How To: Work a Settee

Settees are called love seats for a reason: they're intimate, sweet, and once you see them, they're very hard to resist. The answer to any space conundrums or case of design doldrums, this cozy couch will add a twist to any room. Whether you want to elevate the look of your dining area or encourage more tête-à-têtes in your living room, a settee is an easy way to incorporate a pattern, color, or texture into the décor without going over the top. From bold printed benches to chic French-inspired seats, we've picked out a selection of some of our favorite two-seaters and come up with some fresh ways to incorporate the look into your own home.

Channel your inner Dowager Countess and place a settee in your entryway à la Downton Abbey. Your visitors might not need to be seated before they gain access to your living room, but it's an inviting first impression when they walk in the door and adds warmth to a space that can often feel bare. Bonus: you'll have a place to tie your shoes before heading out the door.

Add a unique twist to traditional table seating. Swapping in a cushioned bench makes the most of the space available, leaving room for additional chairs, and, of course, additional guests. Choose a velvet or luxe silk upholstered option to elevate the feel of the room.

Encourage your guests to get intimate. Positioning two settees to face each other is a good solution for a small space, without sacrificing seating. Since they're smaller than a traditional couch, seize the opportunity to add some drama to the space with a bold ikat print, refined fabric, or a high-backed style.

Forget the daybed, place a love seat in your bedroom to set the mood. Equally elegant, a settee takes up less space than the traditional lounger without losing the feel. Place a backless or low bench on the end of the bed to create an elongated effect and provide a place to sit down without mussing up the sheets.


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 Plum & Bow Tufted Settee, $1150, Urban Outfitters  Antique Indigo Settee, $3995, Jayson Home  Parker Settee, from $1049, Ballard Designs
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 Lenox Bench, $1500, Schoolhouse Electric  Banquette, $500, World Market  French Settee, $2699, Second Shout Out
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 Everett Tufted Leather Settee, from $1765, Restoration Hardware  Lenox Bench, $1500, Schoolhouse Electric  Silk Knotted Settee, $3998, Anthropologie

Photographs: 1. Courtesy of Hickory Chair 2. Courtesy of Live Well 3. Courtesy of Lonny 4. Vintage Revivals 5. Jonathan Adler 6. Maison Rika 7. Johnson Trading Company 8. Courtesy of Old Hickory Tannery 9. facilisimo 10. Courtesy of House Doctor 11. Antony Todd