Can an Ottoman Be Used as a Table?

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Ottomans are small portable furniture pieces that give your home a unique look while serving several purposes. When purchasing your furniture set, you might be indecisive about buying these ottomans or tables. With their structure, you cannot help but wonder if ottomans can serve as tables.

Ottomans are the perfect substitutes for tables. Despite being a trendy and decorative piece, it is perfect for placing items. However, an ottoman as a coffee table might be problematic because spills could damage the fabric.

Choosing between ottomans and tables can prove to be a little difficult. Thankfully, this write-up gives in-depth details about using ottomans as tables. With this information, it’s easy to decide if using ottomans as tables is the best idea.

What Are the Uses of Ottomans?


Ottomans gained popularity in medieval times. They were created as footstools for people to rest their feet. However, homeowners discovered that ottomans could serve better purposes as time passed.

As a result, these stools now serve as additional seats at gatherings, meetings, and sometimes home parties. They are also perfect for decorative and storage purposes.

When ottomans first came on board, they were made exclusively of cotton. Consequently, their structure evolved to include using other fabrics like plush and leather. Ottomans also have an extensive design catalog, providing you with one that must suit your taste, style, or decor.

Are Ottomans Good for Small Space?

Ottomans work well in small spaces because of their versatility. They can serve as extra chairs or tables without taking up too much space in your room.

Yet, they could cause a little inconvenience in smaller spaces. Despite being efficient, they’re still an extra furniture piece to deal with, especially if you have enough furnishing. Ottomans can only be utilized in small spaces if only a few furniture pieces are around.

Can I Use an Ottoman as a Table?

As I mentioned earlier, ottomans have evolved and can be used for several purposes. One of them is a table substitute.

Ottomans are like backless couches, meaning they have the appearance of a table wrapped in fabric. In other words, they have a flat top, making them suitable for tables. However, most of their surfaces are cushioned.

Placing heavy items on ottomans is easy, but how possible will it be to place a tray of wine on its cushioned surface? Besides, if they’re serving as tables, they should be as functional.

Several homeowners and designers have found their way around this little problem with creative skills. In other words, there are several ways to tweak your ottoman and turn them into tables without spoiling its design.

How Do I Turn My Ottoman into a Table?

The best option for using your ottoman as a table is to buy a hybrid ottoman. This option combines an ottoman with a tabletop. Some pieces have trays that form a flat, firm surface, making them sturdy enough for placing items.

Other hybrid variants imitate the style of a coffee table. Some could also include storage space beneath where you can keep several items.

If you’re not using a ready-made hybrid table, you can create something similar. The best option is to use a tray to serve dishes and drinks. This also makes it flexible as you can easily turn it back to a footstool by taking off the tray.

Another alternative is using a piece of treated wood or plexiglass on the surface of your ottoman. The glass flattens the cushioned surface and creates a solid to place items. However, you must measure the edges of your ottoman to get the exact glass or wood size that’ll be a perfect fit.

Advantages of Using an Ottoman as a Table

Homeowners are used to having the standard wooden or glass tables as a centerpiece for their living areas. However, ottomans have recently taken the spotlight and are slowly preferred over tables. This is due to their benefits which I have explained below.

Ottomans Are Space-Efficient

An ottoman can be beneficial if you have a smaller room space. Instead of getting chairs and tables as separate entities, you could opt for an ottoman to serve both purposes.

For instance, instead of getting two chairs and a table, opt for two chairs and an ottoman. This way, you have an extra seat in case of guests.

Ottomans that can serve as beds are also very useful as they save floor space in bedrooms. They might not feel like a mattress, but they are comfortable and can serve as chairs during the daytime.

Ottomans Are Versatile

An ottoman can switch from a chair to a table in the twinkle of an eye. While you can use it to serve, you can also use it as an extra seat when there’s a need for it. In the same vein, it can serve as a footstool when necessary.

They have Trendy Designs

One of the things to love about ottomans is their designs. They come in several sizes, and manufacturers utilize different kinds of fabric in their production. As a result, there’s always an ottoman for you regardless of your personal preferences.

They offer Comfort

Every piece of furniture should be able to make you feel comfortable. Using ottomans as tables is one of the best ways to achieve comfort in your home. Unlike most tables, they have a classy appearance with fewer edges.

Ottoman’s surfaces are neither shiny like glass nor coarse like some wooden tables. Instead, they’re soft to the touch and have a gentler-looking surface.

What Are the Disadvantages of Using an Ottoman?

Like several home furniture, ottomans have disadvantages. Though there are a few good sides to using these stools, there are also downsides which I’ve explained below.

Ottomans Lack Balance

The greatest problem of using an ottoman as a table is the lack of balance. An ottoman can hold a large plate of food, but it’ll be harder to keep cups and wine glasses standing on them. The case is even worse for tufted ottomans because they have a lot of button designs.

Also, several ottomans lack sharp edges because they are covered with fabric. While this can make it look cozier, it easily results in things rolling off them.

They’re Difficult to Maintain

Cleaning wooden or glass tables is relatively easy. Rubbing a damp rag over them is enough to make them sparkle. However, you cannot say the same for ottomans.

Most of them are made from fabric, making it difficult to get stains off easily. It’ll be impossible to get the stain off in some cases, creating a permanent stain on the ottoman. Ottomans with leather covering might be easier to maintain, but they wear off faster.

They Are Smaller Than Standard Tables

Most tables are larger than small ottomans. As a result, you’ll have to buy a larger ottoman if you want it to perform the same function as a table.

Ottoman Vs. Coffee Table

It isn’t easy to select the best option from a coffee table and an ottoman. While ottomans are versatile, coffee tables are just what they are – tables. Both also come in different sizes and designs which can fit into your space.

However, an ottoman is a better pick for someone who prefers to conserve space. This is because you can use it as a centerpiece, chair, footstool, and for other positions that come to mind.

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