Seating: Japanese & Rajasthani inspired low-level furniture

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Aren’t low seating furniture cool and informal? Don’t you think it’s easy to change the layout in a jiffy and change the colors with cushions as the mood changes with every season? And, a big space saver of course.

Last winter, when we got rid of all our bulky living room furniture, one of the things foremost on our minds, was to create space. I’m sure that’s the case for most of us living in apartments – not to bang on furniture while walking. Come to think of it, it’s not exactly the space or the irregular floor plan that’s a challenge, as much as choosing appropriate furniture.Most leather sofas look great in a showroom display, but become a monster in a 11*15 living room.

So, we decided to go non-traditional- mixing and matching- individual pieces which were comfortable and not space mongers. Here is a quick compilation of some interesting ottoman-like ideas from Indian and Japanese living/dining rooms.

The olden day chakki (wet dough grinder) inspired design can be used to display artifacts or be used a seating with/without cushions. The seat is large enough not to hurt your a*.

Peter Sandback’s studio with a plethora of compact, handcrafted options is one of my favorites. Can you spot the green square stool?

I’ve seen such low dining tables with interesting zaisu chairs in Hypercity.

As close as you can get to nature. These handcrafted pieces are made by Russian woodworker Denis Milovanov from soild, damaged wooden logs.

Some contemporary dining tables come with a bench on end and chairs on the other. I think it would be cool to have one with a stone-clad seat such as this one.

Where to buy them in India:

There are a number of stores in Rajasthan with an online presence.  Usually, if you don’t find one for your preferred dimensions, they are happy to make it to your specs and ship it. I have seen (and bought) the low-level wooden stools without any carvings, of course, from Hyper City/Mother Earth/Fab India. Or, there’s always the option of getting one made from your old trusted carpenter.

Image courtesy:

Chakkis and Ottoman – Tara Home

Peter Sandback’s Studio via Apartment Therapy

Japanese Dining table

Solid wood from damaged trees by  Russian woodworker Denis Milovanov

Wooden bench


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