What is an Ottoman?

An ottoman is a versatile piece of furniture commonly used as a footrest, seat, or coffee table.


An ottoman is much more than just a place to put your feet up after a long day at work. This multifunctional piece of furniture can serve several purposes in a home’s interior design, making it a staple in both modern and traditional settings. Ottomans are often upholstered and may come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials, offering both comfort and style to a room. They can be used as a statement piece that adds a pop of color or texture to a space or as a practical storage solution when designed with a hinged or removable top.

The versatility of ottomans makes them an ideal choice for any room. They can serve as a subtle addition to a living room or bedroom, providing extra seating or a cozy spot to rest. In some cases, ottomans are designed to fit perfectly within the interior structure of armchairs or sofas, making them a seamless extension of a furniture set. Ottomans with a firm top can also serve as a convenient coffee table or side table, holding trays, books, or decorative items. For rooms with space constraints, ottomans that offer internal storage can be particularly useful, hiding away items like throws, toys, or magazines.

Choosing the right ottoman involves considering the size, style, and function that best fits your space and needs. Whether you’re looking for a piece to complement your sofa or a stand-alone statement maker, the ottoman's flexibility makes it an excellent addition to any interior design project.


Ottomans are commonly found in living rooms, bedrooms, and dressing areas. They pair well with chairs and sofas, offering a comfortable extension for seating or resting feet. Additionally, they can act as impromptu coffee tables in small spaces or add an extra layer of texture and color when chosen to contrast with other furniture pieces. In entryways or at the foot of a bed, storage ottomans provide both a decorative touch and practical utility for stowing away items.


  • Can ottomans be used for storage?

    Yes, many ottomans are designed with built-in storage capabilities, such as a hinged lid or removable top. This makes them an excellent option for tidying up living spaces by storing items like blankets, toys, or magazines.

  • Do ottomans come in different shapes and sizes?

    Absolutely! Ottomans are available in a wide range of shapes, including square, rectangular, round, and even unique custom designs. Their sizes can vary greatly to fit different spaces and serve various functions.

  • How do you choose an ottoman for a small space?

    When choosing an ottoman for a small space, consider compact, multifunctional options that can serve dual purposes, such as seating and storage. Opt for pieces that match the scale of the room and the furniture within it to maintain a balanced and spacious feel.

  • Can an ottoman serve as a coffee table?

    Yes, an ottoman with a firm, flat surface can double as a coffee table. It's often recommended to use a tray on top for stability when placing cups, books, or decorative items.

Practical Application

When incorporating an ottoman into your interior design, think about the piece's specific role in your space. For a cohesive look, ensure the ottoman's style, color, and material harmonize with the rest of your décor. If space is tight, consider a storage ottoman to keep your area clutter-free. For living rooms, pairing an ottoman with a sectional or sofa can create a comfortable and inviting atmosphere. When used as a coffee table, adding a tray on top can help stabilize items and add an extra layer of decorative appeal. The key is to remember the ottoman’s versatility and adapt it to your specific needs and aesthetic.