Buying a sofa is a major purchase and should be used as a starting point to build the room around. It is a high ticket item that should last a number of years so it is important to choose one that is durable as well as visually appealing. I have often met clients who have turned down the opportunity to buy their dream sofa because it doesn’t work with their current wall colour. Try to avoid this trap, walls can easily be changed and at a cheaper cost than furniture. Start with the furniture and build your scheme accordingly. A sofa is a considerable purchase, try to ensure that what you are choosing is appropriate to the space and style of the room considering the points below:
Usage / Suitability
Think about the size and suitability for the space it is going to be in.·
Consider the use of the sofa, this may seem like an odd question but different people have different needs.
Does it need a reclining function? Is it going to be used for a cosy reading space?
Does it need to be more of a statement piece, which can be more formal or is it something that needs to be more welcoming and cosy? Make sure to measure the piece and ensure it is suitable for your room.
Be sure there is adequate access and circulation in the room and that it doesn’t block doorways.
Remember also to consider access to your home, will it fit in your front door? This can be a stumbling block that people face when purchasing in the store without checking dimensions first.
Comfort / Shape
Consider the depth of the seat, some contemporary sofas have very deep seats which can lead to back strain unless they are propped with numerous cushions. Try them for comfort and bring family members to test out. Remember form should follow function so be sure that the sofa is sturdy, comfortable and looks the part.
Also consider the configuration of the sofa, does it need to be a two or three seater for instance? Or perhaps an l-shaped arrangement. Consider the room type, is it an open plan area? If so then an l-shape configuration may help zone the area effectively.
Patterned fabric has a tendency to date so a single colour will last longer. Avoid trends unless it is something you have always liked, consider the feel of the material, the tactile quality. Do you prefer fabric over leather? When choosing options for leather make sure that it is a high quality grade as over time some leathers can sag and wear poorly.
“Practicality doesn’t have to be at the expense of style, velvet which has become very popular can be a concern for spills, dirt etc. There are a number of spray treatments available which will ensure your sofa will remain vibrant and clean for many years.”
Colour / Style & Aesthetics/ Texture / Durability
Patterned fabric has a tendency to date so a single colour will last longer. Versatile colours include – Navy, Green, Grey, Brown & Black, these will work with most colour combinations and style of décor.
It is important to choose a piece that is stylish and suits the space and scheme you are looking to create. As with any style ensuring it has a look that you appreciate which will stand the test of time. Looking for a contemporary statement quality? Choose a style that is rather minimal and linear. Want a boutique feel? Have a look at styles with luxurious padding and exposed seams. The selections are endless and there are styles to suit every taste.
Texture is an important element for any sofa factor that into your final decision, make sure it is comfortable and supports your back.
Practicality doesn’t have to be at the expense of style, velvet which has become very popular can be a concern for spills, dirt etc. There are a number of spray treatments available which will ensure your sofa will remain vibrant and clean for many years.
It is much cheaper and practical to change cushions and throws which will keep the piece vibrant, interesting and relevant. Where possible try to obtain a fabric sample so you can test how it appears at home. While fabric will vary due to batches produced it will give you a clearer representation in your space. Lighting conditions in stores are very different to domestic environments, so make sure that that grey sofa isn’t actually a green.
Ready Made or Bespoke?
Often when considering furniture for our homes we face dilemmas such as the space available. If you can’t find a sofa to fit in a particular room due to the space available, there are numerous options available from a large network of companies should you wish to get something bespoke. Although more expensive it will ensure you have your preferences met.
While this purchase can be considerable, look at it in terms of an investment piece. If you have a style or finish which you really appreciate and also suits your needs but is also a significant cost. Consider how often you will change this piece; in many cases it will pay for itself over time compared to say a more budget option which may show signs of wear after a few short years. While price is not always an indication of quality, (sales are a frequent occurrence these days) ensure that the material of the piece is durable and will last for the medium to long term depending on your requirements.
Considering and weighing up the numerous options available, be sure to go with your gut feeling and choose a piece that brings you joy. And always check lead times as ordering and delivery can take several weeks and indeed months depending on the time of year and availability. So give yourself plenty of time to research and test out your dream sofa, it will be time well spent and stand the test of time.