Don't assume you know what a beanbag looks like – or feels like – the last time you sat on it in a dorm or children's playroom.
Furniture designers and makers have been busy introducing bean bags of various shapes and sizes, some of which are suitable for outdoor use. And they offer muddy comfort to people of all ages.
"They're strangely comfortable because they conform to your body," said Robert Novogratz, 58, who runs the Novogratz design company with his wife Cortney.
Bean bags are a great choice if you want to lounge close to the floor for hours, watching TV, and watching movies. “You can be great in a room designed for theater,” he said, regardless of whether your screen is in the living room or in a dedicated media room.
Worried about back support? Look for a wedge-shaped model or one that is more chair-like in shape.
"When you get older," said Mr. Novogratz, "you appreciate them a little more than the old ones."
What if you have to seat several people? "Beanbags are not modular, but they can be used as such," said Novogratz. “They can be armchairs, two-seat sofas or sofas,” he added, depending on whether you spread them out or push them together.
How long does a beanbag last? Few are likely to become family heirlooms: "If you make it four or five good years, you've won."
Which type of fabric is best? Shaggy and chunky covers can be fun, but if the chair is used by messy kids or installed in an Airbnb rental, "it's a little better wiping off," Novogratz said.
Adjustable gray beanbag chair
Beanbag made of canvas with backrest adjustment straps
$ 149 at Crate & Barrel; 800-967-6696 or crateandbarrel.com
Beanbag chair made of Himalayan faux fur in gray
Fuzzy beanbag made of polyester
From $ 159 at Pottery Barn Teen: 866-472-4001 or pbteen.com
Eazy Bean Everest chair
Outdoor beanbag by Françoise Séjourné with Sunbrella Stoffella
$ 695 for design within reach: 800-944-2233 or dwr.com
Super chunky wedge beanbag
Knitted cotton beanbag from Jessica Lee
Starting at around $ 210 on Etsy: etsy.com
Chair with adjustable beanbag backrest and olefin fabric
$ 799 at Fatboy: 972-304-6020 or shop.fatboyusa.com
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