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Sitting Pretty

“There are few things worse than an uncomfortable sofa – the rude shock of being repelled by the very cushions you were hoping to sink into!” So says Rita Konig, interior design columnist for The New York Times and I couldn’t agree more.

I believe that, along with the bed, a sofa is one of the greatest furniture commitments one makes. Even cheap sofas cost a lot of money and once you have bought one they are hard to get rid of, so it is important to try and get it right first time. A sofa will, ideally, be with you for a long time and a really good one will serve a few generations.

Buy the best you can possibly afford and even go possibly over budget if you can bear it – the investment will pay off. There is no point in owning something that no one wants to sit on! I have made the mistake in the past of valuing style over comfort but I am now a strong believer that, although a good looking sofa is essential to the success of a room, the comfort element is paramount.

Cushions filled with 100% feather are considered to be the most luxurious but they can be heavy and do require plumping regularly which can become a bit of a chore however, you may save on the gym membership! Another option is 100% fibre but this can be a bit too firm and unforgiving but is virtually maintenance free. My recommendation would be a mixture of feather and fibre offering the combination of luxury and practicality being both soft and with an element of recovery.

Good sofas improve with age; as the cushions get sat on more and more they will soften. However, as with everything, eventually it will require some attention. If you bought well in the first place the frame will still be strong and so long as you are not tired of the style there are two options – reupholstering or recovering. To reupholster means that you want it taking back to the frame and almost remaking and it is important that you get someone reputable to undertake this in order to maintain the feel of the sofa. By discussing your requirements with the upholsterer you can ensure that what comes back is as cosy as the original. If you are essentially happy with the way your sofa feels but you just want to update it changing the fabric simply have it recovered and the fabric choices are endless.

Have fun!

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