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Cult classics: let us introduce you to this wonderfully unique sofa design

Can you guess which design we’re talking about? It’s the Togo Ligne Roset sofa, of course! This wonderfully wacky 1970s creation was a rapid departure from even the most unconventional of existing sofa designs at the time. If you’re not already familiar with the Togo, you certainly can’t forget it once it’s on your design radar. Visually, the Togo is unlike any other sofa out there with an almost caterpillar like structure and beautiful crumpled pleats of fabric. You would be right to imagine that sitting on a Togo would be an experience akin to being hugged by a giant – albeit very stylish – pillow.

These low, deep sofas are dangerously comfortable (although probably not one for your grandmother, unless she has unprecedented core strength). As a modular design, Togos can be arranged exactly as you wish and make perfect sense even as standalone pieces, as an armchair for example. Their versatile nature also means that they look fabulous in a host of different interiors, as stylish in an ├╝ber contemporary setting as they are sharing the space with an eclectic array of other design genres. Many are fascinated by the almost insectoid qualities of the Togo sofa, which – perhaps oddly – have done much to incite the fervorous praise of design critics and fans alike over the decades.

An early 1970s advertisement for Togo living.
Source: Design Milk

So to provide a backstory to this striking design, the Togo sofa burst onto the scene in 1973 when it was conceived by talented French designer Michel Duracoy (get this: he became the ‘spearhead of innovation’ at design studio Roset, cool job title). It was a design that responded to a shift in how people wanted to sit on sofas. Rather than perch politely with a newspaper, 70s kids were hankering after a sofa on which you could really relax, kick your shoes off and sink back. Togos do come with a bit of a price tag, which is probably why we tend to only spot them in glossy interior magazines and designer homes.

However, this is down to the meticulous handmade process through which each sofa is brought to life. From the precise layering of laser cut foam to the sewing of its characteristic draping pleats of fabric, the Togo, much like Rome, is not built in a day. The fabric upholstery of just one sofa takes four hours, and leather even longer! Togos have an arguably artisanal quality: they are the product of enormous care and attention and are built to last for a very long time. When it comes to finding a sofa that fits just about everyone (under 60, let’s say – they are quite low and deep), the Togo is a brilliant option. Nobody needs to be precious about maintaining their iconic cushion-like form…. as squashed as they may get, Togos will resiliently keep their original shape. It’s definitely rare to find a design so unique and iconic yet capable of withstanding the demands of everyday living.

These are just a few of the reasons why we at Vinterior are big fans of the Togo and we’re proud to boast some – get excited – original vintage Togos in our collection of design treasures. They don’t stick around for long, so hop on and see if any of them spark your imagination! Browse vintage Togo sofas right here.

Title image: @thedesignfiles

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