When shopping for a new sofa, it's easy to only focus on design without considering whether or not it will really be comfortable. Sure, looks are great and all, but not factoring in comfort seems odd when the main function is of course to be able to enjoy it.
So how do you guarantee a sofa will not only look gorgeous, but also feel amazing? It all comes down to measurements. Below, we're breaking down the top 5 measurement considerations to make sure you get the most comfortable couch or comfortable sectional for you.
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Rule 1. Make sure the seat depth is appropriate for you
Seat depth is crucial because your height can directly impact how comfortable you will find the sofa. For seat depth, the seat should allow you to sit easily without having to use a throw pillow. Your thighs should be supported by the sofa. The knees should be bent at a 90-degree angle when seated and the feet should touch the floor.
For a person of average height, 21" to 22" is generally the standard to allow clearance between the person's legs and the front edge of the seat. For a taller person, a seat depth of 23" to 25" is a good option. For a shorter person, a seat depth of around 20" is typically preferred. Additionally, if you intend to add a lot of accent pillows, you can always go a little deeper and then factor that in. In fact, some people even like to use accent pillows when sitting upright, but then be able to move them and slouch lower for full relax mode.
Rule 2. Look at the seat height versus your sitting needs
If the sofa height is not appropriate for a person’s height, taller folks can feel as though they are simply squatting instead of sitting while those on the shorter side might find their legs dangling above the floor like children. This is why seat height is so important for the most comfortable couch.
The seat heights for modern comfortable couches can vary. However, the standard range is typically between 15" and 20". The average sofa seat height measures 17" to 18" from the floor to the top of the cushion. Keep in mind, if you do have down in the seat cushion you might sink a little more than a built-in cushion that will be firmer. In addition, a general rule is that the deeper the seat depth, the lower the seat height needs to be and vice versa. This ensures that you're getting something both supportive and ergonomically sound.
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Rule 3. Choose the best cushion filling for the function of the piece
The filling used on bottom and back cushions can make a huge difference for comfortable couches. High density foam is quite common and is known for its comfort and durability. However, down and wool are also popular and are generally used when it comes to a more relaxed vibe. For those interested in down, just note the filling may shift a bit (which is totally normal!) and the cushions will need to be fluffed on occasion to keep their shape.
If you need back support, or you prefer sitting up, a sofa that features a tight back that doesn't have loose cushions is an excellent option. That said, many people also prefer sofas that are supportive enough for lying down and, for that, looser back cushions are likely the best choice.
If you plan to lie down on the sofa to watch TV or nap regularly, you should also opt for a 3-seat couch over a 2-seat couch. On a 2-seat couch, lying down regularly can cause wear to the bottom cushions over time. With a 3-seat sofa, there will be more room to lie down, meaning your weight will be more evenly distributed across the surface of the couch.
Rule 4. Take into account the back height
The ideal height of the back of the couch will depend on your preferences and your height. The back height for the most comfortable couch generally ranges from 26” to 32”.
Additionally, you may also want to select the back height for your sofa based on the height of your ceilings. If you have standard 8’ ceilings, a low profile sofa will look best. For higher ceilings, opt for a high profile sofa so that the furniture can look balanced in the room. We're eager and happy to answer any questions for you around determining the right height for you and your space!
Rule 5. Analyze the back pitch angle for support
Pitch sofas (aka slightly angled) are excellent if you enjoy reclining on the sofa to relax or binge watch one of the best TV shows of all time. Additionally, by adding some support, you can still sit up straight on this type of couch. However, it will require some minor adjustments and a straight back sofa is likely a better choice for you if you have back problems or simply prefer a more vertical seat.
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We can customize your couch to make sure that it's comfortable for you and happily connect you with one of our free Furniture Stylists for more direct help. While most manufacturers try to accommodate the average person by making one-size-fits-all sofas, we understand that you have unique furniture needs. Built to your specifications, you can feel confident knowing your customized couch will be perfect for you and your family.