- Most on-trend sofa
- Most joy-making sofa
- Most minimalist sofa
- The perfect couch for family life
- The perfect couch for entertaining
- The smartest small sofa
- The best-looking large sofa
- The most comfortable sofa
- The most timeless sofa
- The most long-lasting sofa
- The most covetable sofa
- The chicest affordable sofa
The sofa plays a pivotal role in a living room design scheme. It's a practical piece yet its design, color and size will effect what else accompanies it, such as rugs, floor lamps and upholstered chairs.
Finding the best sofa for your interior will depend on a range of factors. Firstly, the size of the room, your style preferences, and, of course, your lifestyle.
Curved couches in ivory bouclé are a huge trend with a variety of sinuous shapes on offer, while models with rounded edges and sumptuous upholstery are current yet less likely to date. For a timeless look, low profile Italian-style sofas and sectionals, button-tufted Chesterfield influences or chunky modular designs are a good bet.
Size and scale are obviously the most important aspects to consider. A couch that's too small can impact family life, while opting a model that's too large can overwhelm a room.
So measure up and peruse our selection of the best couches and sofas from the best home decor stores.
Most on-trend sofa
Soft, sinuous and sociable, Jalis ticks all the design trend boxes yet it won't date too quickly, unlike some sofas. Available as a two or three seater, it's one of the best sectional sofas too as its pieces come with connectors that can be screwed in place to create myriad configurations.
Price: from $11,081
Why we love it: its voluminous, eye-catching silhouette, relaxed informal style and flexibility. It's a future classic.
Sizes available: H27.5" W 117.6" D 40.5" and W81"
Seat height: 15.7"
Upholstery options: eight including this gorgeous navy corduroy, as well as bouclé and leather.
Average lead time: Approx 20 weeks
Most joy-making sofa
Big, bouncy and bright, the Quilton exudes joy before you've even sat down. Designed by Doshi Levien, it's flexible too, available in a range of configurations, all conducive to conversation or lounging, so it's perfect for relaxing and entertaining.
Price: from $5,495
Why we love it: its generous seating, sculptural form and flexibility. Plus a great selection of fabric color choices.
Sizes available: H28.25" x W112.5" x D56.25"; H28.5" x W153.75" x D56.5"; H28.5" x W110.75" x D56.5"; H28.5" x W152" x D56.5"; H28.5" x W113.5" x D 112.5".
Seat height: 16.25"
Upholstery options: over 40 fabrics and colors to choose from
Average lead time: Approx 12 weeks
Most minimalist sofa
Available as a three-seater, four-seater or a sectional, Topanga is a sleek piece with neat proportions and stainless steel legs. Despite its size, this has a light and airy appearance that would suit large or small living spaces, making it one of the best linen sofas.
Price: from $3,900
Why we love it: it's low, linear and elegant with balanced proportions. And there are tons of upholstery colors and tones to choose.
Sizes available: W89" x D 37" xH 29" and W116"
Seat height: 16.5"
Upholstery options: over 70 including Belgian linen, 100% cotton velvet and high performance fabrics in multiple colors.
Average lead time: 20-24 weeks
The perfect couch for family life
One of the best grey sofas, the Aalto modular is available in a variety of sizes and configurations, so there's something to suit most households. The pillows are a mix of foam and feather for comfort and support and the covers are removable and washable for ease. It's squashy enough that all the kids can pile on, but grown up enough to look after they've gone to bed.
Price: from $3,050
Why we love it: it's cozy, comfortable and chic, plus the covers come off and go in the wash. Oh and there's a coordinating ottoman too.
Sizes available: 88", 110", 142" 170" widths x D40" xH33.5"
Seat height: 15"
Upholstery options: dark grey, light grey, beige polyester or air leather
Average lead time: Approx 1 week
The perfect couch for entertaining
Soccer games, movie nights or cocktail parties are a breeze with the Cigar sectional sofa. Designed as a sofa and armless loveseat, the two sections can be moved around and configured to suit your lifestyle.
Why we love it: it's casual, comfy and cool; this rawhide leather sofa has a natural look and is easy to clean, so guests can relax.
Sizes available: 26"H x 92"W x 94"D
Seat height: 15"
Upholstery options: rawhide tan or brown leather or ivory linen-blend fabric
Average lead time: Approx 10 weeks
The smartest small sofa
One of the best couches for a small space, this is sculptural, sleek and sophisticated. In fact, the Beaumont is the smartest small sofa we've seen. Its polished brass frame, sinuous form and sumptuous upholstery would add statement style to a small space.
Why we love it: Beaumont shows that small spaces don't have to scrimp on style. It's a striking centrepiece.
Sizes available: 64" W, 33" D, 28.5" H
Seat height: 17.5"
Upholstery options: varese lichen velvet or olympus oatmeal bouclé
Average lead time: 10-14 business days
The best-looking large sofa
Designed by Mermelada Estudio, the Camden sofa is generously sized without losing any sophistication. Oozing 70s vibes, it's low, louche and lounge-y, and would elevate any large space.
Price: from $2,499
Why we love it: the sumptuous ink blue velvet feels so decadent, while the wraparound arms add architectural interest.
Sizes available: 81" or 101.25" widths
Seat height: 19"
Upholstery options: 26 including velvet, wool, bouclé and linen weave in pale, dark and rich tones.
Average lead time: 7-14 business days for stock; 3 months on made-to-order upholstery
The most comfortable sofa
The best comfy sofa, this is available as a couch, sectional or love seat. Salo invites the whole family plus pets to sprawl out and relax. The various sizes and configurations allow the sofa to grow as your family does too.
Price: from $4,280
Why we love it: the flexibility, ease of use and comfort factor
Sizes available: 115", 151" , 187" widths x D70.5"xH26"
Seat height: 16.5"
Upholstery options: camel, brown, olive or gray leather; beige, jade or grey polyester fabric
Average lead time: 10-30 business days
The most timeless sofa
You can't go wrong with a Chesterfield shape. It'll never go in or out of style - just remain constantly great. This is constructed with a timber frame and upholstered in plush navy performance fabric. Add in its button-tufted detailing, this classic couch will outlive all the latest trends and still look good.
Why we love it: its refreshed take on timeless Chesterfield style
Sizes available: H28.75" x W95.25" D37.25"
Seat height: 19"
Upholstery options: navy velvet
Average lead time: 5-10 business days
The most long-lasting sofa
Made to order and built in Los Angeles with kiln dried hardwood, using mortise and tenon construction, the Milo sofa will stand up to the test of time. As well as its crafted construction, it has a solid, boxy form that surpasses design trends, so expect it to see your kids through from tots to teens and beyond.
Price: from $2,999
Why we love it: classic style, ethically-sourced materials and made in the USA
Sizes available: H28" x W88" x D37"
Seat height: n/a
Upholstery options: five - toffee velvet, dune corduroy, woven ivory, fog wool, alder wool
Average lead time: Approx 10-12 weeks
The most covetable sofa
The classic Togo sofa designed by Michel Ducaroy for Lignet Roset in 1973 is now available in three new velvets exclusive to DWR, to mark its 50th anniversary. Choose Togo on its own or as modular pieces for a sociable seating arrangement.
Why we love it: its revolutionary iconic 1970s design and slouchy comfort.
Sizes available: H27.5" x W68.5" x D40.25" plus loveseat, chair and ottoman
Seat height: 15"
Upholstery options: green, grey or ivory velvet
Average lead time: 1-3 weeks
The chicest affordable sofa
This is a classic piece of mid-century influenced design that belies its bargain price tag. Foam and springs provide support and bounce in the cushions, so it's comfy, keeps its shape and stays looking smart without any effort.
Why we love it: its simple mid-century shape, elegant wooden frame and flecked grey upholstery exude understated style and it requires no plumping.
Sizes available: H31" x W83" x D35"
Seat height: 16"
Upholstery options: five including volcanic gray
Average lead time: Approx 1 week
Which type of sofa is best?
When choosing a style, the sofa legs can have a big impact on its overall appearance.
Low-to-the-ground sofas with no visible legs are a good option for open-plan rooms where the boxy design will add gravitas to the room and ground a scheme.
Smaller rooms will benefit from a leggy design, where the sofa base is lifted off the floor. This allows the eye to travel under the sofa and creates a feeling of spaciousness.
In an open plan layout, a sectional sofa is a good zoning tool. Sectional models allow flexible U or L-shaped seating configurations. Group seating around a large rug to ground the 'chill out' area and create a more intimate 'zone' within a larger space.
Unless you're buying a ready-made model, there is usually a huge selection of fabrics on offer. Each will subtly alter the way a sofa looks and feels. Fabrics with more drape create a softer, more squishy sofa seat, whereas thicker less flexible materials offer more resistance and a firmer feel.
Velvets add a smart, luxe feel; slubby linens provide a relaxed vibe, and hardwearing synthetic mixes can be a practical solution in a busy family home. Sofas with loose covers also allow the flexibility to wash or update upholstery, ensuring your sofa has longevity.
How do I choose the right couch?
A useful approach is to utilise the 'two-thirds rule'; opting for a sofa width that is no more than two-thirds the width of the wall behind it. If you have enough space for a sofa that's half the width of the wall behind, this will increase the feeling of spaciousness further. It also allows for end tables or floor lamps at either end.
As well as the width and depth, take into account the sofa's height, especially if it needs to fit under any existing architectural details like a windowsill or picture rail. Marking out the dimensions with tape is a useful way to get a sense of scale.
Consider access dimensions too. A narrow entranceway, awkwardly shaped hallway, or staircase will need to be measured to ensure the sofa will fit through doorways and tricky access points. Check whether your chosen has sofas has removable legs or is self-assembly if space is tight.
Which sofa is most comfortable?
Finding a supportive backrest is important for upright sitters. Look for models where the sofa frame has a high backrest, rather than just relying on a high back cushion for support.
If you like to curl up or lay down, opt for a lower profile design with a more generous seat depth. Consider arm height too, and choose a lower arm that can double as a headrest when sprawled out.
Sofa cushion construction can affect comfort levels and will be a consideration for vegan shoppers. A pure foam cushion generally offers a fairly firm sitting experience but has the benefit of springing back into shape after being sat on.
Feather and down cushions provide a more squishy seat but tend to settle over time, so require regular plumping.
To combine the best of both worlds, many sofa manufacturers now offer foam cushion cores that are wrapped in a layer of soft feathers – providing comfort whilst retaining the sofa shape.
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Jacky Parker is a London-based freelance journalist and content creator, specialising in interiors, travel and food. From buying guides and real home case studies to shopping and news pages, she produces a wide range of features for national magazines and SEO content for websites
A long-time contributor to Livingetc, as a member of the team, she regularly reports on the latest trends, speaking to experts and discovering the latest tips. Jacky has also written for other publications such as Homes and Gardens, Ideal Home, Red, Grand Designs, Sunday Times Style and AD, Country Homes and Interiors and ELLE Decoration.
- Amy LockwoodDecor Editor
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