Simplicity Sofas' furniture construction is more of an art form than an industrial process. Our furniture is built by hand, one piece at a time, in the long tradition of fine North Carolina furniture.
Frames - The photo below shows our solid oak frame construction. Our frames are corner-blocked, doweled, stapled and glued. All frames are backed by an unlimited lifetime warranty.
Spring Support System - Our furniture uses a premium quality elasticized webbing spring system. Elasticized webbing has been used for high end hand-crafted upholstery for more than 100 years. A high quality elasticized webbing, when used with a strong, high quality frame, is typically trouble-free for the 20+ year life of the furniture.
Interior design blogs sometimes criticize the use of elasticized webbing. There is a reason for this. Webbing can also be found in some poor quality furniture. The difference is that a high end product will have a stronger, thicker webbing. It will have more strands of the webbing criss crossing each other. Also, those strands will be securely fastened to a very strong frame.
Lower quality furniture uses fewer strands of webbing. It also will be fastened more loosely because a strong, well-secured webbing would pull apart a cheap poorly made frame.
Genuine 8-way hand-tied coil foundations have long been considered the gold standard for seating support systems. Simplicity Sofas furniture can be made with 8-way hand tied coils. They add about $600 to the cost of a sofa. However, they do not improve the strength or comfort of our furniture.
Although 8-way hand tied coils have been the world-wide standard for high end furniture for more than 100 years, its use has been drastically reduced over the past two decades.
There are three primary reasons for the demise of 8-way hand-tied coils.
- Comfort -- 8-way hand-tied coils first came into popular use more than 100 years ago. At that time, they were critical to ensuring a comfortable seat. This was back when cushions were being made using down and feathers, horsehair and cotton. Eventually foam began to replace those early cushion materials, but the early foams were far less resilient than those now in use. In addition, cushions were traditionally thinner than they are today. As a result, you could actually feel the foundation beneath the cushions.
- Today, cushions are made with far more resilient (and thicker) foams or with coil springs inside the cushion core. As a result, the foundation used beneath those cushions becomes far less important to the overall comfort. It is almost impossible, even for an expert, to tell the difference between different foundation support systems when seated on a high quality cushion.
- Skill -- Many of the older upholsterers who were highly skilled at making 8-way hand-tied coils are dying out or retiring. Very few new upholsterers are willing to make the commitment of time necessary to master this difficult and physically demanding skill for which there is a steadily declining demand.
- Many of the 8 way foundations sold today are actually drop-in coil units. Although they feature the 8 way knotted twine connecting the coils, that twine does not provide any real support or additional comfort. These "drop-in" units do not require the same level of skill or time consuming labor to install.
- Cost -- An 8-way hand-tied coil foundation installed by an expert adds at least $600 to the cost of a typical sofa.
- Durability -- The 8-way hand tied coils are actually less durable than many of the cheaper foundation options.
Our elasticized webbing spring system is covered by an unlimited lifetime warranty. If one of our frames fails at any time for any reason, we will replace the damaged part at no charge.
Simplicity Sofas offers a choice of two different cushion constructions. Both are backed by 10 year warranties.
1) 2.4 density HR (High Resilience) Futurecel™ foam cushions. (This is our "firm" cushion option.)
Our 2.4 density Futurecel™ foam cushion is one of the finest quality cushions available in the furniture industry at any price. These cushions weigh 1/3 more than the standard 1.8 density foam cushions used by most mid-priced furniture manufacturers. The test of a high quality cushion is its ability to retain its shape and resilience over 10 years or more. [Resilience is the ability for a cushion to "bounce back" to its original shape and loft after someone has been sitting on it.]
Futurecel™ is also eco-friendly, fabricated using a soybean derivitive that reduces the need for petroleum-based ingredients by approximately 20%.
2) Spring-down cushions. (This is our "softer" cushion option.)
Although these super-premium cushions are still "firm" they are more "plush" than the Futurecel™ foam cushions.
Spring Down cushions are designed for a softer initial feel but to be highly supportive once compressed. To achieve this, the heart of the cushion is a pocketed coil spring unit (also known as a Marshall unit) made with 14 gauge tempered steel springs that are individually wrapped in a fabric cover and mechanically tied together to create a complete innerspring core. The spring core is then surrounded with a foam border to completely encase the spring unit.
The final cushion is then encased in a tightly woven channeled envelope of high quality down proof ticking, and filled with a blend of feathers and down. The final cushion provides a smooth ride as each material layer yields as the weight is distributed. The first level of comfort comes from the slow release of air from the down proof ticked envelope. The second level comes from the compression of the feather-down and fiber layer and the air stored within. Lastly, you will feel the support of the innersprings as they equally distribute your weight across the cushion.
Here is a diagram of our Spring-down cushion.