Upgrade It: The George Smith Knole Sofa

Among the many advantageous things about buying classic, high-quality furniture: it’s a long-term investment. When a piece is able to stand the test of time, there’s no need to toss it or replace it when you want to change up your decor … you can simply reinvent the piece, instead (which is easier, less expensive, and more sustainable than purchasing new).

Knole sofa

Take this iconic George Smith Knole Sofa we recently added to our inventory, for example. Furniture doesn’t get more classic–the piece was inspired by a sofa traditionally found in aristocratic households starting in the 1600s (something Downton Abbey fans may already know, since there were a pair of Knole sofas in the library on the show!).

Image via The Visual Vamp
Image via The Visual Vamp

The sought-after silhouette and luxury construction ensure that the piece will last, both functionally and aesthetically, for a lifetime. The upholstery, on the other hand, may leave a bit to be desired — it’s worn and dated, and very tailored to a specific home style. But, that’s the beauty of such a top-notch piece: a quick switch of the upholstery and the sofa will be back in all its regal glory. For proof, check out a few of our favorite Knole sofas we’ve spotted on the web.

We love this version: Velvet complements the classic style, while the bright color gives it an updated feel.

Image via Jonathan Burden
Image via Jonathan Burden

Or, take the sofa in a glam director with white upholstery and add-on nailhead trim (perfect for the end of the bed!).

Image via George Smith
Image via George Smith

Play up the aristocratic air with a version featuring fringe and carved wooden finials, spotted in the Sotheby’s catalogue a while back.

Image via Sotheby's
Image via Sotheby’s

Does it get more polished than an overstuffed cushion, nailhead trim and monotone tassles? We think not.

George smith knoll sofa 3
Image via The Visual Vamp

Which look is your favorite?



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TLV is about sharing, supporting and discovering all that's great about the community we live in. We strive to inspire, enlighten and sometimes entertain. Our team of tastemakers are mothers, wives, sisters and friends, and together we share our musings about love, life and home.
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