So, what exactly is an ottoman? Is it a footstool? Is it a seat? Is it a box for storing stuff in?

Well, yes, yes, and yes. It is all those and more. Ottomans were first introduced into Europe in the 18th century from Turkey (or should that now be Turkiye?). They were originally a padded upholstered bench without a back or arms and were covered with heaps of cushions to form the main piece of seating in the home. They were also more or less a continuous item of furniture ranged around three walls in a room.

Then they got smaller and became a furniture item in the corner, and then eventually moved into the middle of the room. Which is pretty much where they remain until this day.

So, an ottoman is today used as a footstool, and you can have a large ottoman which can take the feet of up to three people, or a smaller one. Of course, an ottoman can be covered in any type of material that you wish, but many people prefer the traditional black ottoman in leather or faux leather such as Idaho.

A Big Benefit If You Have Kids

A leather black ottoman has one very big benefit when you have pets and children in the home and that is that it can withstand a lot of punishment such as children jumping up and down on it, cats scratching it, and twits – sorry, adults – spilling a glass of wine or a cup of coffee on it. A quick wipe over with a damp cloth and you will never know it happened, whereas if you did that on something like velvet you would be in a right old pickle.

A large ottoman can also be used as seating when you have a party, and the ones that we make at Footstools & More are strong enough to take the weight of three or four adults with no problem.

Of course, when you have an ottoman, it has a lid, and that means that you have a really useful amount of space for storing stuff that you need to hand but that you don’t want cluttering up the living room.

Many people also use an ottoman in the bedroom, either as a seat for madam to sit in front of the dressing table while she puts on all the necessary face paint, lip gloss, powder, and all the rest of it, or at the foot of the bed where it is perfect for storing sheets, blankets, towels, and so on.