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The mid-century design is a true inspiration to furniture and interior designers around the globe and sofa’s are the furniture pieces most likely to represent it. When you think of a contemporary mid-century sofa classic pieces from architects such as Mario Bellini or the new generation from studios such as Norm Architects are at the top of the list. Nevertheless choosing a sofa is no easy task, depending on the size of your living room as well as your budget. Choosing the right sofa is also important, this is a piece of furniture you are likely to spend most of your time at home. To choose the right sofa, a step by step guide can be of great help, however getting inspiration from some of the most iconic pieces is equally as important. 

To help you find the right sofa ARCHISCENE magazine editors are investigating some of the most timeless sofas: 


Top of our list is the 1970’s Modular Mario Bellini Sofa coming to a true revival in the past year. Auction houses around the globe are scrambling to get their hands on the 70s original. Bellini is Italian architect and furniture designer who is to this day celebrated for his minimalist and sophisticated sofas, couches and dining chairs. 

Known as the Camaleonda Modular Sofa it is one of the most recognisable design pieces by Bellini. Crated in a set of square seats that can be arranged in various ways the sofa is today’ a true pinnacle of furniture design. Bellini’s pieces thanks to their sculptural form are ranking him amongst artists, with prices of his vintage not falling short far from some of the most in demand art pieces. Well preserved four pieces of the Camaleonda can cost you over 30,000 USD, yet fifty years later this proves the timeless note behind well designed furniture. “To work I only need to have a pencil and a piece of paper, but I sit anywhere the person who is taking care of the project sits. Once we used to cut out the models ourselves, today we are using renderings and a very sophisticated technique that is made by very smart, young guys.shared  Mario Bellini with Dezeen.

Other signature Mario Bellini pieces are his office chairs – Persona, Imago, Forma and Figura. In the 1980s Bellini left the furniture design and started working on architecture projects such as the London Link Bridge at the Deutche Bank in 2010 as well as Sheik Zayed Museum in 2007.  Today Bellini lives in Milan and works with various furniture design houses in the city.

Michel Ducaroy’s Togo Lounge for Ligne Roset

This sofa is a true classic for the world renowned Italian furniture house Ligne Roset, designed by Michel Ducaroy it has been a perfect addition to a contemporary home for over four decades. Ligne Roset still prominently showcases the piece as well as the Togo Lounge modulars as one of their most-wanted sofas

Michel Ducaroy’s collaboration with Ligne Roset dates almost seven decades back when he first started working with the company in 1954. Roset company established itself on the market also thanks to Ducaroy’s continuous drive for new technological knowledge. It was only 1973 when Togo Lounge came about, fit for the time the design has turned into a true iconic piece. Ducaroy himself could not imagine the remarkable longevity of this all foam seating and the ability of the design to keep it’s modernity to this day. 

Eave Modular Sofa by Norm Architects for Menu

The Eave Modular Sofa does not come from the mid-century, yet the design itself by Norm Architects holds the strong values of the movements contemporary sentiment.

For Eave Modular Sofa the Norm Architects team was inspired by the edges of the roof which overhang a wall, the ‘eaves’. The curved upholstered arm-rests give the Eave Modular Sofa it’s instantly recognisable note. The Norm Architects team while designing the modular piece for Menu had style and comfort in mind. While mostly appropriate for larger living rooms it is also a great addition for sitting areas in bigger offices or public spaces. The modular aspect of the design allows you to  estate your own configuration of the sofa creating it from the distinct elements available in the design. 

Founded in 2008 Norm Architects are Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen and Kasper Rønn who today are known in the design industry for their sophisticated furniture as well as home decor pieces.  While famed for their furniture and design pieces their focus is residential architecture and interior design.

Sesann Sofa by Gianfranco Frattini

The sofa is to this day a staple piece from the designer and architect Gianfranco Frattini, the sofa itself upholstered in various ways is a true celebration of the contemporary style. A tubular steel structure shapes the soft cushions that create the elegant silhouette of the Sesann Sofa. To this day a Sessann sofa is a true standout piece of any modern interior. It is often available in velvet and leather upholstering. 

Designed by master architect and designer Gianfranco Frattini, this sofa is a masterpiece of modern style and comfortable elegance. Featuring the strength of steel, a tubular structure shapes the plush cushions that form this timeless silhouette to create a standout piece that will make a statement in a contemporary or modern decor. The warm hue of the aniline leather adds a pop of color and matches the low feet crafted of ash. The sofa is still in production under the famed Tacchini furniture maker located in Lombardy, Milan. 

Gianfranco Frattini is one of the key architects and designers shaping the mid-century modern movement in Italy. Born in Padua in 1926 he graduated at Politecnico di Milano, he stayed living and working in the city of Milan till his death in 2004. In addition to creating some of the most iconic furniture pieces of the time Frattini has also founded the Association of Industrial design. The organisation is in large part credit to helping establish the City of Milan as a true capital of furniture and industrial design. Frattini was a key part in establishing the industry revolving around the furniture fairs in Milan as well as around the world.

Gymnasium in a former Capuchin monastery by Atelier Tišnovka

Gymnasium in a former Capuchin monastery by Atelier Tišnovka