What is a Linen-Press?

A linen-press is a type of cabinet traditionally used for storing linens, such as sheets, tablecloths, and towels.


A linen-press is a piece of furniture that blends utility with beauty, often serving as a standout feature in a room while providing essential storage for textiles. Originating from Europe in the 17th century, linen-presses were originally crafted by skilled artisans who placed a premium on both functionality and aesthetic appeal. These cabinets typically feature deep shelves or drawers and may include a press mechanism in the upper section to smooth linens, a function that hints at the garment-care practices of the past.

The design of a linen-press can vary widely, incorporating elements from various design styles. Some may showcase intricate wood inlays, elaborate carvings, or fine brass fittings, reflecting the architectural elements and fabrication and craftsmanship of their period. Modern versions might adopt a more minimalistic approach, focusing on clean lines and simplicity but always retaining the primary purpose of storing and organizing textiles.

In today’s interior design, linen-presses are not only used for their original purpose but have also been repurposed to accommodate modern storage needs, including clothing, media, or as unique bar cabinets. Their capacity to add character while offering practical storage solutions makes them a beloved choice among interior design aficionados.


Traditionally, a linen-press would be found in the bedrooms or dining rooms of large households, storing freshly laundered linens. Today, they can be seen in various room settings, serving as statement pieces that also provide valuable storage space for textiles and other items.


  • Can a linen-press be used for items other than linens?

    Yes, modern-day uses for a linen-press extend beyond storing linens. They can be adapted for clothing, electronic media, kitchenware, or even as unique bar cabinets, showcasing their versatility in storage and design.

  • Are linen-presses considered antiques?

    Many linen-presses, especially those crafted in the 17th to 19th centuries, are considered antiques and are valued for their craftsmanship and historical significance. However, contemporary versions are available that reflect modern design sensibilities.

  • How do I incorporate a linen-press into modern decor?

    To incorporate a linen-press into modern decor, focus on finding a piece that complements your existing style. For a vintage look, seek out an antique with rich wood tones and detailed craftsmanship. For a more contemporary setting, look for a linen-press with clean lines and simple designs. Additionally, consider repurposing it for unique storage solutions that reflect your personal style and needs.

Practical Application

When considering adding a linen-press to your interior, think about the aesthetics and storage requirements of the space. Vintage or antique linen-presses can add a touch of elegance and history, while modern versions can blend seamlessly into contemporary interiors. Regardless of style, a well-placed linen-press can enhance the appearance of a room and add practical storage solutions for a variety of items, not just linens. Ensure that the linen-press is placed in a location where it is accessible and where its beauty can be appreciated.