One of my favorite things to do when I move into a new apartment is to set up (decorate) my new rooms. I love arranging (placing) furniture around the room and seeing how it looks. I also enjoy finding new pieces of furniture to buy to decorate my house with. The furniture you choose can help you to express yourself (show your personality) to people who you invite into (ask to come over to) your home. When you’re looking for new furniture for your home, wouldn’t some furniture vocabulary come in handy?

This week, we’ve decided to look at some furniture vocabulary for you. This should help you be able to pick out furniture for your home, or maybe just will help you find your way through IKEA easier. Additionally, a great way to help yourself learn furniture vocabulary is to place labels (small notes) on pieces of furniture with the English word on them. You’ll have this furniture vocabulary down pat (know it well) in no time at all!

Armchair

An armchair is my favorite piece of furniture. An armchair is a large, stuffed (has cotton or filling inside to make it comfortable) chair, which typically has armrests (places to put your arms), and can seat one person. Armchairs are great places to curl up with a book for an afternoon. They’re a very comfortable place to sit, and are usually found in a living room or an office. Do you have an armchair in your house?

For example:

  • I have a yellow armchair near the window in my living room. I like to spend my Sundays sitting in it with a good book.
  • She would like to buy an armchair for her apartment, but all the ones she’s seen are either too large, or too expensive. Do you know where she could find a smaller one?

Table and chairs

Most people have a table and chairs in their house, since it’s one of the most comfortable places to eat. A table is a flat surface with three or four legs (poles) to hold it up. A chair is for you to sit on next to a table, and also has three or four legs. Tables and chairs can be many different sizes, and can be used for different things. You can eat at a table, do a puzzle on a table, do crafts there, or use the surface (top) of the table to prepare food on.

For example, I have a small table and chairs in my kitchen to eat at normally, but when we have a large dinner party or celebrate Thanksgiving, we bring a large table and chairs down from a storage space. That way we have enough room for everyone to sit!

For example:

  • Their cat kept chewing on the legs of the tables and chairs. The table and chairs were new, so they had to find a way to get the cat to stop!
  • My parents gave me a table and chairs when I moved into my new apartment. I had it for years, and had many dinner parties at that table.

Nightstand

Do you have a small table next to your bed? You may have a lamp (light) there, or a plant, or some books. These small tables are called nightstands, and are where you can place things that you need or want to keep close to your bed. Some nightstands are just small tables, and others have drawers (containers that slide in and out) to keep things in. On my nightstand, I have a small lamp, a plant, some skincare products, and a book. It’s also where I place my phone when I’m asleep. What do you keep on your nightstand?

For example:

  • When he moved into his first apartment, he didn’t have a nightstand for a couple of weeks. Before he bought a nightstand, he just placed his lamp on the floor next to his bed.
  • I have to clean off my nightstand today. I keep putting too many things on it, and it gets too messy!

Couch/sofa

Who doesn’t love a good couch? A couch is like an armchair, but long enough to seat multiple people, usually two to four. A couch can also be called a sofa, and the word you use is different in different regions (areas, cities, etc.) However, no matter (it’s not important) what word you use, people will know what you mean. Couches and sofas are usually in the living room, so that people can relax on them and enjoy watching TV. Couches are also great to nap (short sleep) on!

For example:

  • The couch I have is very old and worn out. It’s not comfortable anymore. Can you go to the store with me to pick out another one?
  • My least favorite part of moving is carrying the sofa in and out. It’s so hard to get sofas in and out of doorways and up and down stairs.

Bookshelf

Bookshelves are my favorite piece of furniture. I have a lot of books, and I need somewhere to keep them all! This is why you have a bookshelf because they’re where you place your books. I would love to live in a house with lots of bookshelves in it, so that I would have plenty of space to keep all of the books I own. Do you have bookshelves in your house?

For example:

  • My bookshelf is so full, that I now have to stack books on top of each other. I’ll have to get a new bookshelf so that I have enough room for them all!
  • He had so many books on the bookshelf in his office that one of the shelves broke and all of his books fell on the floor.

Wardrobe

Furniture vocabulary also comes in handy when you need somewhere to keep (store) your clothes. This piece of furniture is called a wardrobe, and it’s where you can hang your clothes. Dresses, suits, pants, and coats are all kept in a wardrobe. Do you have many clothes in your wardrobe at home? Or is your wardrobe empty?

For example:

  • She decided to clean out her wardrobe over the weekend. It had so much clothes in it, that she couldn’t fit anything else in there. It was time to get rid of some of her clothes!
  • “I can’t find my suit. Have you seen it?” “It should be in your wardrobe. Have you looked there?”

Coffee table

Finally, there’s one more type of table that you can have as furniture. It’s called a coffee table, and it’s usually kept in a living room in front of a couch or sofa. A coffee table is kept in front of a couch so that you can place things on it while you’re sitting there. These things could be books, tablets, computers, or cups of coffee or tea! A coffee table is really useful to have in front of a sofa so that you don’t have to put things on the floor.

For example:

  • Can you please help me move the coffee table out of the way? I want to put the table for the dinner party in here, so we have to move some things around.
  • Please clean off the coffee table today. There’s a lot of trash and plates on it since we haven’t cleaned up in the past few days.

Have you used any of this furniture vocabulary before? Which pieces of furniture do you have in your house? Let us know in the comments below!


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Erin Duffin lives in Hamburg, is an English teacher, blogger, yoga instructor, and can’t wait to curl up in an armchair with a good book.

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