A sofa might just be the most important household purchase you make — you certainly spend more waking hours on it than anything else in the apartment. Sure, you could spend several thousand dollars on a piece from Knoll or Minotti, but to make it really fun, we decided to challenge interior designers to pick out their favorite affordable sofas and love seats (ones that won’t become notorious for falling apart). Below, the 11 best for under $1,000 — and some under $500.
The Best Sofas Under $500
“It’s a surprise to find any upholstered piece under $500 these days, but this little gem looks like you might have stumbled upon it during a trip to Copenhagen. The price can’t be beat, especially for the style.” — Joshua Greene, designer, Hernandez Greene
“This great, simple sofa is actually a convertible that turns into a bed (on the floor) for your overnight guests. If you want something more modern and benchlike, the Henrick is a terrific option, too.” — Noa Santos, founder, Homepolish
“This sofa reminds me of the work of iconic designer Finn Juhl. The form is great in scale, and the contrast seat cushion is a lovely addition. I can see how it’s inspired by Danish design, which would, of course, provide a timeless addition to a space.” — Sara Story, designer
“Why not go super-minimal? I like this love seat because it’s basically a grown-up bean-bag chair, and it’s been reinterpreted in a classic blue-denim fabric. It’s as comfortable as one of those chairs, too, giving you adequate support if you properly fluff it. Pair it with a few textural elements — like a huge basket to hold books, some Japanese indigo cloth — and paint everything else white.” — Andrew Galuppi, designer
“When I see this sofa, I just think comfy and cozy. The best part is it’s a slipcover, so it can easily be washed — and would make a great sofa for someone just out of college, or someone who has little kids.” — Ryan White, designer
The Best Sofas Under $1,000
“The Esme sofa has a lovely sculptural form, and to me, the blue-lagoon velvet is fantastic. This tailored sofa would work well in a contemporary or traditional interior.” — Sara Story, designer
“A great mid-century look that won’t break the bank. It can work well mixed with higher-priced pieces without showing its affordable price, so no one will ever know you spent less than $800 for this great sofa. If you’re looking for firm seating with generous width, this one’s got that kind of comfort.” — Vicente Wolf, designer
“There is definitely a resurgence of the 1970s and 1980s right now in furniture, and nothing speaks to that time period more than the late Vladimir Kagan, who passed away in April. Pop this in your living room and pretend you’re at Studio 54, or in Richard Gere’s apartment in American Gigolo.” — Joshua Greene, designer, Hernandez Greene
“I love how sophisticated the lines are on this sofa. The thin, black legs give it a bit of a modern edge, too. I’d almost compare the look to a favorite pair of black pants — skinny but still comfortable.” — Ryan White, designer
“I love this smart little sofa and have recommended it to several clients, because it has a great texture that holds up with heavy use (it’s covered in a creamy linen blend and stuffed with down). The raw-oak, block legs and single-bench seat cushion give it a modern feel, too, and because of its simple design and color, you can accessorize it with your favorite pillows and boho throws. The down filling is also extremely comfy — great for accommodating an overnight guest.” — Andrew Galuppi, designer
“Love this chic and classic sofa. It’s like the perfect little black dress for the home. It’s even got the very modern addition of USB power plugs.” — Jon Call, designer
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