Help, leather sectional or sofa and where to go?

bosegirlNovember 13, 2012

Is this site accurate?

I need to buy a leather sectional or sofa and am somewhat confused. This is what I DO know:

1) I need to see/feel it in person

2) My budget is maxed at $3000 (is it possible to get a decent one at this price)?

3) It has to be a small sectional or a sofa (and I'll get a chair or two)

4) I'm in the capital region of NY and there seems to be limited options of stores in the area

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I'd say that the site is pretty accurate, though quality may also differ drastically within a store vs. manufacturing brand since many stores now (including Restoration Hardware, La-Z-Boy, etc) import parts of their sofa or the entire piece resulting in subpar quality and reducing longevity of the item. Also, not sure what your definition of "decent" is... something that will last 5 yrs or 25 yrs?

For your budget, I'd visit Raymour&Flanigan... they definitely carry several leather sectionals, many of which offer different sizes and components. For leather sofas, your budget is much more workable. Pottery Barn has several leather sofas and most stores have at least a fabric-upholstered version in their store. Personally, I'd stay away from Ethan Allen and Thomasville (I believe they have locations in Albany) since I have heard their customer service is horrendous to deal with and quality has diminished over the years. But, it wouldn't hurt to take a look, again, depending on your definition of "decent". Many of these stores have floor models or clearance pieces which can be had at a steal.

With that said, I am not an expert by any means, but a homeowner who was in a very similar position just weeks ago. We were also looking at a small leather sectional and we, too, live in CNY (moved from capital region to Syracuse last year). Our budget limit was set at $5000, though, and even with that, found it extremely difficult to find a high quality leather sectional. After much research, I felt that if we were investing that much into a leather piece of furniture, I wanted the best we could get. There was no way we were going to find something brand new, kiln-dried hardwood, 8-way tied springs, down/foam cushions and stay within our budget. I even looked online (Casco Bay and Comfortable Couch Company) and their quotes for a leather sectional started at $6000+.

DH and I went to Raymour&Flanigan and found all leather to be imported or plywood framed... none had 8-way tied springs. While not surprised, we were a little shocked that most of their leather sectionals sold for $4000+. In the end, we didn't find any of their furniture agreeing with the look we desired.

What did we end up doing? Well, there is a Pottery Barn locally and the only leather sectional they currently offer is the Pearce (made in North Carolina) line and in 1 color, cognac. We saw the piece in person at the store and fell in love with the style and size. We were unable to find any other leather sectional that compared in style and size (and price). We debated for weeks, but when they had a sale on the item, plus doubled reward points when using their cc (basically will get $1000 back to spend in their store), we gave in and placed our order. I will say, though, that our main sense of security was by the assistance of the PB salesperson. She has worked at the store for 10+ yrs and is extremely reliable and available. She recommended that if any problems to should arise, to call her directly at the store and she would fix it for us. She told us that we should never deal with the 800-# for customer service.

I hope this helps!

    Bookmark   November 13, 2012 at 10:46PM
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A break down on the average manufacturers actual cost to build a top-grain leather sofa. First your looking at the costs of the leather; 700.00, Frame; 5/4 poplar doweled and glued; 125.00, or plywood frame; 60.00, spring-up labor & springs; 8-way; 85.00, or sinuous wire; 25.00, materials including down-blend cushions; 325.00, cut & sew; 65.00, upholstery; 45.00, packing & freight to the store; 300.00. Already your looking at 1500.00 to 1800.00 not including the overhead costs and manufacturers mark-up. On top of this you have to add for the retail store markup.

So this is why your seeing these prices at retail. To get a leather sofa under 3000.00 a quiet of few corners will have to be cut. Which will add up to poor quality of a leather sofa, and that's not a very good investment.

Or if you could purchase directly from the manufacturer, you could find a hardwood doweled frame and top grain leather for less than 3000.00

BTW; PotteryBarn uses poor quality plywood frames which can hardly be called hardwood and sinuous wire springs. Not that the normal 8-way tied springs today are that much better, just more costly.

Here is a link that might be useful: leather sofas for under 1500.00

    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 12:51AM
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Thanks guys. We ended up buying Thomasville (but from the DiSiena store here). It's being delivered Friday--so excited!

    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 12:57AM
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