Expandable & Modular: Best Sectional Sofas

Expandable & Modular: Best Sectional Sofas

Maxwell Ryan
Mar 30, 2016

I will admit that I used to think of sectionals only for BIG rooms, but times have changed, designs are MUCH more modular and I want to highlight that sectionals can really be a solution for a small space as well as a large one (our readers voted for sectional over sofa and chairs here and over here they weighed the pros and cons). Why? You can buy only what you need (they're easier to get up the stairs and through the door) and then add to them later when you have a bigger home. Here is our first ever guide to top picks in the sectional department. Enjoy and let me know if you have more in the comments.


West Elm crushes it with sectional choices that allow you to "build your own" in many different styles. The Walton is only one, but very well priced and shows off what they do well, which is give you building blocks you can scale to any space.

This super modular collection from the folks at ZGallerie is the only one with a true retro 70's styling that will allow you to build a lounging "pit." Made in USA, the three pieces can be arranged to "suit your whim" and are made out of hardwoods with poly cushions.

Starting at $149

This durable offering from the Swede is a great example of sectional thinking. Sold in 16 combinations, including its essential single pieces, you can basically build anything to suit your space. The single armless seat is $149. You can do two or three next to one another, or pair it with a chaise or a

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Starting at $1,150

The Cloud helped to kick off this roundup as we road tested one piece in our offices over the last few months. Truly modular, the pieces of the Cloud are made to be expanded and contracted depending on your space. Designed by Timothy Oulton for RH to be "the most comfortable sofa ever made" with "8.2 pounds of 100% curled goose feathers wrapped in the softest panel of pure down" in every cushion, the slipcovers are washable and interchangeable. What did a few of our testers think?

  • "Sitting in it for 2 minutes felt like a 15 minute break"
  • "It feels like my bed — no, it feels better than my bed"
  • "The main issue is it's hard to get out of"

A stunning collection from the fellows out at Blu Dot, the New Standard has a sharp modern silhouette that is gently lifted on slim metal legs. With over thirty pieces/configurations, you can run this from armchair to ottoman to huge sectional and back down again.

One of many new styles at R&B, the Jasper has a great, mid century style with nicely lifted wood legs and the ability to switch the chaise to the left or right at will. Their "Sectional Builder" allows you to customize the Jasper (as well as other styles) any way you want and buy piece by piece switching out fabrics.

Williams-Sonoma's most affordable and modular offering, the W-S Sectional is their "signature sectional that lets you tailor your seating to intimate or grand spaces." With a super cozy roll arm, even back and loose cushions, the frame has mortise-and-tenon joinery, kiln-dried sustainably harvested hardwood and 8-way hand-tied springs in seat and sinuous steel springs in back." All cushions are foam core wrapped with a "premium down blend."

Crate has a large offering of sectionals, and I chose this one for it's gentle styling and traditional roll arm, which seemed a little unusual to me. Made in North Carolina, the Montclair has 10 swappable units that allow you to expand or contract with ease, a standout "corner arm" and all cushions are wrapped in a fiber-down blend.

Another super modular solution where every piece is a cube that can be swapped in and out, GUS "lets you mix and match components and fabrics to build a custom sectional, sofa or chaise to perfectly suit your space." I particularly like the mixing of the fabrics as seen above, along with the matching (or not) bolsters. Made of Kiln dried FSC certified hardwood and each piece joined with integrated connectors on the underside.

Pottery Barn is an old pro in this category with their classic PB modular collection that allows you to basically have anything you want. Switch the units, switch the arm styles, switch the pillow styles, or switch from upholstered to slip-covered, you can do it all. Made in USA, this is PB's most popular collection and you can get the cushions either in down (softer) or poly-wrapped (firmer).

A brand new offering from CB2, the Cielo offers two configurations and the flexibility of being able to move pieces around. It features an attractive, slim design, "chunky" polyester weave fabric and super soft cushions with "down and feather wrap downproof ticking." USA made.

Discovered through our readers, The Sadie is only one of Younger's nicely ranged offerings. Younger is a manufacturer that sells through many shops in the US and makes all of their sofas in North Carolina out of kiln-dried hardwoods and foam or down filled pillows. As they say, "we build in long-lasting quality that's usually only found in high-priced, premium pieces"

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Confluences has long been one of my favorite designs for the boldness of its soft shaping, mixable colors and low slung appeal. Fitting together like puzzle pieces, this is a high end choice and for the super contemporist as well.

If you want the most classic modern European design I can think of you need go no further than Antonio Citterio's update to his famous Charles sofa of 1997. The Michel (2012) is a seating system with modularity that allows you some range of expansion and contraction. Love a firm seat? This is for you.

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