Frequently Asked Questions

Sofa Options

All Topics

Can my sofa be made as a sleeper?

Direct Link

Yes, most of our sofas are available as sleepers.

Our sleepers are made with the same durable frames and extensive color options as our other pieces, and they look almost exactly like their non-sleeper equivalents. We utilize commercial-grade sleeper mechanisms made by a small engineering firm located just down the street from our factory. We offer twin, full, queen, and king sizes and multiple mattress types. Sleepers can also be integrated into sectional configurations and even an ottoman.

The list of available sleeper models and some additional information about them can be found here.

Can your furniture be further customized?

Direct Link

In some circumstances, yes.

In addition to our industry-leading range of available options, like sleeper sofas, multiple depths, design choices, and the ability to adjust seat height on most pieces, we can potentially further customize furniture to your needs. Contact us with your questions and we will be happy to assist.

Note that adjustments to arms and backrests are generally not possible without fully reengineering the frame, which can be prohibitively expensive. Firmness of tight-back or tufted-back backrests cannot be adjusted.

Can I use my own fabric or leather (COM)?

Direct Link

Yes. This is called COM or "customer's own material." We do this all the time. There are a couple of caveats:

  1. You don't get a discount. Working with material that is not ours is more labor intensive, so we do not reduce the furniture price.
  2. The material is not warrantied by us. Not being a material we are familiar with, we cannot guarantee the performance of the fabric. You are responsible for ensuring suitability of the fabric for your application.
  3. You will need to send us details on the piece you would like to order and the fabric you are using. Do not make assumptions about how many yards you will need to supply — we cut fabric differently than other manufacturers. This is especially important with patterned fabrics. We will provide a yardage estimate.
  4. When you place your order, we ask that you have fabric drop shipped to our factory and ensure that it is clearly labeled / sidemarked with your order number and name.
  5. We assign a zero-dollar value to the material upon arrival at our factory. We have no involvement in the purchase of your material and do not see any profit margin with it, so any instances of acquiring additional yardage for any reason will be at the customer's expense.
  6. COM orders are non-returnable and non-refundable. These are fully custom products and we cannot under any circumstances accept returns or refunds in whole or in part for them.
  7. Never buy leather COM. You're wasting your money. Talk to us instead as we can almost always source a comparable product at a far lower price point than is made available to the public or design trade. If you absolutely insist upon doing this, we can accommodate. But — again — BAD IDEA

Do you make sofas that have adjustable headrests, integrated recliners, or cupholders?

Direct Link

No, that's...not really what we do here.

Can I get a sleeper sofa with a tufted seat?

Direct Link

Unfortunately not. Tufted (as well as untufted tight) seats are permanently affixed to the frame of the sofa. A sleeper, as you would imagine, needs a seat cushion that can be removed to permit the sleeper mechanism to unfold.

Can I order a chair with a swivel base?

Direct Link

Yes, most of our chairs can be ordered as swivels. Just give us a shout to confirm!

I'm big. Will your sofas support me?

Direct Link


Our sofas are designed to accommodate everyone. Our hand-built frames are extra sturdy, our suspension systems are super durable, and we use higher-grade ingredients in our cushions to provide long-term support.

Want a bit more? We are happy to build your sofa with strength enhancements like supplemental frame bracing, center legs, and higher density cushion foam. For tall folks, most of our sofas can be ordered in extended seat depths and raised seat heights. Just contact us and we can talk through the best options for your sofa.

No worries, we've got ya!

Can you build me a chemical-free sofa?

Direct Link

Literally everything in our universe is comprised of chemicals, including sofas. We're going to need you to be a bit more specific in your request. 😉

Most folks who come to us with questions about "chemical-free" sofas are ultimately asking about:

  • Flame retardants, some of which have been shown to be carcinogens
  • Stain protection agents, some of which have been shown to be harmful to humans
  • Formaldehyde, which is a chemical of concern for many
  • Off-gassing of new materials, which can be problematic for some individuals
  • Petrochemicals, which some customers wish to minimize in their home

We're confident that we are one of the "cleanest" and most responsible manufacturers of upholstery operating in the United States. We strive to make prudent choices about the materials used in our products and openly disclose which materials are present in the furniture you purchase from us. Here is our best attempt to provide clarity on the above listed areas of concern. Please note — and this is important — that we cannot speak conclusively for every vendor supplying materials to us and cannot guarantee with certainty that your furniture will not be exposed to or, to a lesser degree, contain chemicals you object to. This is a wide-ranging subject matter and we understand that some individuals have severe sensitivities to certain materials. In such a scenario, we recommend first speaking with us.

Flame retardants: We were one of the first furniture manufacturers to remove unnecessary and potentially carcinogenic flame retardants from the foam in our cushions. Our sleeper sofa mattresses are also free of these retardants. While we are required by law to use fabrics, leathers, and other materials that meet or exceed standards for burn and smolder resistance, these materials generally achieve this without reliance upon added retardants.

Stain protection: Many of our fabrics are performance products that have been treated with stain resistance products. There are, broadly speaking, four categories of stain resistance. Here is a bit of information on them.

  1. No applied stain protection. Pretty straight-forward, there. Just a fabric with no protection at all on it.
  2. Spray-on stain protection. Widely referred to by the brand name Scotchgard™, spray-on stain protection is exactly what it sounds like. The original generation of these products relied on an 8-chain carbon molecule in the coating. Studies showed that these molecules were a potential cause of concern, with these long molecules lingering in the human body for an undesirable length of time. Later generations of spray-on protection utilized 6- and 4-chain molecules. These provide a lesser level of protection and have a reduced level of durability, but are far more rapidly eliminated from the body and thus are believed to pose less of a risk. 4-chain molecules are generally not durable enough for upholstery fabric applications, so fabric with this form of protection will most likely use 6-chain formulas.
  3. Bake-on stain protection. Superior in every way to spray-on, bake-on protection — widely known by the brand name Crypton but available through a number of vendors — is the form used on our most popular performance fabrics and is a well-proven option. The method of application is unique, with the finished fabric being "dipped" into the protection solution which is then "baked" into the fabric. Beyond providing an excellent level of stain resistance, this greatly reduces the risk of off-gassing. The solution used in this process is biodegradable, is not considered a carcinogen by NTP, IARC, or OSHA, and is not expected to bioaccumulate.
  4. Solution-dyed fabric. For those seeking excellent stain resistance and UV fade resistance without the use of applied treatments, solution-dyed fabric is your friend. We describe solution-dyed fabric elsewhere on this page, but the big takeaway is that, due to the method of manufacture, these products delivery great performance without anything else getting added to the mix. They also tend to be the most highly-awarded products in terms of Greenguard and Cradle-to-Cradle certification.

Formaldehyde: Many of our customers want to minimize or eliminate exposure to formaldehyde in their homes. In the context of sofas, the biggest vector for formaldehyde introduction is through the plywood used in most companies' sofa frames. Because the vast majority of our furniture is built without any plywood, our products are far ahead of the curve. Note that a few of our non-sofa frames, such as ottomans, utilize plywood to create round shapes, etc. We use it sparingly and exposure should be minimal.

Off-gassing: Beyond formaldehyde, some customers do express concerns regarding off-gassing of new materials brought into their home. Our furniture sparingly utilizes adhesives and varnishes in the manufacturing process. These are all low- or zero-VOC products. Solution-dyed fabrics typically perform better than other materials in terms of off-gassing.

Petrochemicals: The foam in our seat cushions, as with the vast majority of upholstery products on the market, is petroleum-based. We utilize high-quality, domestically-sourced foam for our furniture. Should you prefer an alternative, we can build your sofa using natural latex foam. Note that performance and longevity of this product is not something we can guarantee and that the material carries a substantial upcharge. But we can certainly do it.

How long are your chaises?

Direct Link

Our chaises (as found in a sofa+chaise or other sectional configuration) typically extend about 24 inches beyond the front of a sofa. So, if you are planning a sofa+chaise configuration based on our Higgins profile with a standard 42 inch depth, the chaise will have an overall length of approximately 66 inches.

Why aren't your chaises longer?

The simplest answer is that fabric used for upholstery is about 54 inches wide. We run fabric left to right when we build a sofa, so the maximum length of a chaise works out to about 24 inches longer than a regular seat cushion.

Why does the width of the fabric matter?

In some cases, it doesn't. But many fabrics — velvets in particular — have a directional nap. Rotating the fabric 90 degrees would cause an unsightly change in color and appearance on the chaise cushion. If we didn't rotate the fabric, we would have to stitch together two panels of fabric, which most people do not want.

Can my chaise be made longer?

In some cases, yes. If you are using a non-directional fabric, we may be able to extend the length of the chaise. If you are using leather, your chaise cushion will already have seams on it (because cows only come so large), so extending the length is doable.

Keep in mind that there are limits to this, as a very long chaise cushion will not be anchored to anything at the far end and will not stay in place or hold its shape as well. For this reason, we recommend staying conservative with extending the cushion. If you want a very long chaise, we recommend instead considering a bumper.

Can you build a new style for me?

Direct Link

We often are contacted by customers who would like us to build a custom sofa of a new design for them. In some cases, they've seen a photo of a sofa elsewhere and want to know if we can make something similar. In others, they have an antique they would like us to replicate. We are always happy to take a look at reference photos to determine if it is something we can do.

In some cases, we can adjust the design of one of our existing frames to get close to the look of another piece. Examples include combining the arm style from one profile with the back from another, switching up tufting patterns, and adjusting proportions on the frame.

In other circumstances, a design would have to be truly built from scratch. This does require a tremendous amount of design and engineering time, but if we believe the sofa style would be a good addition to our portfolio, we will consider it.

Jump to:

We'd love to keep in touch

Sign up for "The Weekend Read," our occasional newsletter featuring design ideas, semi-literate ramblings, tips and tricks, and other things that you will (gosh, we hope) enjoy.

Well Built in the U.S.A.

© 2009-2024, All Rights Reserved

Have you sat in a really comfortable sofa today? You should!