While there are so many different kinds of furniture—loveseats, china cabinets, ottomans, benches, dressers—they can really be classified into two major groups: Those covered in fabric (a.k.a. upholstery) and those made of wood (what we call “casegoods” in the industry). We have a series of posts discussing upholstery furniture quality, so if you’re shopping for a sofa or chair, check out our posts on frame material and construction, springs and suspension and seat and back cushions. But if you’re shopping for wood furniture and want to make sure you’re buying something that’s high quality, you’ll need to learn about four elements: wood, veneer, joinery and finishes. First, we’re going to dive into the main material of casegoods: the wood itself. (And check out our selection of gorgeous wood furniture here.) (more…)
We recently went over the nitty gritty of what goes into a high-quality sofa, explaining all the options manufacturers have when making the frame, suspension, and cushions. But that’s only one piece of the puzzle; the other is explaining what you’ll actually find when shopping in some of the more popular retailers. We took a look at the offerings in RH (Restoration Hardware), Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barn, Room & Board, and, of course, The Stated Home. We compared the qualities and prices of a basic, large, slipcovered sofa across all the stores, gathering info from the stores’ websites, other online sources, and reviews. What we found was that not only does quality vary between retailers, but within the retailers as well. No wonder the whole process can be confusing! Here’s more about what you’ll discover while sofa shopping: (more…)
The costs of the beautiful fabrics that cover your furniture can’t just be measured in terms of money. There is also an environmental cost—what creating that fabric does to the earth. For example, what is the fabric made from? How are the fibers that create the fabric grown? How is the fabric finished? How far does it have to travel to get to your living room? What happens to it when its life is done?
This is the third blog in our series of posts about how the best sofas are constructed and it focuses on sofa cushions. (If you haven’t read our first post on frame material and construction or our second post on suspension systems, start there.) The quality of cushions may seem easy to determine since you can actually touch them and sit on them, but there is more going on in there than you might realize. Here’s a little about the different kinds of cushions you’ll find (and check out our selection of high quality upholstery here): (more…)
This is the second blog in our series of posts about how the best sofas are constructed. (If you haven’t read our first post on frame material and construction, start there.) This one focuses on suspension systems–what prevents you from sinking down to the floor when you sit in a sofa or chair. There are many different types of suspensions a manufacturer may use, and not everyone agrees on what type is the highest quality and lasts the longest. We’re going to get to the bottom of it here (and check out our selection of high quality upholstery here). (more…)
Different styles of sofa and chair arms can definitely make a style impact, but that’s not the only factor to think about when considering the arms. How high or low the arms are on a piece of furniture can make a big impact on how comfortable it ends up being. Arm Height is one of the four factors we use in our comfort rating system, ABCS Comfort Metrics (the other three are Cushion Fill, Seat Depth, and Back Support).Here’s how to determine if a sofa’s arm height is right for you and your home (and once you decide, head here to shop our selection). (more…)