I have a feeling my husband deeply hates our velvet sofa. He grumbles about it off and on and never has a nice word to say about it. Upon asking him why, he said it’s because it’s so impractical and, “You always seem to be cleaning it!” I don’t know why, but I’ve been thinking about this comment and mulling over whether our navy blue velvet sofa is, in fact, high maintenance in comparison to the other sofas we’ve had in our time. There has been a linen one, a cotton one, a leather one and now a velvet one. Here’s a picture of it.

Now, obviously a leather sofa always wins in the maintenance stakes and I still have mine for that reason (it sits opposite the velvet one). I don’t particularly like its dark brown colour anymore but it’s just so practical with a child and a dog (and a husband) that I won’t give it up! Plus it’s got that lovely worn in leather feel to it that only years of parking your bum on it can achieve. Still, leather can be, well, noisy – not a problem really, unless you are trying to move away from a toddler that has just fallen asleep! Oh, and it does show up scratches, so it’s not entirely maintenance free.

Anyway, back to velvet. I actually don’t feel our velvet sofa is higher maintenance than a standard cotton-mix textile sofa, it’s just a different sort of maintenance. I must admit velvet, particularly in a dark colour, is an absolute dust magnet but, on the other hand, I find it far easier to get stains and spills off than any other textile sofa we have previously owned and, personally, I find that far more important!

According to my extensive research (about 5 mins. on google) there are various types of velvet: silk, cotton, cotton-synthetic mix, synthetic and a few others I can’t remember, and each of them come with their own personality and maintenance requirements. Silk is obviously the most luxurious; very shiny but also sensitive and prone to pressure marks etc. (read: a complete no go in my house), cotton is stiffer, has a more matte finish, is durable and offers more depth in colour, but it is not as easy to get stains off.  Synthetic velvet is sometimes called microfibre, it doesn’t suffer pressure marks and it’s easy to remove stains from but you can’t achieve the same depth in colour as with silk or cotton.

Therefore, a cotton-synthetic mix is probably your most practical bet as it ticks all the boxes. Nice deep colour tones, durability, not too sensitive when it comes to pressure marks and it’s easier to clean.

This is precisely the velvet that we’ve got. We got it just after our daughter was born and over the last three years it’s been covered in everything: banana, milk, squashed cheese, melted chocolate, baby sick, bogeys and more (nobody will ever want to sit on our sofa again!) and I’ve managed to get it all off without any trouble. A quick once-over with a damp microfibre cloth is all it needs and it looks as good as new.

So, whether my husband likes it or not, I love our velvet sofa and it’s not going anywhere – even if I do have to de-fluff it every other day – sticky rollers at the ready! (That reminds me, I better go and buy some… .)

Is your sofa high or low maintenance? Do you love it, or are you secretly eyeing up the competition? If so, what type of sofa do you have your eye on? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to know. Liz xxx

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