Not an armchair, yet not quite a couch, a settee is the perfect balance between both worlds. Settees are ideal multi-person seating solutions for smaller spaces, and—having been an essential part of design for over 250 years—they’re also extremely versatile in style.
[Quick history lesson.] The first settees originated in the Tudor period in England, and were quite literally just larger armchairs or elegant, pew-like benches. As social norms and styles evolved during the end of the 17th century, with a greater focus on privacy and comfort, settees became larger and more comfortable with the addition of cushions and upholstery.
We now are able to enjoy the beauty of this type of seating in its many forms and shapes, like classic Louis XVI-style settees, cushy French Napoleon III-style, or even more modern takes like Art Deco canned-style settees. Both its size and style range make the settee so adaptable, there’s virtually nowhere it doesn’t look good. Here’s ten photos that prove how versatile settees can be. Afterwards, shop our collection of antique and vintage settees.
1. At the end of a bed
2. Nestled in a corner
3. In the bathroom
4. Making an entrance in the hallway
5. As a standalone statement
6. As a reading nook
7. At the dining table
8. In a child’s room
9. Upholstered in a bold color
10. Outside! (Weather permitting, of course.)