Ottoman vs Coffee Table

Choosing between an Ottoman and a Coffee Table is often confusing, if not a nightmare. Nowadays, ottomans often serve double functions in many homes: as sitting places and as coffee tables. Ottomans may seem to be a lot comfier and versatile, but are usually very bulky and not so suitable for some formal occasions. On the other hand, coffee tables are often more compact, but perhaps are not as flexible in usage.

Before we make a choice, let’s take a good look at ottomans and coffee tables first so that you are aware in what ways that they are different.


Especially in American English, an ottoman is a padded, upholstered seat or bench, often having neither a back nor arms. An ottoman is usually used as a stool, footstool, and/or coffee table. As a rule, ottomans are always stuffed over; they are completely padded so that there is no wood (or any other solid frame structure) visible.

Coffee Table

A coffee table is a long and low table that is designed to accompany sofas or chairs in the living room or sitting room. It is low enough to allow a convenient reach from the seating position. Coffee tables are used to support beverages, books, magazines, plates of dishes, and other small items. Coffee tables are traditionally constructed of wood, but modern ones tend to use stainless steel or aluminum.


If you have a kid in your home, then ottomans are a safer bet due to the softer surfaces. Ottomans are also the way to go if you want to have an extra seating place whenever necessary. However, if you have limited space available, then a coffee table can function excellently without making the room too cramped.