Update by user May 04, 2015
Within 30 minutes of posting this review, C&B called me back and has at least offered to cover the cost of back panel (previously at my cost) and provide a list of recommended installers in my area.
I also posted a review on the website and on houzz, so unclear what was the driving factor to a quick change in response----regardless, we appear to be moving in the right direction now.
Original review posted by user May 04, 2015
Bought a Crate & Barrel sofa in May 2014. It didn't arrive until July 2014. Got all the extra fabric protections etc. Put it in a minimally used room.
Noticed in the fall that due to metal tabs on the corner, the edges frayed. The earliest record I have of a response from Crate & Barrel customer service is 12/4/14. The answer was, we'll dispatch a furniture medic to assess it. This individual did not come until over a month later. Had to build schedule around their timing. Individual made me very uncomfortable and never spoke with me, left without saying goodbye.
I reach out to Crate & Barrel after no response and they inform me that it is my fault and due to wear and tear. I explain that the sofa well under a year old and in a minimally used room, to no avail. Frankly, it's completely reasonable to think that an expensive, new sofa should be able to handle basic use without fraying. This one had far less than basic use. A month later, in late February, we finally are able to get a second medic. This individual reviews the sofa and speaks with me, hears the whole story of when I bought it, how long it's been since it arrived,etc. He evaluates and says conclusively it is not a use issue and is due to the metal tab (which is also causing fraying on the opposite corner.)
I follow up repeatedly with Crate & Barrel because they do not contact me. I am told "we are still working on this" two weeks later. I continue to follow up. Finally, in May, I am contacted after I email again and tweet my frustration.
Crate & Barrel says that the supervisor was brought in and changed the verdict (conveniently in favor of Crate & Barrel). Ostensibly this accounts for the two month+ delay from when the second medic visited and I (at my repeated inquiry) was given a response. It is my fault for misusing (looking at? sitting on?) the sofa and they are "happy to sell me a replacement panel, but it might not match." Also I will have to "google a furniture medic" and pay for the installation. This response was provided without any actual dollar figure for the cost. They said they'd have to follow up on that. Maybe another month, I'm guessing?
My conclusions from this experience: a) Crate & Barrel furniture is overpriced and poorly made. I barely used this $1400 sofa and in less than six months of ownership, the fabric frayed due to, apparently, my fault. b) Crate & Barrel will not stand by the quality of its products---in fact, they do everything in their power, including changing third party evaluations after the fact---do escape liability c) Crate & Barrel does not respond rapidly, proactively or sympathetically to legitimate customer issues.
The vendor for this sofa is Shenandoah Furniture Company. They, naturally, claim it is not a manufacturing defect. The safe is Crate & Barrel's Margot sofa in Putty.
Reason of review: Bad quality.
Monetary Loss: $1400.
Preferred solution: Full refund.
Crate And Barrel Pros: Sofa before it frayed.