Wednesday, July 6, 2022 at 4:31pm
We’re gonna give it to you straight- the online sofa shopping experience is a bit tricky, especially if you don’t have a clue where to start or what to look out for. Not only is a sofa likely to be one of your more expensive home purchases, but it also needs to be comfortable, which is a highly subjective requirement that can only truly be determined in person. While buying a sofa online may sound super risky, we have a few expert tips that will give you the know-how you need to confidently hit that “place order” button. 🛒
Let’s get right to it…
Read the Reviews
Reviewers are your new BFFs! Don’t just skim a few- really dig in and get as many details as possible about your (potential) new sofa. What some reviewers may consider a con, you may view as a pro, and vice versa. The overall score is a decent indicator of quality, so keep that in mind as you also factor in the total number of reviews. You also want to see if any customer images are available; photos of the sofas in real-life spaces without studio lighting and pro styling are generally pretty revealing. 😮
If the manufacturer doesn’t offer customer ratings or the particular item you’re looking at doesn’t have any, take a peek around the internet to see what any bloggers might have to say. Don’t forget to also check out the comments from readers. 😉
Know the “Buzzwords”
When checking out the product descriptions, look for keywords such as:
“Kiln-dried hardwoods” – this process reduces moisture content, making the wood less likely to split or crack.
“Eight-way, hand-tied steel springs” – the most resilient and strongest kind of springs.
“Corner-blocked” – frames that are corner-blocked will have increased stability.
The quality of the upholstery is just as important as the sofa’s construction, as the fabric will likely be the first thing to show signs of wear. Ask about the “double rub count test number”—the higher the number, the better.
Sofa cushion inserts will usually be down, foam, or polyester — or, in some cases, a combination of all three. The best way to determine which is most comfortable for you is to test out the various fills at a local furniture store.
Make Sure it Measures Up
Measure THREE times; order ONCE! ✔️ Grab your tape measure and blue painter’s tape to mark your furniture’s layout. That way, you can get a better sense of how its size will impact the other furniture and your ability to move around the pieces easily. You may also want to measure out the sofa’s dimensions in a few different locations; that way, you can be confident that it will work in your space with some flexibility.
Your room will dictate the sofa’s length; a basic formula for measuring is that your sofa should be about two-thirds the size of the entire space. Your personal height will determine its depth: if you’re on the tall side, you’ll likely prefer a deeper sofa, whereas shorter people prefer a shallower depth. It’s also not a bad idea to test out sofas at a nearby furniture store and take notes of the most comfortable dimensions for you. Also, consider how you’ll use the sofa; for example, if you plan to sleep on it, you will want a dropped arm height. If you are on the taller side, it’s likely that you will be more comfortable with an arm height that’s as tall as the back. If you’re more petite, you don’t want to get a sofa that makes you feel like you’re being devoured.
SUPER important: Don’t forget to measure the size of your passageways (i.e., doorways, stairways, elevators, etc.) for delivery! It’s the absolute WORST to wait weeks and weeks for your new sofa and ultimately have to send it right back to where it came from. 😬
Order Fabric Samples
Ordering fabric samples is ESSENTIAL, and many vendors provide them at no cost or a small fee. DO NOT purchase something as major as a sofa without seeing the fabric in person! The only way to truly get a sense of what materials will work for your space is to see and feel them. If you can’t easily find a way to order fabric swatches on the manufacturer’s website, then contact them and ask nicely; there’s a good chance they’ll send you some. Either way, be willing to pay for them because it’s really cheap insurance!
Read and Reread the Return Policy
You should check the return policy and warranty for any big purchase, sofa included. Some companies offer a return policy of up to a year, while others offer a mere three days. There are plenty of companies with fantastic return policies, so don’t settle. What’s an ideal amount of time to “test drive” your sofa? 30 days. That should definitely give you enough time to know if that sofa is “the one.” 💍 Before purchasing, you also want to check if there are any restocking or shipping fees and/or any other restrictions.
And there you have it, my savvy sofa shoppers!
By the way, if you want a SUPER easy way to get paired up with YOUR perfect sofa- take our Find Your Sofamate Quiz!
We also have many magazine-worthy sofas for you to check out in The store!
Wednesday, May 4, 2022 at 2:19pm
You’ve been asking for it, and we’re delivering! From the best budget-friendly options to the oh-so-luxe designer brands, here is our go-to list of favorite furniture and decor vendors!
Check ’em out:
A fantastic resource for unique, boho chic decor finds.
From full kitchens to pillows and throws, IKEA is not only kind to your wallet, but it’s widely available to countries all over the world.
If you’re looking for a highly affordable vendor with a huge range of options and styles to choose from, look no further. 🙂
Thanks to their auctions, 1st Dibs is an amazing resource for snagging a drool-worthy vintage designer piece without the hefty price tag.
High-quality furnishings, timeless style, and a price point that won’t break the bank? Yes, please!
LOVE LOVE LOVE CB2! Their modern furnishings and contemporary decor are absolutely divine! So fresh!
Mid-century modern designer furniture for a fraction of the price.
Not only do they have FAB furnishings, but their wallpaper collection is a must-see!
If you’re a Modern design fan, get ready to fall in love.
For chic and unique homes, Chairish is an absolute treasure trove of vintage designer finds.
With One Kings Lane you can expect exceptional quality, plus, they offer both brand new and antique furnishings.
These mid-range vendors are groovy too…
Amazing quality with the ability to customize fabrics!
If you’re looking for the top-of-the-line, you’ve found it!
They have the most EXQUISITE area rugs! A must-see!!
The world’s leading destination for designer-trusted brands, which Perigold expertly vets for meticulous craftsmanship and original design. Our personal favs include Vanguard, Marge Carson, Century, Four Hands, Caracole, Kingsley Bate, Janus et Cie, and DEDON.
Bonus Category: Lighting
If you’re in the market for lighting fixtures, do yourself a favor and check these out:
International Vendor Recommendations
Here is a helpful list of International vendors that have been recommended by other DezignSpace members:
Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 10:48am
We’re going to show you how you can get amazing must-have pieces and save thousands! Now, all of these original pieces are things that designers use when working on projects that don’t really have a lot of budget limitations, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have something just as FAB for a fraction! We’re about to prove it to you…
It’s long, it’s low, it’s super sexy. And did you see that knife-edge detailing?! Use this for living rooms, great rooms, or even a cinema. It’s really a great transitional or modern piece; it works both ways. And just in case you were wondering- it starts at about $7400.
Our designer dupe would be to use the West Elm Andes. The Andes is also long and low, with a deep seat. It also comes in various fabrics- a velvet, which would crank up the sex appeal on this like crazy! The Andes starts at $1900, which is quite the deal for such a gorgeous piece.
Next up is another sofa, just a little bit more Transitional:
Oh, this one is so handsome! It’s large scale and masculine, and it has a fabulous leather material with incredible rolled arms and nailhead detailing. It’s perfect for living rooms, offices, and man-caves.
Our designer dupe is the Pottery Barn Webster, a great-looking sofa with really good lines and rolled arms. It also comes in many varieties of leather, which is great. You can always add in the nailheads to get that exact detail. If you really want an expensive look, go for the leather with the flattest finish. It’ll scratch up and patina over time and look super, super sexy. And it’s only $3700. 😉
Now, what can we say about this piece? Mies van Der Rohe originally designed this in 1927, and it was one of the first cantilever tubular steel pieces out there. It comes in black leather and has a stainless finish. It’s iconic. It’s a classic. It’s insanely comfortable, but it’s gonna set you back over $7,000. 🤑
Now, our designer dupe for this is fantastic! It’s the Restoration Hardware Oviedo Chaise. It’s a great option because it’s the same feel, the same look and comes in a variety of leathers. It’s got that lovely channel tufting, just like the original pieces. It’s also super comfortable!
A great focal point is a great coffee table. This Platner steel wire and marble coffee table is an absolute go-to. It was designed in 1962 and is the very definition of a classic modernist piece. It comes with a marble top and a glass top and goes in all kinds of styles, but this puppy starts at about $3,500!
Our designer dupe is a piece from Crate and Barrel called the Spoke Table. It comes in both black and white wire bases, and it’s really cool because you can get two sizes, so you can cluster them together. It also comes with three different tops: stone, glass, and hide. It’s great-looking, exceptionally versatile, and starts out at just $400. That’s a steal!
It’s another classic, also designed in 1962. It is super groovy- I love it! The Italian lighting companies always have so much style to them, and this one is so refined. It’s so hot that it’s actually in the MoMA permanent collection; that’s how cool it is! It comes in a stainless steel arc with a white marble base; plus, it has this exquisite semi-orb shade. It’s really gorgeous and starts at around $3300.
Now, our designer dupe for this is called the PO53 Reading Lamp. It’s a very similar idea in a satin nickel finish, and it’s only $600. It’s a great deal and a great look!
It. Is. So. Gorgeous. Andree Putman was a French designer, and everything that she did was super refined and restrained. It’s silver-plated and has these gorgeous buckles for handles- anything on it looks absolutely amazing, but it’s almost $1,000.
Now, we have a surprise for you on this one…we have two designer dupes! The next step down is another very attractive tray from Williams Sonoma. It’s made of nickel but has a really nice set of handles on it – it’s only $225.
If you really need to squeeze that budget, we’ve got a designer super-dupe for you, which is the West Elm Lacquer Wood Tray in Silver Leaf. These trays are lovely! Keep in mind they’re a little more delicate than the metal ones, but they’re only $45. So buy two! ✌️
Next up is an invaluable anchor piece: the good credenza.
You need them in living rooms, dining rooms, underneath televisions, and you can even use them in the entryway. Its back is painted glass with a simple stainless base and beautiful little refined legs. It’s even got hand-painted birds in flight on the front doors. It’s literally stunning. But, this will set you back almost $6000.
So, the West Elm Washed Mango Console is our designer dupe for an important credenza that also looks really expensive and functions well. Now it’s also up on little legs. It feels less dainty than the John Richard piece, but it still feels really refined, and it’s soft and elegant and gives you plenty of storage, it feels very expensive, and it’s a really accessible price at $1949. That’s a deal for a piece like this!
Oh my god! This is the definition of groovy! It’s done in a white base with a white marble top here. Now think about this for a minute…it was designed in 1956, and quote, it was his response to the “ugly, confusing, unrestful world, underneath tables and chairs.” It has a cast aluminum base that looks like a drop of liquid hitting the floor; it’s just exquisite. So simple. Made in Italy, it comes in both round and oval shapes with marble tops. The 48-inch round starts at about $4400!
So what is our designer dupe? We’re so glad you asked. 😉 It’s a product from Interior Icons, and they call it the Tulip Table. It looks VERY similar, but it’s made slightly differently and only offered in the white options- which is actually perfectly fine with me because that’s our fav anyway! AND it’s only $2,100. So this is a room builder piece extraordinaire!
Let’s just say it is crazy sexy. It has a suspended seat and an integrated arm, and it screams the best of the 70s. But…they run about $1700 apiece. Now, are we gonna pay that?! No, because we have a designer dupe that we almost like better!
It’s called the CB2 Folley, and honestly, it’s just as fab. It comes in this GORG velvet finish! We would use this as a dining chair, as a desk chair, really anything, especially since it’s only $330 apiece.
There ya go, darlings! If you were to add all of this up, you’re looking at savings of 75% off the original prices and still getting the SAME million-dollar look! How delicious is that?! 😋
Speaking of delish…have you checked out the The Store lately? New yummy yummy items are added!
OMG! We almost forgot! You HAVE to check out this quiz: What’s Your Icon IQ?