What’s Inside Matters
A lot of upholstered furniture is not made with the best grades of foam available. There are many different grades at various price points and not all foam is created equal. What’s inside the cover matters and plays a very integral part to your long term comfort and to the overall look of the furniture.
The foam used is as important to your couch as the foundation is to your house. They both support the pretty things that go on top. However, since it is not visible there is a lot of room for substitution of lower quality materials that may improve the manufacturer’s bottom line but may not be the best thing for you or your client.
Have you ever looked inside an upholstered sofa or chair? The sketch to the right shows you a cutaway of a chair. All the green parts represent Koosh Natural high resiliency foam in a number of different compressions.
The darker green represents firmer foam and the lighter green can be softer or even super soft foam. Without getting too technical one thing you should know about foam is that the firmness does not determine the quality.
You can get really firm foam that is light-weight and that sags prematurely or you can buy heavier (high-density) and softer foam that will last much longer.
How to Buy a Really Comfortable Sofa
If you are looking to buy a new sofa here is what you should know about the foam so that you can make your shopping experience as successful as possible. If you do not take the time to learn about the various comfort materials you may end up being frustrated and looking for replacement cushions a lot sooner than you thought you would.
In my experience as a foam supplier to thousands of upholstery shops and furniture manufacturers, over the past 25 years, I have learned that most upholsterers and furniture manufacturers do not really care to talk too much about the foam with their customers. It may be because it is hidden and nobody sees it. Some don’t take the time to learn the difference but the majority think it gets too complicated to talk about the technical stuff with their customers or to stock more than 2 or 3 different grades. We carry 45 different grades. It’s not all the same and all foam is not created equal.
One major retailer that we deal with, everybody knows their name, buys sheets of replacement foam to service the customers that complain about their seat cushions softening or sagging after just 3 months of use. They seem to think that even if they replace 3 out of 10 customer’s cushions, it is still worth it because they make more money on the majority that don’t complain than what it costs them to satisfy the few that do.
If you want “Real Comfort” you should view buying a sofa, just like buying a mattress, as a major purchase. In both cases knowledge is power and that alone will determine how comfortable you will be (for how long). It will also ensure that you get the best value for your money.
Who can you trust? Noooobody!
You should also know that if you shop on price alone and expect the best quality that sometimes you may be surprised without even knowing it. I recently visited this upholstery shop that had this custom made sofa on his shop floor. It was filled with all kinds of scrap foam (new and old) both in the back and hidden under the deck and springs of the sofa. Who can you trust? Noooobody!
The right furniture, filled with high-resiliency foam, will keep fabric looking new and feel more comfotable. If you are ordering a custom sofa, be sure to discuss cushion choices and construction; you should have many options to choose from if you don’t have options or you don’t like what you have bought then you should come in and see us.
Be the best that you can be by improving the quality of your comfort time!
R.C. (Bob) Dimas