Unexpected Bargain Sofa: the (interim) update

There are some surprising parts of writing a public blog and one of the things I absolutely did not anticipate is that when I wrote about our unexpected bargain sofa – a casual 7 years ago – was that by some strange quirk of SEO, it would become the most read article on this site. Although, who doesn’t love a bargain sofa!

In any case (and arguably less surprisingly), the same sofa I was so pleased about in 2016 is no longer stocked. So, disappointingly, the previous article link no longer provides you with any useful bargain sofa intel.

And, much as we loved our admittedly-slightly-uncomfortable-but-aesthetically-pleasing sofa, when we moved back from Canada to the UK in 2021, our shipping container was bursting to the seams. (Not to mention our interim rental was less spacious-Canadian-ranch, more tiny-Victorian-terrace).

What I’m saying is, we left the unexpected bargain sofa to a Canadian retirement.

Goodbye, old friend.

I’m sorry to say it, but I moved on pretty quickly, with a new Swyft sofa – chosen in part by my long term desire for a white sofa (as everyone knows, the perfect choice for a house with five young children).

Image: @swyft_home

No regrets! It’s very comfortable and, crucially, was available for delivery 24 hours after ordering – establishing itself as our sole piece of furniture when we moved back to the UK in the middle of Covid, to a 10 day quarantine period, in an unfurnished rental. A swyft sofa, some camping inflatable mattresses for the children, and a doorstop delivery of an emma mattress for the parents by some very kind friends – along with an upturned large amazon delivery box for a dining table.

Heady days! (I’m never moving again)

Dining in style, if style means asking your children to sit on carseats and balance their plates on an increasingly wobbly Amazon box.

Back to the sofa. I had moved on, no regrets.

I had moved on. But then I saw this photo on The Modern House (never moving again, but can’t quite stop scrolling through houses) – I saw this photo, and I had just a small pang of nostalgia.

Image: The Modern House

The firm cushion that kept you from fully reclining! Those wooden arms that made the perfect resting spot for a cup of tea! The slight sense that the fabric was water repellent, and not in a luxe way. (IS there a luxe water repellent fabric? So many questions). Not to mention, we have the space for a sofa like this, now that we’ve sacrificed the hundred-year-old features of a Victorian terrace for the dimensions (and, perhaps less fortunately, the style) of an early 80s build.

So, in the name of providing you with the bargain sofa information that YOU DESERVE, I went on a mission to see if I could find a 2023 alternative. I did briefly consider a vintage option, but that wouldn’t be very helpful! And while we have space for this sofa, the space is in fact our guest bedroom / gym (‘gym’ is a bit of an aspirational term for a treadmill and various physio equipment) and so a beautiful vintage sofa felt like a bit of a decadence that I couldn’t quite justify. Plus, you know, I felt committed to the Unexpected Bargain part of the story.

IKEA took the hint after the previous article, and the Ekenaset sofa is available again:

Image: IKEA

No regrets on my cream Swyft sofa, but would I buy a second cream sofa, with five young children in the house? Also, no.

And John Lewis got in on the act, with a very similar option, here:

Image: John Lewis. Enjoying the cord green fabric.

Let’s cut to the chase. I did my research, and I found the ultimate update, in unexpected bargain sofas, on HomeDetail (no, I didn’t know either), and with a name like the ‘Langford’ (a town on Vancouver Island – who could have anticipated such a spiritual connection with a sofa?) – I had to give it a whirl.

Image: Homedetail

Readers, it’s a good solution. Its not the comfiest sofa you’ll sit on – its not for slouching. (although it does open into a sofa bed and lying flat is comfortable, as a sort of ascetic / this must be good for your back, sort of experience). The arms are a little more orange than I had imagined, and it would benefit from a gentle sanding and refinishing, if you wanted to improve the overall finish. I’m being picky, because it’s surprisingly good. SO. The 2023 unexpected bargain sofa update. Interim, because I haven’t managed to put up some art around it and take a photo of it looking complete, in situ.

How about you? Any impulse buy, bargain sofas to report?



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