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Archive Dive: 13 Built-In Sofas, Trend Edition

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Archive Dive: 13 Built-In Sofas, Trend Edition

January 18, 2024

Have you been swayed yet by the built-in sofa? They’re space-efficient, good for maximizing lounge opportunities in a big space or squeezing a wee settee into a tight spot. They make a visual statement. And they never need replacing.

Here, 13 variations on the theme from designers and architects the world over:

plantea estudio designed built in linen sofas in the living areas for this home 12
Above: Plantea Estudio designed built-in linen sofas in the living areas for this home in a small fishing town on the north coast of Spain. See more in Casa Guzman: A Family’s Generations-Spanning Coastal Home Gets an Inspired Update by Plantea Estudio; photograph by Germán Saiz.
“we designed this reading nook with an oversized plush cushion,”  13
Above: “We designed this reading nook with an oversized plush cushion,” says designer Sarah Solis; the window seat is conveniently tucked between bookshelves. Photograph by Rennie Solis from Before & After: A 1924 Spanish-Style Villa in Laurel Canyon Gets an Update, 99 Years On.
a good way to make use of unused corners, as seen in geometry prize: \1\2 ideas 14
Above: A good way to make use of unused corners, as seen in Geometry Prize: 12 Ideas for Tight Quarters (and Others) from Precision Design Stars Casa Josephine. Photograph by Pablo Zamora, courtesy of Casa Josephine Studio.
a wrap around sofa faces the garden in this project by designer brem perera; se 15
Above: A wrap-around sofa faces the garden in this project by designer Brem Perera; see A Rising Design Star Introduces Warmth and Familiarity to a Sweeping New Build in Melbourne. Photograph by Lillie Thompson.
guest rooms at little cat lodge in upstate new york are fitted with built in lo 16
Above: Guest rooms at Little Cat Lodge in upstate New York are fitted with built-in lounges. Photograph by Chris Mottalini, courtesy of LoveIsEnough, from “Born Into Yesterday”: 11 Quirky Ideas to Steal from Little Cat Lodge in Upstate NY.
a stripy version at hotel le sud in france, as seen in let there be light: a gu 17
Above: A stripy version at Hotel Le Sud in France, as seen in Let There Be Light: A Guesthouse Inspired by Picasso.
built in sofas, pink edition, via la vie en papotte: a \15th century mill in bu 18
Above: Built-in sofas, pink edition, via La Vie en Papotte: A 15th-Century Mill in Burgundy, France, Redone by Heju.
france born, spain based designer and collector serge castella turned a built i 19
Above: France-born, Spain-based designer and collector Serge Castella turned a built-in bench into a combination seat (with cushions upholstered in vintage floral fabric, found in Hawaii) and log storage. See more in Spanish Eclectic: An Airy Stable Turned Guest House on the Mediterranean Coast. Photograph by Manolo Yllera, courtesy of Serge Castella Interiors.
a bold built in lends the feel of a retreat to an apartment in rome by studio s 20
Above: A bold built-in lends the feel of a retreat to an apartment in Rome by Studio Strato, as seen in Roman Holiday: A Top-Floor City Apartment That Channels Mediterranean Summer.
and a curvilinear version, in a villa in the south of france designed in the la 21
Above: And a curvilinear version, in a villa in the South of France designed in the late 1920s. Interior designer and stylist Lauren Olivia softened it with cushions covered in linen throws. Photograph by Sarah Button from Organic Architecture on the Côte d’Azur: A Jacques Couëlle Villa with a New Kitchen Extension.
a large, low built in sofa makes use of space in a loft in portland, oregon 22
Above: A large, low built-in sofa makes use of space in a loft in Portland, Oregon—particular with drawers underneath. See What’s Old Is New: A Pearl District Loft in Portland Gets a New Shell; photograph by Aaron Leitz, courtesy of Jessica Helgerson Interior Design.
low slung and laid back in a hawaiian cottage; hawaiian summer: a charm filled  23
Above: Low-slung and laid-back in a Hawaiian cottage; Hawaiian Summer: A Charm-Filled Stone Carriage House on the Maui Coast, Restored.
a custom built in sofa anchors a wellness expert&#8\2\17;s nyc living room. 24
Above: A custom built-in sofa anchors a wellness expert’s NYC living room. See The Healthful Apartment: A Wellness Expert Finds Serenity on the Lower East Side.

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Frequently asked questions

What is a build-in sofa or couch?

A build-in sofa or couch is a seating arrangement that is custom made to fit into a specific area or space in your home. It is designed to be permanently fixed in place and often incorporates storage compartments or built-in shelving.

What are the advantages of a build-in sofa or couch?

Some advantages of a build-in sofa or couch include maximizing the use of space, creating a seamless and integrated look in your home, and the ability to incorporate additional storage. It can also be customized to your specific needs and preferences.

Where can I install a build-in sofa or couch?

Build-in sofas or couches can be installed in various areas of your home depending on the available space and your requirements. Common locations include living rooms, family rooms, dens, playrooms, or even outdoor spaces such as covered patios or sunrooms.

Can a build-in sofa or couch be moved or reconfigured?

Unlike regular sofas or couches, build-in sofas or couches are typically designed to be permanent fixtures and may not be easily moved or reconfigured. They are custom-built to fit a specific space and may require professional assistance if you wish to relocate or modify them.

Are build-in sofas or couches comfortable?

Yes, build-in sofas or couches can be just as comfortable as regular sofas or couches. The comfort level depends on factors such as the quality of cushions or upholstery materials used. You can choose the level of comfort by customizing the seating options when designing your build-in sofa or couch.

Can I add storage compartments to a build-in sofa or couch?

Yes, one of the advantages of build-in sofas or couches is that you can incorporate storage compartments within the design. This allows you to maximize space and keep your belongings organized. The storage compartments can be in the form of drawers, hidden compartments, or built-in shelves.

Can I customize the design of a build-in sofa or couch?

Yes, build-in sofas or couches can be fully customized to your design preferences and needs. You can choose the type of upholstery, fabric or leather options, cushions, armrest styles, and other features. Working with a professional designer or carpenter can help you bring your vision to life.

Are build-in sofas or couches expensive?

The cost of a build-in sofa or couch can vary depending on factors such as the materials used, complexity of the design, and any additional features or customizations. Generally, build-in sofas or couches tend to be more expensive than regular off-the-shelf options, but they offer the advantage of being tailored to your specific requirements.

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