The Best Daybeds Can Turn Any Space Into an Instant Guest Room
Did someone say slumber party?
Published Jan 30, 2022 1:57 AM
The best daybeds are totally practical: They make turning a nursery or home office into a guest room a cinch. But they also add a hint of glamour, whether you’re using one for luxurious midday naps or pulling out a trundled version for an old-fashioned slumber party.
“I love daybeds because they are space saving and add versatility to a room,” says Emma Kemper, the founder and principal designer of Emma Beryl Interiors. “Since you orient a daybed on a wall the way you would a sofa, you don’t lose floor space like you would with a bed protruding into a room.” Both Kemper and Jessica Kain Barton, the principal designer at J Kathryn Interiors, point out the multiuse options presented by a daybed. “They offer so many solutions while also being inarguably chic when done right,” says Barton.
Below, we’ve rounded up a list of our favorite daybeds, including a version designed by an icon of architecture—and one that comes in under $200.
- For the design devotee: Mies van der Rohe for Knoll Barcelona Couch
- For the material minimalist: Katy Skelton Belvedere Daybed
- For the tailored sophisticate: Nate + Jeremiah for Living Spaces Marcel Daybed
- For the natural-material lover: World Market Honey Rattan Daybed Frame
- For the drama inclined: Anthropologie Aubury Daybed
- For the softy who likes a little structure: CB2 Boho Black Daybed
- For the deal hunter: IKEA Blakullen Daybed
- For the small-space dweller: DHP Franklin Mid-Century Upholstered Daybed
- For the consummate host: West Elm Urban Daybed & Trundle
- For the color conscious: Hem Palo Modular Lounger
For the Design Devotee: Mies van der Rohe for Knoll Barcelona Couch
Material: Leather | Color(s): Black, cream, tan | Trundle: No | Mattress included: Yes
What we like:
- Part of design history
- Modern but incredibly versatile
- The highest price point on this list
- If you’re buying online, look for an authorized retailer to avoid knockoffs
Why we chose it: A legendary piece that looks fresh more than half a century after its debut.
Some pieces need no introduction, and this daybed is one of them. Since architect and furniture designer Mies van der Rohe introduced this daybed version of the Barcelona chair in the early 1950s, it’s become a staple in design-minded households and offices alike. The design strips the classic silhouette down to the barest bones, rendered in gleaming steel and buttery-soft leather, creating a statement that works in almost every space. While the price tag is high, it’s a piece of design history you’ll have—and love—forever.
For the Material Minimalist: Katy Skelton Belvedere Daybed
Material: Crypton fabric and a variety of metal finishes | Color(s): Options ranging from blush to deep navy | Trundle: No | Mattress included: Yes
What we like:
- Customizable frames and fabrics
- Delicate yet sturdy frame construction
- Made in North Carolina
- Can take between six and 12 weeks to arrive once ordered
Why we chose it: Interesting materials elevate this simple, well-made piece.
Georgia-based designer Katy Skelton’s pieces marry sleek, contemporary style with classic American craftsmanship. Take this daybed, for example. Made in North Carolina, once the capital of furniture-making in the United States, each one is made to order, which gives you options: A charcoal frame with a soft white fabric mattress feels light and airy, while an oil-rubbed bronze frame has an antique feel, especially when paired with a rich, rust-colored topper.
For the Tailored Sophisticate: Nate + Jeremiah for Living Spaces Marcel Daybed
Material: Poly-blend fabric, wood frame | Color(s): Rust, navy blue, various neutral shades | Trundle: No | Mattress included: Yes
What we like:
- Shoppable online and in stores
- Trendy colors make it feel fresh
- Deep bench makes it more comfortable for stretching out
- Assembly required
- Fabric covers are not machine washable
Why we chose it: Stylish, affordable, and easy to shop.
“A gorgeous upholstered daybed that can be used as a settee any other day will do the trick,” says Barton, and this one definitely fits the bill. Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent are bona fide home design TV superstars, so it makes sense that they’d partner with retailer Living Spaces to bring some of that HGTV-inspired magic to the masses. This daybed is the perfect marriage of style and function: Its deep bench and thick padding make it comfortable for sitting and napping, and the poly-blend fabric, in a trendy shade of burnt orange, is easy to keep clean.
For the Natural-Material Lover: World Market Honey Rattan Daybed Frame
Material: Rattan | Color(s): Natural, light wood | Trundle: No | Mattress included: No
What we like:
- Could be styled in a variety of ways
- Solid construction
- This one is BYOM (bring your own mattress)
Why we chose it: A boho-chic daybed with room for under-bed storage.
If your style leans more “garden eclectic,” this daybed will look great next to your collection of houseplants. Cost Plus World Market is an often-overlooked spot for furniture, but don’t sleep on this piece, which combines a sense of rustic glamour with a practical price point. As an added bonus, the construction makes it possible to slide storage boxes or extra pillows directly underneath.
For the Drama Inclined: Anthropologie Aubury Daybed
Material: Velvet, brass | Color(s): Icy blue | Trundle: No | Mattress included: Yes
What we like:
- Brass legs are removable for easy moving and storing
- Velvet fabric is plush
- Stock changes rapidly, so order sooner rather than later if you need it ASAP
Why we chose it: Ultra-glamorous without being fussy, this dreamy daybed is an elegant place to lay your head.
Some daybeds are perfect for taking a quick snooze, while others invite you to stretch out with a good book and stay a while. This one from Anthropologie falls into the latter category. The blue velvet and shiny brass legs have a Hollywood Regency vibe, while the Art Deco–inspired shape is simple enough to work in almost any room. This is a piece that practically begs you to put on your fanciest pajamas and turn a slow weekend afternoon into a film from Hollywood’s golden age starring you.
For the Softy Who Likes a Little Structure: CB2 Boho Black Daybed
Material: Rattan, wood, poly-blend bouclé | Color(s): Black and tan frame, cream mattress | Trundle: No | Mattress included: Yes
What we like:
- Can be purchased as a set or as individual pieces
- Both frame and mattress are a neutral canvas
- Shipping delays are possible
Why we chose it: The woven rattan backrest of this Spanish-designed daybed lends itself to a wide array of styling options.
Part of CB2’s long-standing partnership with Spanish design house Mermelada Estudio, this daybed was inspired by the age-old tradition of the siesta—an afternoon nap that leaves you refreshed and ready to take on the rest of the day (and night). The rattan backrest is both timeless and on trend, and the lush cream-colored bouclé mattress would be an ideal backdrop for a selection of colorful throw pillows.
For the Deal Hunter: IKEA Blakullen Daybed
Material: Wood veneer, poly-blend fabric | Color(s): Blue | Trundle: No | Mattress Included: No
What we like:
- Less than $200
- Headboard shape can be used to create privacy
- Mattress is sold separately
- Like most IKEA products, assembly is required
Why we chose it: At less than $200, this IKEA daybed looks more expensive than it actually is.
IKEA is a must-visit destination for bargain hunters looking to furnish a space on a budget without sacrificing style, and this daybed is no exception. The clever headboard shape serves as a comfortable spot to lean against when sitting and can be used to create privacy while reading (or watching Netflix). This design would work particularly well in a dorm room or studio apartment, where furniture has to serve more than one function.
For the Small-Space Dweller: DHP Franklin Mid-Century Upholstered Daybed
Material: Velvet, wood | Color(s): Deep blue, black, olive green | Trundle: No | Mattress included: Yes
What we like:
- Ships within one to two weeks of ordering
- Wide enough to work as an everyday bed
- Assembly is required
Why we chose it: Ideal for a studio apartment (or those who want to maximize their space), this daybed can be a bed by night and a sofa by day.
This daybed—available on Amazon—is one you’ll want to consider if your bedroom is also your living room (or your guest room is also your home office). It’s wide enough to hold a full-size mattress, meaning you could sleep comfortably on this every night, while the velvet-covered frame makes it chic enough for company. “I love to add throw pillows all along the back of the daybed, making it a space that really welcomes you to sit down and relax,” says Kemper. We’d style this one with pillows in a variety of lush fabrics.
For the Consummate Host: West Elm Urban Daybed & Trundle
Material: Poly-blend fabric, wood frame | Color(s): We like the natural linen and inky blue velvet | Trundle: Yes | Mattress included: No
What we like:
- Seats and sleeps two
- Trundle is easy to slide out
- Both mattresses need to be purchased separately
Why we chose it: A daybed made for sleepovers with a grown-up vibe.
A daybed strategically placed in a home office or nursery means the room can turn into a cozy spot for guests when the time comes. This West Elm option takes being a good host to the next level: With a slide-out section beneath, it instantly becomes a bed that sleeps two. Younger kids will love the novelty factor, and older guests will be grateful to have a comfortable place to get some rest. It’s also one of the most efficient options on our list—twice the sleeping space in a compact footprint.
For the Color Conscious: Hem Palo Modular Lounger
Material: Wool-blend fabric, steel frame | Color(s): Various shades | Trundle: No | Mattress included: Yes
What we like:
- Striking colors
- Sleek, contemporary shape
- Sits lower to the floor
Why we chose it: In a vibrant cobalt blue (or cheerful yellow or deep green, or…) this low-rise daybed lends a stylish dash of color.
This daybed offers practical, flexible seating, but we’d venture that it’s almost a work of art, too, particularly when it’s the standout in a room otherwise outfitted in neutral whites and grays. The blue is reminiscent of the one used in postmodern design, giving it a fun, bold vibe that still manages to feel incredibly fresh. Lower to the ground than some of our other picks, this daybed would look equally at home in a cheerful playroom or a hip sunken living room.
How We Chose These Products
To pick our favorite daybeds, Domino’s market editor, Cat Dash, considered style first and foremost, but also dimensions, trundles, accessories, and more. We wanted a well-rounded selection of designs and brands, as well as various price points.
Our Shopping Checklist
Style and Aesthetics
When it comes to daybeds, a key question you’ll want to ask is how mid-century you want to go. Many of our picks take inspiration from the clean-lined styles of the 1950s and ’60s, and pieces with chrome legs or frames and solid-color fabrics abound. If that’s not your vibe, we also love pieces inspired by the glamour of the 1920s, with soft velvet pillows, upholstered frames, and gold-tone hardware.
Most daybeds are roughly the size of a twin bed, give or take a few inches; sleep one person comfortably; and seat two or three when used as a couch. If you want something more spacious, we suggest looking at one of our wider picks.
How often is someone going to sleep on your daybed? That should guide you when shopping for a mattress. As a rule of thumb, mattresses that come with daybeds tend to be firmer, while buying the mattress separately gives you more flexibility. Another upside to buying a mattress separately is that you can choose something meant for nightly sleeping, which will feel different than something meant for sitting and the occasional nap.
A trundle bed is a daybed with a bonus in the form of an additional mattress, usually one that slides out from the bottom of the frame. For maximizing sleeping space for guests, they can’t be beat (especially for kids who don’t need as much space).
To assemble or not to assemble? That is the question, and our list includes options that come fully put together and those you’ll have to construct yourself. If people are going to sleep on your daybed, it’s worth springing for a pro to help you put everything together, since you’ll want to make sure it’s sturdy enough for tossing and turning.
Q: What type of mattress is best for a daybed?
For daybeds that will also serve as couches or loungers, the firmer, the better. Something softer might work for a piece that mainly functions as a bed, but won’t be as comfortable for sitting. In terms of thickness, it’s best to avoid a pillow-top mattress or anything with extra padding.
Q: Do daybeds come with box springs? Do they need a box spring?
Most daybeds don’t come with box springs and are designed to work without them.
Q: It’s acceptable to use a daybed as a couch, right?
Of course. It’s acceptable and, in many cases, a smart way to save space and money. If you’re going to use a daybed as a couch, look for one that has arms and a back to ensure your seated guests will be just as comfortable as anyone stretching out and drifting off to sleep.
Q: How long do daybeds last, on average?
A daybed that gets regular use will have to be replaced more often than one that sits in a guest room. If the frame is sturdy, you can hold onto it for close to a decade, replacing the mattress every few years.
The Last Word
A daybed gives you options for every space, transforming a home office into a guest room and a living room into a nap zone. Whether you look for something sleek or cozy, in soft leather or washable cotton, the mix of comfort and style just might make it the most popular piece of furniture in the house.
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