help! i need a new couch!


It’s time to get serious about a new couch and I am dreading it like a trip to the dentist. Ours has lasted 11 years but between kids and constant use — yes, that’s the inside of my couch peeking through in the picture — the time has come. Hopefully, you can help take the pain out of the decision process. I’m looking for a couch that isn’t deep so I can sit comfortably without having to stick a pillow behind me. What else? No down (allergic!), no big puffy arms or back and no skirt (too easy for kid or dog toys to disappear). Style? Nothing too traditional — or too contemporary — and with a decent amount of fabric choices. Brand? I really don’t care. That said, I don’t want a couch that costs as much as a small sedan or a super cheap-o that won’t last five years but other than that, I’m open. So if there’s a couch you love, point me in the right direction. — Sarah L.

From our partners

I love design challenges like this: it’s such a common one, and the answer really is quite simple for a professional designer because it’s what we do all the time, so I’m happy to help you and it won’t be nearly as challenging for you as a trip to the dentist! I promise!

My husband and I live in MV and own a custom furniture/upholstery store in Napa called Pollin’s. We can remake your sofa to look brand new again. Or build you a custom couch. You can check out our work on our website. We make house calls, too.

Go to Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams and feast your eyes on the choices. I recently bought a Liam sofa and I am beyond thrilled. I love it so much, I went back 5 months later and bought one of their sectionals.


Try Room & Board -the Jasper is super-comfortable and comes in a million color options (plus slipcovers).

Absolutely love your blog! Here’s another blog I love that did an entire posting on fabulous affordable couches… maybe yours will be in here. My best friend just bought the Corunna from Macy’s and LOVES IT :)

i bought my couch from mitchell+gold (they make furniture for PB, west elm, RH, the lot…), and i love it – so that’s one option! (mine is probably deeper than you want, but they have so many lovely styles!)

also, have you checked out was just in their shop, and utterly impressed with all of their styles. and you can customize length and depth, without breaking the bank. pretty genius, actually. they do have more styles than they show online…may be worth an email :)


I love Room and Board and this is my favorite sofa by them – Jasper. You can have any item of their furniture covered in their wide range of fabrics.

Megan B

I was going to suggest Room and Board, too, but everyone else beat me to it.

And Becki, Perch looks amazing! They are going to be where my next couch comes from. The custom work makes my head spin. LOVE IT. I’d drive the 3 hours to Portland for a gorgeous sofa (tax free!).


oh dang that Perch Sterling makes me swoon. I so love button tufted anything. Have you already checked IKEA? We have the Vreta in black and it looks terrible on the website but I think it’s actually a pretty fabulous sofa and an amazing deal. You say no puffy arms but you should look at it. I don’t like puffy arms either but these are more like built in pillows, again in-person better than pic on web. It’s super kid/pet friendly. the cushions don’t come off and the depth of the spaces between the cushions is very shallow meaning nothing can get lost in there. buy a tub of leather wipes and it will only get better looking with age. We have two kids and two dogs. It’s one tough couch.

megan…we’ll have to meet up for a perch date when you’re ready for a new couch! :)

Catherine gardner

my husband and are both designers and would love to help yup with your project. Our resources are unlimited as my husband also works for a large furniture company. shoot him an email with your photo or blog entry attached and he will help you out right away. [email protected]

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Sarah L.

Thanks for the great suggestions! I doubled my list of places to do test drives at. Now I just need time to get out!