5 Types of Sofas: An Interior Designer’s Guide - post image background.

5 Types of Sofas: An Interior Designer’s Guide

Knowing what type of sofa will best suit a space can be difficult, from small corner sofas and modular sofas to vintage-style sofas and sofabeds, each serves a distinct purpose and bring distinguished design traits to any space. 

As each sofa style is unique in its own way, with distinctive designs and features that can range from contemporary to traditional, it’s often best to think of the wider space, how a sofa will be used and what it is in particular that a certain sofa will bring to that space. 

In this guide, we discuss five different types of sofas to help find the perfect sofa for any room, whether that be a living room or hospitality space.

Tailor-Made & Sectional Modular Sofas 

Modular sofas, including L-shape and corner sofas, are made up of separate sections that can be combined and reconfigured over time. This makes them incredibly versatile pieces of furniture that can adapt to people’s ever-changing tastes.

While most modular sofas share some similarities, there can be some noticeable differences that are worth noting. For example, some are more suited for large curations and can span across large rooms with grace, while others are simply cosier. Both are incredibly popular, with many styles and materials to explore. 

Common Features of Sectional Sofas

Sectional sofas can usually be assembled to perfectly fit any room and are as flexible as they are adjustable. This gives freedom to those who wish to bring a sense of uniqueness to a space.

Specific Features of Sectional Sofas

Sectional sofas often feature a distinguished U-shape or L-shape, with optional chaise ends. They can be assembled using individual sections and even tailored to perfectly fit a room’s dimensions.

Sectional Sofa Types From Minotti London

minotti the roger seating systemThe Roger Seating System is an incredibly versatile piece that can cater to the needs of any space | Designed by Rodolfo Dordini for © Minotti London

Minotti London’s Roger seating system is a super system, capable of creating countless interpretations and configurations, for both residential and hospitality spaces. Born from Rodolfo Dordoni design, this piece is ample sized and a true example of how functionality can combine beauty and flexibility. 

Other sectional sofas from Minotti include the dynamic Hamilton Sofa and Andersen Sofa.

Curved Sofas

Curved sofas, also known as conversation or crescent sofas, are iconic in their voluptuous nature. Striking in appearance, yet soft and delicate in colour and texture, these sofas make a spectacular addition to a living space.

Common Features of Curved Sofas

Curved sofas are often made using plush materials and lavish upholstery, such as velvet and goose down. These materials are not only incredibly comfortable but are also durable and bring a sense of elegance to any room.

Specific Features of Curved Sofas

Many curved sofas often have smooth arches and buttery colour palettes. However, not all curved sofas are designed with the same features. The exact style of the arches and the particular colour scheme can vary from sofa to sofa.

Additionally, many curved sofas can be designed with different colours, fabrics, and materials. This makes curved sofas incredibly adaptable pieces that can effortlessly blend with practically any interior design. 

Types of Curved Sofas From Minotti London

minotti daniel seating systemWith its truly novel composition, The Daniels Seating System has the power to revitalise any living space | Designed by Christophe Delcourt for © Minotti London

The Daniels Seating System from Christophe Delcourt redesigns the living area with brand new compositions. Regular curves and ellipses interrupt the linearity of the layouts to create a striking and beautiful addition to any space.

The system is available in three versions: 

  1. All-fabric 
  2. All-leather
  3. A combined option in which the base and armrest are designed with leather and the cushion is crafted using a rich blend of fabrics. 

Designed around the concept of full modularity and maximum comfort, this curved sofa brings sophistication and functionality to the fore. 

Vintage-Style Sofas 

Sofas characterised by their vintage flavour, particularly those echoing 1950’s decor, have seen a resurgence in popularity in recent years. With sophisticated tailoring and conservative shapes, these sofas often feature timeless and quintessential designs.

Common Features of Vintage-style Sofas 

Vintage-style sofas often have either pastel coloured upholstery or bright and bold hues. Additionally, vintage-style sofas tend to be outfitted with slender, retro-styled sofa legs and curved angles that harken back to an era long past.

Specific Features of Vintage-style Sofas

Not all vintage-style sofas are designed in the same way. They often include distinct colours, and while the major features are similar, there are often different fabrics or materials used to create the sofa.

Furthermore, not all lines are going to be carved at the same angle. These angles are typically curved, but there are times that angles will appear more defined while some curves will be more distinctly visible than others. 

Lastly, there is a growing trend toward hybridity, which means that not all vintage sofas are ‘pure’ vintage. Oftentimes, there are elements of modern design that help to make the vintage features stand out while bringing in an air of modernity to the room.

Vintage-style Sofas From Minotti London

Minotti London has a wide range of vintage-style sofas, but two of our favourites include:

  1. The Rodolfo Dordoni’s Russell Sofa, which uses curved vintage lines and modernises them with a sophisticated silhouette.
  2. The Albert & Ile Sofa, from Gigi Radice & Minotti Historic Archive, shares the same design of the slender and retro-styled leg while maintaining the 1900s-inspired armrests and classic lines reinterpreted by the aesthetics of the ‘50s.

Contemporary Sofas

Modern and contemporary furniture styles often use natural materials in their designs, such as cotton, linen and wood, which help to ensure that the pieces are elegantly understated in appearance. 

Common Features of Contemporary Sofas

Contemporary sofas tend to be functional with an artistic touch. Designers of these sofas are often experimental with the use of new materials, which means that every contemporary sofa is truly unique.

That said, contemporary sofas tend to focus on using clean straight lines, square edges and angular details. One of the more recent trends is to use unusual materials or to use common materials in an unusual way such as metals, stone, and exposed wood.

Specific Features of Contemporary Sofas

In the “postmodern era,” architecture and interior design often dive into the unusual and uniquely novel. So it should be expected that with any contemporary sofa, one will find a beautifully constructed piece of furniture that is as comfortable to sit on as it is aesthetically pleasing. 

Types of Contemporary Sofas From Minotti London

minotti the brasilia sofaThe Brasilia Sofa is characterised by a mid-century aesthetic that has been modernised by its use of materials, angular lines and deep volumes. | Designed by Marcio Kogan / studio mk27 design for © Minotti London

The distinctive characteristic and inspiration behind Minotti’s Belt family, designed in the all-fabric or leather versions, is bursting with contemporary flair. As with The Brasilia Sofa, both have an ultra-precise, contemporary and minimalist style. 

The Brasilia is rooted in Brazilian modernism, with a design that looks to the future and is made to stand the test of time to become a modern-day classic.


As a result of their unrivalled practicality, sofabeds, or ‘sleeper sofas’ are incredibly popular and versatile pieces of furniture. 

They can be used as traditional seating during the day and extended to reveal a bed frame by night, making them fantastic options for guest rooms or living spaces. 

Common Features of Sofabeds

Sofabeds are commonly convertible with several space-saving features. The most common feature of sofabeds is that the sofa itself couples as a bed. Typically, the bed is folded away and tucked beneath the cushions and converting the sofa is as simple as removing the cushions and unfolding the bed element.

Specific Features of Sofabeds

Sofabeds will either have a pull-out mechanism or an easy-open mechanism and are usually upholstered in fabric but can be found in leather as well.

As a sofabed is, in a way, two pieces of furniture, there are many different designs and styles to choose from. Unlike standards sofas where the only design concern is that of the sofa itself, a sofabed requires one to consider both the look of the sofa and the bed beneath it.

While this may make decisions feel a little more difficult to make at first, sofabeds offer more versatility and diversity than most other styles. 

Types of Sofabed from Minotti London

minotti deep suitcase sofa bedThe Minotti Deep Suitcase Sofabed is a wonderfully stylish piece that is perfect for a guest room | Designed by Rodolfo Dordoni for © Minotti London

The Minotti Deep Suitcase Sofabed is distinguished by metal feet, brushed chrome or bronze metal burnished, which contributes to its bold personality. Available in both two or three-seat sofa versions, this sofabed can be tailored to rooms of various sizes. 


Sofas are among the most essential, comfortable and personal pieces of furniture to exist in any home. So whether one seeks something that provides comfort and relaxation or space-saving furniture, the five types of sofas discussed in this guide should help anyone find the perfect piece for any space. 

Ranging from traditional to contemporary and simple to transformational, the five sofa types we’ve mentioned include:

  1. Tailor-made and sectional sofas
  2. Curved sofas
  3. Vintage-style sofas
  4. Contemporary sofas
  5. Sofabeds

The first step to finding the perfect sofa is understanding the purpose it will serve. As with any piece of furniture as intimately personal as a sofa, one should always take the time to view and experience the sofa in person. 

At our Minotti London showroom, our colleagues will be happy to help find the perfect sofa based on the needs and design of the space it will reside to help complete any refurbishment project with a touch of charm, versatility and excellence. 

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