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Hall Benches - They Hold It All

Apr 8, 2008
Storage is always a problem in homes. In fact, it's probably the reason why American homes are getting so large. We've run out of room for all the stuff we own.

This isn't surprising, given our penchant for getting more and wanting more. Pioneers used to carry everything they ever needed in a covered wagon and just made due. In contrast, we simply go out and rent storage units once we get so much stuff the three car garage can't hold even a single car.

There are storage solutions that not only add extra space in your home, but are also less expensive than a cavernous storage unit that's miles away from your home.

You may not have even realized it, but those halls in your home are the perfect place to add storage by way of hall benches. Not only do these benches offer you additional space to hide away your stuff, but they also offer additional seating whenever you need it.

Why are hall benches so popular today? Part of the reason is today's home designs include wider halls. In the old days, halls were barely three or four feet wide. Their sole purpose was to provide passage from one living space to the next, such as a living room to the bedroom, which was always two doors down the hall, on the right.

In today's more open floor plans, hallways are often additional living spaces. They can be quite wide, and that's where the hall bench comes in particularly handy. With just a little imagination and some space planning, you can add hall benches throughout your home and use them to not only add beauty, but extra storage.

In fact, hall benches are essential in areas that have seasonal weather. Here, you can store winter mittens, hats, snow suits and wool blankets - the items you only need three or four months of the year but aren't really storage unit material.

Even in temperate climes, hall benches can be particularly useful for storing beach blankets, snorkeling gear, inflatable floats, beach balls and other sunny weather essentials.

If you have children, you can use hall benches to store board games and other activities to keep the kids occupied on holidays, snow days or vacations. It's also a great place to store building blocks, construction sets and all those accessories dolls come with.

An added bonus: Hall benches come in handy when the bathroom is occupied. Guests or the kids can settle in for the duration in the hallway, comfortable and cozy on a bench that was strategically placed nearby. It cuts down on the inevitable arguments about who was there first.

When purchasing a bench for your halls, be sure to keep the size of the hall in mind. You want to make sure the hall benches you select actually fit in the space. You don't want the bench to overwhelm the hall. Rather, it should complement and enhance the area instead of consume it.

Finally, if you plan to use it for storage, make sure that the lid is convenient to open and that it won't slam down unexpectedly on a child or your own fingers. Most hall benches have catch latches that prevent this, but older pieces, including many antique benches and chests, may not.
About the Author
Jesse Akre,author and owner of numerous home decor sites, offers online consumers his thoughts on purchasing accessories for your home such as versatile benches, inviting park benches and posh and versatile outdoor benches.
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