Armless Sofa Sectionals
When the term “sectional sofa” comes to mind, it can conjure images of a lumbering L-shaped couch in a sad beige that weighs a ton and takes up most of the room. While this can be a memory from made-for-television movies from the 70’s, it does no justice to this innovative modern sofa. In fact, the sectional sofa is one of the most versatile, stylish and practical furniture pieces ever designed.
A Sofa is Born
In Europe the idea that the sofa could be a communal seating area was mostly ignored during the early period of its history. Way ahead of things was the Persian divan and eventual influence from West Asia and the Islamic States infiltrated Europe with ideas. (Greek and Roman couches prior were for men’s reclining and eating). Centuries before the sectional sofa made its debut, craftsmen on both sides of the English Channel tried to extend the width of a chair to fabricate a usable sofa design. The earliest surviving sofa was made in England in the 1690s and was arguably given the simple name of “double Windsor chairs without a division.” In France 1686, a low-backed style called a canapé was developed. Two years later, a Parisian craftsman described himself as “a specialist in sophas” from the Arabic for “bench with cushions” and soon, many styles of these extended seats were called sofas.
This simple-type design was short-lived in France, as decorative style of the time lent itself to the more elaborate, and craftsmen invented new tools and techniques for carving or sculpting wood. Sofas became elegantly carved and gilt with soft rounded cushions stuffed with feathers, straw or horsehair. The seats and backs were then wrapped in burlap and covered in rich velvet, wool or silk. These early modern sofas were very expensive and consequently were the prerogative of elites in Europe.
The late 17th Century saw a kind of sofa craze with some elite having sofas in every room. Others saw the sofa as risqué and encouraging of permissive behavior and thought that the overly plush seating would lead to – well, no good. The 18th century brought in the new “upholder” and the idea of upholstery with creators such as Hepplewhite and Chippendale. By the nineteenth century, the industrial revolution and the sewing machine had dramatically lowered the price of sofas making them available to the rising middle class, and with the introduction of the coil spring – the sofa was even more comfortable.
The Sofa Comes of Age
Over the centuries, hundreds of variations on the sofa have been developed, many of which have remained popular to this day. The Divan, the Chaise, the traditional deep-button Chesterfield, the Davenport, and the Loveseat are still manufactured and a major part of modern home décor. The Victorian sectional sofa and Parlor Set were perhaps the most drastically upgraded designs with the coming of Mid Century Modern in the 1950’s. This upgrade translated to what we know of as the Modern Sectional Sofa, at the heart of modern living.
Welcome the Modern Sectional
With the onset of Mid Century Modern, the general architectural and furniture design perspective changed from ornamental beauty to functional beauty. What was heavy and embellished became light and spare. There was a departure from tradition and a focus on independence, free thinking, the new, the original, and innovation without artifice. The sectional sofa epitomizes the Modern ideal of the beauty of nature reflected in form and function.
The sectional sofa with its sleek, low-profile was pioneered by designers such as Charles and Ray Eames, emphasizing minimalist styles with bold geometric shapes. The Sectional Sofa was designed as a long continuous sofa or sofa sections, free of embellishment, that negated the need for chairs or separate pieces of furniture and, some could be separated and re-configured in the space. This era also saw the development of the innovative built-in sofa bed - an important part of the current sectional sofa designs.
Sectional for the Space
The current sectional sofa for the contemporary lifestyle comes in a variety of design variations. The general low design may include wood or metal inset legs or may be more box-like and seem to rest directly on the floor. Current styles include scaled down smaller units to support a smaller space, as well as built-in chaise design or sofa-bed. One may choose an upholstered model reminiscent of Mid Century Modern designs as well. Viesso offers chic sustainable choices like the deep framed Mota Wedge Open Sectional, with its slender, balanced proportions that embody modern lines and versatility.
The Genius of Modular
Nothing is more innovative and creative than the modular design in sectional sofas. Modular designs enable the individual to conjoin, separate, and reconfigure the units in different arrangements. This brings the elements of movement and freedom to a room, allowing for a more organic use of a sectional. Viesso’s Nein Modular Sectionals are synonymous with excellence in modular design.
Viesso’s Nein Modulars are clever, and they combine the best of comfort and personality – which is what one seeks in Modern design. There are as many reasons to love the designs as there are variations in style and purchasing options and configurations. They can be bought together say, the Nein Corner with the Nein Ottoman and the Nein Left Wedge Open, or separately and mixed as you grow. They can be sized within an inch; Viesso offers 500 fabric options from which to choose, and sustainable green materials and manufacturing as well.
Enough cannot be said about the newest variation in modular sectional design, meaning sustainable materials and construction. Viesso has managed to bring the ideals of Modern design in simplicity of line and an organic relationship to the natural world by bringing the consciousness of sustainable materials and construction into their design model. This is wonderful – frames from locally sourced SFI wood, low or no chemical use in material processing, and made to order pieces, avoiding bulk stockpiling. Browse their website www.viesso.com for the best choices and style options for modern living and imagine something wonderful for your place.