Are leather sofas/ sectionals passe?

cscowNovember 6, 2012

I am in the process of purchasing a new sofa for my family room. In the goose with bonnet thread a few weeks ago, someone mentioned the leather sofa as something that will date decor. I was leaning toward a leather sectional in brompton cocoa. I was hoping this sofa would last some time and do not want to spend thousands on something that is outdated in a year. So is leather still in and here to stay or is it on it's way out?

Here is a link that might be useful: Sofa

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I had to go back to check the thread because I've never thought of leather sofas as "dated", the color of the sofa (I had a hunter green one), yes, but leather, no.

I think the reference was to those puffy marshmallow man leather sofas, which are gargantuan in shape and swollen in profile, not leather sofas themselves.

People still buy decades-old Chesterfield leather sofas; I don't think leather is going out of style.


    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 4:24PM
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I think it's more the the "style" or shape that dates furniture. Well in fabric, pattern certainly dates furniture. But I think as long as you go with classic shape, it will be timeless.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 4:31PM
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I have an antique leather chair, tufted back, nailheads and all and it looks very Right. It's been re done but as much like it was originally as we could manage.
Leather is not dated, but that stuff with the little "Pillows" on the arms sure is.

Here is a link that might be useful: Dated sofa!

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 4:54PM
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Thank you for your input. I prefer leather to fabric as it is easier to maintain with children! I agree that it is the color/ style that dates a sofa. I currently like the look of the leather sofas at Restoration Hardware, but I am sure that with everything that look is a fad and I should search for something with a more timeless look.

Here is a link that might be useful: RH Sofa

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 5:35PM
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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

There is a difference between a trend, a fad and just downright ugly never in style.

Those overstuffed sofas and chairs that look like the Michelin man have never been in although people have been buying them for decades. I don't hold to the theory that just because something is available and for sale that it's somewhat "in".

I think what you want to look for is a classic trend, the style will last for at least 10 years or more, never really go out of style (although the fabric may) and be something that if you wish, could recover because the lines and frame craftsmanship are good.
A leather Chesterfield is a good example. That style has been white hot for a few good years, but for many, it was not. Eventually it will hit the back burner again and someday move again to the front. That is a classic style.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 6:02PM
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The heck with whether or not things are in or out... get what YOU like!

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 6:35PM
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We have two; one in our LR, and one in our FR. I guess we don't think they're passe! :-) Ours are contemporary/modern design, clean lines, black leather, so I don't think they will really go in or out of style. They aren't particularly trendy, which helps (the LR sectional is somewhat curvy, but not so much so that it would "date" it).

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 6:39PM
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I thought that comment the OP referred to was odd, and I disagreed, perhaps because I own leather sectionals and sofas (in brompton cocoa!)

I remember my grandparents having beautiful leather couches for decades. They had the patina of many years and held up well to our abuse. I think the Lancaster will do the same in terms of the style and the leather...

(I agree the puffy, faux, bonded stuff is another story!)

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 6:46PM
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I had to go back to that thread too. It did say something about brown leather sofas. But I think brown, if any color, is the one leather color that will never be passe. My sofa is blue leather, and it has the pillow arms. Oh well. It's comfortable, still looks new, and I like it. That's all that matters to me.

I think the one the OP linked is not, and will not be passe. It has very clean, classic lines, and a good color too.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 7:23PM
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I have a brown leather sectional and I don't think I will every have anything different in my family room. With boys who eat on the sofa, a swimming pool (the reason we decided to get leather) and two dogs (we didn't have them when we bought the sectional) who go in the pool, fabric is just not as good an option.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 9:05PM
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....I believe that I am the one who made that comment on the original thread.

If I recall, the subject of that post was about things that will in the future show....this was done in 2012.

The reasons everyone above has given are why these are so very popular now. The are VERY popular. That is why I felt they would be a marker of this time.

I don't think that means they are passe at all. I have 2 leather chairs, and a leather loveseat myself.

Let's face it, you have to get what works and is available; this is the best option going.

I also think that 20 or 30 years ago leather was so much more costly than fabric that it was seldom seen in average homes. Now there seems to be not much difference in the cost. Making leather available to the average homeowner.

In all honesty, none of us can predict what will not be in style in 15 years. So get what works for you and enjoy it :-)

    Bookmark   November 7, 2012 at 8:01AM
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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

The one linked is really nice!

    Bookmark   November 7, 2012 at 9:27AM
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The puffy "pillow-back" sofas didn't hold up to style changes nearly as well as the sleeker modern ones, or the classic rolled-arm. They look like battered Pillsbury dough-boys now.

The thing to be careful of in a leather sofa is the fill in the cushions. They go from sumptuous to sagging quickly. Make sure you can re-fill the cushions easily.

Leather as a material is classic, like linen and tweed.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2012 at 12:07PM
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I commented in that thread too, partly as a reaction to what seemed to be the ubiquity of brown leather sofas here in the forum (I have one too). Maybe it's just me, but I think there have been a lot of threads about how to perk up family rooms that are dull & dim: brown leather sofas, mushroom colored walls, brown wood furniture. It led me to think people will want to move away from big dark leather pieces that can overwhelm a room -- they'll go out of fashion.

But the GW mantra is a good one: get what YOU like and don't worry about trends. I did, and my big honkin' black hole of a leather sofa from a popular catalog is just right for our needs. No regrets!

    Bookmark   November 7, 2012 at 2:01PM
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I think the idea of any Brown, or any Taupe being a Neutral and that it will go with anything is something that will date current decorating trends.

Genuine leather (just like granite) was Out of fashion for some time because of the popularity of synthetics during the mid-century period. My parents had a custom suede sofa that aged very poorly (it was brown and ended up with bluish black shiny wear marks on it) --the company paid to recover it, and offered black leather, and my parents picked black Naugahyde for it's bullet-proof ness. (Still in their house).

Leather has become much cheaper, because the ways of processing leather all the way to processing the Dermis to look like the hide by coating it and painting it, and embossing it --has made "Leather" accessible at all price points (although the Bycast leather process I described can't be called "leather" in some countries). So the big, *relatively inexpensive "leather" sofa may be something that says early 2000s, as well as the "neutral" color of the sofa, being shoehorned into a room full of other colors.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2012 at 2:56PM
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Brown leather sofas are like classic names such as John, Jane, and Katherine, that don't go out of style but aren't exactly trendy. How you feel about a trendy "Jadein" vs an always acceptable and adaptable "Jane" sofa is up to you.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2012 at 6:56PM
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Thank you everyone for your advise. I am going with a brown leather sectional as it meets the needs of my family at this time. I have a slipcover sofa that I am always washing, so it will be nice to simply wipe down the leather. It appears that many people feel that the sectional I am looking from Casco Bay is too expensive. I have been on a call list at the local RH outlet since Aug. to be notified if they get a sectional, but to date no call. I have also searched CL, but I mostly find the cookie monster sectionals. I want something that is good quality and will last several years. Any suggestions?

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 10:27AM
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If the RH outlet happens to get a sectional, will it be the right size for your space and will it cost less than CB? I imagine it would still be relatively expensive, but don't remember how they price at the outlet.

Are the "many people" who think it is expensive people in your household... or just people on here? If it's people on here, ignore them and make the decision for you and your family.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 11:29AM
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Well I hope they are not passe because I have one on order. I guess I really wouldn't care anyway because I love the look and feel of a leather sofa in a cozy family room with fireplace :) I like the one you are considering.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 12:17PM
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cscow. I'm wanting a leather sectional too. Have you tried Macy's? They have an apartment size one I'm thinking about. The one I REALLY want is at Thomasville but it's like $7000.++

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 3:29PM
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I think that Costco had them in their recent can check on their website.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 7:55PM
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"It appears that many people feel that the sectional I am looking from Casco Bay is too expensive."

IMO, it's only too expensive if it's out of your price range. This looks like a very good quality sofa, it's all hardwood frame and spring construction so this is the sort of sofa that you wouldn't toss on the curbside in a few years and when it does finally wear out, it would be worth getting reupholstered rather than replaced. It might be expensive but IMO it's not overpriced for the way it's constructed.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 11:44PM
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