The Japanese invented and refined the futon. The mattresses are made with a fabric exterior stuffed with cotton, wool, or a synthetic batting and are often sold in sets including the mattress and duvet.
This led to William Brouwer inventing the worlds first sofa bed in 1982. William Brouwer was a woodworker who had spent time in Japan and loved the Japanese design, he also knew the Japanese slept on the floor with their futon and rolled it up every morning. This way they could utilize the space and thus it becomes a dual purpose room.
He also knew if it could be rolled up it must be very flexible and this gave him the idea of folding the mattress into a sofa bed.
The futon is an ideal piece of furniture, it serves as a couch by day and a bed at night, it’s also great for small spaces like an apartment or a mobile home. Another advantage of the futon would be the fact you can have an extra bed for your guests without a designated room that you would need for a conventional bed.
Futons are available in many different styles and are made of finished wood like oak, ash, pine, maple and cherry. The type of wood you choose greatly affects the price, while metal frames are also becoming popular. A high quality metal frame futon can be a stylish addition to your living room decor.
Fully upholstered frames that look like a traditional sofa are available on the market today. If you like the look of a couch but want the functionality of a futon this would be a perfect choice for you.
Futon covers have also changed and are available in a multitude of colors and fabrics, they simply zip on and off making it easy to change the look of the futon and the decor of any room, you could purchase several covers and change the look whenever you feel the need.
The futon has two main types the bi-fold and the tri-fold. The bi-fold being the most common, in this style the mattress is folded in half on top of the frame, the frame then slides into a flat position for sleeping.
Bi-fold futons come with different sizes of mattresses and as the mattress has to undergo much folding an unfolding they are generally made of synthetic materials.
Tri-fold on the other hand are built to save space and have thin mattresses to allow it to be folded over the back of the frame in a couch position. As these mattresses are thinner they are not recommended for continuous use.
The modern variation of futons can definitely enhance your sleeping arrangements and be an asset to your decor.