It’s time to give your sofa the TLC it needs

Let’s be real – our couches have never been more crucial to our lives and living rooms. Anya Cooklin-Lofting talks to six interior influencers about how to give your chairs a makeover

Saturday 11 April 2020 12:07
Comments
Remember – one can never have too many cushions and throws
Remember – one can never have too many cushions and throws

I can’t possibly be alone in feeling as though my sofa is becoming the centre of my universe. It’s where I check my work emails first thing in the morning with a coffee and it’s the place to which I return after my lunchtime excursion. It’s all I see from my dining table-come-desk, and it’s where I spend my entire evening dropping in and out of shock-factor Netflix docu-series and escapist fiction.

Our sofas have never been more crucial to our lives and living rooms; they are portals through which we can transport to other lands, cocooning refuges from this warped continuum of news broadcasts and supermarket queues. It’s time we gave our sofa credit for the hard work it does; for its loyalty, its shelter and its comforting presence.

This week, I spoke to six interiors influencers about how best to give your sofa the lift it needs in these sofa-centric times. From sourcing quirky cushions to embracing the lived-in look, here is how to give your sofa the TLC it needs now.

Clashing prints and patterns can work 

Sophie Robinson (@sophierobinsoninteriors)

Sophie Robinson is a British interior stylist, designer and co-host of The Great Outdoors podcast with Kate Watson Smyth. She believes in the power of the cushion to give your sofa the ultimate easy upgrade, as she demonstrates on her chintz Sofa Workshop sofa with colourful, clashing scatter cushions.

“Switch your scatter cushions up for a new look. I look to change them up depending on the season,” Robinson says.

“When it comes to plumping scatter cushions, I’m not a fan of the infamous ‘chop’. It looks too contrived to me. I just give my scatter cushions a good shake and let them fall in a relaxed manner, never positioning them on their point. That just looks ridiculous!

“You should also keep your seat and back cushions in good order, switching them from front to back to stop wear and tear or fading. This also helps them keep their shape.”

Add sporadic pops of colour for a funky look

Bianca Hall (@frenchforpineapple)

Bianca Hall is a London-based interiors blogger with a modern-luxe look, always looking at new and exciting ways to update her Victorian home. She is another advocate for getting experimental with cushions, and with her Loaf corner sofa, demonstrates the way you can update a neutral sofa with splashes of pattern and colour.

“You can really have fun with cushions, so throw out the rule book and do whatever makes you happy. Changing your cushions can change the whole feel of the room,” she says. “You could opt for fewer in a limited colour palette for a more formal look, or go to town with lots of cushions in a mishmash of colours and patterns for a more relaxed and fun look. I’m currently looking out for cushions in different shapes. Circles, balls, pyramids, anything goes!”

While velvet is stunning, be aware that the material often fades over time 

Louise Roe (@louiseroe)

Louise Roe is an English fashion journalist, model and TV presenter who believes bold is always beautiful when it comes to sofas, and the lived-in look should be celebrated. Her sofa is from Sofa Workshop and combines on-trend velvets with Pantone’s colour of the year, Classic Blue, for a modern classical feel.

“Be aware that velvet will change its appearance over time,” Roe explains. “I had always wanted a plush, soft velvet sofa to sink into, but I did my research about found that certain velvets can fade somewhat in the light and feel lived in from frequent sitting. I love that! To me, home and sofas, in particular, look best when they’re lived-in and loved.”

Accessories aren’t just for humans – they’re for furniture too 

Zeena Shah (@heartzeena)

Zeena Shah is an art director, printmaker and designer based in London with an Insta-famous sofa from Made.com. She believes accessorising and choosing the right pieces over time will result in your perfect sofa. Of course, she also believes a strong colour theme is crucial to the finished look.

“Start small and build over time. You don’t need to solve your sofa styling woes all at once,” says Shah. “I always recommend you buy a couple of cushions first and perhaps add a throw and then build from there. Do some research and source your pieces carefully.

“I love shopping from independent interiors stores and designers to find really unique cushions that are their own works of art. Pattern and colour are also important, so go bold with your colour choices to create a statement sofa style. I’ve pulled out mustard, pink and orange mixing patterns together.”

Throws can change the look of any sofa 

Medina Grillo (@grillodesigns)

Medina Grillo is an interiors blogger and healthcare professional with a passion for colour and DIY. With her daring mustard velvet couch from Sofa Workshop, she shows that having a great sofa to start with is just as important as the accessories that you choose to make it pop.

“Styling your sofa with the right kinds of accessories and furniture is the most important part of creating a cohesive look. This can be anything from a coffee table to an ottoman, or even a side table,” explains Grillo.

“Throws are also perfect for accessorising. Adding a beautiful throw is a great way to bring in some texture and colour. Drape a cosy throw over the arm of your sofa or across the back. How you choose to drape it depends on the kind of person you are and the look you want to achieve.

“I’m a little scattered and like the lived-in look, so I just throw it on and let it fall. You can fold it neatly into a long rectangle if you like things a little more orderly, though.”

Ruth Crilly (@casacrilly)

Ruth Crilly, a fashion model, entrepreneur, writer and blogger, found herself kitting out a Georgian house in Somerset after living in London for over a decade.

She has found some of the most incredible traditional and contemporary design pieces that she mixes artfully around her home, and this includes a button back Sofa Workshop sofa in a sophisticated grey. She’s more of a purist, and believes sometimes the sofa is enough on its own.

“Don’t feel as though you have to accessorise your sofa with a million throws and scatter cushions,” Crilly says. “Admittedly, on any one day I have about eighty chucked on the top of mine because the kids like to make dens, but if you have a handsome sofa with beautiful detailing, such as piping or buttoning, then don’t be afraid to just let that speak for itself.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in