The great thing about a high back sofa is it’s sort of like an upright bed, promotes good posture, and the shape is ideal for clandestine conversation. Here are our favorites, most of which are midcentury classics still in production today.
Above: The Arne Jacobsen AJ5 Mayor Sofa was designed in 1939 for the Søllerød Town Hall in Copenhagen. It’s has a solid oak frame with tight upholstery (Kvadrat fabric or leather) and three cushions. The sofa is still manufactured by &Tradition and is $8,600 CAD at Mjölk in Toronto. You can also find it stateside at Lekker (starting at $8,399).
Above: Designed by Claesson Koivisto Rune for Tacchini, the Highlife Sofa comes in sizes ranging from armchair (seen at left) to an 8-foot-long sofa. The sofa comes in a wide range of upholstery and has hand-stitched buttons at the front armrest; $4,037 at Design Public. (In the EU you can source the sofa at Modernists.)
Above: Luca Nichetto’s Cloud High Back 3-Seater LN7 Sofa designed for &Tradition has a high back for a hygge sensation (the Italian designer lives in Scandinavia). Upholstered cushions and frame are supported by black, chrome, or bronzed steel legs. Prices start at $7,874 at Danish Design Store.
Above: The EJ 400 Apoluna Box Sofa with an extra high back is designed by Studio Hannes Wettstein for Erik Jørgensen as a sheltered space for the living room. It’s available in a range of upholstery fabric (New Zealand wool and Kvadrat included) starting at $7,172 at Hive.
Above: The Ro Sofa is designed by Jaime Hayon for Fritz Hansen. It’s manufactured in Denmark with a steel (shown) or oak base and five different color combinations; $7,369 at Lekker. In the UK, it’s available at Skandium for £4,961.
Above: Børge Mogensen designed the Spoke Back Sofa in 1945 as an English daybed and French chaise combo, thanks to the hinged side. It’s made from a solid oak frame and available in a range of upholstery options including leather, stripes, and woven plaid. Available in the US for $9,222 at Danish Design Store and in the UK for £7,621 at TwentyTwentyOne.
Above: The LaCividina Pinch Divano Sofa by Skrivo Design is made with an upholstered and lacquered metal frame and comes in different configurations (shown as a high back two-seater with an additional table). Prices start at €5,519 at Mohd in Italy or ordered through LaCividina.