Recently, we checked out a nice-looking sofa on sale at Restoration Hardware. It came in two depths: 37″ deep Classic and the 43″ Luxe. Try sitting on the Luxe and you’ll find you’re listing way back at an awkward angle because the back pillows are too far away to support your back. It’s part of a trend the past several years to make sofas deeper so that they appear more luxurious, as in the photo above. (Hence, Restoration Hardware naming it’s sofa Luxe.)
For us, it’s bad design in the name of the illusion of affluence and style. Here’s our thinking:
The average distance between the bend in your knee to the back of a human torso is roughly 18 to 20 inches, which is what you want the depth of the sitting area of a sofa to be. Any deeper than that moves the backrest too far back to support a normal human back. If you sit all the way back on one of these deep sofas, you often find your legs sticking straight out in a rather awkward and unflattering position (that has something of the same feeling as sitting on a doctor’s examining table). The Luxe sofa’s specs show that the inside seat depth without the back cushion is 35 inches. Even if the back cushion were 10 inches deep (which is doubtful), that would make a 25 inch span, WAY too deep for comfortable sitting.
To avoid this, many people find themselves sitting on the edge of the sofa.
Why have a chic upholstered sofa if you have to sit on the edge of it?
Top image via You Have Been Here Sometime