All About Sectionals

A father teaches his son to play guitar while sitting on a sectional couch

Last Updated: June 15, 2023

A sectional couch, also known as a sectional sofa, typically offers a range of features designed to provide comfort, flexibility, and aesthetic appeal. While specific features can vary depending on the design and manufacturer, here are some common features found in sectional couches:

Multiple Sections for Sectional Couches

A 6-piece brown leather sectional couch in a family room.

Sectional couches are composed of two or more sections that can be arranged in various configurations, such as an L-shape, U-shape, or curved arrangement. These sections can often be detached and reconfigured to suit different room layouts.

Chaise Lounges

Grey Lincoln Upholstery 4-Piece Sectional with Left-Arm Facing Chaise

Many sectional couches include a chaise lounge section, which is an extended seat with a backrest on one end. This allows for additional leg support and relaxation, enabling you to stretch out and recline comfortably.

Adding a sectional can breathe new life into a tired family room. Read more here.

Reclining Sectionals

Black leather reclining three-piece sectional sofa

Some sectional couches have reclining seats or footrests that can be manually adjusted or operated using power reclining or mechanical mechanisms. This feature allows you to recline and elevate your legs for enhanced comfort and relaxation.

Storage Sectional Couches

Grey upholstery six-piece reclining sectional couch with storage features

Certain sectional couch models feature built-in storage compartments. These can be found beneath the seats or in the armrests, providing convenient spaces to store blankets, pillows, magazines, or remote controls.

Convertible Options

Light gray three-piece sleeper sectional sofa

Several sectional couches come with convertible features, such as pull-out sofa beds or sleeper sections. These allow the couch to transform into a guest bed when needed, providing additional sleeping space.

Cup Holders & Tray Tables

A cupholder pops out of the front of the armrest in this brown leather sectional.

Some sectional couches include cup holders built into the armrests, allowing you to keep beverages within reach. Additionally, there may be tray tables that can be attached or stored in the sectional for holding snacks, laptops, or other items.

Modular Design

Blue upholstery two-piece sectional sofa

Modular sectional couches offer individual pieces that can be arranged and rearranged to create various seating configurations. This flexibility allows you to customize the layout according to your preferences and the available space.

Modular Sectionals are an extremely popular choice for living spaces right now due to the ability to grow with your space. I love them because they can be as small or as large as you need depending on your living space, family dynamic or personal preference.

Jordan Blackwell – Upholstery Furniture Category Manager

Upholstery Options for Sectionals

Moss colored two-piece sectional couch

Sectional couches come in a wide range of upholstery materials, such as fabric, leather, or synthetic materials. Different colors, patterns, and textures are available to suit various styles and preferences.

Sectional Couch Comfort Features

Light grey upholstery and faux fur three-piece sectional with a matching oversized swivel chair

Sectional couches often feature plush cushions, padded armrests, and deep seating for enhanced comfort. Some models may incorporate additional features like lumbar support, adjustable headrests, massage, heated seating, or memory foam padding.

Sectionals with Decorative Styling

Multi-color sectional ranging from grey to cranberry with decorative pins for styling

Sectional couches can have decorative accents like tufted upholstery, contrasting piping, or decorative stitching. These details add visual interest and style to the overall design. With many options available, you will surely find one that matches your style.

The Difference Between Left and Right Arm Facing

Sometimes while shopping for a sectional sofa you will run into two different descriptions, left arm-facing or right arm-facing chaise. What this means is which side of the sectional the chaise lounge part will be located. This is important to know based on how the room you place the sectional into is organized. See more details below:

As you can see from the images, which side the chaise is facing is determined by which side it is on when you are looking at the sectional from the front side.

The Facts of Buying a Sectional Sofa

While sectionals are wonderful options for many reasons, there are some factors that could be a negative mark against them when you’re shopping for new living room furniture. Here is a short list of things that you need to know before you do purchase a sectionals couch:

  • Sectionals take up a lot of space – Be sure that you know the dimensions of the room that you’re shopping for along with the dimensions of the open space. Also, consider that a sectional can make your space seem smaller once it’s in place.
  • The sectional that you buy now is for the space that you currently have – If you ever move, the sectional can be problematic in your new home.
  • Limited to no space available to place food and drinks – While some sectionals do offer cup holders, and even fewer offer flat surfaces that can be used for food, overall, most sectionals lack these features.
  • Sectionals ARE the room – As big as they are and with so much seating, a sectional typically becomes the focal point of the room that you place them within.
  • No more durable than regular living room furniture – A sectional is really just a really big couch, the same style as many smaller pieces as well as the same construction. As such, their durability is no greater than a regular sofa or loveseat.

Need More Help?

You can contact one of Gardner White’s experts at (248) 481-2208, chat with one online, or visit one of our local Michigan stores.

Dave has been in the furniture industry in one capacity or another for the last decade. When not writing about furniture he enjoys cooking for his family, guitar playing, oil painting, the Detroit Tigers, and the comedic antics of English Bulldogs.