Elizabeth Center, 1000 Ikea Drive, Elizabeth, N.J., 908-289-4488; ikea.com
Modern on a Budget ($600) Sleek, modern-looking sofas at very modest prices. Quality is better than you might think: They’re durable enough for a first apartment; just don’t expect them to last a lifetime.
- Crate & Barrel
650 Madison Avenue, at 59th Street, 212-308-0011; 611 Broadway, at Houston Street, 212-780-0004
Classic Replicas ($1,400) Nearly three dozen well-made, classic silhouettes. For some newlyweds, these might be starters; for others, they’re the upgrade from that Castro Convertible.
- Ethan Allen
visit ethanallen.com for locations.
Mainstream Style ($2,000) This populist, dependable look will outlast fads but never be cutting-edge. Almost 50 frame styles and thousands of fabrics; the free delivery is a real plus.
- Classic Sofa
5 West 22nd Street, 212-620-0485; classicsofa.com
Workshop Quality ($3,500) These people make sofas, chairs, and nothing else. There are three dozen models and the textile library is like a mini D&D building. The frame is guaranteed for life, too.
- Martin Albert Interiors
9 East 19th Street, 212-673-8000
Custom-Made Fantasies ($4,500) For translating your fantasy into reality without spiraling into debt. You work one-on-one with a decorator at every stage, and fabrics are smartly discounted.
- George Smith Sofas & Chairs
75 Spring Street, 212-226-4747
Top Of The Range ($9,000) Everything at this bright, airy Soho shop, named for the famed nineteenth-century cabinetmaker, is made in England, so delivery takes ten weeks. Workmanship and materials are the ne plus ultra of upholstery—as are prices.
Best Sofa Stores
From the 2004 Best of New York issue of New York Magazine
So what exactly does “best” mean in a city with thousands of pizza joints, hundreds of celebrity masseuses, and museum-worthy concept shops on every corner? Well, in the case of this, our annual “Best of New York” roundup, there’s a heavy emphasis on what’s new or what has somehow remained virtually unheard of (until now, of course).