Every time I post a photo of my family on our white slipcovered sofa with my four children (who are all six and under), I get a lot of bewildered comments and questions on how I could possibly keep it clean and why I would ever even consider buying a white couch.
So in this post, I’m going to address why I bought a white sofa, how I keep my sofa clean with kids and pets, and how the sofa is holding up since my purchase a few years ago.
Making the Case for a White Slipcovered Sofa with Kids
I’m going to break down what went through my mind when I finally made the splurge on buying my white slipcovered sofa. There were two considerations on choosing our sofa – deciding on the color and whether to get a slipcovered one or not.
Color of the Sofa
As you guys know, I am drawn to whites, creams and neutrals in my home decor palette. I’m obsessed with the modern farmhouse style. I love how a white sofa provides a foundation for endless options to throw colorful pillows to match whatever season or mood I’m in.
I have always been told that when you have small kids, you would need to buy a sofa that had darker color and texture in order to hide the dirt and gunk that comes with having a “lived in” sofa. That was terrible news to hear.
If you step back to think about it, telling me that the sofa color would hide dirt and grime, well that’s kind of gross. Okay, I get you can vacuum your sofa or get it professionally cleaned, but who has time for that?
In addition, I can’t imagine settling for a different color when I REALLY wanted white. If I would have gotten any other color, I think I would have regretted it every single day and would resent myself for settling every time I saw it. I know, I’m ridiculous, it’s just a couch. I get it.
However, I saw that some of my most favorite bloggers had white sofas who had younger children and actually had a “lived in” home! They showed how their kids spilled everything, and they managed to get it out with a little treatment and bleach. And when they completely ruined one, they were able to get new slipcovers inexpensively. Sounds like a win-win to me.
Choosing a Slipcovered Sofa
Can you imagine all of the grossness that could be hiding on a sofa? I decided that a slipcovered sofa with kids would be the best option for us. The ability to take off the cover and throw it in a wash was a huge bonus for me. That alone convinced me that slipcovered was the way to go for our little family!
The added bonus of a slipcovered sofa is I could change the color and the style pretty easily at a fraction of buying a new sofa. So let’s say I did get tired of a white sofa, I could buy a new one in a different color easily. I worked with Linda Lee’s Store to get replacement covers for my Pottery Barn Grand Sofa.
I loved working with Linda Lee’s Store because she provided various samples of fabric to choose from.
When I got them, they were packaged perfectly! I can’t even fold my old covers how neatly they had them!
How I Keep Our White Sofa Clean
I’ll be honest, initially for 6 months, I had duck cloth draped over our sofa to prevent any stains or spills. And when guests would come over, I removed it for that hour. It was pretty ridiculous.
It was also super uncomfortable. And it was a pain to tuck and re-tuck in spots. Being fed up, I told myself our house would be a lived in house, not some model home. I also didn’t want to be the house that had the original plastic on all the furniture ten years later. So I purchased additional slipcovers so that I had a few to interchange between washings.
Every other month, I take off the covers and bleach them.
I use my natural recipe for detergent along with a cup of bleach. and wash old cold. I tumble dry it to the point that it is 85% dry, so that it allows for some room when I’m putting back on the covers on the cushion.
What My White Sofa Looks Like After A Few Years
Three years later, I am still in love with my Pottery Barn Sofa. I still love my white slipcover – it makes the room look, crisp, airy and light!
However, they are not without stains and grime. These are pictures THREE YEARS later.
Yep, can you see the spots?
And my roll arm chair stains:
Here’s a real life example of things that happen on this couch. Can you imagine washing this off of a non-slipcovered couch? It would be a nightmare.
Thankfully, it was washable marker. Tossing it in our washer with some bleach and detergent, the marker was no more! Can you imagine trying to get this out without it being a slipcover?
Again, this sofa is in a very lived in part of our home. I don’t mind it getting a little dirty.
Where I Buy New Slipcovers
So, slipcovers from Pottery Barn can get a little pricey. I opt to get new slipcovers from Linda Lee’s Store at a fraction of the cost of one from Pottery Barn.
I didn’t take the time to take out the small wrinkles, but this is directly out of the package, and it fits perfectly!
It is the same detail as the Pottery Barn one.
The fabric I chose was cotton, and it is so comfy!
Adding my pillow makes it the most comfy seat in the house!
Our kids love it too!
We use this sofa on a DAILY basis. We watch movies on them while eating popcorn. While we have rules around eating on the sofa outside of movies, the kids sneak Oreos, ice cream and M&Ms ALL the time.
I can attest that every time I see it get grungy, I can throw it in the wash with a little bleach, and be happy with the results afterwards. And if all else fails, I buy a new one.
A house is lived in, and not for show. A messy sofa is a sign of happy kids making memories!
If you are convinced that a slipcovered sofa is right for you, check out my post on comparing a less expensive Ikea Ektorp slipcovered couch versus the Pottery Barn Roll Arm slipcovered couch.
I hope this helps you on your sofa buying journey!
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Read more about my Pottery Barn sofa splurge below: