We did a furniture reconfiguring in the entry now that the entry side is all finished (doors still need painted and we’re missing a few baseboards in the office), and some people were very concerned that we got rid of our bench. Not true! We moved it around to the garage entrance of the house, and that’s just a true staple of an essential decor piece. Benches are so versatile, and I didn’t even realize HOW versatile until we rounded up photo upon photo of benches being shuffled around our house. Even the cute little acrylic bench in the photo above has made its way from room to room and I think it’s the cutest little sidekick to the new chest of drawers.
So let’s talk about what makes benches a staple piece to have in your home.
1. They’re versatile. You should know by now, I’m all about shopping my own house, and playing musical furniture. Discovering a room’s fullest potential and furniture configuration is one of my favorite parts about what we do. I move the benches around a lot because of how well they work from room to room.
2. They don’t take up too much space. This bench now lives in more of a hallway that goes from our garage to the kitchen, and it’s also next to our locker storage so it’s kind of the perfect place for the girls to be able to sit down when we come home, take their shoes off, and put all their things away. I love that even in a hallway a bench can work because of their small footprint.
3. Multifunctional. Who doesn’t love a good multifunctional piece of furniture in their house? Our living room has lived through many reconfigurations, and benches were a big part of that! I think the more expected place to put a bench is in an entryway or at the foot of the bed, but you can get creative and use a bench as an ottoman! Of course use a bench for seating, but maybe stack some books on top and let it serve as a coffee table of sorts.
4. Can completely transform a space, visually and functionally. Recently I was refreshing our bedroom for a photoshoot and it was feeling a little too modern for my liking so I swapped out the modern bench for a more cottagey one (both we had) and it really did the trick. I even added a basket on top to layer in some lived-in elements, because who doesn’t end up setting things on top of their bench?
5. Grounds a smaller space. Not only would our closet feel way too bare without this ottoman/bench, but I think it really grounds the room. When a sofa is too big, but the room still needs something, try a bench. This is where I sit every day and put on my shoes, and let’s be honest, some of my clothes end up getting tossed on top while I’m changing. I’m only human.
6. Introduces different textural elements. Benches come in all shapes and sizes, finishes, materials, and textiles. You can cozy up a space by adding a cushioned, upholstered bench, or get modern with some metal or a glossy wood finish. There’s a bench for everyone, no matter what style your home is, and it’s a great way to mix in some elements that complement what you love.
Do you have any benches in your house? How are you using them? Well in case you’re now in the market for a bench (or maybe a few?) we put together a little roundup of versatile benches that can be used at the foot of a bed, in a living room, or as a place to take your shoes off. And we can’t wait to see how you get creative with your benches, and maybe you’ll be using them as essential decor pieces as well.
1. Magdalene Velvet Ottoman $194
2. Chase Faux Leather Bench $219
3. Ackley Leather Ottoman $250
4. Chestnut Dining Bench $279
5. Clara Entryway Bench $349
6. Pax Black Natural Bench $399
7. Sandy Oak Aspen Wooden Bench $399
8. Del Ray Trunk $499
9. Luxey Tufted Faux Mohair Bench $699
10. Bodhi King Bench $699
11. Ottilie Leather Bench $750
12. Eunice Bench $799
13. Calder 60″ Storage Bench $899
14. Noa Dining Bench $999
15. Saddle Leather Tufted Ottoman $1199
16. Ambleside Bench $1898
We designed the Charly line of sofas, chairs, and ottomans with perfect proportions for comfort — with wide arms, a loungey depth, and stylish and practical lumbar pillows. Available in 70 kid-friendly, pet-friendly fabrics, this line was created with families in mind.
Our wood grain Shaker cabinet fronts were designed for busy, high-traffic homes like ours. Clad with durable textured thermofoils, this line is compatible with Sektion, Akurum, Godmorgon, and Besta cabinets from IKEA. It's the perfect, practical way to add the warmth of wood to all the rooms of your home.
We have teamed up with Loloi to create a line of rugs that are as affordable as they are beautiful. This collection houses a great mix of traditional and modern rugs, in cottage-y colorways, as well as vintage-inspired beauties that you’ll want to roll out in every room.
We partnered with Stuga on a line of hardwood floors — The Ingrid is really livable, and the color is very neutral. It doesn’t lean warm or cool, it’s that just right in-between. We have really loved putting it everywhere in our house. It’s the best jumping-off point for design, no matter your interior style. In addition to being beautiful, Ingrid is really durable — we have three kids, and we always have a home construction project going on. Ingrid stands up to it all.
Looking for our favorite things? A place to shop our home room by room, or just catch up on what Julia's wearing / loving right now? Browse the CLJ shop.
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Almost daily I get asked what I would call my home style. I don’t like to box myself in, but I definitely lean Modern Traditional with an emphasis on comfort when it comes to our home. This especially came up when I shared our Powder Bath Reveal on the blog. I think it changes slightly […]
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