20 Quirky Alternatives to Nightstands

If your bedroom's feeling like a bit of a snooze, these pieces could be just the wake-up call it needs.

Get Stumped

Sustainably harvested from fallen cypress trees, no two of these upcycled stumps are identical. Of course, you’ll realize that anyway if you buy more than one, which we think is a capital idea. BUY IT: West Elm, $249

Graceful Garden Stool

This sturdy little ceramic number puts a southwestern spin on a classic Chinese accessory. Want to perch a carafe of water on top? Just add a piece of circular glass. BUY IT: Overstock, $89

Invisible Shelves

For serious storage without visual clutter, you can’t go wrong with clear, seamless acrylic. Bonus: If a midnight-redecorating urge seizes you, this mod piece rolls smoothly from room to room. BUY IT: CB2, $349

Rustic-Industrial Perch

It’s high time bedrooms started looking more like tree houses. A step in the right direction: A playful hanging side table, handmade with reclaimed barn wood and rope. BUY IT: Grindstone Design via Etsy, $79 and up

Traveler's Trunk

Dream of exotic ports of call with a relic of old-school ocean voyages — minus the seasickness, plus space to stow winter blankets. BUY IT: Pottery Barn, $400

Jungle Nook

Here’s a sweet bedtime story: Carved by hand from kiln-dried teak, this noble beast was "found" in a tree rather than made. The Laotian artisans behind each elephant say that they free them with their tools. BUY IT: Uncommon Goods, $350

Casablancan Chic

This Moroccan-inspired piece’s lacy metalwork is ideal for an eclectic space with a low bed — and its neutral tone pairs beautifully with big, bold patterns. BUY IT: Koehler Home Decor, $51

All-Purpose Piece

Hand-woven of sturdy rattan and texturized with a natural-tea finish, this double-duty catch-all functions as a nightstand and a linen bin, toy box or hamper (hey, space is tight for some of us, alright?). BUY IT: West Elm, $115

Advanced Geometry

Instead of adding interest behind the bed with a headboard, go for sculptural details with a bold, geometric set of shelves. This baby will accommodate a year’s worth of bedtime reads. BUY IT: Target, $126

A Step Up

Available in black and white, this solid-wood stepstool is a minimalist’s bedside bestie. As one product reviewer noted, "It is also excellent for full-figured felines who like to look out the windows." BUY IT: Ikea, $20

Jewel Box

An etagere in the living room is a nice touch, to be sure, but it’s a showstopper in the bedroom. The largest shelf is big enough for a reading lamp, while the smaller ones make everything from novels to a trusty sleep mask look like treasures. BUY IT: Overstock, $263

Room Service

Breakfast in bed sounds great, but have you ever tried to balance one of those little trays on your lap? A "C" table offers the same convenience minus the heartbreak of OJ all over your PJs. BUY IT: Hayneedle, $50

Crisp White Lines

All-weather barstools are even sturdier than side tables — and they often cost less. This one is perfect when you need a bit of extra height. BUY IT: Blu Dot, $299

From Bar to Boudoir

Books and bud vases look even better on these interchangeable glass and mirrored shelves than cocktail ingredients do. BUY IT: CB2, $199

Space-Age Storage

The Kartell Componibili modular unit that inspired this little fellow is in the permanent collection at NYC’s Museum of Modern Art, and it’s easy to see why: Sleek, compact, and timeless, it’s a futuristic-design classic. BUY IT: Modish, $99

Bistro Detail

What’s the difference between a chair-as-nightstand that’s casually stylish and one that gives the impression that you haven’t finished moving in? Classic form, of course. Factories in Europe have been producing this bentwood piece based on Michael Thonet’s original design since 1859. BUY IT: Crate and Barrel, $149

Delicate Shelves

When floor space is hard to come by, skip a mounted lamp and hang a circular unit directly on the wall. An open piece like this one provides plenty of room for tchotchkes without a heavy footprint. BUY IT: Urban Outfitters, $59

Dual-Purpose Ottoman

Have a seat on this padded piece when you’re putting on your shoes in the morning — then flip the lid and use the serving tray on the underside to park your phone at the end of the night. Why isn’t all bedroom furniture this versatile? BUY IT: Brylane Home, $80

Stylish Stack

If you’re not one of those people who just happens to have a pile of perfectly-weathered vintage suitcases to repurpose as a whimsical nightstand, might we suggest this trio of fabric-and-wood boxes? BUY IT: Hayneedle, $86

Impromptu Work Surface

Attention, studio-apartment dwellers: When the smallest piece of this solid-wood desk is tucked in, it’s an especially-studious bedroom piece. Roll out the lower level, and voila—it’s a home office. BUY IT: Container Store, $299

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