This “Chic” West Elm Sofa Solved All My Small Living Room Layout Problems

published Mar 16, 2024
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West Elm Mella sofa in sitting room.
Credit: Margaret Rose Larson

Despite loving all things interior design and spending a significant portion of my free time browsing furniture websites and scrolling on Pinterest for inspiration, I’ve always struggled to find sofas that speak to me. Many excellent, well-made options are out there, but lots of those are either too expensive or too big for my small living room

My living room sofa was looking a bit beat-up, though, and as someone who’s always eager to revamp my space, I decided it was time to start looking for a new one. One of the biggest challenges of living in my current apartment is that my building’s front door measures only 30 inches wide — yes, it’s narrower than a yardstick! I’ve had to creatively wiggle all kinds of furniture pieces through the door, and I did have to call the couch doctor (a service that cuts sofas in half and sews them back together like nothing ever happened) once before. That was a pretty costly undertaking, and I’d rather not go through that process again unless absolutely necessary. 

All that’s to say, my search for a sofa was pretty limited. I couldn’t purchase anything, unless at least one side came in at 30 inches or under, and because I have a pretty narrow living room, I also didn’t want my sofa to exceed 70 inches wide, max. The space is simply too small to squeeze in much more, and having tried a few different configurations in this area, a sofa really does work best floating in front of the windows versus anchored against a wall.

A lot of the loveseats that I, well, fell in love with, were just too deep and bulky, which made me wonder if I’d ever find a relatively compact sofa that fit with my aesthetic. I spent hours browsing all of my favorite furniture websites, secondhand shops, and more, and eventually, while scrolling through West Elm’s offerings, I finally found the sofa of my dreams: the Mella Sofa

Coming in at 67.3 inches wide, 33.3 inches deep, 28.7 inches high — and just $799, which isn’t cheap, but for West Elm is very reasonable — this sofa was a winner on so many fronts. Price and size are the obvious ones, but one additional nice thing about living in New York City, at least, is that delivery from major retailers can be extra speedy when items are in stock, which this sofa was (and still is). Case in point: I ordered the Mella on a Tuesday and it was sitting in my living room by that Friday. 

Credit: Margaret Rose Larson

As soon as the delivery team unboxed the sofa and helped set it up in my space, I knew I had made the right decision. The sofa features a chic, low-profile bat wing back that gently curves at its ends, a silhouette that feels minimalist but not too modern in style. It complements my eclectic, vintage decor perfectly. The “clay” colored velvet reads as tan in person, and it’s neutral enough to work well with many other shades so it can really jibe with any aesthetic.

I also like that the seat cushion is comfortable but still firm; the piece doesn’t really show any indentation, even if you’ve been sitting on it for a while and then finally stand up. The legs are slightly exposed, too, so you get that little hit of wood at the frame’s bottom, which makes the piece feel just the right amount of formal. 

I couldn’t recommend this sofa more; you’d never guess it comes in at such a competitive price based on how stylish it looks and how comfy it is. I’ve even seen a few Instagram posts from friends considering the same piece — I’ve responded telling them to make the purchase because they won’t regret it! This piece has really made my living room feel more like home, and I don’t feel like I had to compromise on style or size.