At Footstools & More we have been making footstools (and more – serving trays, headboards, cushions, and so on) for over 50 years, so we think that we are beginning to get quite good at it.

One of the most popular designs that we get asked for is hallway wooden storage benches because they have so many uses. These are like a rectangular footstool that comes in a choice of sizes from long and thin to short and fat, with legs, without legs, with a storage tray at the base, or with a lid that opens up like an ottoman.

A wooden storage bench is perfect for use in the hall or a cloakroom because when you come in from the world outside in muddy footwear you can take it off and pop it into the bench or on to the tray at the base and let it dry off, without going any further into the house. This is even more useful when you have young kids who love nothing more after a shower of rain than to go out in their colourful wellies and jump in every puddle that they come across. Shades of The Vicar of Dibley, for those who watch the programme!

Not only are you saving having to walk your wellies anywhere else, but they are also right there the next time you have to take the dog out when it’s raining. If you are a jogger, you can keep your running shoes in them too.

But strange as it may sound, our hallway wooden storage benches are not only for use in the hallway. They are often used near a window as a window seat or in the conservatory. They are comfortable to sit on and they don’t take up nearly as much space as a chair would do, so are ideal for use in smaller spaces. If you have kids, they can kneel on them and watch the birds feeding on the bird feeder without standing by the window and risking scaring them off.

They can also be used in the same way as any other footstool – for putting your feet up on – and they can be useful for extra seating if you have dinner guests or a party. They can be covered in your choice of materials, including leather, and they can also be buttoned or deep buttoned if you wish. You can just keep them in the hall or use them in other rooms whenever needed.