Interior chaise lounge chairs add a distinctive design element and style to various rooms in your home. They can be the perfect fit for comfortable seating in your living room, office, library, home study or bedroom.
As a functional alternative to a couch or traditional sitting area, this seating option comes in a variety of styles, materials, and designs to match the decor of your home.
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Interior Chaise Lounge Buying Guide
There are several factors to consider when shopping for an indoor lounge chair. You’ll want to choose one that fits the style and aesthetic of your space and that best suits your seating needs.
Here we’ll discuss the different styles, designs, materials, and applications of the chair to help you make the best choice for your space.
A. Styles of Interior Chaise Lounges
First spotted in France in the 1600’s, the chaise lounge was a symbol of luxury and status in society. In the 18th century, the French Rococo style became popular during the rule of Louis XV.
When the furniture design migrated to America, the original French name was “chaise longue.” Literally meaning “long chair,” it was mistranslated, and the term chaise lounge was born.
Also called fainting couches, the chairs gained popularity between the 1800s and 1930s thanks in part to Hollywood. You would see photos of starlets draped over luxurious looking pieces, or psychiatrists using Sigmund Freud’s method of treating patients while laying on them.
While they were initially a piece of furniture made for indoors, the chairs were adapted for outdoor use as well. Today, they’re a popular choice for home decor both indoors and outdoors and come in five main styles: chair, bench sofa, victorian, french, and contemporary.
There are a few key elements that constitute a chair design in your chaise. This structure is used for both indoor and outdoor furniture and has a distinct seat contour to support your legs.
Indoor models usually have cushioning to make them feel more lush and comfortable, and may also have an adjustable back to increase or decrease the angle of elevation.
2. Bench Sofa
The bench style sofa can take on many different forms. It has some similarities to a traditional daybed and is sometimes wider than other styles in this category.
It typically sits on an uncushioned structure and may have high ends on either side. Some styles also have a back, while others are backless.
Victorian style fainting couches will have the most in common with their English ancestors from the 1830’s to 1900’s. You may be able to find restored pieces from this time period or purchase a new chair with similar design elements.
This style focuses on ornate details, like sculpted designs in the base, legs, and woodwork and opulent upholstery with fine finishes. While these can be some of the most expensive of the bunch, if you choose modern reproductions that use more cost-effective materials, this style doesn’t have to break the bank.
When it comes to the French style chaise lounges, there are three different subcategories of which to be aware. Each has a unique design, and many modern manufacturers both duplicate and improve upon the features of the furniture.
Ask yourself if you want a chaise lounge with a full back, half back, or no back to better help you decide which of these options is the best fit for you. Here’s how to tell the French styles apart.
Named for their most common use, resting in the mid-day when the sun is near the meridian, a méridienne style daybed has an asymmetrical design. The high headrest and low footrest have a sloping back that may feature additional details.
Popular in the homes of wealthy Frenchmen in the early 19th century, traditional themes might have intricate woodwork, tufting, and high-end fabrics. More modern versions sometimes eliminate the curvature of the back of the furniture, but still utilize the asymmetrical design.
b. Duchess brisée
Literally translated from French to “broken Duchess,” this style is known for having two parts: the chair and a long footstool to offer support to your feet. Some options will also include a second chair with a stool that’s meant to sit between them.
If you have extra room in your primary bedroom and want to stage a sitting space, the dual-chairs can be the perfect complement to a cozy nook or a beautiful view.
Named after French socialite Madame Recamier, this style lounge is known for having two raised ends and nothing on the long sides between them. After posing for artist Jacques-Louis David in 1800 for a portrait where she sat on the couch, Recamier made the style one associated with the neoclassical French Empire taste.
The artwork now resides in the Louvre in Paris, France, and modern designs look great in living spaces as either a chair for two or an area to stretch out and relax.
Source: Pottery Barn
Contemporary options usually feature a geometric design and can combine elements from all of the other options above. In this category, you’ll likely see metal accents, or non-traditional color palates, like black, bright colors, or patterns.
Also sometimes grouped with minimalist furniture, the structure of modern choices can be backed or backless, have one side or two, come in one piece or with a footrest, and may have adjustable components.
B. Categories of Interior Chaise Lounges
While the terms fainting couch or lounge chair may be used interchangeably and to describe chaise-style furniture, they are actually two different categories.
Here we will explore the main differences between the two to help you better narrow down your search criteria when you shop.
1. Fainting Couch
Source: All Modern
The fainting couch got its name during the Victorian era. At the time, women may have been more prone to regular fainting spells and had a separate room of the home where they kept the chair when one occurred.
Studies suggest this may have been due to the practice of wearing corsets at the time. Researchers determined that women may have compromised their natural lung capacity by between 2% and 29% during the era, and would need to rest regularly to overcome their shortness of breath.
Thankfully, the furniture isn’t often used for the same purposes today. However, the basic design endures.
Fainting couches are those who have either one or two armrests, and a low, half, or no back. There are larger versions of the piece of furniture that is traditionally wider and have no back. You’ll usually find them placed against a wall or as a window seat in the home.
2. Lounge Chair
Source: Home Gallery Stores
The lounge chair differs from the fainting couch in its construction. It will either have two or no armrests, an elongated seat, and a back that may be adjustable to allow you to recline.
This category is more commonly associated with an oversized chair option and is normally found in living spaces or home office or library environments.
C. Interior Chaise Lounge Materials
Indoor Chaise Lounges are made from more luxurious materials than their outdoor counterparts. Because they don’t need to be weather or moisture resistant, the designs feature leather, high-quality upholstery, real wood, metal, and other aesthetically pleasing options.
Here we will showcase some of the most common cushion and base options and discuss the design details of each.
When it comes to indoor furniture, your upholstery options are seemingly endless. If you’re searching for a chair with a traditional flare, look for options that are made of silk or velvet, and intricate brocade patterns.
If your taste leads more towards modern, look at linen, chintz, or suede options.
You’ll also want to pay attention to the thickness and plushness of the cushions on your chair. Depending on your decor, a thick, tufted cushion might fit the scheme perfectly, or you may need to search for a minimalist version with sleek lines and slim padding.
If you plan to place the piece in a high-traffic room, look for cushions made from stain resistant materials to preserve the life of your furniture. Keep it away from direct sunlight to minimize fading or discoloration due to exposure.
a. Full Grain
Full grain leather is the most expensive, and the highest quality. It is untreated other than removing the hair from the animal, extremely durable, and it retains the natural rugged texture of the hide.
b. Top Grain Leather
Top grain is comparable in quality to full grain leather, but it goes through a buffing process to make it softer and more refined looking. It offers the same durability and longevity of full grain, but with a more polished finish.
c. Split Grain Leather
Once the outer layer of leather is removed, the remaining hide is used in split grain furniture. This cost-effective option is lower quality and has a harder texture, and requires more maintenance than the purer varieties.
d. Bonded Leather
One way to achieve the classy look of leather without breaking the budget is to purchase a piece made from bonded leather. Created by combining scraps from other projects and then rolling them together with an adhesive material, the surface is usually around 17% leather and has the look and smell of the material without the high price tag.
e. Nubuck Leather
Made from cattle rawhide, this option is sanded down giving it a soft appearance similar to suede. While it is both comfortable and affordable, it is also a fragile material, and you’ll want to waterproof it and stay on top of your leather maintenance to keep it looking good.
f. Bi-Cast Leather
A common choice because of its affordability and widespread use, bi-cast products use split grain leather and cover it with a coating of colored polyurethane to make it look like top grain. While it appears nearly identical, bi-cast is known to peel or crack without the right treatments and maintenance.
g. Faux Leather
If you are vegan, or simply don’t want furniture that uses any real animal hides, you could opt for a faux leather option. It both has a similar appearance to the real thing and is a durable choice.
Regardless of the quality level you choose, you’ll have additional options on your leather lounge. Some pieces will have other details, like tufting and buttons, and you’ll need to decide how much padding is comfortable for you.
One of the most popular upholstery options on furniture is microfiber and for a good reason. Not only it is soft and comfortable, but it’s also a hypoallergenic option that resists stains and is easy to maintain.
Made from synthetic fibers that are finer than silk, the material is knit or woven together to create a piece of fabric. The tiny fibers allow for a tighter weave than other materials, making it more difficult for dust or allergens to sink into the cushions over time.
The construction also makes it difficult for liquid spills to sink in past the surface of the fabric. If you live in a home with children, this might be the perfect choice as it gives you a short window of time to wipe up messes before it permanently stains your furniture.
Maintaining the fabric is simple. You can vacuum it with a soft-brush attachment, and if you end up with a spill or stain, you may be able to wash it out and then restore the texture with a nylon-bristled brush once it dries.
Some lounges may even come with cushions that have removable covers that go directly into your washing machine if needed.
Source: All Modern
While microfiber is a type of polyester, there are a plethora of other options in the category that are durable, colorfast, stain resistant, and stand up well to sun exposure and daily use.
If you choose a polyester-based cushion cover, you’ll have canvas, velour, satin, tweed, twill and faux leather options. The fabric holds its shape and resilience and prevents your furniture from getting a saggy look over time.
The only major drawback to polyester is its heat sensitivity. Don’t place hot objects on the material, and avoid laundering your cushion covers and putting them in a heated dryer.
Most home furniture will have wood on the insides offering structural support to the hidden inner workings. The wood quality and design of the wood that you see on the outside, in the chair feet and backing, add value to the piece.
Prior to 1900, most furniture was made of scarce woods like walnut, oak, mahogany, maple, cherry, and birch. These rare and high-quality materials restore well, so if you find an antique piece that needs a little TLC, you may be able to bring it back to its former glory.
Modern furniture is crafted from more abundant woods like ash, pine, gum, and poplar. If you are searching for an option with one of the rare options, expect to pay more for it.
In chaise lounges, the wood can be carved into intricate designs and finished with stains or lacquer to make it look vibrant, elegant, and sophisticated.
Modern and contemporary designs often use a metal frame, base, or feet to add to their clean lines and futuristic feel. In furniture, you’ll most commonly find aluminum or stainless steel providing the support.
The metal can come in many different finishes, but these five are most common.
Usually achieved by darkening or tarnishing the metal, antique finishes are designed to make the piece look attractively aged.
If you prefer a finish without as much shine, you might like the way brushed metal looks. With tiny brush marks and a matte glow, it’s an understated option.
Hammered metal is a texturized option that looks exactly how it sounds. The hammered depressions may be evenly spaced or sporadic throughout the surface to create interesting designs or patterns.
If you like the look of a mirror-like reflective surface, polished metal might be the right fit for you. One potential drawback of this finish is that it shows fingerprints and smudges, so it may not be a good choice if you have small children or pets with wet noses.
Another matte option, satin finishes have a bit more luster than a brushed design, but typically don’t have brush strokes.
B. Interior Chaise Lounge Considerations
Any savvy shopper knows, picking out a new piece of furniture for your home means considering additional variables beyond just construction, style, and materials. Here we want to point out a few additional things to think about as you narrow down your choices.
1. Existing Decor
In each of the different styles and designs of interior chaise chairs, you have numerous colors, finishes, and design elements to choose from. While this piece of furniture has traditional Victorian beginnings, now you can purchase one that fits with nearly any existing home decor.
Take the time to evaluate your current interior design. Ask questions like:
- What color elements have I already incorporated into space?
- Do I want a piece of furniture that coordinates with my set, or that serves as an accent piece?
- What is my overall aesthetic, and does my choice match?
- Are there wood elements in my existing furniture?
- Are any of my current pieces made of leather, and what’s the quality?
These questions and others about the style and decor of your home can help you choose an addition that will both match and compliment your existing theme.
A chaise lounge is not a small piece of furniture. They measure between five and six feet long and may require even more space if they recline or are wide enough to seat two people.
Measure the available space in your home and search for pieces that will fit without overwhelming it. Keep in mind that you may also want to add a side table or area rug to frame the furniture better, so you may need to allow for a bit of wiggle room.
Manufacturers and online retailers will include the dimensions of the assembled furniture on their website to help you choose an option that fits perfectly in your home.
Source: Home Gallery Stores
People use furniture in many ways. Ask yourself how your purchase will best fit into your home.
Will it be a place for guests to recline and feel comfortable? Will it be a comfortable space in your primary bedroom? Will your children use it often? Is it the perfect addition to your home office or study?
Each of these purposes calls for a different size, style, and material to get the most out of the lounge. By choosing an option that both matches your home decor, and how you plan to use it most often, you’ll be satisfied with your purchase.
There are a few additional elements that might influence your choice when you’re ready to buy a chaise for your home. Be sure to factor these into your decision-making process.
Your delivery options will depend on where you purchase your new chaise lounge. While nearly every retailer will offer an option, it’s important to understand the details and how they might impact the cost of your purchase.
Ask about delivery fees and the expected time frame. Research the warranty or guarantee to ensure that you won’t be stuck accepting a damaged piece of furniture if it’s not covered in the agreement.
Also, find information on the return policy. Know if you will need to pay a restocking fee or additional delivery charges if the item isn’t what you expect.
Finally, read the fine print online or ask the salesperson about assembly. Some chairs will come fully assembled, while others will arrive in multiple pieces.
Some retailers will offer assembly for a fee on-site, so be sure to ask ahead of time if it’s an option and what it will cost.
Indoor chaise lounges can vary widely in price depending on the style and materials you like best.
Like most home furnishings, you can find entry-level options at $100 or less and high-end designs that tip the scales at several thousand dollars. In fact, the most expensive chaise lounge ever purchased was designed by legend Marc Newson and snapped up at an auction, for over $3.1 million.
The main factor that will influence the price are the materials you like best. If you want real wood, high-end finishes, or high-quality leather, expect to pay $1000 or more for your purchase.
Take the time to factor in delivery and, if applicable, assembly fees into the overall cost of the item to make certain it fits your budget. You may want to leave a little extra for complimenting items, like area rugs or end tables, that will highlight your new piece of furniture.
Where to Interior Chaise Lounges
Interior chaise lounges are available online from a plethora of retailers. Whether you choose to shop at an online-only store or one with brick and mortar location, you’ll have a huge selection for every budget. Here are a few of our favorites.