Furniture with Style – Sofa Hunting

The hubs and I have been slowly acquiring new furniture to fill our apartment and replace old, hand-me-down or Target pieces that are on their last legs. We scored an amazing tall dining room table with 4 chairs and a butterfly leaf  on Craigslist for – are you ready – $50.  It’s normally 4 feet long, but expands to 6 feet with the leaf, which is perfect for when we host board game nights. (Note to self – talk about board games in another post. We have lots of them, and board games are apparently making a comeback with the recession and all. Who needs to go to a bar when you can defeat your friends and drink for way less $$$ in your own home?)

For now, we’re pretty set on furniture with the exception of two things: a real couch, and a new cushy mattress. We’re still debating about whether we have room for/want to upgrade to a king-sized bed, so the couch is definitely first on the list.

I’ve been in love with West Elm’s Henry sectional for a while now, and I’ve always pictured it in a light grey color, but I’m starting to wonder if grey is really the right choice. Also, this couch is no small chunk of change for a couple of newlyweds, so I don’t want to screw it up and spend a bunch of money on something we’re not going to love a year from now.

Henry Sectional Set 3 in Brushed Heathered Cotton in Gray Haze.

Henry Sectional Set 3 in Brushed Heathered Cotton in Gray Haze

Henry Sectional  Set 3 in Basketweave in Putty Gray

Henry Sectional Set 3 in Basketweave in Putty Gray

I’m looking for a modern, clean lines in a sofa, and I hate overstuffed cushions or rolled arms, but the hubs is all about comfort, and he vetoed any couch that has really square arms, because they “look uncomfortable.” I thought the Henry was a nice compromise,  but I’ll have to find  store and test it out and see what the upholstery options look like in person. Here are some other options we’ve considered:

Ikea Ektorp Sofa – The most budget-friendly option. The thing that puts this sofa behind the West Elm Henry is the chaise portion, which is open on the sides. We’re looking for something roughly L-shaped, but I like that the Henry sofa’s back goes all the way around, so I can prop myself up in various positions while reading and still have back support. One of my biggest peeves with our current futon is that it has no arms, so the only ways to be comfy on it are to lay down completely or sit straight up – no lounging against an arm rest or putting your feet up. Comfort while reading is basically priority #1 for any couch I’ll buy 🙂

West Elm Blake Sofa – A more traditional option, without the chaise/L-shape. This sofa would probably be a better fit for our apartment space, but again, doesn’t look as comfy for reading.

Other than our white bookcases, the only other item in the living-room-area that the couch needs to work with is our graphic patterned rug as modeled by Abe here:

Abe carrying his raccoon

Abe carrying his stuffed raccoon – because every Treeing Walker Coonhound should have their own stuffed prey.

The rug is a creamy white with light blue, a medium blue, and a navy blue in the pattern – so I’m hoping a grey sofa will play nicely with it. I love the idea of a white sofa, but not the idea of maintaining it (especially with a tri-color hound who sheds everywhere.) And I’d really rather not do beige/tan – our current futon is covered with a tan cover, and while it works for now, I don’t really like it. I’ve thought about a navy blue couch, but I think grey would be a better color for the long run.

Anyone have any thoughts? Advice from their own sofa purchases? Other major furniture retailers that I should check out? (Btw, I’ve already checked Crate & Barrel, Room & Board, Thomasville, Nebraska Furniture Mart – even though we’re nowhere near them anymore – JC Penney, and Target.)

Help or opinions are much appreciated!

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