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The Look for Less: Ligne Roset's classic Togo sectional and its budget lookalike

April 26, 2011 |  7:00 am


The Togo sectional, which Michel Ducaroy designed for French furniture maker Ligne Roset, is nearly 40 years old but still looks incredibly fresh, especially in an era when floor cushions are the height of bohemian chic. I've always loved how the Togo's thin horizontal tufting resembles the wrinkles of a Shar-Pei and, as someone who once had a sofa delivered through a window on a third-floor apartment, I've long admired how easy Togo is to maneuver. 

The design comes in five easy armless pieces, each of which can be purchased separately and arranged in a variety of ways: a three-seater sofa, a love seat for two, a corner chair, a single chair, an ottoman.

Imitations were inevitable, and at least two are being sold online for dramatically less than the original. One of the photos above shows the original Togo from Ligne Roset; the other is Waverunner, a copy by Lexington Modern. In five-piece configurations, the Togo starts at $10,800. The Waverunner configuration has a list price of $2,880 but is sold online for $1,499.

Keep reading to see what sets these two designs apart ...

The $1,499 Lexington Modern Waverunner is pictured at the top of the post. It is about 2 inches smaller than the Togo in width, depth and seat height. It comes only in red microsuede. (For $1,699, DCG Stores offers the very similar Downlow sofa in red, orange, green and black.) 

Togo Orange By contrast, the Togo -- shown up close at left and above in red -- can be made in hundreds of different fabrics, including leather or Alcantara, a high-end, stain-resistant microfiber also used in the automotive industry.

"If you look closely at the copies, everything is different," Antoine Roset, executive vice president of Ligne Roset USA, said in an email. "The quality of the cover, the upholstery, the foam they are using, which is commonly one basic piece of foam when we are using more than 10 different pieces with different densities."

Whereas the Waverunner is made in Asia, the original Togo is produced in Ligne Roset's factory in France.  "All of the copies of this icon have from far the level of comfort we can give to this product," he said. "There is a real know-how in this piece and only five people in the upholstery team in our factory are really able to upholster this piece correctly. It has been in production since 1972 so we know what we are doing."

The Togo starts at $10,800 and costs more in premium fabrics.  It can be purchased only at Ligne Roset stores or by phone at (800) 297-6738.

-- David A. Keeps

Photo credits: Lexington Modern, Ligne Roset


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