x bench in library

Benches + Ottomans.

*Image above via Steven Gambrel showcasing a lovely upholstered x-bench similar to the extra-wide custom styles you can commission here.

One of the best home purchases I made nearly nine years ago was a pair of two upholstered x-benches in a fun coral patterns. I initially purchased them to sit at the foot of our master bed. They then migrated down to our living room to double as seating in our living room — they do a great job of filling a vacant space in a living room, or flanking (or stowing beneath) a console, or serving as a kind of coffee table center point when lined up next to one another, or even just anchoring and adding warmth to a space, as seen in the library above.

In our first apartment in Manhattan, we used them as seating in our tiny dining room, tucked beneath our drop-leaf Room + Board table. They now sit in the entryway of our apartment, flanking a bookshelf, and serve as handy seating when removing shoes and a good resting place for an armload of parcels.

In short: benches and ottomans are good, versatile workhorses. (Bonus when they include storage!) A couple of favorite recent styles I like:

SWEET IN A LITTLE GIRL’S ROOM (01.)

$100 WOVEN STORAGE OTTOMAN (02.)

S&L ALWAYS DOES CLASSICS WITH INTERESTING TWISTS/DETAILS — LOVE THE LEGS ON THESE (03.)

THE INSIDE ACHIEVES A CUSTOM LOOK AT A REASONABLE PRICE (04.), WITH LOADS OF DIFFERENT PRINTS AVAILABLE — I ACTUALLY HAVE MY EYE ON THESE SKIRTED STORAGE OTTOMANS OF THEIRS IN THE FLAMINGO HELE BAY PRINT

THIS SKIRTED STYLE IN THE OLIVE STRIPE IS VERY HANDSOME (05.)

THIS WICKER BENCH IS SUCH A GOOD DEAL FOR $100/POP (06.)

$129 RATTAN BENCH — ENVISION FOR AN ENTRYWAY, LANDING, OR LONELY CORRIDOR (07.)

ELEGANT UPHOLSTERED BENCH IN FANTASTIC FABRICS (08.)

LONG STORAGE BENCH (09. — GREAT FOR FOOT OF BED) — SIMILAR LOOK FOR LESS WITH THIS

FUN BOHO OTTOMAN (10. — COULD BE A COFFEE TABLE WITH SOME TRAYS ON TOP — COFFEE TABLE STYLING IDEAS HERE)

Not shown in collage above, but this Etsy shop does gorgeous custom pieces I’ve seen in many professionally decorated homes, and you can select the dimensions, fabric, style (pillow-top, etc.)! These are probably the most similar to the style seen in the photo at the top.

A couple more recent home finds (can you tell I’ve been saving lots of inspiration for our new house?)…

THIS 7X10 RUG IS UNDER $200 AND SO HANDSOME FOR A STUDY/LIBRARY

BEAUTIFUL FLORAL PITCHER — GREAT GIFT OR MAKESHIFT VASE

$25 RATTAN TRAY

QUILTED BOTANICAL RUNNER

HAVE ALWAYS LOVED THIS FABRIC

AFFORDABLE SCALLOPED SHEETS – GET THE HIGH END LOOK FOR LESS!

FUN ALTERNATIVE TO A BASKET FOR STOWING TOYS, MAGAZINES, KNITTING MATERIALS, ETC

WHITE DOUBLE HEMSTITCH LINEN NAPKINS AT A GREAT PRICE

BONE INLAY MIRROR (MORE GREAT MIRRORS HERE)

DELFT BLUE VASES

P.S. Great lighting for any home and recent nursery finds.

P.P.S. In case you have a little ballerina at home.

P.P.P.S. A color combo I’m loving this season. I’m writing this while sitting next to the fun Thibaut pillows on my couch and realizing…maybe I’ve always loved this color combo?

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