Just like most accessories for the home, there seems to be infinite range of choice when it comes to choosing a sofa. So we’ve decided to help you save time, money and a whole lot of buyer's remorse with these 8 helpful buyers tips for choosing the perfect sofa.
Begin with assessing the style and size of the room your sofa will live in. In a small space, it’s a great idea to choose a sofa with legs. This gives your room an illusion of more space. In a larger area you can be more flexible with the shape and style, but still look for a scale matches your surroundings.
Consider where your sofa will be placed in the room. Generally it’s better to have your sofa facing you when you enter the room, rather than looking at the back of it. To help ascertain how much room you’ll need map out a floorplan of the measurements using newspaper. If you’re replacing an old sofa take the measurements with you to help you choose your new style.
The construction of your sofa determines how long it will last and how far your dollar will go. Don’t just focus on colour and fabric, do your research beforehand and choose a frame that works for you. For instance, if you need a sofa for the kids playroom you may only need it for 3 years. However, if want your sofa to shine in the lounge for up to 10 years, then a sturdy high quality frame is a must.
4. Arm & Back Height
The average height for the back of a sofa is 92cm. Some contemporary styles can start as low as 83cm and high-backed sofas can extend well over a metre. If you’re going for a high-backed sofa, place it up against a wall. For comfort, go with a sofa that has a lower back and a matching ottoman, so you can stretch out without losing support. If you love to lie down on your sofa, choose one with a lower arm. And remember that a wide arm will take up extra seating space, so take that into account when choosing the size.
When it comes to choosing sofa fabric you’re either looking at linen or leather. Leather is durable, easy to clean and will give your room a touch of luxury. Its cons include, feeling ‘sticky’ in summer and the fact it needs to be maintained regularly so it doesn’t crack. Cotton-covered sofas on the other hand, are cool in summer and warm in winter. Yet when it comes to stains and spills, they will be a source of cleaning frustration. Choose a fabric that works for your lifestyle. For active families, textured fabric is a great idea because it hides wear and tear. Go with a sofa with some synthetic in the mix and make sure it’s scotch-guarded before using.
There is a huge variation in the quality of cushions that come with sofas. Choose your cushions, just like choosing a mattress. First, decide if you want something firm or something you can sink into. When you sit down the cushions should retain their shape and not curve up. Also, remember the sofas in a showroom have been tested many times, so when your new sofa arrives at home, it will feel slightly firmer.
Expect to pay anywhere from $200 for a budget design, right up to $10,000 and beyond for a bespoke piece. If you’re purchasing a sofa for the long term, invest in the best you can afford - quality and craftsmanship are in the details you can’t see (i.e. frame, webbing and stitching). A great idea is to buy a premium sofa during a major sale. Purchasing a higher quality sofa at a reduced price, is much wiser than going with a quick-fix couch you’ll have to replace sooner.
There’s no point buying a sofa that looks fabulous if you don’t enjoy spending time on it. Everyone who’ll use the sofa, should try it out beforehand. Yes, the feel of it will differ depending on their height, weight and personal preferences, but at least you’ll can decide on a happy medium.
Ultimately, whatever your choice the perfect sofa for you will always be the one you love to admire and the one you can’t wait to relax on every single evening.
Happy sofa shopping!