How to: find the perfect couch

05 Sep 2016

ThinkstockPhotos-508022546-jpg-735x450.jpgIn terms of household items, a couch is one of the biggest purchases you can make. Not to mention one of the most used furnishings in your home!

Whether you’ve moved into a new place or are simply redecorating, a couch is always the anchor and statement piece of furniture in a room.

Ornaments, side tables and floor rugs can easily be swapped out and replaced if trends move on, but the couch is typically a mainstay of a space. So start with your couch and decorate from there!

In order to get the best bang for your buck, follow these steps to help you take the “ouch” out of couch!

Determine your budget:
Buying a new couch can be an expensive exercise, especially if you want a good quality one that will last a while.

Think about what you need from the couch and make sure you are making a smart investment. It’s better to invest in a quality item that is going to last, otherwise you could be repurchasing a new sofa before you know it.

Define your needs:
Like everything else these days, there seems to be endless choice when it comes to choosing a couch.

You might think you know exactly what you want, but when you begin to browse seriously in store, you can often be bombarded with different styles, shapes and custom alternatives that will leave you completely overwhelmed.

Start by defining your needs – what do you actually need in this couch? Is it for your everyday living room, or your formal lounge? How many people does it need to seat? Do you prefer a chaise to spread out on, or do you like the flexibility of adding an ottoman. Do you need a pull out bed for houseguests?

Once you know the answer to these, you can filter through the options to find a handful that are right for you.

What material is safest?
The next thing to consider when looking for the perfect couch the material.

Apart from the look and style of the material, you need to think about what will functionally work best long term. For example, if you have children, pets or enjoy the odd TV dinner, leather or even faux leather could be a good match for you. Materials like these are easy to wipe clean and maintain.

A fabric couch isn’t quite as easy to wipe clean, but there are some great synthetic fibre options that promise to be easy to clean and even stain-free. You can also get a couch with a slipcover that you can remove a few times a year and toss into the washing machine. This is especially easy if you get a slipcover made of microfiber.

Think about size:
Consider the size of the space when you are looking at couches.

A big couch in a smaller room can make the room appear cramped, while a small couch in a big room will be lost.

If you are unsure of the size you need, measure the dimensions of a couple of couches you like and mark them with masking tape on the floor of your home. Can you move easily enough around the tape? Does the taped couch look lost in the room? It is much easier to suss out the right sized couch with masking tape, rather than purchasing a great couch only to realise it doesn’t fit in your home!

What is your style?
It can be a little hard to nail down your own personal style, but go with your gut instinct when picking the type of couch that will fit nicely in your home.

Is your style sleek and modern? Perhaps you'll be more drawn to leather, steel accents and minimal cushions. Prefer a laidback, coastal vibe? You may lean towards linen fabrics in lighter colours.

If your home is an eclectic mix of colours and designs, a couch that combines several styles (such as a vintage couch re-upholstered in a colourful fabric, or a more modern shape with traditional accents) could be the perfect expression of your taste.

If your look is a little more traditional, a classically structured sofa in a durable and neutral fabric will stand the test of time and will work well with various colours and complementing pieces.

Remember, you'll likely have this couch if and when you decide to sell so take into account how potential buyers may view it too.

Of course, your home should reflect your tastes, but polarising colours and styles may turn potential buyers off. If selling in the future is important to you, it is best to consider this when choosing a couch.

Quick tips:

  • A couch with legs can make a room feel larger.
  • Bold colours can be tricky in a couch —use such hues in accessories such as lamps or throw pillows instead.
  • Keep patterns small in modern couch silhouettes with cleaner lines.
  • Place the couch facing the view you’d most like to see from it.
  • Leather, textured velvet or treated linen couches are more practical than ones done in delicate, fine fabrics such as silk.
  • If you can’t find your perfect couch, decorate your runner up with lots of pillows and an amazing throw that will cover up a good portion of the couch.

 

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