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Why are replacement loose sofa covers so expensive???? Where can I get cheaper ones????

(87 Posts)
BoffinMum Sat 21-Mar-09 03:20:34

We have two ten-year old John Lewis sofas that are in perfect nick, apart from the loose covers are now threadbare, so I wanted to get some replacements. I have mended them several times, but now they are really giving up the ghost. The covers are the kind you can put in the washing machine.

I got a local firm in to quote, and also spoke to John Lewis, and all these people quoted four figure prices for replacement covers well in excess of what the two entire sofas had cost in the first place, and probably equivalent to what it would cost to buy two brand new sofas now.

I am loath to put two perfectly good pieces of furniture into landfill, so I want to get them recovered. But if I can't afford to shell out ££££ how do I go about this? There must be a way of getting covers done cheaper or nobody would be able to afford to buy sofas at all. BTW just putting a rug over the top of them won't work for us as the kids are over them all the time and I would spend my entire life replacing the rug.

greenhill Thu 02-Aug-12 14:29:49

A lot of cheap sofas are made in South Wales too, it's not just cheap overseas sofas.
Am watching thread as have the same problem, my 12 year old sofas were good until the cat fancied them as a scratching post, she used to prefer the carpet and has ruined the stair treads too...

ChristieF Thu 02-Aug-12 15:01:52

We bought Ikea sofas with covers you can buy separately. I think it's about £60 for a new set for one sofa. We deliberately bought them because we knew we'd want to change them and wash them often. Sofas get horribly dirty. They want you to buy a new sofa not re-cover an old one. I made my own for years but got fed up of the amount of work involved.

ChristieF Thu 02-Aug-12 15:03:03

We have two dogs and two sons and I cover the sofas with fleece throws (to match) and that saves a mountain of washing covers.

ChristieF Thu 02-Aug-12 15:05:56

I'd seriously think about replacing your sofas with new ones that have loose covers which are washable and which can be replaced at a reasonable price. You'll probably find it's cheaper than buying new custom made covers especially if you buy from Ikea. And they have a great choice in spare covers too. And we ordered the sofas and the covers online and got them delivered.

WantAnOrange Fri 03-Aug-12 08:44:36

Trenni I'm doing a degree a to (in Education) and there is no way I would charge £900 for 4 days work after expenses. Unless there are many expenses after the cost of fabric that I'm missing?

You can't expect people to pay more for just the cover than it costs for the whole sofa, including a new cover?

lizziebach Sun 05-Aug-12 14:57:07

Trenni I have a degree too and @ £900 for four days work you would be earning more per day than I do per week. I understand where you are coming from as I knit, sew, preserve etc lots of things there aren't much money in. I try to explain to people who tell me I should "give up work and become a knitter" that there is very little money in handmade things, so I am not saying you should undervalue your work. But £900 for 4 days work or a new sofa which costs less than that, I can see why people think the costs are too high.

TrollofTrollHall Sun 05-Aug-12 15:01:40

Ikea Ektorp sofas are the way to go. other companies so covers to fit them too. comfy, cheap as chips.

BoffinMum Mon 06-Aug-12 22:10:12

In the end I got new sofas made in Wales by Kirkdale for £750 - that was one sofa and one sofa bed as well as arm caps. Customer service was brilliant too. Very happy. But old sofas sadly went to landfill.

jombeadle Wed 24-Oct-12 14:04:20

Have just found a co called Chair and Sofa covers uk. They are a bit cheaper and look quite nice. Jo

Cfitzs05 Sat 23-Feb-13 07:24:59

I feel so passionately about this issue that I am constructing a website called Green heart style about good choices in home-wares and about renovating and up-cycling . It is non profit and will not accept unsolicited links from companies .
It is largely about using second-hand goods, so it will not attract advertisers anyway. I agree about the ikea sofa covers, one of the problems of unique designs is they never reach the critical mass of the ektorp for example, which has a number of competing sources for replacement covers. Ikea really annoyed tho, when they sold me a Nikkala sofa then went to dry-cleanable , then a year later discontinued it.

BoffinMum Sun 24-Feb-13 11:40:33

Well, Chair and Sofa Covers, that was exactly what I was looking for!! I might buy some of the folding chair covers from them, which would look great in the Dining Room. I wish I had known about them earlier, though. grin

tutu100 Sun 24-Feb-13 13:03:52

One of my craft magazines this month had an article on how to recover a sofa yourself. I will try and dig it out. It did look simpleish if you have some sewing knowledge, but required a lot of fabric.

GallopingGertie Sun 17-Mar-13 12:51:33

I like the dust sheet idea - not that they are cheap to buy. I'm trying to sew a new cover for an old, but good, leather sofa.

I think the way of the future is to learn to do these things yourself; going on a course, if you've got the time, sounds beter than forking out thousands.

I mean, historically, home-makers always did up their stuff in this way, making rugs, pictures, clothes etc. and is relatively new idea to buy in everything -

so yummy to go and choose something new though LOL.

Mfab Tue 02-Apr-13 17:23:03

Loose covers are time-consuming to make but not difficult if you can use a sewing machine - not nearly as fiddly as making clothes. Loose covers are supposed to be loose so they don't have to fit perfectly and any slack can be tucked in round the edges of the seat. Make a pattern by pinning newspaper to the furniture and marking the edges with felt-tip pen before cutting out. On each pattern piece draw an arrow to indicate which way up to lay it on your material. Allow extra at the edges for seams and tucking in. I think using velcro is easier than zips. But I think it is worth buying a zipper foot for your sewing machine if you do not have one, even if you are not sewing in zips for making piping. Do this sewing long strips of material together (cut on the bias if you are a perfectionist) and sewing in piping cord (cheap to buy) using the zipper foot to make piping for sewing into exposed seams. This reinforces the seams of the covers and makes them more hard wearing as well as nicer to look at. Use cotton/linen union material for your covers especially if you have children and pets as this will wash many times and is hard wearing. Wash it first before cutting out pieces in case it shrinks a bit. Lay your pattern pieces out on the material in the shop to work out how much you need and allow extra for piping and shrinking. Do not use striped or checked material or other patterns where the pieces may hard to match together unless you have a lot of patience. Use strong machine sewing needles as fine ones will break. When washing covers put them back on the furniture while still damp as this saves ironing. Good luck!

MinimalistMommi Tue 02-Apr-13 18:08:55

Boffin I've never seen the Kirkdale site, I was going to get ikea Ektorp but was wondering what the quality of the sofas were like? Are they comfy?

MinimalistMommi Tue 02-Apr-13 18:09:30

I meant the quality of the Kirkdale sofas not Ektorp !

coffeeinbed Tue 02-Apr-13 18:14:15

I made some.
I'm in way, shape or form qualified as a loose cover maker, I was just in possession of a sewing machine and desperate.
Bought some reasonably priced denim and they were absolutely fine.

poppyknot Tue 02-Apr-13 20:58:25

Surprised at the JL quote. Have a sofa workshop sofa bed and after phaffing about with local options (none) and looking at Plumbs website (££££) went to SW online. They asked when and where I had bought it (13 years ago!) Told them and they were able to locate order so had dimensions of sofa. Sent a few swatches and bingo. Nowhere near 4 figures and in 6 weeks had what amounted to a new sofa.
Hope you enjoy your new sofas. So cheering.

kitsonry Tue 09-Apr-13 09:58:01

If you want to compare with the full variety of choices you should go to: eBay

Scabs2little Sat 25-May-13 22:54:28

Still looking for loose cover for a 2yr old sofabed. What is SW on line? Thanks

janek Tue 28-May-13 09:18:21

poppyknot do you mean you went back to sofa workshop and they were able to replace your covers? How much did this cost you, if you don't mind me asking? I have an 11 year old vivasofa sofa (who were taken over by sofa workshop i hope...) which needs recovering. Be brilliant if it could be done for not much.

IAmNaturallyThisOrange Wed 29-May-13 14:24:57

Advice on ikea sofas please, I know they are practical but are they comfy?

Desperately in need of new sofa but its a real hassle taking DCs to ikea. Are they worth it? (The sofas not the Dcs!)

Which range do you have and would you buy it again?

Ilikethebreeze Wed 29-May-13 14:32:54

I know Trenni made her posts months ago, but having excellent craft skills are really no good if they cant be financially viable.
Most people just do not have unlimited budgets.

I have gone down the throws route, but it is a bit of a faff.
They are machine washable though, so that is a bonus.

grannygrump1 Thu 30-May-13 20:37:38

we have 2 leather sofas which have back cushions which been ruined where my husband rests his head most of the day. Have tried using leather cleaners and saddle soap etc but nothing works. also because he sits in the middle of the sofa over 2 cushions he has ruined the cushions on that one. We have a sofa bed with loose covers and are planning to ditch the broken leather sofa and recover the other one plus the sofa bed in the same material. Trouble is, the leather sofa seat cushions while the backs come off. Has anyone managed to get covers which will work on this type of sofa at a reasonable price?

toasty Wed 19-Jun-13 08:54:34

A good company to use is Coverstory - based in Surrey but they will make covers for anywhere. The making cost is about £200 - £300 for a sofa, but you can supply your own fabric. You can quite often get cheap fabrics on ebay, or local fabric warehouses. This keeps the price from getting out of hand.

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