Living Room

I Ordered The Sofa! Now I Have To Choose A Color (Fabric Swatches Arrived!)

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Y’all, I ordered the sofa! I went with my favorite — the James sofa from Interior Define. I ordered it while it was still on sale, but I haven’t selected a fabric for it yet. They’ll send up to 10 swatches, and they just arrived yesterday, so I’ve been staring at them ever since. I looked at them in the afternoon light, in the evening light, and in the early morning light, and I think I have my color picked out. I think. 😀 But y’all know me well enough to know that I could change my mind at any minute.

For those who missed my sofa post, you can get caught up here and see the other sofas that were contenders for the living room. The James was my favorite, but it was also the most expensive, so it took a few days for me to convince myself to go for it. But I want a quality sofa this time (not another two-year sofa), and those cost money. So now I’m on to the task of choosing the fabric.

Here are the ten fabrics (all velvet) that I ordered, from left to right: Galaxy, Greige, Sterling, Narwhal, Peacock, Celadon, Bloom, Coral, Scuba, and Lavender.

I knew before I ordered them that those last four wouldn’t work, but they said I could order up to 10, and I wanted to see those in person just because. 😀 And while I love the Peacock and Celadon, I really don’t want to change the look of the room so drastically. I’m not redecorating this room. I simply want to swap out one cheap gray sofa for a quality gray sofa, and then move on. That’s it. So right off the bat, that narrowed it down to four grays.

Here’s what they looked like on the website mockup where you can click on the fabric and it changes the picture.

Here’s the Galaxy…

James sofa from interior define - galaxy velvet

And Greige…

And this is sterling…

James sofa from interior define - sterling velvet

And Narwhal…

Just based on those pictures alone, I would have sworn that I’d choose either the Greige or Sterling. I’m so glad that I didn’t order based on pictures! Because in the end, I don’t think either one of those would be the best choice.

In person, the Greige was definitely one of my two favorites, but the Sterling was way too blue. I ruled out Narwhal because it was way too dark. And it also has a funny undertone to it, but I can’t put my finger on it. Green? My brain wants to process it as a green undertone, but I don’t think that’s it. It just looks “off” to me.

So within minutes, I had pretty much narrowed it down to either Greige or Galaxy.

Velvet can be a tricky fabric to select. Because it has such an obvious nap to it, it can look really dark one way, and really light the other way. Case in point, check out the two grays on the end in this picture. The one on the far left is Galaxy. The one just to the right of Galaxy is Greige.

velvet samples for new sofa from interior define - 1

But here they are looking at them from the opposite direction. It looks like I swapped the Galaxy and Greige, but I didn’t. They’re in the same spot.

And they’re in the same order here — Galaxy on the far left, and Greige just to the right of it.

But here they are again — Galaxy on the far right (appearing much darker) with Greige just to the left of it (appearing much lighter).

So the two colors are actually much close than I had originally thought, with Greige just a bit lighter than Galaxy, but not a whole lot. They just stapled the samples to the cards with the nap going in opposite directions. So when I placed the two samples side-by-side with the nap going in the same direction on each one, they looked a whole lot closer in color. Here’s Galaxy on the left, and Greige on the right, with the nap going up on both samples.

And the same order — Galaxy on the left and Greige on the right — with the nap going down on both samples.

Of course, on parts of a sofa line the back and the bench seat cushion, the nap will go neither up nor down. It has to be railroaded, with the nap going sideways. So here’s the Greige on top and the Galaxy in the middle with the nap going sideways.

Here they are against the purple chair — Galaxy on the left, Greige on the right.

And here they are on the fireplace mantel. I should have flipped one of them so that the nap would be going in the same direction.

After narrowing it down to these two for sure, I flipped the cards over to read the details, and that pretty much sealed my decision. I don’t know if you can see this…

The Galaxy is a performance plush velvet with a rub count of 100K, while the Greige is a mod velvet with a rub count of 25K. That’s quite a difference in durability. Plus, the mod velvet isn’t listed on their site as a cat friendly fabric, where the performance plush velvet is. So with those important characteristics in mind, that pretty much made the decision for me.

I was kind of concerned about the Galaxy being too dark (because their mock-up picture looks so incredibly dark), so I contacted Interior Define to ask questions, and the lady who helped me sent pictures of sofas covered in each of the three grays for me to to see what actual sofas in actual rooms look like with the three grays. (I was still curious about the Sterling, even though I knew it was too cool/blue.)

Here’s the one with Galaxy performance plush velvet.

velvet sofa from interior define with galaxy performance plush velvet

I think it’s beautiful! It is dark, but the way that light plays off of the velvet, it has enough highlights that it doesn’t look like a solid dark gray blob. I think it’ll be perfect. And it’s really quite similar to the gray I have now, which I really do love.

So Galaxy it is!

Now I just have to let them know my selection, and in 22-25 weeks, I’ll have a new sofa!

Yes. 22-25 WEEKS. 😀 Ugh. Everything takes so long now, but that’s okay. I can be patient. And this will put the arrival of my new sofa around my birthday in June (if I counted correctly), so it’ll be a nice birthday gift for me. 😀

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48 Comments

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  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    BeckyJ
    January 21, 2022 at 10:45 am

    Galaxy was my pick from the very first picture. Glad it made the cut! The wait is awful right now. Daughter needed furniture for her new house and had to settle for sofa she could get in less than 16 weeks instead of custom fabric special order that she really wanted (they had purged old furniture in the spring before purchase of new home so they really needed seating!)

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Katie
    January 21, 2022 at 10:56 am

    Good for you! I’m glad you went with the one you really loved. I know it will look great.

    I have to say though, I would be soooo tempted by that dark teal fabric. In the pictures it looks exactly the same shade as your fireplace and entry wall. I don’t have a great eye for design so it’s likely that the grey would look better anyway, I just love that teal!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Andrea
    January 21, 2022 at 11:14 am

    I was going to say pick the color that matches your kitty’s fur. Also darker fabric show fewer stains. I’ve also been tempted by Interior Define and even ordered swatches. Can’t wait to see your experience.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Deb
    January 21, 2022 at 11:22 am

    Glad you went with the one you loved, and I like the neutral color choice. There’s a lot of beautiful color every where else.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jessica
    January 21, 2022 at 11:32 am

    Sometimes when there are so many choices, I would go with my first instinct. In this case, the Greige but that’s purely based on the initial photos I saw. Good thing you took the time to do a thorough selection process especially with the velvet as that material definitely can change color in different lighting. Thanks for sharing your process with us – we can learn from your experience. It was a good selection! Can’t wait to see it in the room when you get it in 22-25 weeks. 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    marcia greene
    January 21, 2022 at 11:39 am

    absolutely the galaxy – deep rich color

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Chris
    January 21, 2022 at 11:44 am

    I was liking Greige until you turned it sideways and then I preferred Galaxy. The fact that Galaxy is a performance fabric sealed the deal for me too. I think it’s going to be a great choice and you have a bright living room so I don’t think it will be too dark.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Karen
    January 21, 2022 at 12:14 pm

    I think your new couch will be beautiful. FYI … another fabric that is cat friendly is microfiber. It looks and feels very similar to velvet but you can clean any spots that show up with a damp cloth. We have had three couches, two love seats, four chairs and two ottomans covered with microfiber. We love it! Cozy and comfortable and our 11+ cats have never snagged it!

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Linda
      January 21, 2022 at 4:42 pm

      I’m going to keep this information in mind when I begin looking for new furniture! Good info. Thanks for sharing it.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Mary Ellen
    January 21, 2022 at 12:18 pm

    You can’t beat performance fabric! You couch looks brown undertones with your gray samples.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Christine in California
    January 21, 2022 at 12:32 pm

    Lovely choice on your new sofa and fabric.

    Now that it is on order, please consider working with your veterinarian on a behavior modification plan for your cat! It would be such a waste to have the same issue with this new, beautiful, durable sofa.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Elaine Ness
    January 21, 2022 at 12:38 pm

    Perfect choice on both counts and what I thought you would choose, which I chose too. (The info about the durability rating was new to me and so helpful.) I like the color you chose because it affords more contrast with your rug.

    Think of the 22 (?) week wait as a reward for what you can realistically get finished in the other rooms by then. You can do wonders in 5 months.

    Sofa installation day is going to be such fun.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Caroline-ND
    January 21, 2022 at 12:59 pm

    I’m impressed you made such a well thought out but quick decision. You got the sofa you (and I) loved and have chosen the fabric!

    Did you consider the peacock or celadon colors? I would have jumped on those in a heartbeat.

    Now you can call in the fabric choice, pay for the sofa, and cross that item off your list.

    I waited over 6 months to get my shower system made (in Kansas), delivered here to the northern prairie, and then installed, but now it’s done.

    All good things come to even us impatient folks.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi Linauer
      January 21, 2022 at 1:58 pm

      I loved the celadon, but purple and green remind me of my college dorm, and I just can’t go back there. 😀 And the peacock is beautiful, but it’s just a touch too green for my taste. I prefer my teals to be more on the blue side instead of the green side. Had it been just a touch bluer, it would have been VERY tempting.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Cindy
    January 21, 2022 at 1:17 pm

    Galaxy was my pick from the very first picture. It’s beautiful! Can’t wait til you get it….

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Janice Jeanne Dinse
    January 21, 2022 at 1:24 pm

    Wow, it is hard to believe your new sofa is worn out already. Didn’t think you used that room very much. I like the Galaxy, but would the blue match your fireplace?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Dawn
    January 21, 2022 at 1:27 pm

    Too anyone questioning a “peacock” couch…I got a “peacock” slip cover when I first moved into my new house to match a rug that I bought. It was going to get me through maybe a year until I could afford new furniture for that room. It’s been 4 years with the “peacock” slipcover and every time I look at the couch, I say to myself, I should JUST reupholster the thing in turquoise. I love it and it was “on a whim” decisions!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Laura
    January 21, 2022 at 1:49 pm

    You like the sofa you have so I don’t think you’ll regret your choice. I also think spending the extra money is worth it in the long run. I liked the teal, but I love any shade of blue. Galaxy was my choice of the grays. The rub count definitely seals the deal!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Shirley
    January 21, 2022 at 2:01 pm

    That sofa has a regal look to it. I love it.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Desi
      January 22, 2022 at 8:04 pm

      I like all, of course, my favorite was the Griege but after seeing the durability count I would select the galaxy. When I was in my 20s (many year ago), I ordered a sofa from a local St Louis department store. I wanted something that had some yellow floral (popular then) in it. I wound up ordering this beautiful white sofa with shades of yellow flowers and small green leaves on it, beautiful! I waited over three months and finally delivery day. When it came off the truck I was in shock, it was dark green with white floral. By the time they reordered it was six months. So it may have been years before and never heard of Covid, it still took a long time. That sofa lasted for many years and gave it away when I retired it, about 30 years!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Tracy
    January 21, 2022 at 3:18 pm

    My pick from the beginning 😃
    not only rub count but cleaning code too!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ellen Shook
    January 21, 2022 at 3:43 pm

    Good choice since you prefer to stick to grey, although to my eyes, I really like that coral! The lavender is a close second. I think those could work, too, but it’s no my LR! Cheers!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Linda
    January 21, 2022 at 4:13 pm

    I would have chosen the exact same thing! Galaxy for sure. And I picked the expensive sofa too, lol.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Toni
    January 21, 2022 at 4:19 pm

    I like the dark teal!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Terri
    January 21, 2022 at 4:30 pm

    LOVE the Greige!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    JJ
    January 21, 2022 at 6:47 pm

    Excellent decision, Kristi. I’m glad you’re getting the sofa that’s your first choice. It looks like a well-tailored piece.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sue
    January 21, 2022 at 7:10 pm

    Love your sofa choice. I’d go with the teal. It would look so nice with the rug. I think gray has sort of had its day but in your home you know what’s best. Cheers!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Michele
    January 21, 2022 at 7:32 pm

    Very pretty color! That will look perfect in your living room.
    I’m also a fan of the navy one that looks textured.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Marianne in Mo.
    January 21, 2022 at 7:57 pm

    YAY!!!! Love the color. You are right, it is similar to what you have. These wait times are crazy! I ordered a pair of shoes (recommended by an Influencer) on 01/12. First notice I got was it was being shipped, that was 01/17. Today I did a trace, it arrived to CHINA 01/20 ready to ship overseas!!!! Had I known it was coming from China, I would not have ordered. Even though things are often made there, they are usually coming from an exporter elsewhere, so they don’t take too long. When I ordered them, I assumed it was a QVC vendor, because this person often buys and recommends stuff from them. Last time I let her “influence” ME!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sandra
    January 21, 2022 at 10:19 pm

    Yahoo! Great! I love your choice and I think you did your homework.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ginny
    January 22, 2022 at 9:52 am

    Yikes! I had no idea there was so much to consider. Thanks for educating me on the multiple facets of velvet. I love the color and the style you chose. On a silly note, I was thinking that if a cat’s claws won’t stick to it, how will someone’s butt stay on? I have a vision of an elderly lady in a polyester dress trying to stay upright. Just my odd sense of humor.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Oriole
    January 22, 2022 at 10:45 am

    How do you buy a sofa or chair without sitting in it? Did this come from a store or show room.
    Galaxy would be the best match for the carpet on my monitor.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi Linauer
      January 22, 2022 at 6:51 pm

      I’m five feet tall. There’s no such thing as a comfortable sofa for me. I can buy locally and sit on every single sofa in the showroom, and none of them will “fit” me. So I learn to find a comfortable way to sit on whatever sofa I have, which usually requires my feet up and lots of throw pillows.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lauren
    January 22, 2022 at 11:59 am

    If you end up loving the sofa style that sits on the floor, for your family room addition you might want to look at the new one Costco has for only $1k…spend in the living room, save in the family room! Can’t wait to see you new sofa!

    https://www.costco.com/thomasville-whitley-4-piece-fabric-modular-sectional.product.100702090.html

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jaylyn
    January 22, 2022 at 12:49 pm

    Good choice for the fabric for your sofa it will be worth the wait. 👌🏻❤️

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ally
    January 23, 2022 at 1:51 am

    It’s funny because I took one look at your picture of swatches and thought, “Those gray colors are so boring and blah. Avoid those for sure! I love the four colored swatches on the end. They really make the colors in the rug pop. Kristi should go with one of those four colors” and you end up going with the grays. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised because you never choose what I think looks best but your designs always end up beautiful anyways (maybe I’m just bad at picking colors, lol).

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Eileen
    January 23, 2022 at 8:27 am

    Galaxy was my pick, also. I think it will hold up better and is a really rich color.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Eysan
    January 24, 2022 at 2:33 am

    Yeah It is really good reflect the light. Nice color.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    HeatherB
    January 24, 2022 at 10:01 am

    Galaxy was my favorite from the start, with Greige a second. It’s going to be beautiful!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Marcia
    January 25, 2022 at 12:02 am

    Can you order the same dye lot as the sample? That can sometimes be a big, unwelcome difference. I really like the color you chose. Fingers crossed!
    ma