The Tale of the LoveSac

I mentioned in the previous post that I purchased and returned an uncomfortable, inadequate sofa. This is the story of that sofa. It begins with the arrival of my previous sofa, on the day that the movers brought my furniture.

The Sofa was an Ikea Ektorp, a fairly comfortable seating arrangement, but one made of pressboard and held together with little metal fasteners and happy thoughts. When the movers set it back up, I noticed that there was a big ripped and stained hole in the cover.

No biggie, I thought, Ikea sofas are designed with replaceable covers and the contract with the movers included insurance for just this eventuality. I didn’t realize just how broken the couch really was until later when I finally tried to sit on it. It had a variety of damage to the undercarriage, and it wasn’t level in all sections. It had the look and feel of a sofa with a broken spine. I won’t bore you with a photographic record of all of the damage I found when I looked more closely, but here’s the most egregious part.

broken ektorp

When I realized how broken it was, I put in a claim with the movers and they paid me replacement cost minus my moving insurance deductible. With that money in hand, I set about trying to find a replacement sofa.

I settled on the LoveSac Sactional. I’d seen them before, years ago. There’s a LoveSac store in the Town Center Mall in the Boca Raton. Aside from the exceedingly silly name, LoveSac’s idea of modular furniture is pretty neat. I like the idea of being able to design the furniture to meet your needs, choosing sections, sides, and covers to shape how you want.

I went to the LoveSac store in a nearby mall, not far from the Pentagon. I sat on several different chairs and weighed my options. After some deliberation (and a little waffling) I took advantage of a Labor Day sale and ordered my LoveSac Sactional, a two seats/four sides configuration. I thought it would be wide enough and if it wasn’t, I could always order another seat and side later to expand it. It arrived fairly quickly, packaged in a bunch of boxes.

Once the new sofa pieces were here, I disassembled my poor Ektorp and took its main pieces down to the trash room. I put aside the sofa pillows, not sure yet if I wanted to do something with them. This proved later to be a very good decision.

Assembly of the modular LoveSac Sactional was fairly straightforward. The two largest boxes contained the seat, cushion, and back pillow. The other four slimmer boxes contained the sides, and the two smaller boxes included all the covers. The boxes themselves had unboxing and assembly instructions printed on them. All the clamps and accessories I needed were included. It was difficult to pull the covers onto the individual pieces- it’s probably a lot easier with a second person. Ultimately, I was able to muscle them into a proper sofa shape.

I sat on the LoveSac Sactional for a few weeks, and I was dissatisfied in the following ways:

  • It wasn’t as comfortable as I had hoped. When I sat on the floor models in the store, I thought it would be fine, but at home I found that the foam seats were not firm enough. I sank into the foam every time I sat down- some people might enjoy this sensation, but I did not. I need a firmer seat.
  • I need a sofa with a taller back piece. The sides are all the same height- that means that the back support is only as high up as the armrests in the completed Sactional photo above. The pillows are taller than the top edge of the back pieces, which meant that if I leaned back, it was just weird, with the top edge sort of jamming into my back.
  • The Sactional wasn’t long enough to lay down on. Laying down on the couch after a long day at work or any time I want to pass out for a little living room nap is absolute bliss, and it’s absolutely necessary. Laying down on the couch is an important part of my life and I couldn’t do it on this one. The width of LoveSac seat parts are just a little bit weird- the modular sections of a LoveSac seat are 35 inches wide by 29 inches deep. You do have the option of doing the sections sideways, to change the width. I tried orienting it the other way and found that the back pillows were too wide and smushed together. 35 inches is a weird width- the two sections were just a few inches too short to be comfortable for laying down. If I had added a third section, I would have been able to lay down, but then my sofa would have been almost ten feet long.
  • Last, but certainly not least: LoveSac Sactionals are on the pricy side of things. They’re relatively well made and guaranteed for life against manufacturer defects, but I never really felt like the Sactional was worth the more than two grand I shelled out to purchase it. Mine was a relatively small example, too- for a bigger room, you could easily shell out eight or ten thousand dollars for a Sactional.

Ultimately, I decided it wasn’t for me. After 24 days of life with the Sactional, I disassembled the thing and boxed it back up to ship back to LoveSac. Fortunately, they have free shipping and a 60-day in-home trial, so this was quite simple.

Allow me to pause my retelling for just a moment to talk up how amazing LoveSac’s customer service was throughout this process. It’s easy to complain online about bad service, but truly excellent service is rarely commented on, and it should be. LoveSac was so great throughout all of this that I am willing to consider them again in the future- their giant beanbag thing, the hilariously named SuperSac, does look kind of amazing. Here’s how they excelled: First, their in-store help was amazing. Secondly, when I reached out to return it, the process was dead simple. They sent me FedEx shipping labels and boxes, and when I had boxed it all back up they arranged a FedEx pick-up to come to me and cart them away. All I had to do was disassemble and rebox them. Once the boxes were received back at the mothership, I was given a full refund. The service was effortless and so much less difficult than I expected.

In the time since I boxed up the LoveSac and sent it on its way, I’ve been using the cushions of the old Ikea Ektorp on their own without the rest underneath, just set up on the floor- I call this the Boneless Sofa. It’s comfortable enough, in a Bohemian sort of way.

The Boneless Sofa

Ultimately, I know that this isn’t a good permanent sofa. While the Boneless Sofa has been acceptable for the very short term, I do want a proper couch in the future.

I’ve already located a part of Falls Church that I refer to as the Arlington Sofa District- a place with at least five different stores that have sofas within approximately a single square mile. I’ll go there some weekend in the near future, sit on a bunch more sofas, weigh my options- and then I’ll probably just order another Ikea Ektorp.

This is my process. I’ll get there, eventually.

What kind of couch do you like to sit on?

23/52 (and 2 of 30!)