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What Is a Chesterfield Sofa? (+ Why You Need One, Pronto )

A Chesterfield exudes elegance. Learn about its history and why every living room is better with a Chesterfield here!

What Is a Chesterfield Sofa?


A Chesterfield sofa is a type of sofa that features rolled arms and tufted upholstery.

Traditionally, a Chesterfield sofa’s upholstery is dark leather.

History of Chesterfield Sofas

Chesterfield sofas are thought to have originated back in the 18th century, when Lord Phillip Stanhope presided as Earl of Chesterfield. As the story goes, the Earl commissioned the first-ever sofa design resembling what we would now call a “Chesterfield” today.

What accounts, then for the widespread demand that would soon follow?

The simple answer – again, according to the story – is that the Earl had at that time already established himself as a trendsetter. In particular, he was well-admired and sought-after for his writings on manners and society, Letters to His Son.

After an instance in which the Earl gifted the sofa to his godson, word traveled, hype grew and a rising demand for what would one day become a classic furniture piece was born.

Continuous comfort: Key features of a Chesterfield include roll arms equal in height to the backrest.
Today, a Chesterfield sofa exudes elegance. It is synonymous with class, and while it feels right at home in a luxurious study or library, it also blends in effortlessly with the modern living room, breathing an air of sophistication wherever it is placed.

Sofa Types Similar to Chesterfield


Can’t get enough Chesterfield? A world of genuine leather awaits.

The design pictured here is crafted with 100% buffalo hide over a combination of down and foam cushions.
Featuring luxurious leather (and an insanely buttery-soft feel – seriously!)...
...these all-natural leather sofas prove that Chesterfields are in good company.
The best part? Genuine leather upholstery only gets softer and more luxurious with age…

...so, use it to your heart’s content – and indulge your senses for years to come.

What to Pair With a Chesterfield Sofa

A Chesterfield is a classic, so wise is the decorator who pairs one with classic decor! Try a Chesterfied sofa before a brown wood coffee table (preferably, a coffee table with claw feet or molded trims to match a traditional aesthetic). You can also pair a Chesterfield sofa with other furniture pieces: try a Chesterfield chair (a shortened form of the sofa) or a club chair.

Best Chesterfield Sofas of 2021

Best Chesterfield Couch

Best Features: Versatile size - Bold fabric
Size: 94"W x 41"D x 31"H
Why It's the Best: With a gazillion reviews (okay, maybe a little less than that), the Patterson Sofa is a customer favorite and a notable Chesterfield, at that. Graceful roll arms, tufted back and a low silhouette remind us of why the Chesterfield was ever popular to begin with.

Best Velvet Chesterfield Sofa

Best Features: Rich velvet - Versatile size
Size: 94"W x 41"D x 31"H
Why It's the Best: A custom variation of the Patterson 94" Sofa, the Blue Velvet adds a tangible richness. Let your eyes feast on the regal blue hue and your fingers run through the plush velvet fibers, and you'll see (and feel) why this design ranks first in its class.

Affordable Chesterfield Sofa

Best Features: Small - Bold fabric
Size: 52"W x 41"D x 31"H
Why It's the Best: Literally a shortened form of the sofa in the same collection, the Patterson Armchair is the "Chesterfield sofa" for anyone living in a smaller space – and on a smaller budget. High ratings are telling of its quality and the selling point for this firecracker of a design.

For the Chesterfield Lover . . .

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Editorial Disclaimer: Articles featuring tips and advice are intended for educational purposes and only as general recommendations. Always practice personal discretion when using and caring for furniture, decor and related items.