Arm yourself for sofa shopping in Mexico

Choose wisely when choosing where to snuggle up for the next 11 years, says furniture expert Sheryl Novak

Photos: Contributed
Photos: Contributed

I recently got a chuckle out of an article about how we use our sofas, whether in our home countries or in Mexico.

The article referenced a poll conducted online, which asked 2,000 adults what they used their couch for, and how often they used it. Based on an average sofa life span of 11 years, over 6,500 hours are for watching TV and movies. 2,700 hours are spent cuddling up and reading books. We spend approximately 2,400 hours sleeping on our sofas; 1,400 hours are used for gaming and another 1,400 hours for working on emails.

On average every week, we apparently spend 16 hours on the couch. No wonder it is so important to find one that is comfortable.

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When sofa shopping, we think about how it looks and how we feel when we sit on it. The seat and back cushions are usually the focus. We often forget to take into account the style of the arm. Yet this is also an essential feature of the sofa. To determine which style is best for you and your family, consider the different ways you plan to use the couch in your house.

One of the most preferred arm styles is the rolled arm. The rolled arm is considered a traditional or transitional style. It is soft and relaxed and is an excellent choice for those that like to read.

If you are a fan of taking an afternoon siesta, a cushioned arm is a perfect solution. This arm type is also great for those who like to lie down when watching TV and movies.

The flair arm is an elegant and timeless style. A sofa with this type of arm requires a larger area since it will take up more space. Flair arms are generally higher, providing good back support for those who like to do emails on their sofas.

The track arm is best for contemporary and modern décor styles. It’s also a great choice for homes with a smaller living room since it will not take up as much room as the rolled arm sofa. Track arms are very popular. They are square and modern. Although they are simple and rectangular, they make a bold design statement. Track arms are available in many widths. I recommend wide track arms to clients who enjoy entertaining so that their guests have a comfortable place to rest their arms, glasses and small serving plates.

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No matter which arm style you select, remember that we also spend a lot of time eating and drinking on our sofas. That is why it is so important to get a cover that will last. In our environment, the only one I recommend is a performance fabric. This will make sure it looks new for the life of your sofa.

Before you go shopping for your sofa or sectional, remember to consider how you are going to spend time on it. The arm is one of the most important features that will make or break whether you consider it comfortable or not.


Sheryl Novak is an expat from Canada who sells furniture across Mexico to other expats. Novak is the owner of SOLutions Mexico, an online furniture store and an expert on sourcing all styles of furniture, for all budgets, in Mexico.  Email sa.novak@solutionsmexico.com.

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