Using A Daybed As A Couch: 5 Simple Tips

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What is a daybed? It’s a combination of a chaise, sofa, and bed. This piece of furniture is a common feature in many luxury living spaces, and people often choose daybeds as an additional seating option for larger open-plan living rooms. However, it’s easy for a daybed to look more like a bed than a couch — out of place in a living room. Consider one of these five simple tips for using a daybed as a couch.

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5 Steps To Turn Your Daybed Into A Couch

The tips below can be as inexpensive or as pricey as you want and will quickly make the daybed look like a sofa.

Tip 1: Use Pillows As Armrests

Even if you have side panels on your daybed, they are often too small or too high to be used as armrests. You can make your daybed more sofa-like by adding pillows to its sides.

For this purpose, the best choices are typically rectangular, round, or bolster pillows. You can mix and match colors or choose uniform pillows to achieve a consistent, clean look. Pillows will make the daybed more comfortable and give it an inviting appearance.

Tip 2: Use Large Pillows As A Backrest

You can make your daybed look like a couch (and make it more comfortable) by adding long, large pillows along the back. Daybeds are much deeper than the typical couch, so adding large, thick pillows will create better back support for sitting on the couch.

Tip 3: Add Side Tables

Side tables are a great way to change the appearance of a daybed because they make the area look like a living room instead of a sleeping area. Add a side table (or two) and put lamps, books, and decorations on it to add to the “this is a living room” impression.

Tip 4: Get A Coffee Table

Like side tables, a coffee table alters the appearance of the daybed, making the area look like a seating area instead of a sleeping area. Add magazines, candles, coasters, or other accessories to enhance the effect.

Tip 5: Hang Wall Art Differently

Instead of hanging art at the “head” of the daybed, which is typical for beds, hang art behind the back of the daybed. For guests, this unconsciously makes the area look more like a living room and less like a bedroom.

5 Pictures Of Daybeds Used As Couches

1. With Pillows And A Side Table, A Daybed Looks More Like A Sofa

A daybed in a living room with a gray rug in front of it.

2. A Trundle Bed Under A Daybed Creates Extra Sleeping Space

A white-framed daybed with a trundle bed underneath.

3. Incorporate A Daybed Into Your Existing Living Room Furniture

A daybed in between two bookshelves.

Image credit: General Assembly

4. Use Daybeds As Living Room Dividers In Your Seating Arrangement

Daybeds in a large living room.

5. Make The Daybed The Central Piece Of Furniture In A Room For An Upscale Look

A daybed as the main piece of furniture in a living room.

Different Types Of Daybeds

There are many different types of daybeds, including some of the popular ones below:

  • Outdoor daybed: This kind of daybed is made of weather-resistant fabrics that can hold up to rain, snow, and wind.
  • Daybed with built-in trundle: This kind of daybed has a second twin-sized bed that pulls out from underneath, making it great for hosting overnight guests.
  • Daybed with storage space: This type of daybed features storage drawers underneath, so you can store extra linens and other household items — useful in small spaces.

FAQs About Using A Daybed As A Couch

Daybeds, Futons, Trundle Beds, Sofa Beds: What’s The Difference?

Most daybeds are twin-size mattresses, making them 38″ deep. The seat depth of an average couch is only 20-25″. Daybeds don’t fold out to become beds; instead, you just remove whatever’s on the daybed during the day so you can use it as a bed at night.

Futons are sofas that have one large futon mattress. A futon sofa folds back flat to make a bed.

A trundle bed is a bed that pulls out from underneath another bed to create a second sleeping space. When it’s not in use, the trundle bed goes back underneath the main bed, so it’s not in the way. A trundle bed can go under a normal bed or a daybed.

A sofa bed is a couch that has a metal frame under its seating cushions. The metal frame pulls out from under the cushions, revealing a mattress to sleep on.

Can A Daybed Be Used As A Couch?

Yes, a daybed can be used as a couch by adding some pillows as armrests and back support.

Is A Daybed Good For A Living Room?

Yes, a daybed is good for a living room if you make it more comfortable for sitting by adding throw pillows. You can also style a daybed with throw blankets to make it look more like a living room space than a bedroom.

Can You Sit On A Daybed?

Yes, you can sit on a daybed. A daybed mattress is deeper than a traditional sofa, so you can lean back or cross your legs on a daybed. But to sit or lounge as you usually would on a couch, you’ll want to add some back pillows for better couch ergonomics.

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Lucy Henderson is a Seattle-based home décor expert and creator of Palladio Interiors. She loves writing about design trends, home-interior inspiration, and home-decorating tips. She's a fan of coziness and simplicity.