We Tested (and Rated!) All the Sofas at Blu Dot — Here Are the Best to Suit Your Style and Space

published May 22, 2024
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Blu Dot Bonnie & Clyde sofa in living room with seal in upper left that reads "Apartment Therapy Personal Shopper Blu Dot Sofas 2024"
Credit: Blu Dot

If you’ve been following our Personal Shopper series, you know we’ve been visiting some of the most popular home retailers and viewing their furniture and accessories in-store. The most recent brands featured include Pottery Barn and West Elm — and for good reason. Their sofas, rugs, accent chairs, and dining tables are well-made, blend in with a variety of aesthetics, and are designed to suit many different lifestyles. We’re not finished looking through their showrooms, but it’s nice to break away and see what other stores have in stock. If you want something contemporary and unique but still versatile, you should consider heading to Blu Dot. Our first order of business? We headed in-store to look at the brand’s large selection of sofas and sectionals. Of course, buying something as big and expensive as a couch sight unseen is a risk. Luckily, you have us to guide you through the models and break down which type of household each would suit best.

Fans of modern design will love Blu Dot’s wide selection. Although some sofas are on the higher end price-wise, they’re made with premium materials and designed to last a long time. We were also pleasantly surprised to find that many of them were plush and loungey; they’re far more than mere showpieces. If you keep reading, you’re bound to find something you love.

Why Blu Dot?

Blu Dot’s furniture is beautiful, but we also appreciate the brand’s dedication to thoughtful design. The company was founded by designers and every piece is hand-sketched in the team’s Minneapolis studio before production. Blu Dot also prioritizes sustainability by using high-quality materials and rigorously testing furniture to prevent damage and, in turn, waste. If you invest in a piece from the brand, you’ll find that it evolves with your lifestyle, regardless of trends. As a result, when you shop Blu Dot, you can rest assured that you’ll own and love your new piece for many years.

The Sofas

 The Criteria

We judged every Blu Dot sofa in-store based on the following criteria, giving each category an average rating between 1 and 5. These scores helped us determine who the sofa suits best, from the regular party host to the studio dweller.

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Seat firmness: How soft or firm are the seat cushions? How do they contribute to overall posture and comfort?

Seat depth: How far do you have to scoot to meet the backrest? And when you do, are you in an upright or reclined position?

Loungability: Can you spend hours on this sofa? Would you want to?

Durability: Is the fabric easy to care for and able to withstand everyday use? Does it require frequent upkeep and spot cleaning?

Appearance: What style does it suit best? Does it lean more traditional (i.e., rounded lines, tufted cushions, classic silhouettes) or more contemporary (i.e., clean lines, bright hues, modern silhouettes)?

Every Editor-Tested Sofa at Blu Dot

Best for Small Spaces: Puff Puff Sofa

What impressed us: The rounded curves and tall steel legs.

We didn’t see many small-space-friendly sofas on display at Blu Dot, but the cool thing is that most of their offerings are available in multiple sizes and styles online. At 87 inches wide, the Puff Puff sofa could fit along your longest living room wall and perhaps even leave room for a side table. It is on the firmer side and has an almost futon-like appearance. We like that it maintains a clean, modern look even with its rounded lines, which help to soften up the frame. The sofa’s tall legs also offer plenty of storage space underneath the body. If you want to make the Puff Puff feel a bit homier, you can play around with different accent pillows.

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 87 inches long, 35 inches wide, 31 inches high
  • Available in fabric upholstery
  • Available in 4 upholstery colors 
  • Also available in ottoman, lounge chair, bench, and studio sofa styles

What impressed us: The tufted bench seat and timeless appearance.

For an option you can style endless ways, go with the Paramount sofa. It’s simple enough in design to fit in with a variety of interior decor styles, meaning it won’t impede you if you decide to switch up your aesthetic. In looking at its plain rectangular frame and metal legs, we noticed the charming button tufting on the bench-style seat, which serves as a subtle but fun detail. Whereas the Paramount’s back cushions are soft and bouncy, the seat is a tad firmer, so you get just enough support without sacrificing that sink-in comfort. If you have the space for it, you can’t go wrong with this model. It’s a crowd-pleaser that allows your decor to shine while providing cozy seating in the process.

How We Rated It:

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Specifications:

Best with Built-in Storage: Souvenir Sofa

What impressed us: The built-in bookshelf and roll-back cushion.

If there was one model that stopped us in our tracks while we were walking through the showroom, it Blu Dot’s Souvenir sofa. It’s stunning from the front with its velvet upholstery, which has a slight shine, but in the back you get a brilliant built-in shelf that you can use to store all kinds of things. Show off your favorite decor pieces and souvenirs, or use the shelf to house practical items, like your book collection or dishware. You can choose between a dark walnut or white oak frame, as well as velvet or fabric upholstery. The sofa’s back cushion is yet another eye-catching detail. It’s essentially a long roll pillow, and although it doesn’t come up very high, it still provides plenty of lumbar support. If you’re after a true statement piece that effortlessly combines beauty and practicality, look no further.

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 87 inches long, 42 inches wide, 30 inches high
  • Available in fabric upholstery
  • Available in 3 upholstery colors

Best Sleeper for a First Apartment: One Night Stand Sleeper Sofa

What impressed us: The ease of use and sparse silhouette.

The One Night Stand sleeper is perfect for those in search of an easy, functional sleep surface for overnight guests that folds up compactly when not in use. Its no-frills design makes it suitable for any space, be it the home office, guest bedroom, or even the living room. Like most sleepers, this model is quite firm to sit on, but we were charmed by its tweed-like fabric, matching side pillows, and retro appearance. Most importantly, the fold-out process is super straightforward. Just remove the back cushions and flip the seat forward to create a queen-size sleep surface. Add your bedding on top, and you’re good to go!

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 80 inches long, 32 inches wide, 30 inches high
  • Available in fabric upholstery
  • Available in 5 upholstery colors

Most Timeless: Guide 96” Sofa

What impressed us: The velvet upholstery and wooden base.

The main impression we were left with after testing the Guide sofa is that, simply put, it’s really pretty. We viewed it in a dazzling moss-green velvet fabric that’s soft to the touch. While the seat cushions are medium-firm, the back is delightfully plush. Once we were fully reclined, we found it difficult to leave the enveloping coziness. What’s more, the sofa’s upholstery is nicely contrasted with a wooden base of your choosing. You can go with a darker fabric and white oak base for more impact, or opt for walnut wood for a richer look. No matter which combination you choose, the Guide sofa will never go out of style. Details like its inward-curving arms prevent it from looking too austere, but it’s still undeniably contemporary and sophisticated.

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 96 inches long, 36 inches wide, 31 inches high
  • Available in fabric upholstery
  • Available in 4 upholstery colors
  • Also available in lounge chair and medium sofa styles

Best for Socializing: Thataway Small Angled Sectional

What impressed us: The inward-curving arms and back cushions and unique angle.

Even though the Thataway sectional is another pretty firm model, there’s something about its low profile and roomy surface that invites you to plop down and stay for a while. We deemed it the best pick for socializing for obvious reasons. Its open-angle design is not only different from any sectional style we’ve ever seen before, but it also allows you to chat with friends from a comfortable position instead of being awkwardly seated right next to them. The sofa’s geometric shape will also give your living room a structured look, while the heavy platform base allows it to serve as an anchor piece. We think this model will work wonders to open up your space and make it feel bigger, too.

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 126 inches long, 36 inches wide, 29 inches high
  • Available in fabric upholstery
  • Available in 2 upholstery colors
  • Also available in sofa, sleeper sofa, and sectional styles

Best Living Room Sleeper: Bank Sleeper Sofa

What impressed us: The tall arms and boxy shape.

We think it’s fair to say that most sleepers are designed to go in a spare room, not function as your main living room seating. But the Bank sleeper is stylish enough to be the focal point of your communal area in addition to serving as a convenient sleep surface for overnight guests. In fact, we didn’t even realize it was a sleeper before Blu Dot’s store manager demonstrated how easy it is to unfold the queen-size foam mattress. (We consider it a two-person job, but a straightforward one nonetheless.) In sofa form, the Bank model stuns with high square arms and a refined silhouette. Its seats are firm, but you get a decent recline, making this pick a solid lounging spot. We were also taken with the sofa’s bone-gray upholstery. It’s neutral but still a nice departure from your basic ivory or white.

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 80 inches long, 37 inches wide, 30 inches high
  • Available in fabric upholstery
  • Available in 4 upholstery colors 
  • Also available in lounge chair, medium sofa, and sofa styles

Best Oversized: Sunday L Sectional

What impressed us: The pillowy cushions and deep seats.

Sundays are for doing nothing, which is why this sectional’s name is so fitting. The L-shaped number is impossible to ignore, and not only because of its oversized frame. We viewed it in a gold-toned velvet fabric that’s every bit as luxurious as it sounds. In fact, the sectional looks downright sumptuous with its overstuffed cushions, deep seats, and barely exposed legs. The seats are also sink-in soft, whereas the back cushions are slightly firmer and a bit low. This makes the Sunday all the more suitable for movie nights and reclining back as you read or rest. Also of note is the chaise on the shorter side. It’s a prime spot for stretching out, although really this sofa doesn’t have any bad spots.

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 139 inches long, 40 inches wide, 30 inches high
  • Available in fabric upholstery
  • Available in 5 upholstery colors 
  • Also available in other styles

Best for WFH: Dandy Sofa

What impressed us: The extra-firm feel and leggy base.

As you’ve likely realized by now, Blu Dot’s sofas either skew pillow-soft or exceptionally firm. The Dandy sofa falls into the latter category, which is part of what makes it so great for working from home. It’s also upholstered in durable fabric and boasts clean lines, so you can balance work materials on it and enjoy lunch from your seat without worry. Of course, the Dandy wasn’t just designed for utility. It certainly packs a punch with wiry metal legs and a box-shaped appearance. You can even snag it in that opulent gold velvet or opt for smooth aniline leather upholstery — the oxblood color is to die for. 

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 96 inches long, 37 inches wide, 32 inches high
  • Available in fabric and leather upholstery
  • Available in 5 upholstery colors 
  • Also available in lounge chair, studio sofa, and medium sofa styles

Best for Frequent Movers: Bonnie & Clyde Sectional

What impressed us: The separate chaises and sleek lines.

You might think a sectional would be difficult to own if you change your place of residence every one to two years, and that’s likely true of most models. That said, Blu Dot’s Bonnie & Clyde is comprised of two separate parts, so you’ll be able to tailor it to your space no matter the layout. The chaises will be easier to move than one angled piece — you could even place them in different rooms to make up for a lack of seating wherever you need it or space them out in your living area with a side table in between. The styling options are endless! Additionally, the sectional’s metal legs serve as a unique detail on an otherwise simple piece of furniture, and they look especially nice when contrasted against the smooth yet distressed camel leather upholstery. Firm, supportive seats and backs round out this chic sectional.

How We Rated It:

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Specifications:

Best for Lounging: Esker 98” Sofa

What impressed us: The low profile and deep seat.

Although the Esker sofa falls in the middle on the spectrum of soft to firm, we would still classify it as a prime lounging spot because of its deep seats and square arms, which are almost wide enough to double as side tables. And because they lie close to each seat, you can rest your head against them comfortably without experiencing an awkward neck angle. The sofa also has a pretty low profile, which, coupled with the deep and wide cushions, almost makes this piece look like a bed. What’s more, the Esker is available in Kelso upholstery fabric, which can be cleaned with bleach and other disinfectants without losing its color or texture. On Blu Dot’s website, this couch is described as “the fancy sweatpants of sofas,” and we think this is a perfectly fitting label.

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 98 inches long, 42 inches wide, 31 inches high
  • Available in fabric upholstery
  • Available in 5 upholstery colors 
  • Also available in medium sofa and sofa chaise styles

What impressed us: The customizable configuration and block bases.

Like the Bonnie & Clyde sectional, the Cleon sectional is a fabulous choice if you want to be able to change the configuration of your living room seating on a whim. Whether you end up moving or you simply decide you’re tired of your current layout, the Cleon’s detachable seat modules make doing so a breeze. Although the seats look pretty plush, we were surprised to find that they’re quite firm. Additionally, the profile is low, so that’s something to consider if you want something more utilitarian that you can get in and out of easily. The fabric upholstery on this sectional features zig-zag stitching at the seams, too, which is a subtle but elegant detail that catches the eye.

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 108 inches long, 66 inches wide, 28 inches high
  • Available in fabric and leather upholstery
  • Available in 6 upholstery colors 
  • Also available in other styles

What impressed us: The smooth leather and sink-in comfort.

Leather might seem like a risky choice for families with kids, but the New Standard sectional comes in a full grain aniline leather that’s meant to naturally patina over time, so it’s crafted with durability and long-term use in mind. Plus, you’ll likely have an easier time wiping spills off of leather than trying to scrub stains out of fabric. In any case, the New Standard offers enough space for your entire brood, so no one will ever have to fight over the last seat. We also couldn’t help but admire the sectional’s angular frame and contrasting steel legs, not to mention the unrivaled softness of its seat and back cushions. While the foam cushions are wrapped in feather down for comfort, a steel spring system underneath provides support and prevents sagging.

How We Rated It:

Credit: Apartment Therapy Media

Specifications:

  • 102 inches long, 35 inches wide, 32 inches high
  • Available in fabric and leather upholstery
  • Available in 6 upholstery colors 
  • Also available in other styles