How to heighten a sofa

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Adding height to a sofa can be an easy solution for room decor problems. Instead of "retiring a sofa" to a room that is seldom used you can add the height you need with just a bit of time and creativity. What is most required is a willingness to do some of the work yourself. Add to that a bit of creativity, and you can give new life to a sofa at a price that saves you from having to buy a new one.

Measure to determine how much extra height you want to add to the sofa. If you are caring for someone who is disabled or elderly, make sure the sofa will be high enough for him to comfortably move from standing to sitting. If the person is in a wheelchair, make sure the sofa will be the correct height for her to transition from the chair to the sofa.

Examine the bottom base of the sofa. Some sofas have a "flat" base with no legs to heighten it from the floor. Others have legs, but the legs need lengthening.

Look for inexpensive furniture at second hand shops, with an eye toward the legs only, if your sofa has existing legs that can be replaced. You can also look in timber merchants and DIY centres for 10 by 10 cm (4 x 4 inch) wood that can be cut and stained to add to the sofa.

Saw off the current legs, then use the cuts of 10 x 10 cm (4 x 4 inch) wood to replace the existing legs. Paint or stain the wood to make the legs look finished.

Buy simple furniture risers, which are commonly available in 7.5 to 10 cm (3 to 4 inch) heights at furniture shops. If the height that you need is only about 7.5 cm (3 inches) and you want to save money, look for wood-turning pieces or knobs at DIY centres to add height to your sofa. Be creative. You could quickly and inexpensively repurpose a doorknob, for instance, by staining and finishing it to attach to the existing sofa legs.

Create a raised platform for the sofa. If you have a large room where the sofa is placed, creating a platform can provide height and drama by truly making the sofa a centrepiece.

Create a storage platform to heighten the sofa. This can be a simple bin constructed of plywood that's painted or stained. Having a storage bin will not only heighten the sofa, but also will provide extra space for storing seasonal clothing, bedding and other items.

Add skirting or a wooden board to the sofa to hide the height adjustment. This can be used in cases where you add raw, unfinished blocks of wood for height that you don't want to stain and finish. You can create a replica of a skirting board to surround the bottom of the sofa and paint or finish it. Alternatively, you can create a "skirt" of fabric to hide your sofa heightening handiwork.

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