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Bean bags vs Soft Furniture. What makes the difference and what are the advantages.

21 Apr 2021
by James Brandon

Modular soft furniture by Ambient Lounge. Home Cinema gold class furniture

As pioneers in the global Soft furniture space - driven by the interior design and architectual B2B industries - ambient lounge® have been asked countless times "what the difference between bean bags and soft furniture?".

Here's a few key pointers and advantages that soft furniture has over bean bags.

1. Soft furniture has structure and form - bean bags do not.

This is essentially the key difference, some kind of framework or structural design. Examples are the ambient lounge butterfly sofa and ambient lounge® modular lounges which have a specially design internal elastic structure (over 92 elastic points in one Butterfly Sofa) that holds a beautiful and steady shape. Solid piping, internal compartments and stitching techniques can also enhance the shape - and this technology is very difficult (and more expensive) to manufacture.

The benefits of having a structure are a) more firmness than a bean bag where it's easier to get in and out of the soft furniture. It's often difficult for older people to get out of a traditional bean bag b) beauty and consistency. where the soft furniture hold a lovely shape even when you are not sitting inside it (a bean bag tends to flop into a shapeless object c) soft furniture with structure has better lumbar support and health benefits compared to bean bags - its better for your back and posture in general.


Butterfly Sofa. Soft Furniture with Structure by Ambient Lounge.


2. Soft Furniture uses Premium Quality Fabric - bean bags do not.

Just like with your favorite pair of jeans, dress shirts, traditional couches and even a car's interior - a high quality fabric is everything. Without a quality fabric finish with the right composition, tactility, durability, hand-feel & look ... even the best structured & designed product can look & feel poorly. This is normally the case with bean bags - especially cheap bean bags from the likes of Kmart, Big W, Spotlight and Target who use extremely cheap and (let's face it) poor quality fabrics.

Our ambient lounge "pub test" for our global soft furniture design team is normally asking ourselves the question - "would this furniture and fabric look good in a high end hotel or designer commercial space?". If the answer is no - the fabric is the wrong choice. This is the case for both interior fabric soft furniture and outdoor fabric soft furniture.

Look for reputable premium fabrics such as Sunbrella solution dyed outdoor fabrics and Warwick Interior Fabrics for a sign of true quality.

Modular Furniture with premium interior fabric by ambient lounge. Mod6 in eco weave


3. Soft Furniture has Quilting, Premium Piping and quality finishes. Bean bags do not.

It's often hard to look under the surface of a chair cover to see how well something is made - but once you sit on it and inspect it carefully you will definitely feel & see the difference. The often flimsy nature of traditional mass market bean bags are because they have poor fabrics that are not quilted with padding (and no internal structure). It's the quilting, piping and stitching that add the heavenly touches to make soft furniture (or often called "designer bean bags") a genuine long term piece of designer furniture for your home - vs a more disposable short term bean bag seat.

Look out for thick layers of quilting as a sure sign your soft furniture is made well. Products such as the Avatar Lounger by ambient lounge is a great example, with thick layers of quilt on the seating and back rest area. This creates true home cinema bliss with the additional quilting for long term viewing.

Quliting in Soft Furniture vs Bean Bags. Ambient Lounge changes the game

4. Soft Furniture should have higher quality filling (such as premium foam/bead mix filling & high density beads). Bean bags do not.

Just like food into the body - what you put inside your sofa or seating counts!

Bean bags have traditionally been filled with large polystyrene beads - which are cheap and feel comfortable at first, but they deflate quickly, smell, and are noisy. Many bead manufacturers also do not follow a strong environmental policy.

Progressive Soft Furniture makers such as the globally famous ambient lounge - use a specialist technology of filling together with an environmentally sustainable policy. The revolution of recycled crushed foam and memory foam is a game changer for soft furniture. Combined with high density bead this filling adds superior comfort, holds longer lasting form, fills out a more beautiful look to the designer soft furniture. Ambient Lounge also has recycling depots in all six Aussie states for its high density UltraBeads.

Ambient Lounge® Australia are currently filling their modular lounges with this technique and also their B2B commercial furniture. It is and option that is set to be introduced to Australian B2C seating markets in mid 2021. International branches such as Ambient Lounge Japan have already been supplying the So Lux technology to rave reviews with their single seater chairs and luxury pet beds.

Ambient Lounge® is a 20 year old Aussie brand with a global distribution network. Our soft furniture loungers are comfy, cozy, flexible, and lightweight transportable lightweight for B2B and B2C. If you’re creating your own commercial outdoor space or dream home - and would like to discuss your concept with the Ambient Lounge® team - please live chat or contact us on 1300 707 121. Our crew will be in touch.