After much deliberation, I think we've finally picked out a fabric for the new sofa and armchair. David referred to all the linens I brought home as "beige" and "crunchy" so it was hard having a discussion with him about which he preferred, or rather didn't hate.
He is also worried about all the "beige" in the room when we replace the green furniture, so it took a lot of convincing that "beige" or off-white will actually be more versatile and will let me add coloured pillows (golden yellow, dark green, blue, pinks) that I couldn't do quite as easily with the sage green furniture.
In the final analysis, we also decided to upholster BOTH pieces in the SAME fabric, for a coherent look since we already have two odd chairs in the room and don't want all four pieces to differ. The new furniture does not match (but has similar characteristics), and once covered in the same fabric, I hope it will look coherent. I'd love to do a matching pair of chairs and a new sofa, but it ain't happening budget-wise!
So...drum roll please:
The fabric we selected is the off-white linen on the left, which also feels quite soft:
I think it will look beautiful on this:
Here is another photo of the same fabric in late afternoon light. It looks very pale in sunny daytime light but darkens as the light fades:
Here is the chair again, which will be done in the same fabric:
Unfortunately this is a very expensive fabric. The otherwise fairly-priced sofa will cost $1000 more in this fabric than in the runner-up fabric. Woe is me.
On that note, the runner-up fabric has me rather perplexed. I picked up samples at two different shops because they looked different to me. And sure enough, when I got them home, I could see that they were in fact different.
In the photo below, the two swatches on the left are the "same" runner-up fabric, with obvious dye-lot differences (the 1st place fabric is on the right):
David's right - they're all just "beige"!!!
Here's the runner-up fabric again on two swatches, which show dramatic dye lot colour AND also texture differences. Though they bear the same name, the fabric on the left is greyer and quite rough while the fabric on the right is beiger and softer:
I was surprised to see such dramatic differences in mill runs. I would expect variations but not this much (I wonder now what the fabric I have chosen might end up looking like!). I wonder if this is real, or if one of these is mis-labelled?
On a final note, regrettably, I've also eliminated the brown stonewashed fabric you all liked:
I love it so much, for both the texture and *gorgeous* colour, but honestly I'm afraid it will look too casual and disheveled for the sofa (since now we're doing matching pieces). It might be okay on a tightly upholstered chair, but I'm afraid it will look unkempt on the long bench seat of the sofa.
And since it is the highest grade of all the fabrics I've chosen, it would be a VERY expensive experiment.
Ok, that's my update. What do you think of my selection of the lighter, softer linen? What about matching fabric on the two pieces?