What is the Difference Between Couch and Sofa

The main difference between couch and sofa is that couches do not usually have arms and are smaller than sofas, which have two arms.

Couches and sofas are long, comfortable, and upholstered seats for two or three people. In a general context, we use these two words, interchangeably. However, there is a slight difference between couch and sofa in design. Sofas have two arms while couches typically do not have two arms and are smaller than sofas.

Key Areas Covered

1. What is a Couch
     – Definition, Features
2. What is a Sofa
     – Definition, Features
3. What are the Similarities Between Couch and Sofa
     – Outline of Common Features
4. What is the Difference Between Couch and Sofa
     – Comparison of Key Differences

Key Terms

Couch, Loveseats Sofa, Sectional Sofa, Sleeper Sofa, SofaDifference Between Couch and Sofa - Comparison Summary

What is a Couch

A couch is a long and comfortable seat for two or three people. They are usually upholstered and often fitted with springs, tailored cushions, etc. The word couch comes from the French verb ‘coucher, which means to lie down. Originally, it referred to a piece of furniture to lie down or sleep on, like a chaise lounge.

Main Difference - Couch vs Sofa

Although we generally use the terms sofa and couch interchangeably, a couch is typically smaller than a sofa and has no arms (or only one arm). Couches are also said to be more casual or informal than sofas. However, we often use the word refer to big fluffy seats that can seat a few people. Moreover, the word couch is predominantly used in North America, Australia, South Africa, and Ireland.

What is a Sofa

A sofa is a long, upholstered bench with a back and arms, which can seat two or more people. This definition includes a variety of comfortable seating options, from loveseats to sections. Given below are some of them:

Loveseats Sofa – Sometimes known as the two-seater, these have two cushion seats and designed for seating two people. This is the most common type of sofas.

Sectional Sofa – This has multiple sections (usually two, three or four), and includes at least two pieces which join at an angle.

Sleeper Sofa – During the day, this functions as a sofa. At night, you can remove the cushions and make it a foldout bed.

Difference Between Couch and Sofa

Moreover, traditional sofas can typically seat three or more people. Many houses have sofas in the living room. They can come in a wide variety of colors and fabrics, including leather and microfiber.

Furthermore, the word sofa comes from the Arabic word ‘suffah’, which is basically a wooden bench with blankets and cushions.

Similarities Between Couch and Sofa

  • Both are long, upholstered seats for two or more people.
  • These two words are often used interchangeably, even in those in the furniture industry.

Difference Between Couch and Sofa

Definition

A couch is a long and comfortable seat for two or three people while a sofa is a long, upholstered bench with a back and arms, which can seat two or more people.

Features

While couches have no arms and are smaller than sofas, sofas are long, upholstered with a back and two arms.

Word Origin

The word couch comes from the French verb ‘coucher’, which means to lie down while the word sofa comes from the Arabic word ‘suffah’, which is basically a wooden bench covered in blankets and cushions.

Usage

The word couch is predominantly used in North America, Australia, South Africa, and Ireland while the word sofa is predominantly used in the United Kingdom.

Conclusion

Couches and sofas are long, comfortable, and upholstered seats for two or three people. The main difference between couch and sofa is that couches do not usually have arms and are smaller than sofas, which have two arms. In a general context, we use these two words interchangeably

Reference:

1. “The Top 5 Sofa Styles for Your Home.” Overstock.com Tips & Ideas, Overstock.com, 9 Nov. 2018, Available here.
2. “Couch.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 10 Aug. 2020, Available here.

Image Courtesy:

1. “704213” (CC0) via Pxhere
2. “blue, sofa, the interior of the, couch, furniture, home, lighting, session, desk, modern” (CC0) via Pxfuel

About the Author: Hasa

Hasa has a BA degree in English, French and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. Her areas of interests include literature, language, linguistics and also food.

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