that I have posted too way many different pics and am confusing everyone! For example, we have only one rocker and, unless we make the LR piano area smaller, we can't add much to the fireplace area.

    I will take new LR DR pics and refine the remaining question for everyone. Thanks for your patience!

  • 15 years ago

    Delta. I should have been more specific re the DR table: first, let me reiterate, I don't think you need to add more pieces, but if you do find something you absolutely can't live without, it should be at least 30" high, shallow depth, and the width will be based on your wall dimension but should be not very wide since you have your wonderful tapestry which makes a strong statement.

    Trust your instincts! Your have great innate style, and your home should make you hapoy!

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