HOW TO USE VINTAGE DAYBEDS & CHAISES IN YOUR SPACE
Not quite a bench, but not quite a sofa either, vintage daybeds and chaises straddle many definitions. Yet thanks to their premium versatility and comfort, vintage daybeds and chaises ultimately land themselves among the most skillful furniture pieces we can think of. Whether you’re in need of a vintage daybed to do double duty as both seating and bedding in a studio apartment, or you simply crave a vintage chaise for weekend lounging, these stylish multitaskers live up to the challenge.
To shine an even brighter light on all the ways in which a used chaise or daybed can function (not to mention the many style directions they can take), read on!
HOW TO USE A VINTAGE DAYBED
Characterized by its bed-like appearance, the vintage daybed is typically constructed of an elevated platform surrounded by railing on two or three sides. Alternatively, some vintage daybeds are closer in form to a sofa and feature a pull-out or fold-down mechanism that turns the sofa into a bed. No matter your choice, a vintage daybed will maximize a room’s footprint, turning forgotten corners into cozy nooks and extra bedrooms into functional, multitasking guest rooms.
If you’re looking for a vintage daybed that will function as both a sofa and a bed, start with deciding on what size sleeper you’ll actually need. Many traditional daybeds with railings only come in a twin size, and so if you need a larger sleeping space, a sofa or futon-style daybed may be better suited. With that said, traditional railing daybeds can usually be outfitted with a standard mattress while futon and sofa daybeds usually only have the option of a foam-based cushion (which—cringe—can mean they’re not quite as comfy).
When it comes to choosing a style for your vintage daybed, there are a number of options, but some forms lend themselves better to certain styles. Case in point? If you’re looking for a modern daybed or a Mid-Century Modern daybed, your best bet will likely be a sofa or futon daybed. However, if you prefer a Moroccan daybed or a traditional daybed, a traditional railing daybed is more likely to offer up you what you’re looking for. Worth noting is that Moroccan daybeds sometimes feature a large, oversized platform, which means you can often use a mattress size larger than a twin.
While vintage daybeds of course make fine additions to living rooms, there are scads of other ways to use them. Among our favorites? Try a used daybed in a recessed window nook to create a custom-looking window seat. Or, try a small used daybed in an entry. While a bench would normally be our go-to, a petite daybed can mimic a bench while offering a bit more room to sit and remove shoes and drop packages.
HOW TO USE A VINTAGE CHAISE
Consider a vintage chaise the more relaxed cousin of the used daybed. While vintage chaise silhouettes vary, most closely mirror a slipper chair with an elongated seat or a settee with a single arm. Their languid shapes make them ideal for reading and cat napping, and, yes, a re-charging therapy session.
To decide what chaise will best suit your needs, it’s best to first consider if your chaise will be infusing your space with style or function. Many designer chaises feature sultry, serpentine shapes which usher in an element of the avant-garde, but don’t necessarily feel casual and utilitarian. If you’re seeking the latter, you might consider a Méridienne chaise, which features a settee form. It’s graceful and shapely and perfect for packing into hallways or bay window nooks. Similarly, the Recamier chaise features a straight seat capped by high arms on either side, making it ideal for pulling a shift as a bench an entry or living room.
Used chaises come in a variety of styles, but they traditionally take either a modern or French route. For an ultra modern bent, try a wave chaise, which features a slinky s-frame platform elevated on metal or wood legs. If Marie Antoinette is your style muse; however, try the previously mentioned Méridienne chaise or a Duchesse chaise (which features a full back and a half footrest), these curvy designs are perfect for imbuing any room with a regal Parisian vibe.
Love the French look, but looking for something less petite and pretty? Try a used chaise that takes its cues from a comfy, overstuffed armchair. Featuring an armchair back, but an extended seat, this contemporary chaise is perfect for bedrooms that have a little extra floor space or nurseries where story time is a nightly prerequisite. These used chaises will also sub for a bed in a pinch, which once again, makes them an inspired choice for the kiddo’s room.