It’s important to know the key distinctions between different types of dressers. The wrong decision may be unsuitable or clash with your interior design.
I’ve created a comprehensive guide after years of decorating and upgrading bedrooms. The information is intended to help you choose a model tailored to your space.
Top Recommendations on the Best Dresser Types
For versatile bedroom storage furniture, opt for standard horizontal or vertical chest compartments in your dresser. They come in wood or metal with a traditional, contemporary, or modern style. A wooden combo dresser with both drawers and cabinets in a contemporary design would be good too.
Different Types of Dressers
I’m here to sort out the wide array of dresser options for anyone looking to buy a new model for their home. Here is a table comparing notable features, pros, and cons of the various types of dressers.
Dresser Type by Design
What design do you want? This will significantly narrow your choices and provide a clean starting point in your quest. The design of a dresser is its most defining feature.
|Squat, wide frame with columns of compartments
|Tall and narrow with stacked drawers
|Mix of compartments and cabinets/shelves
|Versatile storage options
|Mounted and custom-built drawers
|Hard to move
|Single column of compartments, compact
|Compartments and a wardrobe cabinet
|Lots of mixed storage
|Many small, deep drawers
|Not space efficient
|Wide bottom chests, slimmer top compartments
|Maximize vertical space
|May be too big for some spaces
|Three to six drawers
|Wider, spacious compartments
|Smaller than usual
|Change pad, drawers, baskets
|Quick access to baby’s clothes
|May not be for long-term use
|Curved exterior and ornate details
|Complements classic-themed homes
|Not ideal for minimalist homes
|Cloth comparments and a lightweight frame
|Safe from toppling over
|Limited space for storing items
|Hanging rod and hooks
|Enough space for longer clothes like dresses
|Lacks mini drawers
|Excellent space for everyday items
|No space for hanging clothes
|Comparments with wheels
|Can be easily moved
|Prone to creaking
|Small drawers with a chest
|Ideal for homes that lack vertical space
|Not much storage
|Dresser with a hutch
|Shelves on top, comparments at the bottom
|Can store clothes, book, and ornaments
|May be too large for small homes
1. Standard Horizontal Dresser
The standard horizontal dresser is one of the oldest pieces of furniture invented – the Chest. Horizontally-oriented dressers typically contain two columns of drawers to maximize floor space. Modern horizontal dressers can fill storage needs and provide a stylish focal point.
2. Standard Vertical Chest
The vertical chest, also known as a tallboy, has a double stack of compartments. As opposed to horizontal dressers, sometimes the upper half is replaced by a cupboard.
3. Combo Dressers
The combo dresser design is a combination of two major elements. Most models combine a standard squat dresser with a tall cabinet. This allows for more storage options in a single piece dresser. Como dressers work well in shared spaces or primary bedrooms.
4. Built-in Dressers
Best for shared spaces, built-in dresses are permanent fixtures. They consist of cabinets, compartments, or hanging sections. This allows you to customize the drawer depth to maximize functionality and space.
5. Chifferobe Dressers
Chifferobe features several compartments with greater depth. It complements a tall dresser by providing space for folded clothes. This is an excellent choice for storing shirts, shorts, jackets, socks, and underwear.
6. Nursery or Changing Table Dressers
A nursery or changing table has a change pad and extra storage for baby clothes or other items. While it often has three drawers, it is generally smaller than other types. Modern nursery table dressers come with tiered baskets or diaper caddies. If you have a baby and are looking for something a little different than your standard dresser, this is a good option.
7. Lingerie Chest / Semainier
The lingerie chest traditionally holds seven drawers meant for each day of the week. Compared to a gentleman’s chest, the design is tall and long, with deep and narrow compartments.
8. Highboy Dressers
“Highboys also work well in rooms with high ceilings because they help draw the eye up”.
9. Lowboy Dressers
Lowboy dresses include short storage drawers that can serve double duty as vanity. This is one of the best dresser designs for rooms with low ceilings.
10. Gentleman’s Chest
The gentleman’s chest features a drawer column paired with a vertically oriented door. I store suits, pants, and other clothing in both drawers and hanging compartments.
11. Bombe Dressers
I commonly see bombe dressers at antique-style homes. They have a distinct curve at the bottom, often with ornate details. Despite its unconventional shape, it can serve double duty as an entry table or bar station.
12. Cloth Drawer Dressers
Cloth dressers tend to have metal frames and cloth storage drawers for convenience. This design makes the dresser more lightweight. Thus, it ensures safety in children’s rooms as the dresser won’t topple.
13. Armoire Dressers
An armoire is a large wardrobe with a hanging rod and inner hooks. The vertical space is a great way to meet extra storage needs to keep suit jackets and dresses. While most armoire dressers are antique and ornate, there are minimalist styles nowadays.
14. Bachelor’s Chest
Bachelor’s chests feature a single column of drawers in usually a squat, narrow frame. Originally, bachelor’s chests had a slanted surface for writing, most now are horizontal.
15. Rolling Chest Dressers
A rolling chest features cubbies or compartments and wheels at the bottom. I use this when moving and storing clothes in different rooms. It’s also a great style for keeping seasonal clothes and accessories.
16. Dresser Desk
A dresser desk was one of the first types I owned when I moved to a studio apartment. I also used it as a vanity and writing station since I lacked floor space. It’s a good option for keeping a streamlined look without investing in large dressers.
17. Dressers With a Hutch
A hutch is a design with cabinets or shelves placed on top of a counter or drawer. A dresser with a hutch provides more shelving for storing items. It can either be vertically or horizontally oriented.
Dresser Type by Material
Dressers are among the few furniture categories routinely made of one material: wood. Beyond tradition, it is the most versatile and reliable building material. While the majority of dressers will be wood, there are notable exceptions.
|Made of various wood types
|Prone to scratches
|Constructed from metal
|Woven material construction
|Not as sturdy
|Leather exterior surface
With wood, you get a full galaxy of options and configurations. The venerable material has gone through every design permutation in its long history. You can find wood in various designs, from rustic to elaborate contemporary styles.
While much less common than wood, you may also find metal dressers in various designs. The material can be used for innovative purposes and provide a lighter frame.
Wicker, also known as rattan, is a type of woven material crafted from natural fibers or plastic. This material is strong, resistant to moisture and stains, and surprisingly lightweight. It appears in many cottage-style designs and is often incorporated within wood structures.
The framework is built from wood, but some pieces boast a fully leather surface for a rich, textured look. This example features button-tufted drawers and white leather upholstery in a horizontal dresser.
Dresser Type by Style
Compare a selection of styles with which your new piece of furniture will be finished. This determines how a new dresser may fit in your home and your lifestyle.
|Ornate detailing, dark woods
|Fussy for some spaces
|Sleek, minimalist lines
|Distressed paints, pastels
|Can look worn out
|Heavily distressed wood
|Not for refined spaces
|Glossy colors, novel shapes
|Not for traditional decor
|Signs of artificial aging
The traditional style features a timeless look, with carved wood and straight lines. The general shape often comes from having three to five drawers.
The contemporary design contains up-to-date styling that could come from no previous era. There are no predefined stylistic nuances because various details can nail this look.
The cottage style evokes a relaxed, warm, and soft country living feeling. The carved wood and light tones add texture to small bedrooms. This is a stylish dresser option for teenagers as well.
Rustic style is the epitome of timeworn, old-fashioned dressers. Dressers of this type will use distressed wood and soft metal hardware. The utilitarian framing of the style complements larger rooms.
Modern style originated in the 20th century and features clean, futuristic lines. My example here is on the extreme end of futuristic, yet it fits the general idea of a design for guest rooms.
Distressed dressers intnetionally look aged and worn, giving them an antique look.
What Are Dressers?
Dressers may seem like one of the more utilitarian pieces of furniture. A short, wide piece of furniture with multiple drawers in two or more columns. They are something of high value and everyday use, yet often overlooked when it comes to design.
Considerations When Choosing the Right Style of Dresser
Here are some final tips for finding the right types of dressers according to your needs or situation.
- Take inventory of current clothing and bedroom items to determine the ideal configuration.
- Consider storage solutions. More compartments for sorted piles or fewer, larger drawers for bulk.
- Know if you need several smaller compartments or larger, fewer drawers.
- Map out bedroom layout to guarantee enough floor space to open drawers and walk around.
- Check that the height doesn’t block windows or views.
- Decide if you have room for a separate mirror or need one attached to the dresser.
- Match the size and type to your storage needs, room dimensions, and decor style.
Top 34 Bedroom Dresser Brands (Chart)
Below is a chart listing the top brands for dressers by popularity (monthly search volume). I did not include IKEA products, which is one of the more popular dresser brands – it has 12,000 monthly searches in the US.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is a Dresser vs Chest of Drawers?
A dresser is typically a short piece of furniture with drawers in columns. A chest of drawers is taller with stacked drawers. Today, the terms are used interchangeably.
What Is a Bedroom Chest of Drawers Called?
A chest of drawers designed for bedroom storage may also be referred to as a tallboy or highboy dresser. These describe the taller, vertical orientation of the drawers.
What Is a Bedroom Dresser?
Bedroom dressers are pieces of furniture that provide space for clothing in drawers. They also sometimes contain shelves or cabinets. Key features are its short horizontal shape and many drawers.
Understanding the pros and cons of types of dressers will ensure you find the right fit for your needs. With these guidelines you can furnish your bedroom with a stylish storage solution.