I Customized My Sofa for the First Time and It Turned Out to Be the Cozy Touch My Living Room Needed (And It’s on Sale!)

updated Sep 4, 2023
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Credit: David Prado Perucha/Shutterstock

As people of the modern age, my family and I have been ordering furniture online for several years and have certainly run into our fair share of duds among the successes. Although I’d take my time to find the right piece for the room I’m looking to furnish, I’ve never really had the motivation for custom orders. I’d just keep narrowing my search down based on color, style, and function until something that fit showed up. Honestly, I didn’t think I had the patience to sort through upholstery swatches and furniture styles. I was trying to save my energy and choose my battles wisely. However, when “rebellious luxury” furniture brand Benchmade Modern gave me the opportunity to test out their custom ordering process from swatch to sofa, it was the no-pressure arrangement I needed to give customization a real chance.

After scrolling through their sofa offerings many times, my top choice was their popular OG Couch Potato Sofa, and the ball quickly went rolling from there. And this Labor Day, you can shop the stylish living room staple for 20 percent off during the brand’s sitewide sale!

Looking for more great deals? Check out our complete Labor Day sale coverage, and be sure to sign up for our Retail Therapy newsletter for the latest sales and must-have home finds.

Benchmade Modern is set on defying the norm for luxury furniture by turning it around in far less time than other manufacturers that often take three months or longer — and that’s not even accounting for the potential delays. They can have it done in as little as three weeks, not including shipping and delivery time. Selecting the OG Couch Potato Sofa was the easy part. From there, I still needed to choose my upholstery from the free Swatch Kit Benchmade Modern sent when they heard I was interested in their furniture. The swatch box included all of the available fabric and leather options, and I expected it to take much longer than it did to trim down my picks, but I was able to get it down to 10 after ruling out anything that didn’t suit my ideal style or wasn’t pet-friendly. My last couch had a woven design that made it extremely easy for dog hair to get caught in the fibers, so I wanted to avoid that at all costs. What I found so helpful about Benchmade Modern’s swatches was the sticker on the back of each one that let you know the name of the style, type of material, the rub count, the finish, and the cleaning code. 

Credit: Britt Franklin

For me, the rub count was most important factor, because it would inform me about which fabrics were good for pets. The higher the number, the more durable it would be, which meant it would be a better fit for my two-dog home. The dogs aren’t allowed on the couch (way too much shedding), but they still inadvertently rub against it, so flyaway fur is pretty much unavoidable. I wanted to be able to brush off the fur without a fuss, and thanks to the swatches, I was able to see exactly which materials would work best. I ended up going with Glee Dreamer, a dark teal 100-percent polyester fabric with a rub count of 100,000. In addition to polyester, the multitude of options in the Swatch Kit included premium velvet, leather, and polyester blends with cotton, nylon, viscose (bamboo), and more. The swatches are separated not only by type but also by colors and neutrals, which simplified the selection process because I could easily rule out specific materials, shades, and weaves before looking into smaller details like the rub count and finish.

The next step was receiving the real-size—and free—printout of my chosen piece of furniture to ensure that it would fit in my space. Whether you have a small or large room, Benchmade Modern gives you the power to chose the length of your sofa, so that you can size it to fit your home. For instance, the OG Couch Potato can be as small as 65” and as wide as 100”. I knew I wanted it to be on the longer side, but I still had to be mindful of the space I actually had to use. My previous sofa was 93” so upping the couch to 95” wasn’t much of a leap, but better safe than sorry. The printout was rolled and delivered in a tube, and all I had to do was roll it out where it was going to go. My old couch was still in my apartment at the time, but thanks to its wide silhouette, I was able to lay the paper print on top of it and see how the new sofa would look. To be perfectly honest, my old couch and my new one have very similar builds, so it wasn’t a challenge to picture how it would look, and with only a 2” difference between them, I knew it would be a great fit.

Credit: Britt Franklin

Including delivery time, it took just under one month for me to receive the OG Couch Potato Sofa after confirming the fabric and size based on the printout. If you’re ordering a larger sofa (like me), Benchmade Modern makes sure to check with you to ensure that it can be delivered safely to your home. Because I’m in an apartment, they let me know what clearance dimensions I needed in order to get the sofa through the walkway and the door. I made a point to measure it to be sure, but I wasn’t too worried since there was a lot of open space to work with and I trusted that the local delivery team would be able to handle it with care.

Upon delivery, when the delivery guys complimented my sofa and proceeded to ask me about the brand after seeing it themselves, I considered it a hugely positive sign. Plus, the praise was well warranted: The OG Couch Potato Sofa in Glee Dreamer was a beautiful addition to the living room! Other than its teal shade, it also matched the generated image on Benchmade Modern’s website, where I got my very first preview of what the sofa could be. Once the delivery team left and I was able to finally sit down, I was pleasantly surprised by the sofa’s support. The wide arms are cushioned on the top and sturdy around the frame so it was immediately clear that the sofa was well-constructed, and the fabric looked just like the swatch.

Credit: Britt Franklin

When ordering a custom sofa from Benchmade Modern, you’re given a choice for cushion fill between foam and fiber and foam and trillium. The difference between the two is essentially that one is firmer than the other. I was told the recommended (and most popular) choice for the OG Couch Potato was foam and trillium cushions, so I took a chance on it. I’m glad that I did because the seats have just the right amount of give to sink lightly and comfortably into them without worrying that the sofa will fall apart in a few months; however, my favorite part of this couch is its back cushions. Although trillium is a man-made polyester fiber, the feel of it is similar to down, so the cushions are marshmallowy soft and squeezable while also having ample support and comfort. I don’t even mind fluffing them every now and then. In fact, I look forward to it! You’ll also be happy to know that I’ve been able to keep the dog fur at bay for weeks with a quick swipe of my hand or pet hair roller. My older dog has been great at staying off of it, but with a rambunctious puppy running around wildly (he’s still in training), I’m clearing it of fur daily.

As it turns out, ordering custom furniture isn’t as much of a headache as I originally thought. Benchmade Modern made it a very simple and fun process that made me look forward to receiving my sofa with every step. It feels more special because I got to choose what it looked and felt like, and didn’t have to settle for what I could find via search engine. Another thing I love is that if I wanted to get another piece to match or complement the sofa, the brand has other furniture options, such as sectionals, accent chairs, ottomans, bed frames, chaises, and more that can be customized as well. They also offer ready-to-ship furniture in their best-selling sizes and colors if you want to skip the customization process altogether. Aside from furniture, Benchmade Modern has rugs andlighting to outfit your home, too. The furniture is expensive, but considering how well it’s made and that it’s handcrafted in the United States and tailored specifically to your liking, it’s clear to see that the costs go towards creating optimal furniture that’s made to last. So far, I don’t think it’s a bad investment. I’ve been enjoying kicking my feet up for hours on the sofa after a long day, especially during the hectic holiday season.

Plus, there’s good news if you are looking to save a few bucks and are in the market for new furniture: Benchmade Modern is currently hosting its Labor Day sale, during which you can score 20 percent off their custom furniture collections. You’re welcome!

Buy: OG Couch Potato Sofa, 95″, $3,878 (normally $4,847)