It’s been a year since we purchased our family flagship, the big white leather Karlstad Ikea couch that our family lives on. At the time we were shopping I crowdsourced advice, and read every review of this couch I could find. I feel like I really need to give back – which is why I am writing this Ikea leather sofa review!
Time has flown by and people are often asking me whether I am happy with the purchase, a big one for us, so I thought I’d write a review and include the pros and cons of our couch. The biggest con by far is that this couch has been discontinued, replaced by the new Landskrona sofa that looks very similar. The Karlstad is still available in fabric.
Here are the questions we asked others when we were considering buying this sofa, which we are now fully qualified to answer for future shoppers. I would imagine these would apply similarly to the new line.
1. Is this couch comfortable?
That depends on who you ask. This is a structured couch. The cushions are firm and the seating is pretty upright. If you want to truly lounge, extra pillows are suggested. Our couch prior to this one had thick down-wrapped foam cushions that enveloped you. I found it to be lacking in support when I would work on my laptop on the couch and specifically sought out a firmer seat.
2. How does the white leather stand up to the inevitable abuse of family life?
The leather looks surprisingly ok after a year, but not perfect. It has a few nemesis. The biggest damage has been caused by dark colored jeans transferring dye to the leather. Beware of overdyed clothes!!! Most other marks and dirt come off using Ikea’s own brand of leather sofa cleaner. We give our couch a once over every month or two or when it looks dingy. My kids are technically forbidden from eating on this couch which they don’t seem to take entirely seriously. We even used the couch as seating for a family Passover meal. So wine, tomato sauce, cheese, have all come into contact with the leather and have been cleaned up without lasting damage.
3. How is this leather with pets?
I am most dismayed by the damage this couch has sustained from my cat. She doesn’t use the sofa as a claw sharpener or even spend a ton of time on the sofa, yet there are marks on the arms where her claws have nicked the leather as she jumped up. I wasn’t expecting that sort of damage and I’m not sure how to repair it (or if it can be repaired). Its a good argument to trim the cat’s claws! I would be concerned about dog claws as well but cannot comment about dogs as I don’t have one!
4. What are some of the configuration options, and why did you choose what you chose?
We’ve gotten a lot of fun use from the chair plus sofa plus two lounge seats & two ottomans that we purchased. A few months ago we switched up the arrangement entirely and it was so nice to refresh the room. We are able to use the ottomans to create a giant lounge style sofa for 5 people, or to extend the chaise lounges to make beds for two people for sleep overs. I like to use the chair/ottoman to sit and read or work, when the kids are all on the couch.
5. Any regrets?
No regrets! This couch was a great value for our family – a fraction of the price of other leather sofas we looked at. It still looks sharp and modern after a year of use and if we can get a couple more years (or longer) out of it, I will be satisfied with the investment.