Ottomans have been a staple in homes since, well, The Ottoman Empire, and for a very versatile piece of furniture, there doesn’t seem to be any hard or fast rules as to how to style them in your home. That’s a good thing. You’re free to experiment as you like, but if you’re looking for some pointers to get started, you’ve come to the right place. Read on for our guide to styling your ottoman.
What is an ottoman?
It really depends on who you ask what the purpose of an ottoman is. In some houses it’s a place to physically put your feet up without scratching the table, in other’s acts as another seat in the room, in others it’s still a place to store towels and bedsheets and in others it’s simply an aesthetic choice.
It’s ultimately a very versatile piece of furniture that today most resembles a small table with a soft top, with the flat top and legs, but it can come in lots of shapes and sizes. The earliest ottomans, a la The Ottoman Empire, resembled a small sofa, minus the back and arms, which is also a design that is common today.
Make it the focal point
Typically, the sofa or TV is the focal point of the room, but you can buck that trend by putting a large ottoman in the center of the room. By forgoing the back of the sofa, there’s nothing dictating that it needs to be up against a wall or acting as a wall so you can place it in the center of your room and use it as a set of seating for guests. Think of turning your home into an art gallery with the ottoman in the center.
In the bedroom
Ottomans are very popular in the bedroom. They can be placed at the end of a bed, giving you somewhere to get into those stiletto heels easier, and offer storage so you have somewhere to store the clean bed linen, or stow away all the mountains of pillows that you won’t be using at night.
Grab something long and slender for the end of your bed as a way to quickly add a lot of style to the room.
Center or side
There is the option of placing it where a coffee table would be and enjoying somewhere to put your feet up. In fact, it could replace your coffee table, creating multiple purposes of storing items, drawing attention, and another seating option.
Or you could buy a long and slender ottoman and place it in an empty space in the seating area. You add more seats to the equation and perhaps close a gap in your room with a stylish addition.
Mix or match?
So, what style of ottoman do you go with? There are a lot of furniture and home accessory stores out there that offer cheap furniture like ottomans as a nice addition, using the same material in the same color. This is a lovely option and will offer a nicely uniform look. However, you can also go in the complete opposite direction with ottomans, since they are big enough to make a statement. Go for an opposing color option or add some boldness to the room with a pattern to oppose the predominant colour scheme.