*** Before I say anything else, I want to point out that you should beware of any glowingly positive review on this website that doesn't include specific details. Some of them are cross-posted verbatim on multiple items. *** Some basic shipping information. The couch shipped in two separate cardboard boxes (the "loveseat" and the "chaise") on a single pallet. There was no shipping damage at all. Each box weighed about 50 kg. After a friend helped me lug them up to my second-floor apartment, I unpacked and assembled them myself, although this was a bit of an adventure. ** The boxes say "Made in China" in big letters, and it really shows. This couch has the quality we've come to expect from cheap manufactured goods: they look fine on the outside, but the more you examine them the crummier they are. (Although for $700 I expected better.) The microfiber has a smooth sort of texture, unlike other microfiber couches I've seen, as if it were worn out and going bald. The leather claims to be real, but feels a bit like vinyl. The cushions are very firm for a couch, like an extra-extra-firm bed. They feel a little bit like that sculpted plastic packing foam that comes with expensive electronics. The two little cushions are reasonably soft, but they really showcase the unpleasant texture of the upholstery. ** The picture where they've unfolded the couch into a double bed is misleading, because they've included the ottoman (sold separately). Without the ottoman, you get approximately a twin-size, with the chaise forming a funky little nightstand. ** A word about the construction of the couch. The frame for each of the two sections is basically an open-topped box, apparently made of plywood and particleboard (I can't tell for sure because it's all covered in black cloth). The seat is attached to the sides of the box frame using a linkage that allows it to slide forward and tip back, exposing the storage space underneath. The two sections attach to each other and to the armrests using metal clasps also mounted to the sides of the boxes. The gliding-forward action is nice, but not enough; if you back the couch all the way up to the wall, you won't be able to open the storage area properly, let alone recline the back. ** The main assembly procedure is attaching the hard plastic feet. This is easy but very hit-or-miss: some of them inevitably don't fit quite right. I had to modify some of them with my drill just to make the screw cap fit into the molded recess. They also give you two goofy little angle brackets to attach the armrests with, but the first one was so flimsy and fit so poorly that I didn't see any reason to continue and install the second one. ** The open-topped box construction is simple and elegant, and provides lots of storage. It's also pretty flimsy. If I pull on the armrest, it. wobbles. If you accidentally kick it a few times from the inside, you might crack the box frame. If you're the handy sort, you can probably figure out a way to mount a metal brace across the entire width of both boxes to make them more rigid side-to-side, but if you don't do it right you'll probably just make the structural problems worse, so that it breaks in multiple places instead of just one. ** No part of the upholstery is removable for washing. They tell you to wipe it with a damp cloth, but I have a feeling that won't cut the mustard if you spill wine or something else that stains badly.
- Would you recommend this to a friend? No