A sofa is one of the biggest furniture investments you’ll make when furnishing your home and its also one of the permanent things you don’t want to change in at least 5 years. This could be less if you suddenly have a change in income or have need to move to a new or bigger home, even at that you don’t want to throw away the old sofa, you may have use for it somewhere else in the home or gift it out to a family member.
So give some thought to it before you buy and make sure you buy the best-quality sofa that you can afford. Your purchase will be amortized over many years.
To spot a good quality sofa you need to test or consider the following;
1. Test its sturdiness
- Quality sofas should feel solid and heavy. Flop it around i.e. turn it around awkwardly to test its sturdiness, then lift it up by the corner and shake it a bit. If it feels light or wobbly, please don’t buy.
- You may not be able to determine what the carcass /frame structure is made of but you may ask the supplier;
- If the frame is made from a kiln-dried hardwood
- If the suspension is made from sinuous S-shaped springs which is about the best offered in Nigeria which last longer than webbing which is a less costly alternative but can provide nearly as much comfort.
Consider the cushions.
- Most cushions have a core of polyurethane foam; the higher the density ( for seats should not be less than D25) of the foam, the heavier it is and the longer it will last.
- In the lower quality sofas, the cushion is filled with just the polyurethane foam core.
- while in better quality sofas, the core is wrapped with Dacron ( fibre) batting which gives the cushion that wrinkle-free, clean, crisp look, and also prevents the breeding ground for mold, mildew, and other micro-organisms.
2. Check the joints and frame.
The best sofas have joints that are fitted with corner blocks that are both glued and screwed into place. Also good quality sofas have legs that are part of the frame not just attached to it ( a very important factor especially for sofas with slim arm) , while the bulky arm style its may have removable feet (although removable feet do make it easier to get items through doorways).
3. Check the covering.
- The next thing you want to check is the covering which may be leather or fabric.
- For fabrics you want to consider the obvious options of colour and style, the feel against the skin and most important is the double rub count which determines the durability of the fabric.
- The double rub count, is tested by a machine that runs back and forth over the fabric until the fabric is worn down. 25,000 double rubs is a great place to start for residential sofas, while sofas used in commercial areas generally require fabrics to be over 100,000 double rubs.
- For high quality leather sofas, the most authentic type of furniture leather is a Full Grain Leather also known as real leather from the original animal hide.
- It has the look and texture of the actual hide and you cannot miss the smell too. Since this leather is so pure, it’s generally the highest price of all leather Sofa choices. The texture of full grain leather is tough at first, but softens with use.
- The better quality is the bonded leather Also known as semi skin. This gives the high-quality leather look at a lower cost. This leather is created from the scraps of other leather projects, and then rolled up using adhesive material. In most cases, the end product contains just 17% leather but still gives a leather look and smell.
- The last on the list is the faux leather. It looks like leather but doesn’t actually contain any animal hides. It is man made leather. Technology has not yet made it possible for man-made leather to quite reach the quality of its real counterpart, but it has improved enough that faux leather furniture is durable and looks great. For whichever you are going for make sure you are not paying for full grain leather and given faux leather.