how to choose the right size sofa for a room

How to Choose The Right Sofa For a Room: Sofa Guide

When it comes to choosing a sofa for a room, size is of the utmost importance. But even more important than the size of the room are the dimensions of the area where you plan on putting the sofa. Keep reading to learn how to choose the right size sofa for a room.

No living room is complete without a sofa. It’s where you’ll spend your most relaxed moments, your time socializing with loved ones, your sick days, and your Super Bowls. 

But a couch is more than just a functional piece of furniture. It can make or break a room aesthetically too. Color and style are pretty easy. You know what you like and what you dislike. But size and shape can be a little more complicated.

Use this sofa guide to find the right size sofa for your living room.

The Scale of the Couch

When sofa shopping, the scale of the couch is the most important thing to consider. You don’t want to end up with a sofa that is too large for the room and makes getting around difficult, but you also don’t want an awkwardly small sofa that doesn’t serve your needs.

If you live in a large, open floor plan, you can invest in a larger living room sofa. But if you live in a small studio apartment, you need to look at miniature options and loveseats.

You can measure out spaces in your living room where a sofa would fit and pick a couch based on that. The general rule is that a couch should not take up a whole wall of space. Leave about a foot of space on both sides of the sofa. If you have a sectional, don’t let the chaise extend further than halfway through the room. 

Sectionals, as comfortable as they are, tend to require a large living room.

The Shape of the Living Room

Not every living room is a perfect square with four walls to choose from for the living room sofa. Some living rooms are L-shaped, have support pillars in them, including a fireplace, etc. 

When you go shopping for a sofa, don’t forget the unique qualities of your room that may prevent certain sofa sizes and shapes. Sometimes it’s helpful to draw a picture of your living room from above so that you can sketch a couch and see how well it fits.

Another option is to tape out the dimensions of your ideal couch on the floor with painter’s tape. This will give you a better idea of what size couch will fit there.

Moving Around

The number one thing people forget to think about when choosing a sofa is traffic flow. If a sofa just fits in a space, are you sure that you can move around it comfortably? What about when you have people over? Can everyone move around it to where they need to go?

It’s not just people who need to move around the room either. The way energy flows through a room can seriously impact how comfortable it is to be in it. Always allow for at least thirty inches of walking space between your sofa and other furniture and about five inches between the sofa and the wall. Otherwise, you’ll feel cramped and trapped. 

What Furniture Do You Already Have?

There are two reasons to consider what furniture you already have. The first is obviously space and scale.

If you have a large coffee table you love, you’ll need a large couch to go with it. You should also take a look at the height of your coffee table to make sure you’re choosing a couch that matches. You don’t want your coffee towering over your head while you sit on the couch.

You’ll also need to make sure that any other furniture won’t get in the way and interrupt energy and people flow. Walls aren’t the only thing to worry about.

You can also opt for a smaller sofa if you have a lot of other seating options available. Do you have a lot of reading chairs or perhaps benches to sit on? You can worry a little less, if that’s the case, about making sure there’s a lot of seating on your couch.

How Will You Use Your Sofa?

How you intend to use your sofa will answer a lot of questions about the kind and size to get while you’re shopping. If you host a lot of movie or game nights white velvet loveseat probably isn’t the right choice for you.

Consider how much you entertain. If you plan on having a lot of conversations on the couch, you’ll need something where people can face each other to speak. In these cases, a sectional is best.

But if you plan on using your sofa to relax and read or watch TV by yourself, something smaller and straight across will be fine. However, if you intend to lounge, make sure that you choose something with a large cushion depth and softness.

Don’t forget the potential of a sofa to host overnight guests! If you lack a guest bedroom but still like having the option for people to stay over, you should consider a pullout couch or convertible sofa. In this case, tables and other furniture can be moved aside when you convert the sofa, but remember the dimensions of your room when you go to choose a pullout size.

How to Choose The Right Size Sofa For a Room: Simplified

With this living room guide, you should be able to know how to choose the right size sofa for a room with ease. Keep in mind energy flows and purposes, and don’t forget to consider the purpose of your future sofa.

Curious about more interior design guides? Our articles in the Interior section can help you design the home of your dreams!

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