Comfortable IKEA-esque couches?
July 30, 2006 10:37 PM   Subscribe

Help me choose a cheap IKEA (or similar) couch without actually sitting on it first.

This week I'll be moving from a tiny-as-a-closet studio apartment to a slightly bigger one bedroom, and I'd like to buy a comfortable couch or loveseat. When I first moved here I rented a van and got a bunch of stuff at IKEA (Seattle). Unfortunately that's not an option this time around, and I'll have to order online.

I'm looking for suggestions for cheap, comfortable couches and loveseats that can be easily acquired in the Seattle area. My budget is about $400 plus shipping. I don't have a car, and I don't have easy access to either Target or IKEA. I've checked their online offerings, but would appreciate pointers to comfortable couches that others have enjoyed. Thanks!
posted by shaun to Shopping (17 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
IKEA has the Lillberg series, which is really wonderfully comfy. Adjustable, with firm cushions that are not too firm. Wooden frame, so you'd need throw pillows if you wanted to have a snooze. But really, I adore my Lillberg. And it's the cheapest stuff they have: series includes a full couch, a loveseat, and I think a rocking chair. Nice beige cushions.

The Klippan isn't bad, either, if you like couches that are a bit low.
posted by brina at 11:00 PM on July 30, 2006

Do not buy a futon couch. Looks great in store, feels okay for the first two weeks and then gravity kills it. The whole back sags and can never be retrieved. (Well, it happend to the futon couch we bought - ymmv).
posted by b33j at 11:23 PM on July 30, 2006

I disagree, b33j. Well, when it comes to one particular futon line: the Beddinge. When I lived in the UK, I slept on this and sat on it every day for 4 years, and always adored it. The futon mattress never gets saggy (it's solid foam, I believe), and the mattress is pleasantly firm. I'd buy one of these again in a second.
posted by yellowcandy at 12:39 AM on July 31, 2006

yellowcandy - unless I'm missing something, that is not a futon couch. A futon couch is a futon mattress on a wooden frame, I have one in my office and it has exactly the problem that b33j describes (though it is comfy to sleep on).
posted by altolinguistic at 1:28 AM on July 31, 2006

Don't get this one. The cushion is supported by wooden slats which frequently pop out of the frame and are extremely difficult to get back in. (You pretty much have to grab a sharp instrument and hack away parts of the plastic thingys that hold them in.) Or sometimes they'll just crack in two. Definitely bad news.
posted by equalpants at 1:29 AM on July 31, 2006

I love IKEA for smaller household items, but I'm not such a big fan when it comes to their human-load-bearing furniture. The chairs I've purchased there make me feel like a giant (6'3", 230) and I've found their couches to be sub-par and prone to breakage/sagging unless you're a woman or a very small man. For $400 you could find a decent used couch & chair set on Craigslist and probably pay a local handyman the $40 to cart it to you.
posted by datacenter refugee at 2:00 AM on July 31, 2006 [1 favorite]

One vote here for Ektorp. I've fallen asleep on this couch more times than I can count, and it also transforms into one of the more comfortable fold-out beds I've slept in. I think the fold-out version is over $400, though.
posted by bjrubble at 2:52 AM on July 31, 2006

Go for the Ektorp, it's one of IKEA's best sellers and is very comfortable and reasonably priced. I have the Ektorp leather loveseat and chair myself and I love them.
posted by klwatts at 4:04 AM on July 31, 2006

Dittoing what equalpants said. I bought the same futon, and have had two of the supporting slats break within the first year, with an additional one or two managing to worm their way out of the plastic holders.
posted by Meagan at 4:21 AM on July 31, 2006

I have the Ektorp loveseat and it's super comfortable. My friend has the same Ektorp loveseat, but with the pullout bed, and it is very uncomfortable. She just tossed it actually. So for your price range, I'd recommend the basic Ektorp - the seat and pillow covers are washable and when you get bored of the color, you can switch to another IKEA set.
posted by meerkatty at 5:16 AM on July 31, 2006

I just went to Ikea last week, with a friend who was also shopping for his tiny studio. We both sat on the KLIPPAN Loveseat. It was comfortably spaced for two people, a little too tight for three. We both liked it, it was firm, not too big or too small, and comes in a variety of colors.
posted by hooray at 6:10 AM on July 31, 2006

Avoid MYSINGE. We have a MYSINGE couch and it's awful. No back support and the seat is way too deep.

I've always found friends' KLIPPAN sofas comfy given the extremely low price but I haven't tried them long-term.
posted by mendel at 6:15 AM on July 31, 2006

I second the idea that you can get a much sturdier couch for around 400 dollars if you go to a discount furniture shop. I too furnished my first apartment with IKEA. I had the Lillberg and did not like it, personally. It was OK for awhile, but the wooden arms were annoying, the cushions were not as soft as I would like them, one of the bottom slats broke, and the piece on the side that slides the frame into the sides wore down so that we sat on the floor for awhile. We replaced it with a $400 sofa from value city furniture. It's not the greatest sofa EVER but it's really sturdy and has much more cushioning. I know you don't have VCF in Seattle, but you must have something comparable!
posted by theantikitty at 8:36 AM on July 31, 2006 [1 favorite]

You should also check out EQ3 - slightly more modern / showy than Ikea, same price point, perhaps slightly higher quality construction. There doesn't look to be an EQ3 store in Seattle, but there are local furniture stores that carry some of their stuff if you want to see it. However, you can buy online and I do believe they ship.
posted by luriete at 10:56 AM on July 31, 2006

Ok - we went to Ikea just yesterday and sat on near every couch there - Ektorp was the best for the price, and seems like a good buy. There was also one there that would have been sat on by lots of people and it seemed to be holding up well. It is a little on the soft side but that is good. If you need it firmer - I would suggest the leather version. T

here is a difference in sofas there even with approx the same price - the LUND HOGEN for example has cushions which are not too comfortable, very wobbly....
posted by clarkie666 at 11:53 AM on July 31, 2006

I have to disagree with mendel's assessment of the Ikea MYSINGE. We have had ours for two years now and it has worked out great for us. Our basement apartment is tiny, without a lot of furniture, and my boyfriend and I spend hours on it every day because it's just about the only place to sit in the living room, and we find it very comfortable. We are both quite tall so the depth is fine for us. It is much firmer than most other couches I have sat on, but now that I am used to it I like it that way.

I especially like how the arms fold down flat so it can be used as a nap spot or a guest bed. Also, we can take off the cover and wash it in the washing machine (helpful with 3 cats in the house!).

Also we got it from the "As-is" department at Ikea (the little drink table that attaches to its foot was broken), so it was less than $200 AND came fully assembled. I don't plan to have it forever, but for now, it's perfect!
posted by slenderloris at 11:53 AM on July 31, 2006

Beddinge is a futon couch. It just looks like a proper couch. It folds out just like any other futon couch.
posted by yellowcandy at 9:54 PM on July 31, 2006

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