A day bed is comfortable and relaxing. Strangely, perhaps, it has a private air to it as it usually has sides and a back. Not quite a bed and not quite a sofa, the day bed family includes the chaise longue, the fainting couch and the cure chair.

Day beds have been around for centuries and were used by Ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. If people have the free time and opportunity to lie down in comfort, it seems as though they do!

The Venice day bed

The Venice day bed

Let’s look at five things you can do in a day bed.

Reading a book

There are great advantages to reading in a day bed. It is daytime and so you are relatively alert. You are in the day bed and so you are relaxed. Pick up the book and let it take you where it will.

Having a snooze

I am an ardent proponent of the snooze, and I know I’m not alone. The relative privacy of the day bed encourages relaxation and the dropping of one’s guard. Before you know where you are, you find yourself in the Land of Nod. And that’s no bad place to be. I understand that the optimum time for daytime snoozing is 15-20 minutes. They call it the ‘power nap’.

Sara C. Mednick, PhD, sleep expert and author of Take a Nap! Change Your Life:

You can get incredible benefits from 15 to 20 minutes of napping. You reset the system and get a burst of alertness and increased motor performance. That's what most people really need to stave off sleepiness and get an energy boost.


Doing your homework

Once again, the relative privacy of the day bed comes into play. You can concentrate and also relax after a hard day at school. There’s room to spread out and to put two and two together. More precise work, such as handwriting practice or drawing graphs, might be better done at a table though.


A popular pastime, although some think it perhaps over-rated.

Mrs Patrick Campbell, a famous actress, born in 1865 and well known for her witticisms:

I commend the deep, deep peace of the double bed after the hurly-burly of the chaise longue.

Writing poetry

This is just an idea, but it seems to me that words might flow more freely and associate with one another more readily when the legs are stretched out and the back is supported. With a notebook, pencil and perhaps a drink at hand.

If you are interested in relaxation and creativity, try a day bed.