There’s so much to think about when buying a new sofa. What colour do you want? Where will it fit in your room? What do you think is the cosiest seat? When you start to think about choosing the right upholstery on top of everything else, things can start to seem a bit overwhelming.

We spoke to our resident expert and head sofa designer, on how to choose the best piece for your home. As the genius behind our great range of sofas – from style to construction – he had some great insight on making the right choice that will stand the test of time in your living room.

A good sofa should last for many years to come, he explains, so the very first thing you should do if make sure that you love the style of the sofa, and find the design comfortable. “We make our cushions with special high grade fillings, such as our dual foam and foam and fibre cushions, so your sofa will feel the same in the showroom, as years down the line in your home”. Once you know the sofa suits your lounging style – and that it fits in the room, now’s the time to browse the swatch book to find the upholstery look you love.

nautical sofa with coastal furniture

Westbury 3 Seater Sofa in Kendrick Stripe


Your sofa shouldn’t be reserved for formal “kid-free” zones! When your home life centres around children, friends, family, and entertaining, you can make sure your sofa upholstery is ready to take on your busy schedule. “Darker coloured fabrics are incredibly forgiving when you have kids,” he says. They’re perfect for disguising everyday mess, and are incredibly hard wearing – no matter how many cheeky monkeys decide to use your sofa cushions as indoor trampolines.

“All our fabric upholstery has been subjected to a clever process called the Martindale rub test, because with family life wearability and texture are so important”. This test uses special machinery to test how long a fabric will last on a sofa without showing wear. He notes that “We only use fabric upholstery that has achieved a rating for heavy domestic use, perfect for children and adults alike.”

bevel sold oak range by oak furniture land

Jasmine 3 Seater Sofa and Oak Furnitureland Bevel Natural Solid Oak Range

For your fur-baby

For those of us with furry friends, keeping a sofa looking its freshest best can be a challenge, no matter the upholstery. Thankfully, we’ve created a special care kit, available when you purchase any sofa which covers you for most pet-related incidents. With a mild cleanser, fresh stain remover, old or resistant stain cleaner, plus grease and oil cleanser and a deodorizer – so no matter how messy your furry friend, you can find exactly the sofa you want!

But when life’s little pet emergencies strike, our head of sofas has a top industry secret for cleaning up small stains and dirt in a pinch. “Baby wipes are a lifesaver,” he explains. “They don’t have any harsh chemicals that will damage the fibres, and are great at dealing with life’s little messes.”

oak furniture land clayton leather sofa

Clayton 3 Seater Sofa in Burgundy Leather

Longing for leather

According to Bill, “when it comes to long-lasting sofas, nothing beats real leather upholstery”. It’s easy to keep clean, with a wipeable surface, and is incredibly durable. Since all our leather sofas are upholstered all over, with no inferior materials used, as they age they take on a beautiful character. “Plus, we’ve specially designed the seats to keep the upholstery looking its best”, he explains. “The seats are sprung for incredible comfort, and this has the added bonus of preventing the leather from ‘puddling’ or sagging over time.” So it’s simple to maintain the luxurious look of leather in your living room!

alto living room

Oak Furnitureland Alto Natural Solid Oak Collection  and Nebraska Corner Sofa

Always on the move

For those of us who rent, or those planning on moving their home, finding a sofa that will work across decor schemes can seem impossible, but clever upholstery choices can make this easier. “If you’ve found a sofa that you love, and that you find comfortable, you’ve already done the hard work,” advises Bill. “The best way to make sure it looks great through all your home moves is to choose a neutral base colour for the upholstery, that will work no matter the space.”

Inject a personal touch with accessories that reflect your home now, and know you can change it up for the future. Picking smaller or more compact sofa is another great tip for making it last through several moves. Or, if you’re looking for something larger, modular sofas – made of individual units that can be configured or reconfigured into the shape you want – offer great flexibility. Thankfully we offer a wide range of soothing neutral colours and sofa sizes that work great for people on the move. Plus, many of our sofas come with free scatter cushions. With reversible patterns, they make it easy to change your sofa style

Choosing the best upholstery shouldn’t be a chore. “At the end of the day, the most important thing to do is to choose a high quality sofa that you love,” says our sofa expert. W couldn’t agree more!

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