RIP White Sofa (what have I done?!)

“If you want a golden rule that will fit everything, this is it: Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”William Morris

My goal for the remainder of this year is to try and live by this rule, and lately I’ve been on a mission to simplify and get rid of things that aren’t practical. I started out in the usual way by clearing out my closet. I got rid of a lot of “beachy” clothing I know I won’t wear any time soon that is taking up valuable space. I also got rid of a few “hold us over” items that we accumulated last winter while we were waiting for our stuff to get here. Eventually my attention turned to the sofa and the horde of cushions on it. I decided that while 2 cushions are useful, 5 are too many for our lifestyle. The thought of eliminating pillows sent me down a rabbit trail, and long story short, I decided to dye the sofa black.

First let me explain. I like the idea of having a white couch, but the real reason we bought ours is because it was the cheapest version of the Karlstad sofa at Ikea. (We discovered that the Karlstad series was being phased out, which was why the more popular colour options were so expensive.) The problem with white is that I have to worry about protecting it, and it’s a losing battle. I keep a blanket spread over the seat cushions, and feel the need to pile on pillows to make it look “cosy.”DSC_0041_322It’s fine to have loads of pillows when no one’s sitting on it, but we do sit on it, and I’m tired of tossing cushions around.

My previous experiments with dye led me to believe that if I bought a dark dye it would  fade to a lighter shade than the advertised colour. The navy dye I’ve used before strangely has a lot of purple tones in it, and I didn’t want to risk having a purplish sofa. So I went all out and got velvet black instead. Talk about drastic.dyeI followed the directions on the packet, and threw the fabric in the washing machine with the dye hoping for the best. It worked really well. Too well. The colour did not fade AT ALL. I was shocked by how black it came out. I’m still in shock actually – like send someone to help because I don’t know if I’ll be able to get over this.

My initial reaction after reassembling the couch was to run upstairs and pretend it never happened. It felt like a stranger took up residence in our living room and was thinking evil thoughts about me.dsc_1016_00008-4
I tried to console myself by looking at my inspiration photos.

top left  // top right  //  bottom

And I reminded myself that I’m not the first person to swap a white sofa for a black one. It can be done!

via Door Sixteen

It’s taken me awhile, but the dark look is growing on me.dsc_1019_00009-2

Well white couch, it was nice knowing you.picmonkey-collage



8 thoughts on “RIP White Sofa (what have I done?!)

  1. It looks fantastic! Question: did you fit all the fabric in the machine or have to do two loads. I may have to do two washes and my worry is there will be a colour difference.

    1. Thanks 🙂 I did it in two washes, but luckily there wasn’t a colour difference with the black dye. I did the cushion fabric together, so that at least they would all match if the colour or shade came out differently in the next wash.

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