A White Sofa, Inspired or Insane?

white-sofa-floral-print-pillowsNothing is more beautiful and versatile than a clean crisp white sofa. It will match anything and can be updated every season with just the change of a pillow or two. But for anyone with kids, pets, or even a husband who likes to eat Cheetos® the idea of a white sofa seems absolutely insane. In years past this was probably true but since we have moved into the age of washable slipcovers the white sofa is a little more inspired.

These are only a few of Mom's white slipcovers, she has them in every room. Photo via Visual Vamp

These are only a few of Mom’s white slipcovers, she has them in every room of the house.
Photo via The Visual Vamp

My Mom’s style of decor has been Shabby chic, long before it was chic. So I have been making white slipcovers for her for years, and not just for the sofas. She has white slipcovers on the the chairs, the ottomans, the dining chairs, even the headboard of the bed.  I know from experience a lot about white slipcovers. Mom has a dog, two cat’s, seven grand kids and a husband who eats Cheetos® and swears by the white slipcover. They can be washed and bleached and in the event of a tear or permanent damage a section can be replaced without the need of a full upholstery job. But that does not mean that they are completely stress free.

White slipcover are washable and they will need to be washed. It can be a big job, especially for a sofa slipcover, to get the cover off washed and back on again takes a bit of work. If the fabric was not per-washed before the slipcover was made it will shrink and make getting a slipcover back on almost impossible. So if you have slipcovers made make sure the fabric is washed 2-3 times in hot water to be sure you don’t have any additional shrinkage later. If you are buying a slipcovered piece from a dealer ask the question, “is this fabric per-shrunk? and if is does shrink do I have any recourse?”

Whether you have a slipcover or not the sofa is white so it is going to show dirt. You are probably not going to want to wash the slipcover as often as it may be needed. If you are like my Mom, when you know the husband is eating Cheetos® or the grand kids will be over wrestling with the dog on the sofa you might want to toss a quilt or something easily washed over the top just to save you the hassle of an extra wash of the entire slipcover.

There you have it the good, the bad, and the lovely.  So inspired or insane? I think inspired! Any sofa is going get dirty, at least the white slipcoverd one forces us to see it and clean it rather than let it blend in to the rest of the dirt.  I am willing to make a few small sacrifices for a beautiful room so bring on the white slipcover. Or if you are pet free, kid free and husband free you could go really insane and buy some white upholstery.

What do you think? Are you feeling inspired?

If you are here a few good options…

slipcover-only-for-klyne-ii-sofa C&B

 Klyne II sofa by Crate and Barrelpb windsorWindsor sofa by Pottery Barn ektorp-sofa__22361_PE107241_S4Ektorp sofa by Ikea ballarddesigns.scene7.com

Davenport Sectional by Ballard Designs

 And a few more inspirations…


Photo via Caitlin Wilson Design


Photo via Style at Home

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  1. I say yes! We have had a white/cream slipcovered sofa for 15 years. Came from Jennifer Convertibles for, I think, $800. Well, it has been great. The dog would sleep on top of the back cushions, husband naps there, and daughter sat and ate…but the covers wash beautifully and are so crisp after an afternoon in the sun. It’s looking a little worse for wear by now, but still…it’s been great!

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