What is a T Cushion Sofa?

Updated April 17, 2017

Not all sofa cushions are created in the same shape. The distinctive "T" shape of the seat cushions on a T cushion sofa are what sets it apart from other sofa styles. At first glance, it can be easy to miss the details of how a sofa is constructed. But those details become a problem if they are ignored when a sofa needs reupholstering or slip covering. Additionally, understanding the benefits and drawbacks of the T cushion sofa is important before making the kind of big ticket furniture investment a sofa represents.


T-cushion sofas get their name from the distinctive shape of the seat cushions that are used. Unlike the traditional square or rectangular sofa seat cushion, the T cushion has short extensions on either side of the front of the cushion that cause it to resemble the letter "T." These extensions, or ears, should hug the lower arm area of the sofa for a snug fit.


T cushion sofas may come with a variety of cushion styles. A shorter sofa may have one long cushion with the traditional T-shaped extension on both the right and left side. In some cases, two cushions will be used with each cushion having only one extension. Longer sofas will often have three cushions, a standard square or rectangular cushion placed in the middle and two modified T cushions placed on either end. Each of these two cushions will have only one extension, and these ears will be located on opposite sides.


Often when consumers are purchasing sofa slipcovers, they don't realise a standard slipcover will not fit on a T cushion sofa. No amount of pulling and tugging will make the slipcover fit correctly if the ears on the T cushions are not accommodated. While there are special slipcovers available for T cushion sofas, the selection of available slipcovers may be more limited than that which is available for sofas with square or rectangular cushions. Custom-made slipcovers are certainly a possibility, but they will come with a much higher price tag than ready-made slipcovers.


Since the T cushion is conformed to the shape of the sofa arm, the cushions will fit more snugly and is more likely to stay in place. A T cushion will offer more surface area as well. This means that anyone sitting on the sofa will enjoy support that extends under the knees, providing extra comfort for taller individuals with longer legs.


If the seat covers for a T cushion sofa are removed to be cleaned, special care needs to be taken when putting the covers back on. It's best to start by inserting the ears of the cushion into the cover first and fitting them into the ear pocket. Once the ear extensions are snugly fitted the rest of the cover can be pulled into place and zipped.

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About the Author

Ann Hudson is a freelance writer who began her writing career working for a small community newspaper. While there, her work as a feature writer and a weekly columnist were honored. Hudson holds a bachelor's degree in journalism. She has been writing for more than 30 years.