I’ve resisted for a number of years, but have finally realized it’s time to do it. Yes, I absolutely, positively must replace my old living room furniture.
My sofa and loveseat looked quite nice when I originally purchased them. But they’ve finally started to show their age. No matter how many new pillows I place on them, the basic furniture is just looking a bit too worn. I try to be frugal, so shelling out money for a new sofa hurts. But it’s long past time when a slipcover will do the trick.
This time, I want to be a bit smarter than I was before in my furniture shopping. Because sadly, while my sofa looked nice when I first purchased it, it was never quite as comfortable as I’d hoped. I can remember sitting in it a number of times in the store, but once in my home, it just wasn’t everything I wanted. But I made it last. Boy did I make it last. The furniture has now moved into the definitely too squishy territory.
So this time around I want to be smarter. I’m ready for a new color (perhaps red?) and I’m definitely ready for a new comfort level. I’m thinking that instead of a sofa and loveseat, I might go for something like the design in the picture above, with a nice comfy accent chair.
Does anyone have any furniture-buying tips they’d like to share? Anything I should particularly look for? Anything I should avoid?
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LinnieGayl. . . .just for you:
I have a red leather couch, chair and ottoman, and I love it. I have had it almost ten years, and I am still not tired of it. The only problem is that I am not an authoritarian parent to my pets. After adopting my two rescue dogs, (plus my other two) I was lax in making them stay off my furniture. So, unless I have company everything has covers on it.
Excellent suggestions, especially about getting cushions that can be flipped.
I definitely want something with arms.
Cindy, yes, I liked the room photo above where the red furniture is the only really bright thing. As a renter, I’m stuck with the flooring, walls, trim that comes with the place. And most rental units in the town I live in have a neutral/beige carpet and white or off-white walls. I think one very colorful piece might help make the room a bit more lively :)
Checking the “bones” of the furniture isn’t something I automatically thought of, but clearly is something I need to do this time around.
Older furniture has better construction than most newer furniture. Cruise the used furniture stores, is my advice. Have whatever takes your fancy re-upholstered. You’ll get more choice in color, have a sturdier piece of furniture, and probably save money. In our married life, my wife and I bought a “new” couch only once and came to regret it.
Beware nubby fabric that attracts cat claws, and marauding Border Collies smart enough to figure out that the pillows that make up the back of the couch are perfectly dog bed sized.
I love the red couch but just think of how spots would show because you know there will be spots. Lots of great advice already given. I would add that make sure you get any furniture with Scotchguard or similar to protect the fabric from stains.
My couch is dark, almost navy blue, with little red and green accents which you can barely see. It’s lasted a long time and does have cushions that can be flipped.
Also, definitely think about whether you want arms or not.
LOL – now being someone who buys ‘neutral’ coloured furniture I can say a person can get just as sick of it as anything else. I have a leather sofa that would probably be considered timeless – the problem is even with coloured pillows the darn thing never looks right.
And as with anything – age with any colour is a hazard. I have considered the ‘microfiber’ couches as it is mentioned how they can be cleaned and the colour stays true especially with pets.
What I do like in the picture provided is that the sofa is the only red item in the room. To me, that is again a classic look. I love what Katja said as hubby and I are famous for saying things like this but with more long term investments. Eg. To me, stucco homes up here in Canada are going to be ‘oh soooo 2000’. I have also decided that glass tiles for bathrooms and kitchens might be the 2010 thing.
But a red couch? I’m not sure how much of a thing it could be unless it’s all gussied up like those froufrou 80’s couches. Clean lines will keep the piece looking modern for a longer person of time. So straight arms (no rolled out arms) and clean lines would be the key.
Well, of course, you want to check the “bones’ of the furniture — whether or not the underlying frame seems sturdy and well put-together.
And myself, I generally prefer furniture where I can flip all the cushions — that way you can flip them about every so often, which helps them wear more evenly, I think.
If your new furniture doesn’t have easily removable (and washable) covers for the arms (which tend to show wear and dirt), we’ve found that hand towels in a matching or complementary color fulfill that requirement quite nicely! :-)
Thanks, Katja. I do have a cat with long fur so that’s definitely an issue. Love the “a red sofa, that’s so early 2010s”. Clearly I need to think on this a bit more.
Hi LinnieGayl, just one thought:
Yes, the red sofa looks very nice. But in my experience a color can look dated very quickly (oh a red sofa, thats so early 2010s ;-) and if you want this sofa to have a similarly long life you might also get bored with the color after some time. Especially if you change the rest of your living room furniture after a while and the red doesn’t really match anymore. (Ask me how I know this ;-)
So a more neutral color and cushions or throws for accent color might be a safer bet.
And since I can’t remember whether you have a pet. The color of the pet’s hair is also worth considering. Nothing more annoying then black cat’s hair on your light sofa.