Saturday, March 23, 2013

Opinions Please! How to Make an Ugly Couch Presentable?

Downstairs in our new tiny office, we are now using Josh's love seat against the back wall as a spot to lounge. The love seat is comfortable -- my goodness, it's unbelievably comfortable -- but the problem is it just doesn't work in the space. It's a light brownish overstuffed La-Z-Boy type suede sofa that is 1) too deep for the space and proportionally does not work, and 2) ugly as all get out.

Behold, the brown beast:

Josh has agreed that we can move this bad boy on out if/when I can sell it for a decent price and I find something to replace it that doesn't break the bank. Fair enough.

And so my question for all of you --
How can I make this love seat presentable until the day that I can wheel it out the door? Short of a reupholstery job, are there any tricks you know of to spruce up a blah couch?  If you had this guy on your hands, what would you do with it? Furthermore, if anyone has ugly couch success stories and/or links to before and after pictures, please feel free to share in the comments! 

Thanks in advance for any tips!

- Claire


  1. I'd two-piece slip cover that bad boy (in an off-white maybe to match the trim and accents in the rug). Then get some throw pillows to tie in the textures of the rug (cotton slubbed or linen) and other colors you got going on in the room.

  2. Two piece slip that like a cover for the main couch and a separate cover for the sofa seat?

  3. I'd start with getting rid of the two brown pillows and replacing them with sexy new pillows- graphic kilim? Maybe a lumbar shape? But I wouldn't worry too much about putting lipstick on a pig.

  4. Exactly. It makes it look slightly less like a clear cover-up-the-ugly-couch. is ripe with them.

  5. There are companies that make new covers which you can put on. Apart from new cushions and throws we are not much help.
    Have a serene Sunday.
    Best wishes Molly

  6. Def new pillows, love the kilim idea. Maybe a sheepskin rug thrown over the back and another cozy throw over the arm. I don't think it's that bad!

  7. Such good suggestions! I like the kilim pillow idea, although Josh always takes them off because he says they are too scratchy. The the sheepskin idea is great...soft and snugly and would cover a good portion of the couch, breaking up all that brown.

  8. I would pick a throw that I really liked and would want to keep and use it to cover most of it and get throw pillows that are not in the same color as the loveseat but complementary to brown so it wouldn't look like you are just trying to cover up an ugly chair. I something somewhere where a person had tucked in fabric without sewing so it looked like it was reupholstered but I don't know if that would work here.

  9. we tossed canvas paint drop cloths over our couches. they're soft and drapey, almost linen-like with wear. and of course, easy to pull off and wash when they get dogged up. (our couches weren't ugly, but we have both decided we like the drop cloth covers better.)

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  10. I am a quilter, so my go-to is always to just drape a quilt over it. Obviously this would work with a throw as well..tucked in so that it stays on.
    The pillows are also a good idea.
    Good luck!

  11. Slipcovers are fantastic, but if you are looking for a more economical answer, accent pillows would definitely help. My mom used an old quilt to cover the bottom cushion of a sofa she has that out dogs kinda ate. It looks pretty cute tucked over the cusion :)

  12. So many good suggestions, thank you guys! I will try a few things & post pictures if I have success :)

  13. Once you pick out new pillows, perhaps you could replace or paint the little legs with a pop of color to coordinate with your room.

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