How to Choose a Sofa

If you are in need of a new sofa, there is much to consider BEFORE you go shopping. There are so many styles, specifications and details to choose from to make the best choice for a new sofa. First start with the size that fits your space. Before you decide on color and fabric,  ask yourself the following questions:

Do you want a three seat cushions, two-seat cushions or a single seat cushion?

Loose, attached back cushions, or upholstered back (tufts or not tufts)?

Skirt or exposed legs?

High or low arms?

Streamlined or oversized?

Avoid these mistakes:

1.       sofa too big for your space

2.       fabric  and frame not the best durability for your lifestyle

3.       deciding on price over quality

What defines quality?

There is a lot going on under the fabric of an upholstered piece of furniture. Price does certainly reflect the quality of a piece. Ask the sales people in the furniture showroom about the frame, the foam, the pillow and cushion content. All of these elements affect the price. Be sure to understand what you are buying to suit your budget and durability needs.  

To illustrate sofa options I've selected sofa models from Sherrill Furniture. There are so many other options and styles. These examples will help you identify what style you like before you go shopping.
Furniture photos courtesy of Sherrill Furniture.  

Single seat cushion, high arms, pillow back with skirt.

Single seat cushion, look pillow back, lower arms, with skirt.
Single seat cushion, loose pillow back, integrated arm with exposed legs.

Two seat cushion, loose pillow back, low arm with skirt.

Three seat cushion, pillow back (may be attached or detached), wider arm with exposed legs.

Single seat cushion, tufted upholstered back with exposed legs.
Two seat cushion, loose pillow back. detailed exposed leg.

Two seat cushion, two pillow back, low arm with skirt.

Julie Fergus, ASID, is a nationally published interior designer. Her studio and showroom is located in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire. Julie's clients are primarily in the Lakes Region and Mount Washington Valley, however, she will travel throughout the state and North East. |