It doesn’t matter whether you intend to place it in the family room where it will be covered in food in seconds or whether you intend to place it in the formal lounge where it will only be used by guests, choosing a sofa in Melbourne is not a decision that should be made lightly. There are a number of things that you should be looking for when making your purchase, and we have outlined the most important ones in the list below.
- Check the Frame
This is important because a sturdy frame equals a long lasting sofa. Soft woods like pine are low cost, but it should be noted that they may warp or wobble after 5 years or so. You should also avoid frames that have been constructed using particleboard, plastic and metal – these may also crack and warp over time. The legs should be either part of the frame or held on with screws/dowels – not with glue alone.
Tip: To test the frame’s strength, lift one front leg off the floor; by the time you’ve raised it 6 inches, the other front leg should also have lifted.
- Ask about Joinery
The way that the frames of sofas in Melbourne have been connected is also important, as this will ensure that it remains secure. Look for wooden dowels, double wooden dowels, wooden corner blocks, or metal screws and brackets. Staples or nails can be used for extra reinforcement but they should never be the primary joining method, as the frame will certainly collapse over time.
Tip: Be sure to ask a salesperson for written manufacturer information on the frame joinery, not verbal information.
- Test the Springs
These days, most sofas will have sinuous or serpentine springs. This means that they are preassembled units of snaking wire. Whilst they are nicely supportive, they can press on the frame or sag over time. Make sure you feel the springs through the upholstery – they should be close together and firm. Couches with no springs (either webbing or mesh) should be avoided, as they are uncomfortable.
Tip: Sit down firmly on a corner or outside edge; squeaks or creaks suggest that the springs are incorrectly placed on hitting the frame.
- Feel the Filling
Whilst polyurethane foam is a low cost and easy-to-care-for cushion filling for sofas in Melbourne, the more durable and higher density type can feel hard and the lower density type can actually degrade faster through frequent use. High resilient foam is both comfortable and long lasting, but it is on the expensive side. Many people believe that the very best filling is goose down mixed with feathers.
Tip: HR foam in a layer of down and conventional foam wrapped in polyester batting are comfortable options that are also affordable.
- Find Tough Textiles
Remember that sofas for everyday use will require durable fabric. Whilst cotton and linen are winners, you should beware loose weaves because they can snag. Synthetic microfiber is also a good choice because it can mimic most fabrics and is stain resistant. Both wool and leather are nice choices, but they are definitely on the expensive side. It should also be noted that fabrics with patterns tend to last longer.
Tip: Ask the store for a piece of fabric that is larger than the usual swatch; place it in your desired spot and view it in different lights.
Whilst there are certainly many other things that you should be looking for when purchasing sofas (from the colour to the size) the five points that we have outlined above will ensure that you have made a structurally sound and long lasting choice. If you are ever in any doubt about the sofa that you should buy, make sure you speak with a professional or even an interior designer – they should be able to offer you advice and suggestions.