If you’ve ever tried to get a sofa into a flat, terraced house or loft conversion, then you'll know how a sofa in a box could change your life (and your back). Forget worrying about whether it will fit through the door or up the stairwell. Arriving in easy-to-handle boxes, these superhero sofas can be delivered to any home – even those with cramped hallways and steep stairs – with minimal fuss.
What's more, they can be with you quickly. So if you are after a new sofa in time for Christmas, a sofa in a box takes the pressure off in every way.
Like mattresses in a box, the number of sofa-in-a-box companies is destined to grow and grow. However, a couple have already made a reputable name for themselves. These are our Ideal Home recommendations...
Best sofas in a box
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These companies are leading the way when it comes to convenient sofa shopping.
As the name suggests, everything about Swyft's sofas in boxes is designed for speed – from choice to delivery to assembly. There are three sofa styles available, simply named Model 01, Model 02 and Model 03. Each style comes in a choice of seven fabrics (four velvets and three linens) and three sizes (two seater, three seater and arm chair).
The Swyft website says it’ll take less than five minutes to put up your sofa – and they’re not lying. The Ideal Home team's Laura Crombie has tested one out and can confirm it's a simple process. 'The boxes are numbered so you simply unpack them in order and slot the pieces together,' she explains. 'The legs screw into the base, the back slots on, the sides slot on and then you add the cushions. It really is that simple.'
'Okay, so the boxes are as long as your chosen sofa, so don’t go expecting them to be really small. They take two people to lift but have handy handles on them, which makes things A LOT easier. We manoeuvred the sofa into a bedroom – into the hall, up the stairs and along a tight landing with no swearing or bashed fingers.'
Snug, who were first to market with the sofa-in-a-box concept, aims to make long lead times and sofas that are too big for your doorway a thing of the past. Its sofas again come deconstructed in boxes with fast and free delivery, provided you're on the UK mainland.
When it comes to options, Snug has two core styles – the Big Chill and the Rebel. However, there is a wider choice of arrangements, including corner options and footstools. As with Swyft, there are seven fabric choices, including four velvets, so you won't be too bogged down in indecision.
Amazingly, a Snug sofa can be put together in under three minutes – something we witnessed with our own eyes when Snug came to IH HQ last year. Like Swyft sofas, the legs twist into the base, and the arms slide and lock into place.
One thing we love about Snug's service is that it offers a 30-day trial and free 'no-questions-asked' returns. You can also order a set of fabric swatches for free.
It should come as no surprise that the king of convenience Argos has been quick to pick up on the sofa-in-a-box trend. At just £200, the cute Evie is the ideal starter sofa. It comes in two fabrics – charcoal and natural, and comes neatly packed into two boxes that should fit through the tightest of hallways and stairwells.
In fact, the boxes are so compact, they'll fit into most cars. Which is important, as Evie is available to click and collect from Argos stores. That means you could have a new sofa within the hour. Talk about speedy.
Granted, this is not the squishiest, most sumptuous sofa you'll ever sit on. But it does have a 10-year frame guarantee so you can rest assured it's built to last. And if you are looking for a small sofa for a bedroom, study or den, it's great value for money.
We'll continue to update this article as we get hands-on with more sofas in a box.
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Amy Cutmore is an experienced interiors editor and writer, who has worked on titles including Ideal Home, Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc, Real Homes, GardeningEtc, Top Ten Reviews and Country Life. And she's a winner of the PPA's Digital Content Leader of the Year. A homes journalist for two decades, she has a strong background in technology and appliances, and has a small portfolio of rental properties, so can offer advice to renters and rentees, alike.
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