Hi Tinsel readers, as we near summer we’re pumping the brakes on the blogs to give ourselves a much-needed break and enjoy all the perks of life at Lake Tahoe in the summer! So while you may not hear as much from us for a bit, we want to take today to help you find the perfect functional living room centerpiece: the couch! While coffee tables, rugs, and other decor get plenty of attention, let’s face it- you’ll be spending the majority of many evenings on the couch, and if you have kids, it’s likely their favorite spot to sit (...or climb). So it’s important to get it right, and ensure you can balance comfort with necessary design considerations for your space. It’s also worth noting that a good couch can and should be an investment piece- this isn’t something to compromise on and replace in a couple years. Ideally, a well-designed couch should last you 5-10 years, at which point you’d likely want to change and account for personal style changes. Let’s review three quick tips for choosing the right couch:
1. Window shop and demo - As the old adage goes, try before you buy. This couldn’t be more true for a couch. If the cushions are made from a filling you find uncomfortable, you’ll be dealing with the hassle to return and search again. So to get a sense of what you like, try visiting a few stores, plop down to test out couches, and make note of the fabrics and fills you prefer. Consider how you like to sit- upright or leaning? How far off the floor is ideal, do you prefer low-slung or high plushy seating? It might be worth taking a tape measure along. And with many new furniture producers on the market utilizing a 100% ecommerce model, it can be hard to test out some of the brands you see advertised all over the web. While it’s not as helpful as in-person testing, looking closely at product sheets and searching YouTube for couch testimonials or video reviews can help you decide on the right fit for your home.
3. Aim for a quality build - As we mentioned, a great sofa should last you at least 5-10 years. And some designers create products they expect to last much longer than that, with 15 year frame warranties. A cheap build can seriously shorten the life on a couch that is otherwise well-designed and comfortable. Read reviews and look at the warranty, if it’s only a few years on the frame, it may not be worth the money. This is where sit tests can tell you a bit more- are there big gaps in the cushions, creaks? Does it make a lot of noise when you sit down? Is there much wiggle or wobble to the piece?
4. Find the right fabric - This is where that window shopping comes in handy again, narrowing down fabric choices. Maybe you don’t find your perfect couch this way, but you certainly can narrow down your covering options by testing out a few. Consider the hand feel, the durability, the expected maintenance, and of course spot cleaning abilities (especially if you have kids!) as these decisions can make or break a successful couch purchase. They also affect the ability to age gracefully- will daily sunlight be shining on your new couch with natural fabric? It might fade out the color over the years, so consider synthetic options if it’s close to a window. There’s also leather, which brings plenty of additional styles, colors and textures to consider.
We hope this list helps you narrow down your choices and find the perfect couch for your Lake Tahoe or Truckee home. Tinsel House is ready to help you find the right living room centerpiece, so reach out to us anytime!