News

Read about the latest tips and trends in the furniture and sofa buying industry - right here from Tempe, Arizona.

Trend Alert - Small Space Sofas

Posted by Michele G on

With the growing number of high-rise condominiums across Arizona, it is no wonder that small space sofas are trending. We are seeing a surge of customers coming in and wanting their sofa to fit in sometimes less than a 200 square foot living room. We are also seeing customers want to add a small space sofa to an office or study or even a bedroom, guestroom or a reading room. Let’s not leave out the fact that children and teenagers are getting sofas in their bedroom as well – so small space sofas are a great addition and if you buy from Sofa Shack and get them something durable – they can even take it off to college with them!

At Sofa Shack, another small space trend that has emerged is that we are seeing a surge of customers from students in Tempe wanting small space sofas that are not only small, but also stylish as so many of our student customers are ramping up their social media game and utilizing their sofas as backdrops to their Instagram stories, Facebook photos or youtube.com videos.

Although our customers are looking for small space sofas and they may be on a furniture buying budget, one thing that we know is they don’t want a sofa from IKEA that is going to last only 3 months of use or their first college party. Who wants to wait in the Tempe Ikea long lines anyway and fight having to walk thru the entire store, to then figure out how you are going to deliver it to your place without paying a fortune for their subcontracted delivery drivers. If you haven’t figured it out, I have bought from there before… and as an interior designer, I have changed my mantra on furniture buying since my college days. You would be surprised; college students are getting this way before I did – must be that Pinterest and blogs like these are available to them.

From a manufacturers standpoint we have seen an increase in the making of small space sofas too – far more than any other sofa type. We are seeing a lot more of the midcentury modern sofa in basically every color you can possibly imagine with gorgeous shapely wooden legs. We are also seeing a rise in jewel tone and velvet collection style sofas – also in every color you can possibly imagine – color is big this year for living spaces again – although – we are still seeing a steady pace with the gray sofa or neutral colored sofa for the family or living room.

Another huge small space sofa trend we are seeing this year is that sofas are becoming more shapely sofas or having a real “figure” to them as well as sofas that either have some sort of tufting, extra threading or needlework, or a couch with just a little more character to it – like wood trim. We are seeing more detail in the sofa legs and a lot more creation of leatherette type of sofas – which is basically a nice faux leather. With that said – interestingly enough, love seats that went out of style years ago, are coming back into style because they really work for small spaces. We are seeing more love seats frequent the living rooms of our Sofa buying customers whereas their accompanying regular sized sofa may have taken a backseat if the couch buy customer’s space doesn’t allow for the larger regular sized sofa.

Futons also have been huge this year – they were once associated with the poor ASU student, but are now trendy and stylish and are great for small spaces. You can literally get a gorgeous futon with arms or tufting, and no one would even know it was “a futon”. They are huge sellers this year in our Tempe showroom – I really love the emerald velvet one.

Flying off “the shelves” so to speak of our showroom floor is also the pullout bed – or sofa bed for small spaces. Finally, you can get a sofa bed that is stylish – and again, another item, like the futon, that once received a bad rap, is making a comeback with our customers. Sofa beds have been huge in game rooms and guest bedrooms or office spaces. We have seen a lot of Airbnb and VRBO companies and customers renting out their spaces gobble up the sofa bed and futon option to allow for more guests – hey anyone in college – I am also talking to you – the sofa bed or the futon are the way to go for your living space!

Having an influx of people moving from all over the Country to work – some are getting relocated to small spaces, so we are seeing a lot of this type of customer looking for something temporary until they can find a larger home. In this case, finding a small space sofa works best, and then you can upgrade to it’s larger or regular sized sofa counterpart, if you went with a love seat, or getting two small space sofas (regular sized sofas) that are matching for your living room seems to be a great alternative when you find that larger house as opposed to the sectional (which is also making a huge comeback… but we will talk about sectionals in another trending blog post).

Custom sofas are also trending right now – and we carry a great selection of custom sofas that you can customize literally everything about them so you don’t have to compromise if you are looking for a nicer small spaced sofa for your nicer home. Regardless, you should never compromise on the quality of your small space sofa – that is why we carry the best quality product and won’t let you compromise if you want your sofa to last more than 3 months!

Whatever your sofa needs are, come on down to our showroom and let us help you design your living room or help you pick out a small space sofa for another room in your house. There is a lot of great small sofas available in the market – let us find you the one that you are looking for.

Read more

Trend Alert - Small Space Sofas

Posted by Michele G on

With the growing number of high-rise condominiums across Arizona, it is no wonder that small space sofas are trending. We are seeing a surge of customers coming in and wanting their sofa to fit in sometimes less than a 200 square foot living room. We are also seeing customers want to add a small space sofa to an office or study or even a bedroom, guestroom or a reading room. Let’s not leave out the fact that children and teenagers are getting sofas in their bedroom as well – so small space sofas are a great addition and if you buy from Sofa Shack and get them something durable – they can even take it off to college with them!

At Sofa Shack, another small space trend that has emerged is that we are seeing a surge of customers from students in Tempe wanting small space sofas that are not only small, but also stylish as so many of our student customers are ramping up their social media game and utilizing their sofas as backdrops to their Instagram stories, Facebook photos or youtube.com videos.

Although our customers are looking for small space sofas and they may be on a furniture buying budget, one thing that we know is they don’t want a sofa from IKEA that is going to last only 3 months of use or their first college party. Who wants to wait in the Tempe Ikea long lines anyway and fight having to walk thru the entire store, to then figure out how you are going to deliver it to your place without paying a fortune for their subcontracted delivery drivers. If you haven’t figured it out, I have bought from there before… and as an interior designer, I have changed my mantra on furniture buying since my college days. You would be surprised; college students are getting this way before I did – must be that Pinterest and blogs like these are available to them.

From a manufacturers standpoint we have seen an increase in the making of small space sofas too – far more than any other sofa type. We are seeing a lot more of the midcentury modern sofa in basically every color you can possibly imagine with gorgeous shapely wooden legs. We are also seeing a rise in jewel tone and velvet collection style sofas – also in every color you can possibly imagine – color is big this year for living spaces again – although – we are still seeing a steady pace with the gray sofa or neutral colored sofa for the family or living room.

Another huge small space sofa trend we are seeing this year is that sofas are becoming more shapely sofas or having a real “figure” to them as well as sofas that either have some sort of tufting, extra threading or needlework, or a couch with just a little more character to it – like wood trim. We are seeing more detail in the sofa legs and a lot more creation of leatherette type of sofas – which is basically a nice faux leather. With that said – interestingly enough, love seats that went out of style years ago, are coming back into style because they really work for small spaces. We are seeing more love seats frequent the living rooms of our Sofa buying customers whereas their accompanying regular sized sofa may have taken a backseat if the couch buy customer’s space doesn’t allow for the larger regular sized sofa.

Futons also have been huge this year – they were once associated with the poor ASU student, but are now trendy and stylish and are great for small spaces. You can literally get a gorgeous futon with arms or tufting, and no one would even know it was “a futon”. They are huge sellers this year in our Tempe showroom – I really love the emerald velvet one.

Flying off “the shelves” so to speak of our showroom floor is also the pullout bed – or sofa bed for small spaces. Finally, you can get a sofa bed that is stylish – and again, another item, like the futon, that once received a bad rap, is making a comeback with our customers. Sofa beds have been huge in game rooms and guest bedrooms or office spaces. We have seen a lot of Airbnb and VRBO companies and customers renting out their spaces gobble up the sofa bed and futon option to allow for more guests – hey anyone in college – I am also talking to you – the sofa bed or the futon are the way to go for your living space!

Having an influx of people moving from all over the Country to work – some are getting relocated to small spaces, so we are seeing a lot of this type of customer looking for something temporary until they can find a larger home. In this case, finding a small space sofa works best, and then you can upgrade to it’s larger or regular sized sofa counterpart, if you went with a love seat, or getting two small space sofas (regular sized sofas) that are matching for your living room seems to be a great alternative when you find that larger house as opposed to the sectional (which is also making a huge comeback… but we will talk about sectionals in another trending blog post).

Custom sofas are also trending right now – and we carry a great selection of custom sofas that you can customize literally everything about them so you don’t have to compromise if you are looking for a nicer small spaced sofa for your nicer home. Regardless, you should never compromise on the quality of your small space sofa – that is why we carry the best quality product and won’t let you compromise if you want your sofa to last more than 3 months!

Whatever your sofa needs are, come on down to our showroom and let us help you design your living room or help you pick out a small space sofa for another room in your house. There is a lot of great small sofas available in the market – let us find you the one that you are looking for.

Read more


Picking a Kitchen Rug

Posted by Michele G on

One of the hardest things I ever experienced when I moved into a new house was picking rugs. Picking a kitchen rug on the other hand, was a lot of work, more than I even imagined. There is so much that goes into picking the right rug – we are talking about rug construction, design, and of course rug size. In effort to save you hours of figuring out what to pick, I broke it down for you with some real helping rug tips so you don’t have to go through all the trouble and research I had to do when I made my final kitchen rug selections.

 Whether you are choosing a small round kitchen table or a long rectangular dining table – the rug you choose is just not about size. It’s also about rug durability and rug construction. Food drops on your rug – whether you are messy or not, spills are inevitable, especially in the kitchen. When picking a kitchen rug, the safest bet is to pick a rug that could withstand the outdoors, or a patio rug. Indoor Outdoor rugs can be cleaned with a hose, so imagine how easy it would be after a night of fun with your friends, that like your dishes, you can grab your rug and take it outside, hose it down and viola, your rug is clean! I guess you can’t really do that wish dishes, but you get the idea – kitchen rug cleaned with a hose is like what dishes are to a dishwasher. There are so many beautiful indoor-outdoor rugs you can choose from now too. A lot of people are afraid to buy a rug for the kitchen, so picking a rug for the kitchen in the right construction will calm your fears. Seriously – go indoor outdoor rug, you won’t be disappointed on this!! If you aren’t crazy about an indoor-outdoor rug, consider a rug that doesn’t have a ton of weave to it or isn’t plush or made of cotton – in fact flat weave rugs are probably the most popular for the dining room. Food gets in places you don’t want to know about with your rug so go with flat. Also, thick weave rugs can be hard to clean. Sisal and Jute rugs can be spot cleaned – but I use to have one, and it wasn’t my favorite in the kitchen. I just don’t want to spot clean my sisal rugs every house party that I have. If you find a rug that is machine washable – well hey we know that would be a win for your dining area!

Let’s talk a little about picking the right rug look or rug design for your kitchen space. Let’s be honest, the kitchen is where the party is at. How many nights do you have people over and they are hanging out away from the food and drink? For some reason the kitchen draws people in for great conversation and it’s accessible to everything you need, even the front door when you need to leave the most party house party. So, if the kitchen space is the place to be, why isn’t the kitchen one of the most important places to design when designing your home look and creating the perfect living space? We spend most of our home time in the kitchen, think about it! Why wouldn’t you want to pick décor that finishes your kitchen space and brings your entire kitchen look together? Rugs do that people – rugs finish your living space, no matter what part of your home you are talking about. Now for me, although I am a woman of color – the brighter the rug the better I feel. I love bright everything in my house – I am going to steer you clear of anything dramatic and bright and crazy pattern in your kitchen. I know, some of you are probably falling off your dining chair, no pun intended. Whether or not you are picking a runner rug or just a rug to go underneath the table – call me boring, but I really love a neutral rug in the kitchen, this allows for more opportunity to dress up your table in different décor throughout the year. Picking something neutral like a navy-blue rug or a gray rug or a beige rug or even a multi colored outdoor rug is a safe bet for kitchen rug options. The reason I say that is because for me, like I said before, I really want the space to come together for an evening or just for a family dinner – I want room to grow with my dining top design. I want the space to feel cohesive and warm, but like I said, table top décor is important to me too. If I have a Halloween Party or a Christmas Cookie themed party or a Wine night with my girlfriends – all those nights call for different table top décor. Table Top décor that is well thought through and if I have this rug that is screaming at my table top décor – that is no rug I want in the kitchen. Although, a lot of people will say the kitchen rug is the most fun to make a statement in your home – so to each their own, for me, I would rather make a statement with what is on top of the table, than what is on the bottom. One word of advice however, picking a pattern rug is going to be a safe bet if you are looking to hide minor rug stains. A dining rug that hides dirt is always the best choice. So really – the safe bet, and the bet that makes the most sense if you do ANY entertaining, even if it’s a kid’s birthday party is a neutral kitchen rug in some sort of design that won’t fight your table top look – plain and simple. And don’t call me plain – but I just don’t want to be the middle man between my rug and my table top décor as the duke it out.

Now let’s talk about rug sizes. Picking the right rug size can be tricky. Take it from me, when I moved into a new house, I had to take measurements of every hallway, bedroom, living space, and of course all our furniture to make sure that the rugs that I was purchasing would fit and give my house the finished look that it was going for. Bigger is always better, isn’t it? We are still talking kitchen rugs, get your head out of the gutter. When we are talking dining tables – whether it’s a rectangular dining table or a round dining table or even a square dining table. That rug should be slightly bigger than your actual table – not too big – we don’t need a rug that is too big causing commotion. A rug that is just right in size means a rug that is approximately 24” or 24 inches beyond the table size – even 3 feet longer than your dining table is safe. So, if your dining table is 6 feet long, then you need a rug that is approximately 8 or 9 feet long. Why do you need a larger rug than your table size you ask? Well, every table has chairs, so it’s just enough room for your table and your dining chairs and your dining rug! Everybody and everything taking part in the dining experience wins here.

If you walk away with anything – walk away with a durable constructed rug, with a rug pattern that is neutral but still speaks to you, and of course the right size rug so your chairs are tipping or your guests or family aren’t getting caught up in the rug every time you leave the table. And be safe – non-slip rugs are best! Happy Rug Hunting!!

Read more

Picking a Kitchen Rug

Posted by Michele G on

One of the hardest things I ever experienced when I moved into a new house was picking rugs. Picking a kitchen rug on the other hand, was a lot of work, more than I even imagined. There is so much that goes into picking the right rug – we are talking about rug construction, design, and of course rug size. In effort to save you hours of figuring out what to pick, I broke it down for you with some real helping rug tips so you don’t have to go through all the trouble and research I had to do when I made my final kitchen rug selections.

 Whether you are choosing a small round kitchen table or a long rectangular dining table – the rug you choose is just not about size. It’s also about rug durability and rug construction. Food drops on your rug – whether you are messy or not, spills are inevitable, especially in the kitchen. When picking a kitchen rug, the safest bet is to pick a rug that could withstand the outdoors, or a patio rug. Indoor Outdoor rugs can be cleaned with a hose, so imagine how easy it would be after a night of fun with your friends, that like your dishes, you can grab your rug and take it outside, hose it down and viola, your rug is clean! I guess you can’t really do that wish dishes, but you get the idea – kitchen rug cleaned with a hose is like what dishes are to a dishwasher. There are so many beautiful indoor-outdoor rugs you can choose from now too. A lot of people are afraid to buy a rug for the kitchen, so picking a rug for the kitchen in the right construction will calm your fears. Seriously – go indoor outdoor rug, you won’t be disappointed on this!! If you aren’t crazy about an indoor-outdoor rug, consider a rug that doesn’t have a ton of weave to it or isn’t plush or made of cotton – in fact flat weave rugs are probably the most popular for the dining room. Food gets in places you don’t want to know about with your rug so go with flat. Also, thick weave rugs can be hard to clean. Sisal and Jute rugs can be spot cleaned – but I use to have one, and it wasn’t my favorite in the kitchen. I just don’t want to spot clean my sisal rugs every house party that I have. If you find a rug that is machine washable – well hey we know that would be a win for your dining area!

Let’s talk a little about picking the right rug look or rug design for your kitchen space. Let’s be honest, the kitchen is where the party is at. How many nights do you have people over and they are hanging out away from the food and drink? For some reason the kitchen draws people in for great conversation and it’s accessible to everything you need, even the front door when you need to leave the most party house party. So, if the kitchen space is the place to be, why isn’t the kitchen one of the most important places to design when designing your home look and creating the perfect living space? We spend most of our home time in the kitchen, think about it! Why wouldn’t you want to pick décor that finishes your kitchen space and brings your entire kitchen look together? Rugs do that people – rugs finish your living space, no matter what part of your home you are talking about. Now for me, although I am a woman of color – the brighter the rug the better I feel. I love bright everything in my house – I am going to steer you clear of anything dramatic and bright and crazy pattern in your kitchen. I know, some of you are probably falling off your dining chair, no pun intended. Whether or not you are picking a runner rug or just a rug to go underneath the table – call me boring, but I really love a neutral rug in the kitchen, this allows for more opportunity to dress up your table in different décor throughout the year. Picking something neutral like a navy-blue rug or a gray rug or a beige rug or even a multi colored outdoor rug is a safe bet for kitchen rug options. The reason I say that is because for me, like I said before, I really want the space to come together for an evening or just for a family dinner – I want room to grow with my dining top design. I want the space to feel cohesive and warm, but like I said, table top décor is important to me too. If I have a Halloween Party or a Christmas Cookie themed party or a Wine night with my girlfriends – all those nights call for different table top décor. Table Top décor that is well thought through and if I have this rug that is screaming at my table top décor – that is no rug I want in the kitchen. Although, a lot of people will say the kitchen rug is the most fun to make a statement in your home – so to each their own, for me, I would rather make a statement with what is on top of the table, than what is on the bottom. One word of advice however, picking a pattern rug is going to be a safe bet if you are looking to hide minor rug stains. A dining rug that hides dirt is always the best choice. So really – the safe bet, and the bet that makes the most sense if you do ANY entertaining, even if it’s a kid’s birthday party is a neutral kitchen rug in some sort of design that won’t fight your table top look – plain and simple. And don’t call me plain – but I just don’t want to be the middle man between my rug and my table top décor as the duke it out.

Now let’s talk about rug sizes. Picking the right rug size can be tricky. Take it from me, when I moved into a new house, I had to take measurements of every hallway, bedroom, living space, and of course all our furniture to make sure that the rugs that I was purchasing would fit and give my house the finished look that it was going for. Bigger is always better, isn’t it? We are still talking kitchen rugs, get your head out of the gutter. When we are talking dining tables – whether it’s a rectangular dining table or a round dining table or even a square dining table. That rug should be slightly bigger than your actual table – not too big – we don’t need a rug that is too big causing commotion. A rug that is just right in size means a rug that is approximately 24” or 24 inches beyond the table size – even 3 feet longer than your dining table is safe. So, if your dining table is 6 feet long, then you need a rug that is approximately 8 or 9 feet long. Why do you need a larger rug than your table size you ask? Well, every table has chairs, so it’s just enough room for your table and your dining chairs and your dining rug! Everybody and everything taking part in the dining experience wins here.

If you walk away with anything – walk away with a durable constructed rug, with a rug pattern that is neutral but still speaks to you, and of course the right size rug so your chairs are tipping or your guests or family aren’t getting caught up in the rug every time you leave the table. And be safe – non-slip rugs are best! Happy Rug Hunting!!

Read more


5 Things Furniture Companies Don't Want You to Know

Posted by Michele G on

Wholesale Pricing? Not likely.

There is not a retailer on earth that sells furniture at true wholesale pricing. The wholesale cost is the price the retailer paid for the item they are selling. If the retailer sold their products at wholesale, there would not be any money left to (A) Pay the bills to run the store  (B) Pay the employees   (C) Make any profit

Return Policy… it might be a bit painful.

Be careful when you purchase any piece of furniture from a retailer and check how long you have to return it. You might need time to not only think about it but should you need to return it, enough time to do so being that returning furniture can be more time consuming than say… returning a watch. Our recommendation is 7 days or more. Most importantly, check to see if the retailer has a restocking fee if you do decide to return the item. Some retailers can charge up to 30% for returns which can really add up especially when making larger purchases.

Mark the price WAY up……. just to mark the price WAY down.

It’s the oldest trick in the book…. on big “Holiday Sale” weekends, retailers can mark the price way up a few days before the “big sale” just so they can mark the price way down misleading you to believe you are getting a “HUGE” deal. Be cautious of this and be sure to check the original price first, then apply the discount and judge for yourself if it’s a real deal or not.

No one does “free delivery”….. NO ONE!

Yes, furniture retailers may be giving you “free delivery” but the cost of that delivery is buried in the price of the furniture. When offered a “free delivery”, make sure it’s not added on somewhere else in your sales ticket or hidden in the price of something else you might be purchasing at that time whether it be a product or a service.

Advertised price too good to be true? It probably is.

When advertising their “special deals,” some retailers will promote an item that has a very low price on it knowing that by advertising their products at a low price it draws customers in (bait) and when customers visit the store, they discover that the advertised furniture items are either not available or are not as good as expected, or the customers are pressured by sales people to consider similar, but higher-price items. This is simply “bait and switch”. They “bait” you to come in, then “switch” you to purchasing something else that is probably not quite the same deal.

Read more

5 Things Furniture Companies Don't Want You to Know

Posted by Michele G on

Wholesale Pricing? Not likely.

There is not a retailer on earth that sells furniture at true wholesale pricing. The wholesale cost is the price the retailer paid for the item they are selling. If the retailer sold their products at wholesale, there would not be any money left to (A) Pay the bills to run the store  (B) Pay the employees   (C) Make any profit

Return Policy… it might be a bit painful.

Be careful when you purchase any piece of furniture from a retailer and check how long you have to return it. You might need time to not only think about it but should you need to return it, enough time to do so being that returning furniture can be more time consuming than say… returning a watch. Our recommendation is 7 days or more. Most importantly, check to see if the retailer has a restocking fee if you do decide to return the item. Some retailers can charge up to 30% for returns which can really add up especially when making larger purchases.

Mark the price WAY up……. just to mark the price WAY down.

It’s the oldest trick in the book…. on big “Holiday Sale” weekends, retailers can mark the price way up a few days before the “big sale” just so they can mark the price way down misleading you to believe you are getting a “HUGE” deal. Be cautious of this and be sure to check the original price first, then apply the discount and judge for yourself if it’s a real deal or not.

No one does “free delivery”….. NO ONE!

Yes, furniture retailers may be giving you “free delivery” but the cost of that delivery is buried in the price of the furniture. When offered a “free delivery”, make sure it’s not added on somewhere else in your sales ticket or hidden in the price of something else you might be purchasing at that time whether it be a product or a service.

Advertised price too good to be true? It probably is.

When advertising their “special deals,” some retailers will promote an item that has a very low price on it knowing that by advertising their products at a low price it draws customers in (bait) and when customers visit the store, they discover that the advertised furniture items are either not available or are not as good as expected, or the customers are pressured by sales people to consider similar, but higher-price items. This is simply “bait and switch”. They “bait” you to come in, then “switch” you to purchasing something else that is probably not quite the same deal.

Read more