No matter if your preferred perch is a sofa, an armchair or a loveseat, choosing the right one for you (and accessorising it accordingly) is a crucial part of enjoying evenings spent at home.
Armchair sitters: chances are you prefer to sit more upright, or at least not as supine as sofa dwellers do, so support for your shoulders, neck and head in the backrest of the chair is important. It doesn’t have to be a very high-backed chair if you don’t like that look – our Olivia is tall enough for most. If you sit with your feet on the floor or you like to curl them up on the chair, you’ll also want to pick a style that’s wider, either to accommodate your curled-up legs or so you can relax your knees to the side. Designs like George, whose arms stop short of the end of the seat, are great for curlers because you can use those extra bits of seat at the front to put your feet on. If you’d rather rest your legs on a footstool, make sure it’s one that’s slightly lower than the chair’s seat height, and also ideally large enough to support both your feet and your calves, if not also your knees, or you might find that your knees start to ache a little after a while.
If you’re an armchair sitter who likes having the seat to themselves but feels like they need to spread out a bit more, a loveseat is the chair for you. It’s also perfect for those who find their dog or cat likes to sneak up onto their lap. With room to the side for your legs, your knitting or (if you must) your laptop, it’s a happy middle ground between armchair and the sharing space of the sofa. Of our two, Olivia is the more supportive and upright, whereas Long Island is soft and slouchy, so choose accordingly (and remember you’ll spend more time sitting on it than looking at it – although happily, both are timeless and elegant styles).
Those that head straight for the sofa are generally those that like to spread out. Legs up and back against the arm is the position they’ll usually adopt, unless of course they’re sharing the sofa (in which case a large footstool like Arthur that everyone can get their feet on is essential). Whether you select a sofa with high or low arms depends on whether you really like to lie out (lower, like Olivia) or you want to sit a bit more upright (higher, like Lottie or Eva). Like to do a bit of both? Choose whichever style you’d prefer but make sure you have plenty of scatter cushions to either bulk up a lower arm and support your upper back when sitting up, or create a sort of ramp up to a higher one so you don’t get a crick in your neck when lying down. And if you have the room, choose an L-shaped sofa so you can spread out without having to lean against an arm (but be warned you might have to fight over the corner piece).
Whichever seat you choose, the objects around and on it are just as important in making it a truly comfortable place that you’ll look forward to spending time with. We’ve already touched on where footstools are needed, and on the subject of scatter cushions (although it’s also worth saying that the bigger, squishier kind are generally more comfortable, but little ones have their place for lumbar support or propping your head up), but tables and lighting are also key. Being able to reach your drink or book without getting up (and disturbing the cat) and having enough light to read by are what we’d call essential luxuries.