The Best Multipurpose Furniture Every Home Should Have

It’s been a year of making the most out of our homes. Sheltering in place prompted us to come up with quick multipurpose home design tips, as many of us rethought the design of our spaces to eke out more function.

What’s really made a world of difference is leaning heavily into multipurpose furniture pieces that are space-saving, make for clever storage, and help give us some sense of order and organization in the home. And in the new age of WFH and family living all rolled up into the same spaces, anything that helps separate work life from home life is game-changing.

Here, to help you maximize your spaces, we’ve rounded up the best multifunctional furniture every home needs—from narrow shelves that double as nightstands to pouf seating that stand in as coffee tables. Think of this as your ultimate checklist for functional investment pieces!

multipurpose furniture, multifunction furniture

A Sofa Day Bed

A well-sized daybed is the perfect two-in-one piece to instantly transform any room into a space for both lounging and catching some zzz’s. You can easily turn any den, spare room, or basement living space into a combo guest room design by simply pulling in a daybed that doubles as a sofa. You can also use a daybed for work by pulling up a C-table for your laptop—and who can resist working from a sofa that’s also a bed!?

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multipurpose furniture, multifunction furniture

A Storage Bench

When it comes to multifunctional pieces, the storage bench is at the top of our essentials list. Among the many uses for benches, they’re especially great in an entryway or along hallways. Storage benches are also space-savers in a studio apartment or kids room, perfect for blankets and shoes as well as toys. Not to mention, a storage bench also makes for a comfortable seat and a practical surface, which makes it truly an indispensable workhorse in any space.

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multipurpose furniture, multifunction furniture

A Bookcase Nightstand

Instead of a traditional nightstand, pull in a bookshelf next to your bed for a bedside table that also offers tons of vertical storage space. The best part about this multifunctional approach is that the bookshelf utilizes wall space, meaning it gives you storage without taking up floor space. utilize wall space for extra storage. Try a ladder bookshelf for a piece that helps keep your bedside looking and feeling open.

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multipurpose furniture, multifunction furniture

A Console Desk

For many of us, working from home has required us to carve out home offices once and for all. One stylish and space-saving solution we came upon is using a console table as a desk. Because consoles tend to be narrow, they’re perfect for small spaces and easy to pull up along a wall in any room— think a hallway, in front of a window, behind a sofa. If what you’re looking for is a simple surface for you to set up your laptop, a console desk is definitely the way to go!

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multipurpose furniture, multifunction furniture

A Room-Dividing Bookcase

One multipurpose use for lower, wider bookcases is to arrange them as a room divider in large open spaces. It’s a great way to create different areas and “zones” that feel distinct and separate from each other in one room. Consider the living room with an etagere that partitions off a home office corner, or the seating area that’s delineated from the dining space by a low bookshelf. This is a very practical “half wall” approach that also offers you tons of storage.

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multipurpose furniture, multifunction furniture

Console Dining Tables

Just as consoles can double as desks for an office, they can also function as compact dining surfaces. This is great if you have a basement media room that’s dedicated to lounging and TV watching. Simply line up two high-top consoles along a wall or behind a sofa and pull in some barstools to make them casual surfaces for eating. It’ll feel like eating out at a laid-back bar where you can snack and watch the game all at once.

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multipurpose furniture, multifunction furniture

A Dresser TV Stand

If you’re like us, TV in the bedroom is where it’s at. Get the most out of your space by having a dresser double as a TV stand. It’s a practical and space-saving solution for any bedroom, and especially if you live in a studio apartment or have a small bedroom. The dresser offers you all your practical clothing storage and more, but it also has the bulk to hold up a large and heavy TV. It’s the perfect multipurpose use of a dresser in an unexpected way. If you need help finding the right dresser, check out our roundup of best storage furniture for your needs.

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multipurpose furniture, multifunction furniture

A Dresser & Changing Table

For new parents, a multifunctional use for a dresser is to use the surface as a changing table by adding a pad and topper. This is a serious space saver since it means you can skip an actual changing table, and it’s a solution that can work in small and spacious nurseries alike. Just make sure you choose a dresser that’s wide and deep enough and at the right height for comfortable changing for both baby and parent.

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Pouf Coffee Table

Like storage benches, poufs are serious multitaskers that can act as a coffee table—or footrests and extra seating. They’re also soft and relatively easy to move around, which makes them perfect kid-friendly pieces in family rooms and homes with little children. Poufs are also great multipurpose pieces to have in an apartment or studio since they’re so versatile in use and can easily be stowed or stacked away in corners.

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A Bench Coffee Table

Similar to poufs, an upholstered bench makes for a stylish coffee table alternative that’s great in narrow living spaces. In a pinch, the bench can also be pulled out as extra seating. Consider an open-base bench, which will give you additional space underneath to tuck in a pouf or baskets for additional storage. Just be sure to choose a bench that’s proportional in height to your sofa.

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A Dresser Nightstand

You can instantly add a multipurpose function to any small bedroom by swapping in a dresser for your nightstand. The dresser surface will give you adequate space for all your nightstand essentials, like a lamp, books, a tray, or a plant, while the deep drawers will provide ample storage beyond the normal bedside table. Remember to check that the dresser isn’t too tall, where you can’t comfortably reach for things like your phone from bed. To really make the most out of a tiny bedroom, you’ll want to also bring in these small space furniture essentials.

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A Desk Nightstand

When your small bedroom is also your office, arrange a desk next to your bed for a nightstand that does it all. The best part about this approach is that you can get away with decorating just one side of your bed since the desk has everything you need—a functional surface, good storage, a workspace. It’s a stylish multifunctional solution we especially love in small spaces like a studio apartment or kids bedroom. Keep to a desk with a reasonable height so that it doesn’t tower over your bed.

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A Storage Coffee Table

One of our favorite sneaky storage ideas is a nondescript storage coffee table that has a spacious hidden compartment for holding small accessories, like throw blankets, games, toys, books, extra, candles, you name it! It’s the ultimate multipurpose furniture piece that gives you storage without looking like a storage piece. If you have a family room or living space that also functions as a default playspace for kids, you can’t go wrong with a storage coffee table!

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Work From Home: 9 Places to Put an Office in Your Living Room

living room design with a seating area and home office set-up

Sometimes, the best place for an office is in the living room. With more and more people needing to work from home on the regular, we here at Modsy have encountered many homeowners asking for help designing their home offices.

The reality, however, is that most people don’t have an extra room to dedicate to a full-time office—especially if you live in a location where square footage is at a premium, like New York or San Francisco. But you don’t need a full room to have a stylish and productive work space.

Instead, most people are opting to incorporate a work station of some sort into their living spaces.

Here, we offer up 9 easy ways to make an office in the living room.

living room design with a desk behind the sofa

1. Set Up a Desk Behind a Sofa

If you have an open floor plan with a seating area pushed off to one side, try placing a desk behind your sofa.

Add a swivel chair and a table lamp and you’ll have a work station that’s tucked into your living space without looking or feeling out of place.

Check out these other ideas for what to do with that empty space behind your sofa.

living room design with a desk in a window nook next to the fireplace

2. Make the Most of an Unused Nook

An unused nook area – like the space directly next to a fireplace – can easily be the ideal spot to fit in a mini office.

Pair a desk with a chair, and even mix in a hanging plant or some art, and you’ve got a simple arrangement that will blend in seamlessly with your living room while taking up little space overall.

living room with a small office set-up in the corner featuring a cocktail table and a single dining chair

3. Consider a Mini Work Desk

Sometimes a small area that’s dedicated to work is all you need.

Rather than a full desk, consider tucking a small round table into an unused corner for a place where you can set up your laptop or go through paperwork.

This is a great option for busy living spaces or family rooms. Adults can get to work while the kiddos play close by, or you can use it as a designated homework zone.


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living room design with a large office. A credenza is placed against the wall and a desk is floating in front of it

4. Create an Open Office Space

If you have a large living area, carve out a space for a home office by placing a desk on its own, letting it “float” in front of a wall or credenza.

This is a stylish way to create a formal office space even if you don’t have an extra room.

Stylist Tip: Add a small rug to help clearly delineate the office from the rest of your living space.

a living room design with a small desk next to the sofa, in place of a side table. The living room color scheme is neutral with pops of blue and yellow and a gallery wall of butterfly art

5. Maximize Forgotten Spaces

Try designing a compact office in forgotten spaces, like the space next to your sofa or even at the bottom of your stairs.

The areas, which often go unused, make great spots to sneak in a workspace.

a living room design with a small desk next to the sofa.

6. Make an Office Work With Your Layout

Apartment living often means making the most of your limited square footage.

Incorporate an office into your main seating area by pulling a desk right up alongside your sofa to create a seamless live/work space. This also allows your desk to double as a side table.

Another great tip? Rather than bookshelves, opt for wall-mounted shelving to maintain storage while saving on floor space.

a living room design with an office for two. Two desks are placed against a wall arranged side by side

7. Line Up a Work Station

Set up multiple desks along a wall to establish workstations that can be used by two or more people in your family.

If you’re a family with kids, this can be a great way to give each person a special homework area that doesn’t take up too much space.

Consider a series of matching chairs and desks to give your “home office” a more designed look and feel.

an open living room design with a small office tucked into the hallway

8. Fit a Desk Into a Passageway

A console can function nicely as a vanity and desk in any living room. They’re often narrow enough to be placed along walls in hallways and passageways leading to doorways.

Try adding a console near an entrance or hallway, as in this living room scenario, to turn a large empty wall area into a simple and functional office spot.

a living room design with a small home office set up. There are two floor to ceiling bookcases and one has a built-in desk

9. Optimize Shelving As a Working Spot

If you’re particularly tight on space, skip the hassle of making room for a full office. A compact wall shelving unit can provide you with just the laptop workstation you need to get work done.

Pull up a chair and fill your shelves with books and office materials and you’ll have an organized space that’s stylish and functional both when it’s in-use and not.

Shop all of our office in living room ideas!