Scotland On Sunday

Country Sofas was featured on page 8 of the Scotland on Sunday's Grand Designs supplement - read it on the Scotland On Sunday's site, download it as a PDF or see below for the full editorial.

Settle down to find bespoke seating

An individual sofa is now just a click away. Kirsty McLuckie talks to a Perthshire furniture maker

Choosing a large item of furniture is likely to be one of the more valuable purchases for your home. Get it right, and you will invest in a piece that combines style, quality and comfort which you could enjoy for decades. Get it wrong and you might be lumbered with something that is uncomfortable, costly and out of fashion in months.

Bespoke furniture – having an item made to your own specifications of material, size and shape – might be a world away from high street shopping, but Miriam Galt, who runs Country Sofas near Pitlochry, Perthshire, says that the price for designing your own piece is surprisingly reasonable.

“We don’t have the overheads of big manufacturers, so can pass on the savings to our customers.”

At Country Sofas, the customer chooses from a wide range of sizes, shapes and fabrics and the piece is manufactured and delivered in a few weeks.

Galt says: “For an individual piece that is created to the customer’s specifications, the price is comparable to the sofas and chairs you find ready made in a furniture warehouse chain, so the question has to be why would anyone buy something dictated by someone else’s taste when they can create their own heirloom.”

The company, which is family run, is finding a new generation of customers who use their tablets and phones to search for a unique piece.

Galt says: “We have an extended barn showroom near Pitlochry with many many designs and fabrics for customers to see. But the number of sales from the internet has increased dramatically, so we are used to advising people at a distance.”

The company has recently significantly increased the range of fabrics it offers too.

It has a reputation for specialising in wool, particularly tartan and tweed, but can also offer materials such as cotton, linen and chenille.

Galt says: “We advise people who are wanting something really specific – from a throw for a cotton wedding anniversary present, all the way up to the Scottish customer living in London who ordered a tartan sofa bed.”

Country Sofas’ website has a good range to get customers inspired and the prices for ex-display models are very reasonable.

Galt says: “You can come in and see us with £50 and leave with a high quality bespoke footstool which will last for years. We only sell our own furniture; that way, I can be sure that each piece is of the right quality and looks good.”

Galt says she sets great store in advising on design so that pieces won’t date.

“I want the customer to be as excited about their furniture in ten years time as when they first take delivery.”

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