Solutions: Plan ahead when narrowing down sofa picks

Jeanine Matlow
Special to The Detroit News

Where you see yourself in five or 10 years often pops up in job interviews and other conversations, but the same type of forward-thinking can apply to sofas and other anchor pieces for the home. Because they become major players in any space, it helps to look ahead during the selection process.

With so many styles to choose from, we shouldn’t have to settle for something less than we imagined due to time and budget constraints.

Though some sofas are more durable than others, their aesthetic also determines whether or not they end up staying in our homes. This can be true for traditional styles like the classic Chesterfield sofa that has a handsome profile that’s meant to last.

The same can be said for modern varieties like the mid-century pieces that remain popular in their original form and through quality reproductions.

Styles with clean lines may also stick around like the hand-me-down sectional in my living room that has been reupholstered more than once without losing its appeal.

Comfort is a big consideration when choosing any type of seating. Some prefer a firmer cushion while others like to settle into something soft. A wide array of fabrics that come in endless colors, patterns and textures are among the other selections.

While some people love the look and feel of leather, others are drawn to chenille and other fabrics.

Size matters when choosing the right sofa for your room. This decision should be based not only on the scale of the space, but the number of people you intend to seat.

That’s where a sectional (like the one shown from Norwalk available at Home Interior Warehouse in Walled Lake) can suit multiple scenarios as a place to nap, read, watch TV and entertain.

Some sectionals can be a better fit for a small space than an assortment of furniture that may interfere with the traffic flow.

When selecting a sofa, you’ll want to keep other accents in mind, such as coffee tables and ottomans.

Placement also plays into the decision process. If your sofa will be floating in the room as opposed to being pushed against the wall, the view from the back should be just as attractive as the view of the front.

Other features to consider include the various types of arms and legs that help to define the overall style of the sofa.

If you’re the type that likes to pile on more pillows, make sure the seat is deep enough to allow you to do so while still leaving enough room for people to sit.

Other choices include casual or formal, back cushions that are loose or attached, slipcovered styles, and so much more.

If you need a sleeper sofa, you might try out a chaise or a daybed instead.

Transitional styles that offer a fresh take on the old classics tend to go with everything, meaning they may even stand a better chance of sticking around for years to come.

Jeanine Matlow is a Metro Detroit interior decorator turned freelance writer specializing in stories about interior design. You can reach her at