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Your sofa is so important, you probably take it for granted. It’s where you curl up under a blanket to read or switch off the lights for movie night. It’s where you chat with your friends over a glass of wine or build cushion forts with your kids. In short, the family sofa is where most of your life will happen.
Choosing the right sofa for your needs is part common sense, part economics and part emotions. Does is it look right, does it feel right? Will it fit in your room? When you need to cater for a range of people with one piece of furniture, suddenly, what you were looking for in the first place isn’t quite what you’re looking for now.
So what makes the perfect sofa?
When it comes down to it, the most important aspect of a sofa is its shape. This is what will draw you to it first off, and should be your primary search goal. These days, sofas come in all sorts of shapes from wingbacked to minimalist, a simple two piece suite to a corner sofa plus chaise longue.
Aside from the obvious aesthetic reasons for choosing a particular shape, you must also factor in comfort. If you want to sink into plush cushions, a minimalist sofa isn’t going to work. If you want to be able to get up without hurting your knees or hips, something with wide arms and a bit more support would be better.
Sit on every sofa in the shop if you have to, but finding the shape that brings you the most comfort is key.
Obviously, if you have a tiny lounge, a massive sofa isn’t going to work. Measure your space before you fall in love with a three seater that is a few centimetres too wide to fit through the door. The length and depth of your current sofa will give you an idea of what you can fit in. If your sofa is going in front of a window, you should also measure the height so that you don’t block the light.
The layout of your room will also decide whether you get a corner sofa or a suite. If you’re feeling brave, you could try shifting furniture about and experimenting with new layouts to see what the best use of your space could be. Make a map of your room before you actually move anything though and plan carefully!
The material is the last thing you should think about when choosing a sofa. This is because it is easily changed and most shops will allow you to choose your own finishing material from a selection.
If you have young children, leather is ideal for cleaning with a damp cloth. However, materials like velvet will offer you immediate warmth and comfort when you sit down. The colour you choose will also make a difference to how your room feels so do take swatches home and consider them in your setting. Be prepared to repaint if the colours clash – this is a cheap solution and will give you the feeling of a completely new room to go with your brand new sofa!