Stretch and Cover in the Test Lab

Stretch and Cover in the Test Lab

Jul 19, 2006

Product: Stretch and Cover Slipcovers
Price: from $119

Rating: Recommend*

We should have retired this Ikea sofa a long time ago. But we bought it back in the day when Ikea still manufactured pretty high quality at low prices, and it has stood the test of time well. Plus, we really like it: it's comfy, attractive, and scaled for small spaces. But as you can see, it has seen better days, and was in dire need of some cosmetic work.

In general, we're not big fans of slipcovers. They tend to look frumpy fast. It's almost as though someone comes and tugs them out of place every time you turn your head. So we called in two upholsterers to estimate the cost of recovering our sofa's worn twill fabric. Both came in at $900+, which is twice the original bargain basement price of the sofa.

We quickly revisited the idea of slip covers.

After some research we found a $119 product called Stretch and Cover, "the only ready-made that rivals custom-made." We were intrigued by the fiber content: mostly cotton with a little spandex, kind of like our yoga clothes. We dicided to forge ahead.

The verdict? Far better than hoped.

The first time we put on the cover we spent a good half hour wrestling with the excess fabric and trying to figure out how to fit it over the T-shaped seat and armrests…just-so. We finally succeeded, not even bothering with the optional foam tubes, which you can use to keep things in place extra tight. The cover didn't seem to need them.

Then we sat down, got up, and looked at the results. It was almost as though we hadn't been there.

Stretch and Cover hugged the sofa's original lines rather than creating its own tent-like effect. Much more flattering. And it stayed in place over time as well, even with the Child playing on it everyday. Other than an occasional re-tucking along the back cushion, the only maintenance required is a periodic throw in the washing machine…and about 10 minutes to wrestle it back on.

*Our Ratings:
Strong Recommend
Weak Recommend
Don't Recommend

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