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Restoration Hardware’s Lancaster VS Of Iron & Oak’s Roosevelt

What are the differences between our Roosevelt leather roll arm sofa and the Restoration Hardware Lancaster leather sofa?

On the surface, the of Iron & Oak Roosevelt sofa looks the same as Restoration Hardware’s Lancaster style. With their classic roll arm design, depth options, and commanding presence, it can be hard to tell the difference between the two just by looking at them.

While the main visual characteristics of each piece are similar, there are quality and structural components that differ greatly between the two, making it clear which is the superior piece. It’s just like mom said, it’s what’s on the inside that counts.

Let’s start with the roots. The of Iron & Oak Roosevelt lawson style roll arm sofa is made right here in the United States of America. If you wanted, you could walk right up to our workshop in North Carolina and watch your couch being built by hand. If you want to do the same thing with Restoration Hardware’s Lancaster, you’d better learn to swim, because the Lancaster sofa is—along with too many other Restoration Hardware pieces—is made in China.

How do they afford to ship such a big piece overseas? Plywood, that’s how. Here at of Iron & Oak we use sturdy kiln dried hard wood to build our frames, making them heavy and strong. Restoration Hardware doesn’t like to tell anybody what their frames are made of, like lightweight plywood and plastics, making them light enough to easily ship overseas (and maybe break or warp over time). It’s no secret how we build our frames, because we are proud of the work that goes into each and every sofa that we produce, and we want you to know where your furniture is coming from.

Let’s pretend that (for whatever reason) you don’t care about the quality of your sofa’s frame. You still want it to look great, right? If you’re comfortable with the small selection of Moore & Giles leather available to choose from at Restoration Hardware, you may find their leather to be as good as ours. If you want something a little more unique, however, here at of Iron & Oak we have over a thousand different leather and fabric options, to fit every style and price point, all at your disposal.

But let’s just say you really really like one of Restoration Hardware’s few leather options. On the surface, the Lancaster and the Roosevelt are virtually identical. What happens when you sit down? Well, the Roosevelt built for of Iron & Oak is supported with 8-way hand tied springs. Each of the springs is tied by hand in eight different directions to the springs surrounding it and the frame of the sofa. What this creates is a supportive and comfortable seat that works like a suspension bridge so nothingsags over time. Restoration Hardware claims to use 8-way hand tie as a buzzword, but they actually use a machine made imitation. This spring system drops into the frame, sometimes fitting perfectly, but sometimes not. The springs are machine fixed to one another but there is no further attachment to the frame. This can create a wobbly seat that loses support and sags over time.

If that wasn’t enough, Restoration Hardware also uses lower quality cushions to increase their profits. Restoration Hardware uses an 18 lb cushion core. Sure, it’s soft at first, but it doesn’t hold up over time, especially not when compared to the cushions that we use. Here at of Iron & Oak we use 21 lb Ultracel high-density foam core in our cushions. The core is surrounded by a layer of super soft oscillated foam and a final layer of soft and cushy down, giving you a seat that stays as soft and supportive as the day you bought it. Restoration Hardware charges you for an expensive upgrade just to get the same thing.

As for personalization, with the exception of a few leathers to choose from, and two different depth options, Restoration Hardware does not offer many options for customization. Here at of Iron & Oak, almost everything is entirely up to you. From upholstery and depth to the teeny tiny nail heads accenting your piece, of Iron & Oak has an endless number of combinations to choose from, allowing you to design your perfect sofa, each and every time.

So let’s break it down:

Restoration Hardware uses cheaper labor, cheaper materials, and offers fewer options to customize their Lancaster sofa than we do here at of Iron & Oak. That means their sofa must be more affordable, right? Wrong. Despite cutting corners every step of the way, the Restoration Hardware Lancaster sofa is more expensive than the of Iron & Oak Roosevelt sofa. So if you want an overpriced, foreign made, mass produced sofa, go ahead, give Restoration Hardware a call; and when it starts to fall apart, we’ll be here when you need a new one.

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