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Sofa or Sectional

Sectional vs sofa: it’s a choice that defines the living room. Do you prefer a sectional that you can sink into at the end of a long day? Or do you have a room that calls for a stylish sofa for once-in-a-while entertaining?

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When making such a big furniture decision, looking at the differences between sectional vs sofa (or sofa versus couch) will get you started in the right direction.

Sofa versus Couch: What Is the Difference?

We’ll start with sofa versus couch. The word “sofa” brings to mind more elegant furniture, and a more upright seat. The word “couch,” on the other hand, sounds more casual, and suggests a place to recline. Why do some people choose a sofa versus a couch? It’s mostly a word preference. They’re really the same thing.

A sofa is shaped as a straight (or curved) line with one, two, or three cushions. Sectionals are available in many different configurations – U-shaped, chaise, L-shaped, or pit sectionals that can be rearranged however you like.

Sectional or sofa? It all depends on your space and your family’s needs. John Delong, Design Consultant at Bassett Home Furnishings’ Perimeter Center store in Atlanta, says “seating space is going to be about the same for sectional or sofa. It’s all about how you’re living in that space.”

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A few questions about how you plan to use your space will help sort out whether sectional or sofa is right for you.

  • 1. Who will be using your sectional or sofa? When you have a room that’s only used by family, a sectional may be the coziest choice, and a sectional like Bassett Furniture’s Envelop is a great one to sink into. In a room where you entertain guests, a sofa may be a better choice if people don’t want to bump into each other on the chaise.
  • 2. How much space do you have? While a sectional can be more versatile, all those cushions do take up extra space. If you have a smaller living room, a sectional can overwhelm the room and crowd out other furniture. On the other hand, for a large great room, a sectional sofa in the middle of the room helps define a space to relax and talk with friends. A large, relaxed L-shaped sectional with arms, like the Wellington, is a great fit because it is stylish from all angles?
  • 3. Will it be a casual space or an elegant space? You can find casual and elegant versions of both styles, but usually a sectional fills a more informal role.
  • 4. How do you plan to use your space? Just reading the newspaper? For hosting large gatherings? Watching the big game – with a couple of family members or a big group of friends? Putting your feet up? Picture how you’ll live with sofa or sectional.
  • 5. Do you need flexibility? A large and customizable pit sectional has a cushion for every spot, so you can create a seat that’s just right for how you’re feeling in the moment — or let everyone pile on at once! A pit sectional like Beckham works well because it is so easy to reconfigure.

Maybe you have a large space or need a lot of seating for get togethers, but you just aren’t drawn to a sectional.

In that case, look for furniture combinations that meet the same needs as a sectional, but also offer the more traditional room layout, with flexibility to change it up. Two sofas and two accent chairs can create the same shape and size as a U-shaped sectional.

A sofa and a love seat might take up the same amount of space as an L-shaped sectional, but allow you to create a path between them, or place a coffee table and lamp.

Once you sort out whether sectional or sofa is best for you, you can look at other factors like the depth and height of the seat. According to John Delong, “It’s all about the comfort at that point.”

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Sectional vs. sofa? There’s no need to go it alone! Find a store near you and make an appointment to explore some of your options.