5 Essential Tips to Make a Custom Sectional

Customized sectionals are one of those design elements that can take your living room from nice to magazine worthy. Unfortunately, the gorgeous style of a well-made customized sectional that has been carefully selected for the right space is often difficult to duplicate without help. Working with a furniture store that specializes in customized sectionals can allow you to build the sectional of your dreams. Here are some of the most important things to know about customized sectionals to help you get started.

1. Right Arm Facing (RAF) vs. Left Arm Facing (LAF)

Before you get started with building your customized sectional, you will need to learn some basic terminology. Sectional configurations are typically named by the direction in which the arm on the loveseat, chaise or sofa faces. These configurations are known as left arm facing (LAF) and right arm facing (RAF).

For sectional configurations that feature a section that is a one-armed loveseat, chair or sofa, the LAF and RAF designations refer to the position of the arm when you are facing the sectional. The easiest way to envision each configuration is to simply picture yourself standing in front of the sectional looking at each piece. A sectional with a LAF configuration will have an arm on the left side, while a section with a RAF configuration will have an arm on the right side.

Why does this matter?

Using a LAF sectional in a corner where a RAF section might have been more appropriate makes a difference because you will have to use more sections to achieve your desired look. Choosing the wrong configuration for your sectional may also mean that all of the pieces won't fit. In addition, the wrong sectional configuration can make the room look crowded instead of opening up the space. If you don't want your sectional to overwhelm the room and force guests to have to jump into their seats because the entranceways are blocked by the sectional, you should take some time to figure out just how the sectional will comfortably fit in the space!

Now that you understand how sectionals work, it is time to think about the details. Here are 5 essential tips to make a customized sectional for your home.

Assess Your Space

The first step to selecting the right customized sectional for your room is assessing your space. You should be aware of the limitations that inserting a sectional can create. Here are a few important questions to ask yourself:

  • Will there be enough room for people to comfortably sit without rubbing their legs against other furniture items?
  • Do you want the sectional to be placed in the center of the room rather in a corner?
  • Do you prefer to have flexibility with regard to the configuration of the sectional?
  • Which upholstery options do you prefer?
  • Will the sectional receive daily use or do you only plan to use it on occasion?

Sectionals are designed to work in almost any room. However, the key to making sure that it fits appropriately is to properly evaluate your space.

2. Take Measurements

After you have asked yourself these questions, you should take measurements of your space that include the dimensions of the sectional pieces to make sure that you have the right fit. Measure the distance from the wall and note the dimensions of the sectional pieces. These dimensions are almost always available online.

While you take the measurements of the space, also take measures of any difficult entranceways that may make it hard to bring the sectional into your home. Customized sectionals are usually pre-built in a factory before they are delivered to your home. Measure carefully or you’ll wind up dealing with a major mistake on delivery day!

3. Choose Sectional Pieces That Work

Depending on your needs, you will want to select specific sectional pieces. If your plan is to use the room mostly for lounging or relaxing, adding a chaise to your customized sectional will allow you to nap or relax lying down.

If you plan to use the space to entertain, adding sofa and chair sectional pieces is the best way to accommodate guests for eating, drinking and light conversation. You can even add in an Ottoman to serve as a cocktail table or to provide additional seating as needed. As you select the pieces for your customized sectional, make sure to take advantage of room corners that can serve as natural divisions for the pieces of the sectional.

4. Select Cushion and Back Height

The cushion and the back heights for the sectional pieces are important if you care about the back and neck support that you will receive while seated on the sectional. Most sectionals come in standard cushion heights. However, these can generally be adjusted based on your specific needs. If you have children, you may want to opt for shorter seat heights that will allow the entire family to comfortably enjoy the sectional.

5. Select the Right Fabric for the Upholstery

Our customized sectionals are available with over 75 options for fabrics. The fabric choice is important for helping to create the appropriate ambience in your space. You may also want to select more durable fabrics if you have children or pets. Durable fabric for the upholstery is important to prevent against damage from pet claws, spills and other issues that typically occur with heavy use of a sectional.

Many online furniture stores will allow you to build your own customized sectional from preplanned layouts. If you are not sure which options will work best for your needs, using one of these layouts is the best way to ensure that you select a design that has been tested and proven to work for a space like yours.

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