What is the difference between a $599 sofa and an $1100 sofa? More than five hundred dollars. You really do get what you pay for. . A Consumer may see two sofas covered in the same fabric and assume they are the same when that couldn’t be further from the truth. Many of the features that determine quality in upholstery are things that can’t be seen.
Quality really starts with the framing. A reputable manufacturer will only use kiln dried native hardwoods like Maple and Birch. Kiln dried woods are much more expensive but using them prevents warping and cracking. Bargain driven manufacturers may cut corners here. They might also use cardboard liners for shaping. If you have ever pushed on a sofa arm and heard a pop chances are pretty good they have used cardboard.
Reputable manufacturers will use no sag springs closely spaced, doubled in the corners and clipped to the front rail with padded clips to prevent squeaks. You should never roll into the corner or bottom out when sitting on a sofa.
The next area manufacturers can skimp on is in the quality of foam used. A lesser quality set may look fine in the showroom but won’t keep its shape for long. Look for foam that is 1.8 pound density or higher. A more expensive manufacturer will offer a choice of seating firmness, will use greener options, have extended warranties and will always have zipper accessed seat casings in case the foam ever needs to be changed. More expensive sets will have accessible channeled back inserts which prevents the stuffing from falling all the way to the bottom. A more expensive set l usually has piping as a finishing touch around seams; have loose seats with fabric on all sides. This adds to the cost but is necessary in keeping your set looking good long term.
If you can’t see these things what is a consumer to do?
I recommend dealing with a reputable retailer and be sure that your sales associate can confidently answer your questions about construction and warranties. The price tag on a sofa truly does reflect the cost that went into the manufacturing of it.
There is truth in the adage, “all that glitters is not gold”.