Is a Sofa a Chair?

Is a Sofa a Chair?

Sofas and chairs are necessities for our living room and dining room. Due to their same function, people confuse both pieces of furniture. 

Is a Sofa a Chair? A sofa is not a chair but an upholstered piece of furniture to provide seating for more than two people. A chair only has seating for a single person. They have different shapes, sizes, varieties, and locations in your rooms. A couch is different from a futon as it is used for lying down. A single sofa chair is also known as an armchair.

What is a sofa?

It is a piece of furniture used for sitting comfortably. The word sofa is derived from the Arabic word Suffah. It is also called a couch or settee. It is long and fully upholstered with a long back, arms, and cushions.

It is similar to the bench in its shape and style. However, it has more than one seat, and multiple people can sit together on a sofa.

What is a chair?

It is also a piece of furniture used for sitting. It is only for a single person and has a back, legs, and arms. It is the most ancient and popular item of furniture. Some types are backless and without arms. 

Is a sofa a type of chair?

No, a futon is not a type of chair, as both have many differences. Due to their resemblance in shape and same function, many people consider them the same. The chairs are available in different types, and designers consider a sofa a type of chair.

From a broad perspective, one might think both items as the same. But they are different from each other. The concept and purpose of both articles of furniture are opposite.

They both are different types of upholstery and are used to provide comfortable seating. New interior designers and experts classify them separately in different kinds.

Similarities between a sofa and a chair

A futon and chair are different pieces of upholstery. You can not regard them as the same entity. But still, they have one thing in common.

They both have the same function and serve a common purpose. You can choose any design or style, each of which has the same purpose.

They both are essential to provide a comfortable and relaxed position for sitting anywhere.

The sofa is also used for sleeping and relaxing after a tiresome day. Some types of settees are convertible to a bed where you can lie and sleep comfortably.

The chairs also provide support to the back and supine. They are not wide enough to provide space for lying down. 

What is the difference between a sofa and a chair?

Despite having the same function, there are many differences between them. Here is a brief description of all of them.


The sofa has a different shape as compared to a chair. It is long and has a high back throughout the length of the couch. The legs or feet are shorts and usually covered with upholstery.

Most of the couches have two big arms to provide support to the arms. They are available in various shapes like rectangular, L-shaped, and sectional sofas.

In contrast, the chair is short and has four or three legs. They usually have one or two arms and can be armless. They have a raised flat area for sitting. The seat is wooden or upholstered to provide a relaxed point to sit.


Both pieces of furniture differ remarkably in their size. A sofa is comparatively bigger in size as compared to chairs.

An average three-seated futon is 38 inches long and 56 inches wide. It is about 30 inches tall and 42 inches deep. Couches with more seats have different sizes and dimensions.

In contrast, a chair is only 18 to 25 inches tall. A club chair is taller and has a height of 35 inches. Its back is usually 12 inches long.

It is usually 15 to 16 inches wide. They also have different weights. A settee is usually 250 to 300 pounds in weight, while a chair is only 30 to 40 pounds.

Different locations in the house

They look good in different places in the house or in the living area. For example, a settee goes well in the center of the living room.

It is present in front of the TV or mantel. You can not place it in the corners or around the tables. It is not placed beneath the windows or in kitchens. They also mix well with other furniture on the side of the bed in a bedroom.

While the chairs are usually present around a dining table or coffee table. People place them in the corner alone to elevate the grace of your room.

They are present around the office desk or computer desk. The accent chairs are part of the living room to fill up the space.

They are also placed in the lawns with a small table for family time. They mix well in the vanities in study rooms or libraries. They are also a part of a dresser.


Couches also differ in their material. The settee’s frame consists of pure wood or plywood. The cushions contain synthetic fibers, like polyester or cotton.

Some types are fully upholstered, and the whole structure is padded. The cushions and frame are covered with fabrics like velvet or silk. They are also made from pure or synthetic leather.

In contrast, the chair’s frame is made from various materials like wood, plastic, or metal.

The seat is sometimes without cushions or other upholstery. The seats with cushions contain foam in the cushion cover. The legs and frame are devoid of any cover.

Multiple varieties

Both items have different varieties and designs depending upon their intended use. For example, couches have more variety than chairs.

L-shape sofas, ottoman, armchairs, and sectional futons have different types.

The sofa bed is the most demanding type of couch.

They have different varieties depending upon the shape of the frame and arms, like round arm and square arm couches.

Chairs also have different varieties depending on the style and purpose. For example, desk chairs are present in schools, libraries, and offices.

Club chairs are present in club bars and restaurants. Wing and chesterfield chairs are also different types of chairs.


Settees or couches are more expensive than chairs. On average, a standard 3-seated sofa costs about $600 to $1200.The price can go higher for customized or five-seated items.

The price also varies depending on the material and design of the furniture. Sectional or leather sofas are more expensive than all types of settees.

A chair is a cheap item of furniture and costs about $200 to $800.The price of a recliner or office chair is higher than ordinary plastic chairs. Pure wooden furniture is rare and is more expensive than other types of upholstery.

Comparison between sofa and chair

Features Sofa Chair
Shape Rectangular or round Various shapes
Size Long Short
Varieties More Varieties Less variety
Cost Expensive Cheap
Location In the center of the living room Around the table
Material Wood Wood, plastic or metal

Is the sofa and couch the same?

A sofa and a couch are similar in style and shape but differ in their intended use.

You can also use the word couch for the settees and futons. The settees are used for sitting, while sofas are used for lying down.

Couch comes from the French word coucher, which means to go to bed. They can have up to 4 seats. It can have one or two arms, while futons are supposed to have two arms. The futons can also be armless.

Are sofas and loveseats similar?

The loveseat is quite similar to the sofa in appearance. But they differ in their size, shape, and purpose.

Sofas are perfect for providing seating for multiple people. People use it to spend some quality time with friends and family.

While the loveseat contains only two seats to provide comfortable seating for couples. It was built especially for women to provide comfortable seating and to tackle their heavy dresses.

Settees can have more than two seats; Love seats can have only two seat cushions.

The size of seat cushion of the loveseat is smaller than a futon or settee. The love seat is not placed in the center of the living room. It fits well along the side walls of the rooms.

Should I buy a sofa or a chair?

Buying any piece of furniture depends upon your personal preferences. Each of them has some good points and some drawbacks.

For example, a settee has soft and comfortable seat cushions. So you can sit comfortably on it. But long sitting on a soft cushion can make you lazy. 

In contrast, the chairs are perfect for supine and correcting posture. But the hard seats can cause back aches and other problems.

In addition, they are not as comfortable as a couch. It helps you to remain active during working hours. But prolonged sitting can make you tired and lethargic.

What is a single sofa chair called?

A single-person couch is also called an armchair. It is fully upholstered and has the shape of a chair. It has side arms on both sides to provide an armrest.

They are long and wide than ordinary wooden or plastic chairs. They provide support to the back and soft seating cushions. 

They mix well with 3 or 4 seated sofas in the living room. You can also place them in the corner of the bedroom with a stool.

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