9 Types of Furniture You Might Not Have Known (But Should Know)

9 Types of Furniture You Might Not Have Known (But Should Know)

When it comes to furniture shopping, there are a lot of types you may not know. If you're not sure what the name of something is, it can be difficult to make a purchase that you're happy with or even find what you're looking for in the first place. Furniture stores have specific names for certain pieces of furniture that go beyond the simple, "sofa" or "sectional" we are all familiar with.

In this blog post, we will go over 9 types of furniture that you might not have known before. Couch Potatoes has several furniture items with names you may not use in your own household. By the end of this post, you'll be an expert on types of furniture and ready to shop with confidence!


Term #01: Chaise

A chaise is a piece of furniture that looks like a cross between a chair and a couch. Chaises can be used as standalone pieces or as part of a larger furniture set. Before I knew the term, "chaise" I conjured up some image of a chaise and thought it was just called a "lounge". While you can certainly lounge on a chaise, using the right term may help narrow down your search for this specific piece.

what is a chaise lounge

This is our Ladybird Left-Arm Facing Chaise in the fabric Bella Hunter. The retro-chic style of our Ladybird Chaise is perfect for lounging It's available in a variety of different fabrics and colors to best match your personal style.


Term #02: Cocktail Table

A cocktail table, also called a coffee table, is a low table that is typically placed in front of a sofa. It is the perfect place to set down books, magazines, coasters, or anything else you might need while relaxing on your couch. The words coffee table and cocktail table are used interchangeably, so you may not have known about the other term meaning the same thing if you grew up in a "coffee table" household.

coffee table with tempered glass

You could absolutely sip cocktails at this table, but this is called the Bodi Coffee Table. The contemporary style of this table creates a centerpiece for your living room that is both stylish and functional with its tempered glass top.


Term #03: Counter Stools

Counter stools are chairs that are typically used at a kitchen counter or bar. They are shorter than standard chairs, with no arms, and usually have a backrest.

It's important to understand that there are multiple heights for stools, and knowing the different names for the heights will help you decide which is right for your home. The different names are:

  • Table Height: this stool should be at least 18 inches high.
  • Counter Height: this stool should be around 24-26 inches high.
  • Bar Height: this stool should be around 28-30 inches high.
  • Spectator Height: this stool should be around 34-36 inches high
mid-century modern stools

This is the Studio Counter Stool, with a seat height of 24.75". The satin walnut finish on the legs and linen upholstered seat adds a touch of elegance to any dining set.


Term #04: Chests

No, this term does not mean a chest as in "treasure chest". A chest is a type of furniture that is used for storage. It usually has drawers or doors and can be made from a variety of materials. It differs from dressers and sideboards in that it is taller and narrower. Chests are a great way to add extra storage to a room without taking up too much space.

affordable chests for clothes in austin

The Sun Chest is a perfect example of a chest that has both drawers and a door. Inside the door is also two more shelves, so you don't have to worry about not having as much room as a dresser.


Term #05: Snack Table

A snack table is a small, low table that is typically used in front of a sofa or chair. It can be used for holding food or drinks, and usually has a lip or tray to prevent items from rolling off. Snack tables are also sometimes called TV trays because they were originally designed to hold food while people watched television, but the ones we have are more stylish and design friendly.

snack tables

This is the Clara Snack Table. It's sturdy as far as snack tables go, with industrial details like the metal base and cement top.


Term #06: Reversible Chaise

If you didn't know what a chaise was, as mentioned above, chances are you don't know what a reversible chaise is either. A reversible chaise is a type of chaise lounge that can be configured with the chaise on either side. This is a great option if you need to be able to switch the orientation of the chaise depending on the layout of your room.

mid-century modern sofas in austin

Before I knew about different types of furniture my mind would've decided on defining this as a "sectional" since it clearly has another section attached. However, this is the Wallace Reversible Chaise, with tufted cushions and elegant tapered legs.


Term #07: Ottoman

An ottoman is a piece of furniture that can be used as a seat, footrest, or coffee table. It is typically low and square, with no back or sides, and can be made from a variety of materials, including wood, leather, or upholstered fabric. Another term used is "footstool" which acts as an umbrella term that ottoman falls under along with "hassock".

unique cube ottoman

This little cube is the Diana Square Stool Accent Ottoman. Although a non-conventional shape, with no legs, you can use it as you do an ottoman.


Term #08: Pouf

A pouf is a small, round, and often colorful Ottoman. It is the perfect size to use as an extra seat or footrest, and can easily be moved around your home as needed.

natural ottomans

As you can see, it has a distinct shape from other ottomans. You will want to know the term, "pouf" to find similar pieces like this Brady Round Natural Pouf.


Term #09: Modular Couch

A modular couch is a type of sofa that is made up of multiple sections that can be arranged in a variety of ways. This is a great option if you need to be able to change the layout of your couch to suit your needs.

modular sectionals in austin

Modular couches are trendy these days, so you may just search "trendy couches" or "popular couches", and most of them are in this style. Our Fluffy Collection is comprised of different-sized modular pieces like this Fluffy 5-piece Modular Sofa.


The More You Know About Furniture

Be sure to keep these terms in mind the next time you're furniture shopping, whether it's for your home or you're searching for different types of furniture online. There are so many different types it's hard to pinpoint the right name for the exact piece you are searching for. By knowing all the names for each type it'll be much easier to find what you're looking for, and you'll sound like a furniture pro in no time!

If all this searching sounds like a chore, stop by Couch Potatoes and we'll be sure to help you narrow down your options and find the perfect piece for your home. We have a wide variety of furniture, from sofas and loveseats to coffee tables and ottomans, and everything in between. We have furniture stores in Central and South Austin, Texas.

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