The Perfect Sofa? Go Danish

by Kate Burt in Designer style at home

The BoConcept modular Fargo sofa was a timely arrival in my in-tray…

“Most of my school holidays were spent with furniture makers where the wood joiners taught me all about the craft. I grew up with functionalism and craftsmanship.”

I could easily fill this whole post with lust about its elegant form, sharp but feminine legs and the simple, unflashy but beautiful detailing – it is Danish after all, and BoConcept, purveyors of new design classics since 1952, knows a thing or two about style. But, instead, I’ll recount a story – one that I think brings this sofa’s cleverness to life.

Last week, a good friend exchanged on her very first flat. Completion is still pending, but before she’s even got the keys, she’s anxious to get the basics ordered – for fear of feeling like a temporary guest in her own home. Her most pressing concern, along with getting a good bed, is to find the right sofa – and I can understand why. It’s the piece of furniture that most says “I’m home”, and with her fear of feeling nomadic – she travels a lot for work – the right one will really help to anchor her.

But her new living room is quite a tricky space – beautiful yet definitely compact, and with fairly low ceilings. Once I saw the place in person, I could see that the solid, leg-less sofa designs she’d tentatively picked out would swamp the space. She needs a design with air underneath it to let the room breathe – a delicate piece of furniture that doesn’t dominate, yet is big and comfortable enough to sink into at full stretch.

The Fargo could just do the job. My friend loves classic Scandinavian designs and this sofa is created by long-term BoConcept designer, Anders Nørgaard. His heritage is perhaps evident in the design: “Danish architects of the 50s and 60s were friends of my parents and among my teachers at the School of Architecture,” Nørgaard explains. “Most of my school holidays were spent with furniture makers where the wood joiners taught me all about the craft. I grew up with functionalism and craftsmanship.”

So that’s one box ticked. But another winner is that the sofa is also incredibly flexible and can be configured to suit your needs. And not just in the predictable – “add a footstool there, put the L-shaped bit this end” – sort of a way. Not even just because there are a staggering 90 fabrics you can choose from to have it upholstered in. The Fargo is more sophisticated still. For example, you can choose three different arm shape options – chunky, slender or with a separate, slim side-cushion – which make quite a difference to the overall look. I think the slender arm-rest would fit beautifully with the petite scale of my friend’s new living room. There is also the option to have higher or lower back cushions – not only good for personalised comfort, but also handy for adapting the sofa to the dimensions of your room: the low cushioned option is what I’ll recommend to my friend, as lower furniture gives the illusion of more ceiling height in rooms where that is lacking. There are also firm or squishier cushions to choose from.

But a challenging sized room was only part of my sofa friend’s problem. She was also hampered by her belief that she is useless at interiors and has “no idea about good taste”. This, of course, is rarely – if ever – true. It’s just about gaining enough confidence to trust your instincts, and nurturing your interest in a project by understanding how much of an impact good design can make to daily life. Developing all that can be helped by having someone with more experience to brainstorm ideas with.

My friend asked me – but if she goes for the Fargo, she can also get advice from BoConcept. The company offers 1-1½ hour home visits from one of their interior consultants, who will measure your space, listen to your needs. Then – along with the help of clever Home Creator 3D computer software – they can help you to optimise the space you have and to shape your own style, all according to your budget.

Right then, brilliant: that’s me off the hook.

The Fargo starts at £2195. Find out more, and enquire about BoConcept’s interior design advice at their website.

This post is sponsored by BoConcept.

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