The folks at modular furniture brand Burrow understand how to carefully mix stylish design with modern-day practicality when it comes to the brand's bestselling Nomad sofa.
Delivered flat-pack, the modular sofa is perfect for apartment living as the sections can easily be carried upstairs or into rooms with awkward access, and the sectional design offers the ultimate flexibility; just add or subtract modules as your seating needs change, with the easy set-up and disassembly making house moves far easier – particularly useful if you're renting.
Plus there's much more, including a built-in USB charger, stain-resistant fabrics, reversible double-sided seat cushions that offer the ability to change the couch from tufted to plain in a matter of seconds, and a 'sleep kit' that transforms the sofa into a sleeper if guests come to stay?
Sound too good to be true? We put this bestselling design to the test to see if it lived up to our expectations and earns a place on our coveted list of the best couches.
Burrow Nomad sofa review: specifications
Firmness: 8 out of 10
Seat depth: 22"
Seat height: 17"
Leg height: 7"
Arm Height: 24"
Widths and configurations: multiple
Construction materials: foam and fiber seat and back cushions, olefin fiber weave fabric, Baltic birch frame, responsibly forested wood or steel pin legs
Upholstery options: 5
Leg finishes: 6
Armrest styles: 3
Matching items: moveable chaise section, ottoman, lumbar pillows
Burrow Nomad sofa: configurations
Burrow has made it easy to customize the Nomad sofa to match your home’s style or your personal needs.
There's a three-seater option, a super generous king-sized couch with seating for four-five, plus a variety of chaise sectionals and corner sofas, or a U-shaped configuration.
To tailor the look of the couch you also get the choice of three armrest styles, plus six different leg finishes including wooden legs that come in walnut, ebony, and oak, or chrome, black, or brass metal legs.
Upholstery options are a little more limited, but the five fabric options are all versatile colourways – charcoal, ivory, brick red, crushed gravel, and navy blue. I loved the fact that you can also flip the back cushions to choose from two different designs; tufted or untufted.
For the purpose of my testing, I chose the three-seater Burrow Nomad Sofa (opens in new tab) that was ivory in color, had walnut wooden legs, and came with tufted flip-back cushions and sloped arms. These choices were free to make.
Although I didn’t test the moveable chaise, ottoman, or lumbar pillows, you can order these for an additional cost.(opens in new tab)
Who will enjoy the Burrow Nomad sofa and Sleep Kit?
Stylish and design-forward folks: the Nomad sofa comes in five different colors, six leg finishes, three arm styles, and two flip-back cushion styles. No matter which combination you choose, it’s sure to impress guests.
Families with pets or kids: the sofa's fabric is inherently scratch and stain resistant so you don’t have to worry about kids or pets ruining this one.
Tech-savvy owners: do you hate moving your phone charger from one room to the next or don’t have an outlet next to your couch? Us too, which is why we love that the sofa is outfitted with a built-in USB charger.
Those who need an additional sleep space: save your guests from sleeping on uncomfortable blow-up mattresses. The Burrow Nomad Sofa can double as a bed when you order the Sleep Kit.
Setting up the Burrow Nomad Sofa
The Burrow Nomad Sofa and Sleep Kit Suit arrived in six boxes. As a solo woman, I was nervous that the boxes would be heavy, but I had no issue dragging them into the house. I opened the boxes until I found the instructions and followed them step-by-step when setting up the sofa.
To start, I pulled out the three seat sections and laid them face down on the floor. I latched them together with galvanized latches. A few of the latches were a bit tough to lock into place, but it’s because they’re reinforced in a way that once they do latch together, they’re not coming apart. It was worth the effort.
After that, I unfolded the sofa seats so that the back of the sofa was lying on the ground and the seats were in the air. From there, I added the arms to the sofa and connected them with another set of latches.
Take note that the USB charger is built into one of the arms. Make sure that you move the cord out of the way before attaching the arm so you can access this cord later on. I didn’t think about this and had to remove the arm, pull out the cord, and reattach it.
With a flathead screwdriver, I attached the legs to the bottom of the couch. By then, it was time to lift the couch up. Per the instructions, you are supposed to have a second person to help lift the couch as it prevents undue pressure on the back legs. However, I did it on my own and it worked out fine.
From there, it was as simple as moving the sofa to the spot I wanted it to be and adding the seat and back cushions.
How comfortable is the Burrow Nomad Sofa?
Prior to testing the Burrow Nomad sofa, I was using an antique sofa that was made in the 1950s. The cushions were pretty broken in and dipped down considerably along the seams. The couch I owned previous to the antique sofa was bought brand new from Wayfair. I think this is important to keep in mind when it comes to reading my review.
The first thing I noticed about the Burrow Nomad sofa was the firmness of the seat cushions. In my opinion, they rate an 8 on a scale of 10. My body doesn’t really sink into the seat cushions. This may not sound ideal to some consumers, but you have to consider that the cushions will break down over time becoming softer with use and age.
Additionally, I find that I enjoy firmer seat cushions because it allows me to take my laptop to the sofa and work. The Burrow Nomad sofa offers a lot more support for my lower back, which makes working on the couch more comfortable.
The back cushions are much softer and more comfortable than the seat cushions. In terms of height, the top of the couch stops at the bottom of my scapula. For taller people or those with really long torsos, I could see this as being a bit uncomfortable. For me, it has no positive or negative effect on the comfort of the couch.
The sofa is very deep, but even so, I can sit with my back against the back cushions and still have my feet nearly flat on the floor. I’m 5’5” if that helps to picture it in your mind. I love the deep-set design because there is plenty of room for me to curl my legs up on the couch.
I generally like to lay on my side on the couch when watching TV, but the Burrow Nomad sofa is a little too firm for that. So instead, I lay on my back and prop my head up with a few pillows when watching TV. This is quite cozy.
I can lay completely flat without my feet touching the other end of the sofa. The cushions are 75 inches in length so anyone who is 6’3” or shorter should be able to do the same. If you’re taller than this, I would suggest choosing the low arch arm style because it's low enough to comfortably set your feet upon.
What is the Sleep Kit like?
I always felt bad when a guest had to sleep on any of the couches I've ever owned. They were never long enough to fit people over 5'5" or the cushions dipped in spaces that left you with an aching back. That’s why I was I was ecstatic to test the Burrow Nomad Sleep Kit (opens in new tab).
There are six items in the Burrow Nomad Sleep Kit: the memory foam topper is the exact dimensions of the Nomad sofa cushions. A fitted sheet (with a side pocket to store your phone), flat sheet, and quilted blanket are also provided and sized to fit the couch. One pillow and a pillowcase are also included in the kit. Plus an eye mask, which I thought was a nice touch.
They all fit into a 25" H x 15" W storage bag that's easy to stash out of the way for when guests come to stay.
To use the sleep kit, I simply had to remove the back cushions on the couch before placing the mattress topper down and adding the bedding.
The memory foam topper offered some soft cushioning and contouring that contributed to well-rested nights of sleep. Honestly, I thought I wouldn’t sleep well on the couch, but I was very surprised by how comfortable I was. The couch is deep enough that I didn’t feel like I was going to fall off in the middle of the night if I moved around. It was also long enough that my feet didn’t touch the opposite arm.
I will note that there is nothing particularly special about the bedding or the thread count and when I washed it all, some of the threads in the quilted blanket were pinched. Even so, I’m glad that the bedding – including the memory foam – was all fit-to-size which is something that might be hard to find or make on your own.
Rolling all of the items into the carrying bag was no trouble. I’m glad that anytime a guest comes to stay, I can simply pull out this pre-ready bag and set them up for a comfortable night’s rest.
Burrow Nomad sofa review: stain and scratch resistance
Although Burrow advertises that the Nomad sofa is ‘inherently scratch and stain resistant', I was really nervous to test that out, especially since I had received an ivory-colored sofa. If it was true to description this is a lovely feature that makes the sofa great for a family home and saves you from other couch cleaning methods.
For testing purposes, this is probably the best one I could have chosen because if the fabric stained, it would be obviously visible, say compared to the charcoal-colored sofa.
To test the fabric’s scratch and stain resistance capabilities, I did a few different tests. Read on to see how the sofa fared:
I don’t have a pet so I can’t really test to see how a pet’s nails would do on this couch. Instead, I used a kitchen knife and tried to utilize the same pressure I thought might cause a scratch. I’m happy to say that the fabric held up without any snags or visible wear.
Stain test: water, watermelon juice, soy sauce, and hot sauce
I wanted to put the fabric’s stain resistance capabilities through the wringer, so I tested it with four different liquids. Let me start by saying that when I poured all four liquids onto the couch, the fabric appeared to initially repel the liquids rather than absorb them. I think this was incredibly helpful in the clean-up process and stain prevention.
When I poured water on the sofa, it dried quickly and didn’t leave a water mark or visible stain. After that, I poured watermelon juice on the sofa cushion. The pink liquid was easily wiped away with a wet rag, and once it dried, left no mark.
The next liquid I tested was soy sauce. It, too, disappeared when I cleaned it with a wet rag, though I have to admit that I had to use a lot more water than I did with the first two liquids.
The last liquid I tested against the sofa was hot sauce, and it proved to be a lot tougher than the previous three liquids to wipe away. A wet rag didn't do much but leave behind a bright orange mark. So, I unzipped the cushion cover, sprayed the orange spot with OxiClean MaxForm laundry stain remover (opens in new tab), and then threw it in the wash. Unfortunately, when I pulled it out of the dryer, there was still an orange stain.
I resprayed the spot again with OxiClean and let it sit for two days, respraying the spot at least twice a day. On the third day, I got an old toothbrush and put a little bit of Persil ProClean laundry detergent (opens in new tab) on the orange spot, and scrubbed it clean. After putting it in the wash once again, it came out clean and looking new. If I had to do it all over again, I think I would have first tried scrubbing the spot clean with the Persil ProClean detergent. I’m fairly confident that would have done the trick.
While I think most juices and vinegar-like liquids will be easy to remove with a wet rag, you may need to make a bit of effort if the couch gets any red-colored or tomato-based sauces like hot sauce, barbecue sauce, or marinara sauce. Although, with a darker-colored couch you might not have as much trouble as I did with the lightest colored sofa that Burrow has to offer.
Ordering, delivery, and warranty
Shipping is free and quick when you order a Burrow Nomad Sofa. According to Burrow’s website, the couch can be returned within 30 days of delivery. However, they do charge a return fee that is 10% of what you paid, if you use the original shipping materials. If you have to use different materials, the fee goes up to 20% of the price paid with a $250 cap. The fee is waived for a damaged or defective order, or if you want to exchange the item for another Burrow product.
Burrow offers a one-year warranty on all their products, as it relates to defective workmanship or materials. They do not charge a fee to have the product exchanged or returned under the warranty. You can purchase a three or five-year warranty at checkout with Mulberry. This warranty would cover things like stains, accidental rips and tears, broken metal components or zippers, chipped or cracked wooden legs, and minor burn marks.
Take note that if you purchase cushions, legs, arm sets, or couch modules in a separate order from the actual couch, they are not eligible for return.
How does the Burrow Nomad sofa rate online?
The Burrow Nomad Sofa has what appears to be a five-star rating out of 1,610 reviews on the Burrow website. (Though I must say that there were some three and four-star ratings. The actual star rating is not noted so it's hard to say if the rating is actually 4.7 or 4.9 rather than five stars).
As for myself, I would rate it 4.8 out of 5 stars. If you look through some of the reviews, there are some buyers who dislike how firm the sofa is, and I can’t deny that it is quite firm. So I’ll take off 0.2 in regards to this, with the caveat that a firm sofa is subjective and doesn't negate the overall comfort and design of this couch.
Would we recommend the Burrow Nomad sofa?
As I sit writing this review, I can see the Burrow Nomad sofa in my living room, and it makes me smile. This couch has added some elegance to my living room that I didn't know was missing. While it is a little firm, when you think about the overall aspects of comfort – from the back cushions to the arm height, depth, and length – it all boils down to a positive experience and we can say with confidence that the Nomad Sofa would make a great addition to any home.
Tack on the built-in USB charger and a Sleep Kit that makes sleeping on this couch super cozy and comfortable, and the Nomad sofa is a winner in my book.
About this review and the reviewer
Alex Temblador is one of Real Homes' mattress experts — which is a good role for someone who needs over 8.5-hours of sleep each night. The Dallas-based freelance writer has covered home, design, architecture, and art in publications like Real Homes, Dwell, Architectural Digest, Artsy, Neighborhoods.com, Culture Trip, among many others. She recently bought her first home, a green Sears & Roebuck house that's over 100 years old, sits on half an acre of land, and features a stunning wraparound porch, original hardwood floors, pocket doors, and a butler pantry.
In addition to her mattress reviewing duties, Alex tests a variety of products for Real Homes buying guides and reviews so that she can continue to expand the richness of her first-time homeowner life. When she's not sitting on her porch with a cup of tea and her laptop, you'll find the Mixed Latinx writer scrounging through estate sales and vintage shops looking for unique objects to bring 'The Starlight House' to life.
As with all our reviews, the Burrow Nomad Sofa + Sleep Kit has been tested first-hand in our home, using it just as you would so you know exactly what you are buying. The products are given to us free of charge and we test them for as long as possible before returning them to the brand unless or continuing to use them indefinitely. This means that we can continue to use the product which gives us the opportunity to return to our reviews for updating, so you can keep up-to-date with how it's fared over a period of time.
Find out more about how we review products at Real Homes.