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Is this sofa from West Elm the worst? Couch disappears after customers revolt

Imagine buying your first “grown-up” piece of furniture, shelling out the money for what you believe to be high quality construction, only to see it break almost immediately before your eyes. That’s what some customers have experienced after purchasing West Elm’s “Peggy” sofa, a mid-century tufted couch that’s notorious for having buttons pop off sometimes as quickly as during first few weeks of use.

Julie Pennell
West Elm Peggy Sofa

Customers seem to have been complaining about this issue for a while. But a recent scathing online article about the frustrating experience of owning the “Peggy” might be the reason the furniture company has finally taken the sofa off of its website.

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In the honest and rather hilarious essay published on The Awl last week, Anna Hezel describes how the $1,200 couch quickly disappointed her and her partner.

“The couch began to disintegrate in small ways,” she wrote. “We would scooch across a cushion at the wrong angle, and a button would pop off, leaving a fraying hole behind. We would lean back slightly too far, and all of the cushions would shift forward and over the edge of the couch in unison. As soon as one button had fallen off of our couch, it was like a spigot had been turned, allowing all of the other buttons to fall off, too.”

Hezel says she reached out to customer service, who ultimately sent her a confusing and rather ineffective repair kit for the buttons. “I tried in earnest to follow the directions, but the wooden dowel would not fit into the buttonholes, and the entire exercise left me with fewer buttons than I started with,” she wrote.

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Many other customers have had issues with this. A quick search on social media reveals the problem is not an isolated incident.

"We were sorry to learn of our customers’ experience with the Peggy Collection and have decided to temporarily remove it from our U.S. and Canada assortment — online and in stores — until we can better understand and resolve any issues," a statement from a West Elm spokesperson sent to TODAY Home said.

"We stand behind the integrity of our products and take customer feedback seriously. Therefore, we are offering owners of defective Peggy sofas, sectionals and chairs, a full refund or replacement for orders placed in the U.S. and Canada after July 2014. Customers with Peggy Collection related issues should contact the special support number (888) 922-7870 or email support@westelm.com."

Writer’s Note: I actually have this sofa, too. My husband and I purchased it a few months ago. While we do love its design and think it’s pretty comfortable, we have definitely noticed the issues with the buttons. None have popped off completely (knock on wood) but they have pulled enough to make my heart stop when it happens.

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