- A bit of history
- In appearance
- By design
- Number of seats
- Purpose of the sofa
- By the type of folding mechanism
- By filling material
- By type of upholstery
- Average cost of different types of sofas
Humanity has always strived to ensure itself the most comfortable existence. It is safe to say that it is the desire to spend time with comfort that has become the main reason for the evolution of furniture – from ordinary wooden benches to luxurious soft sofas.
Indeed, it is simply impossible to settle down more comfortably than in the “embrace of your beloved four-legged friend”! Soft pillows, warm fabrics, orthopedic base – modern sofas can be called a real example of ideal furniture that makes any interior even more attractive, becoming the main center of attraction for all family members, saving space.
When did the first sofas appear? What are the varieties of this piece of furniture? What is the average price of different types of sofas, and which models to give preference to?
A set of upholstered furniture is an indispensable attribute of almost every living room.
A bit of history
The first sofas appeared several thousand years ago in the Ancient East. The word “sofa” itself is of Persian origin. In the East, it was customary to sit simply on the floor, so the first “progenitors” of sofas were ordinary soft pillows, simply thrown on the floor and installed near the wall. It was on such seats without legs and with soft backs that the eastern rulers and the local nobility spent their time, and the premises themselves, covered with carpets with pillows scattered over them, were called “sofas”.
The ancient Romans gladly adopted the Eastern tradition of communicating lying or reclining. Their sofas already had legs, were made of bronze or marble, and for convenience they were thrown on skins or all the same pillows stuffed with fluff or wool. Roman matrons and patricians not only dined, but also received guests on the sofa, it was believed that the ability to spend most of the day lying is proof of the high status of a person.
Europeans, who were dictated by the fashion to wear fluffy skirts, trousers with gathers and corsets, had to go the other way – it is impossible to sit comfortably reclining in such clothes and during official receptions, because the European sofas of the 17th and 18th centuries were distinguished by straight backs and rather narrow seats, on they could only sit. Couches and canapes became the first European sofas.
It is easy to imagine a small baroque sofa by the huge window of the palace hall
Such a small sofa, designed for only two people, it was customary to call a canapé, an ottoman, a banquet or a chaise longue, from the French causer – talk, chat. On such sofas, it was customary to sit decorously together and talk, of course, about love
In Russia, the first sofas appeared in the middle of the 18th century; it is believed that Count Potemkin introduced the fashion for them in St. Petersburg, who preferred wide sofas in the oriental style. Very soon, Russian noble beauties received guests on French canapes and couches, on which it was so convenient to flirt with young officers.
In the 20th century, sofas literally experienced a rebirth, turning from a piece of furniture into a spectacular element of the interior and an object of art. That there is only the famous sofa-lips, invented by Salvador Dali! And square or cubic sofas from the famous architect and designer Le Corbusier are still relevant today.
It is difficult to imagine a sofa-lips from Salvador Dali in an ordinary apartment, but he will decorate a bohemian loft or art cafe quite well
The strict forms of square sofas, invented by Le Corbusier, perfectly “took root” in offices
It was Corbusier who invented the sofa, in which the frame of chrome-plated shiny steel is combined with the strict forms of square soft pillows, leather or covered with a plain fabric.
Today, eastern and western trends have united – it is customary to create sofas wide enough, not too high, with backs and soft pillows. And the variety of upholstery, shapes and sizes is simply amazing, allowing you to choose a model for every taste and wallet..
Sofas are usually divided into varieties according to several categories, so the classification of this piece of furniture is rather complicated. Let’s try to figure out what kind of sofas are presented on the furniture market today.
Sofas are divided into ordinary, straight – square, and more often – rectangular; corner; island, which are usually placed in the center of the room, they cannot be attached to the wall or pushed into the corner, since their backrest has either a semicircular shape, or shelves, or is an important part of the design.
A regular rectangular sofa in a retro style is installed near one of the walls of the room.
The corner sofa is more spacious than its “colleague”, fits perfectly into the corner of the room and does not take up much space
A luxurious island semicircular sofa can be placed only in a large enough living room, it requires a lot of space, but it always looks great and expensive
Sofas are stationary, that is, consisting of a single block, a ready-made solution, in which only the upholstery can be changed, and modular, consisting of several separate parts, which the owner can combine at his own discretion.
Both stationary and modular sofas, in addition to the main part – the seats, can also have additional shelves, the armrests can turn into a small table, roomy drawers and minibars can easily be hidden in them. In a small apartment, the more storage space in the sofa, the better.
Such a couch can be called a vivid example of a stationary sofa – it is impossible to change its shape
Modular furniture, like this sofa, set on a wide wooden base, consists of individual blocks that the owner can move from place to place or remove altogether, turning one of the massive pillows into an armchair or pouf
Another type of modular sofas – in this case, you can move one-piece modules, swap the shelves, a small table and an attached part that has a slightly longer length
Number of seats
In this category, sofas are divided into compact, small models designed for two or three people, as well as real giants for five or more seats. It should be borne in mind that today there is no single standard for the size of sofas. One manufacturing company will call a sofa 160 centimeters long, and another – 190 centimeters. Some furniture factories introduce an intermediate classification of sofas, for example, 2.5-seat.
And manufacturers of modular sofas offer up to ten options, where a seat is intended for one person from 60 to 110 centimeters..
The choice, of course, depends on the size of the room, as well as on the needs of the buyer.
A small sofa with an unusual accordion back was designed by Italian designers
Such a really huge sofa can comfortably accommodate a large company
Purpose of the sofa
It is customary to distinguish between children’s sofas, whose design was developed taking into account installation in a bright and cheerful nursery, sofa beds, which, when unfolded, turn into a sleeping place for two people, and office sofas.
A great option for a children’s room is a small sofa, which at night turns into a sleeping place for a child or his guests
The sofa bed, which folds out according to the principle of extending and raising the bottom, does not have a box for linen, but it allows you to comfortably accommodate guests
By the type of folding mechanism
All folding sofas are also usually classified according to the type of folding mechanism. The following main varieties can be distinguished:
- A book, a traditional type of folding sofas, well known to those who bought furniture back in Soviet times. A distinctive feature of these sofas is that the seat and back are almost the same size. Sleeping on them is not very convenient – there is a depression in the center, but they take up little space, unfold quickly and have a spacious box for storing linen inside.
- Eurobook or couch. In such a sofa, the lower part is pushed forward, and the upper part drops into its place, forming a perfectly flat surface. This option is rather bulky when unfolded, but very durable. It is eurobooks that are often advised to be purchased as a permanent bed, used daily.
- Accordion or accordion – the seat rises until it clicks, and the berth slides out on its own. Convenient, the sleeping place turns out to be quite comfortable, but when folded it is too small to serve as a full-fledged resting place even for two people.
- Cot. The cushions are removed from the seat, a sleeping place with a comfortable mattress on a metal frame is laid out. Disadvantages – it does not have a box for linen, its place is taken by a folding mechanism, and at night you need to put pillows from the seat somewhere.
- “Dolphin”. This folding mechanism is most often used in corner sofas – it assumes the presence of a front pull-out mechanism, from which an additional seat is obtained by a special loop.
- Modern hypertrasformers, in which everything that can be folded out and moved – backs, armrests and pillows. At first glance, it is quite difficult to understand such a design, however, as a result of manipulations, a comfortable sleeping place with a flat surface is obtained..
Accordion sofa with laundry box
The choice of a folding mechanism is a delicate matter and requires careful consideration of all the features of one or another option. It is best to assemble and disassemble the sofa several times in the store to make sure that everything works perfectly, and it will be really comfortable to sleep on such a folding bed. Experts point out that the simpler the sofa lay-out mechanism, the longer it will serve. When buying a trendy model that turns into a sleeping place using a remote control, it is worth remembering that the repair of such a mechanism will be very expensive..
Such a sofa corner is already a fairly roomy berth in itself, but it can also have a folding mechanism
By filling material
The most inexpensive, economical models are filled with foam rubber and springs. However, cheapness is the only advantage of this filler. After a couple of years, pieces of foam rubber are sold out and a noticeable dent will appear in your favorite place, and the springs will begin to dig into the sides of the sleeping.
Polyurethane is much more resistant, if the manufacturer has not violated the manufacturing process, when several layers of this material with different densities are used in one sofa, then it will last a very long time. In addition, polyurethane is environmentally friendly and does not require springs – the sofa is already quite elastic.
Another modern material is holofiber. It has anti-allergic properties, does not absorb odors, is environmentally friendly, quickly takes its original shape after compression, elastic and durable. The only drawback is the high cost.
A separate type of sofas is wicker furniture made from natural wood, for example, rattan or willow vine, as well as bamboo, or artificial, synthetic materials – techno-rattan, plastic straps or artificial leather weaving.
A light, light wicker sofa is usually complemented with soft pillows and seats, such a set will turn an urban living room into a rustic, country house
By the way, experts advise to choose sofas, the base of which is a frame made of natural wood – oak, birch or larch. They are more expensive than products based on chipboard or MDF, but they last much longer, do not creak or loosen, and a folding mechanism such as a Eurobook will work perfectly in them. However, high-quality MDF is not much inferior to natural wood in terms of resistance and durability..
By type of upholstery
Most often, fabric is used for the upholstery of a sofa. The most common options for fabric upholstery today:
Flock –artificial fabric imitating velvet, suede and chenille. Hardwearing, soft, very pleasant to the touch, easy to wash, flock on flock upholstery lasts longer than flock on cotton. The main disadvantage is that it quickly absorbs odors.
Flock is able to imitate velor, suede and even leather
Chenille– upholstery fabric with high durability, a huge selection of colors and shades. Safe, non-toxic, does not cause allergies, does not absorb odors, but needs careful care – in case of stains, you will have to resort to chemical cleaning.
Leather.Genuine leather sofas look extremely respectable, solid and expensive, but they cost accordingly. Artificial leather is also often used in the upholstery of sofas, mainly office ones, cracks may appear on it over time, it is very afraid of open fire.
A leather sofa is a great option for an office or study
The combination of several types of upholstery gives excellent results – the seats and backs of these sofas are upholstered in flock, and the sides, backs and bottom are upholstered in leather.
Jacquard.Dense fabric with an expressive pattern, somewhat slippery to the touch, but very resistant, does not fade in the sun, stains from it are removed quite easily, and the choice of shades and patterns is unusually wide.
The advantage of this roomy sofa is a removable cover made of dense plain fabric, jacquard or chenille
When choosing the type of upholstery, one should focus not only on external parameters: color and pattern, but also on tactile sensations, as well as such additional properties as, for example, “anti-claw”, which will definitely come in handy for pet owners. The cost of upholstery also matters – a fabric from the new Italian collection can significantly increase the price of a sofa..
Average cost of different types of sofas
In terms of cost, sofas are usually divided into three main categories:
- economy option – up to 30,000 rubles.
- middle price category – up to 150,000 rubles.
- premium class – from 150,000 rubles. and almost indefinitely
Economy option– these are always sofas on springs with foam filling and ordinary fabric upholstery; here you will not find leather or newfangled materials such as holofiber. Usually these are very small sofas, for two or three people, sometimes they are corner sofas with the simplest folding mechanism, the base is chipboard, fiberboard, MDF, it is almost impossible to buy natural wood for that kind of money. In general, you can buy a double, simple sofa for 8-10 thousand rubles, but how long it will last is unknown, and experts do not recommend using it as a permanent bed.
In the middle price categorynot only domestic sofas are presented, but also furniture from European manufacturers, Italian brands are especially appreciated. In general, a sofa brought from another country will cost 40% more than a Russian one. The choice in this price range is very wide – from small sofas with genuine leather upholstery to huge six-seat corner models with shelves, a bar and so on..
An island sofa of Italian production – stylish, high-quality, but at the same time quite expensive – at least 35 thousand rubles
Premium class– it is mainly the author’s exclusive models of sofas from famous designers, one might say the furniture “elite”. In this price range, you can choose sofas of the most bizarre shape, with hand embroidery, the latest upholstery materials, with a base of precious woods and so on. The choice of a customer, not limited in funds, is truly enormous.
Author’s sofa models are much more expensive than their “colleagues” of mass production, not only due to the use of natural materials of the highest quality, but also due to the “loud” name of a brand or designer
Interestingly, according to statistics, Russians most often buy sofas of an average price category in the living room, doing this on average once every nine to ten years.
That is, we can say with confidence that, since a sofa is an infrequent purchase, designed to serve more than one year, the choice of a model should be approached especially carefully and thoughtfully, having considered several options. It is better not to skimp on the base material and upholstery by purchasing a high-class item that will become a real decoration of the interior, a beloved “four-legged friend” of all household members and a comfortable sleeping place.