The most useless piece of furniture, but I want one

When picturing your fantasy "grown-up" life - the one with home ownership and somehow, adequate savings - what does it look like?

In particular, is there one piece of furniture that would signal that you were now a "responsible adult"? I've talked to people who've always wanted a swing chair, for example, or an outdoor fire pit, or a window seat, or a Japanese-style bath. For me it's the daybed.

I can trace it back when I was first moving out of home and my mother and I were wandering around a large furniture shop in Newtown. It had giant slabs of Balinese furniture - four-poster beds, enormous tables, and solid wood sideboards that were definitely not man-in-a-van-friendly.

Nothing in the shop was remotely in my price range. And then I saw it. Still not in my price range, but in all its glory: the daybed.

It was enormous, heavy and completely impractical, and yet I've yearned for one ever since. It's come to symbolise something much more than overpriced hipster furniture.

1. I can afford an enormous house to fit one in

Space in the big smoke is a hot commodity. Fitting anything bigger than a bar fridge in a Sydney kitchen is more often than not an overzealous endeavour.

So owning a daybed - such a superfluous piece of furniture - and actually having somewhere to put it would mean I could afford to live in a home with something as luxurious as a "sitting room'' or even a "foyer''.

2. I have a very, very leisurely lifestyle

If I had a place to put it, and better yet, the time to spend lounging on it, my life must be pretty good. Mydaily routine would involve a bit of a dramatic lie down - with the back of my hand checking the temperature of my forehead - the kind that's been immortalised in a million different pieces of classical artwork.

There would be no such thing as long hours at the office, or shift work - just oodles of time to lounge, drink tea and stare listlessly into the middle distance.

3. I don't have to move every six months

I'm exaggerating, it's probably closer to every two to three years -but still, that amount of relocating means you value your furniture more for its ability to be reassembled than its ability to say, look nice.

And there's no way I could drag a solid wood daybed down the stairs of my apartment block and hoick it into the back of a ute - nor would I want to. No, my daybed would never have to leave the sunny corner in my second sitting room, and nor would I.

4. I have some kind of ridiculous, magnificent view to look at

I'm resorting to visual cues at this point but presumably this is what happens when you're the kind of person who owns a daybed. You have a view like this. Come, join me on my private island.

5. I could legitimately afford to just buy one and not feel angst

Aside from everything else, daybeds are not particularly cheap. Could I even really justify buying one?

So this is what I tell myself: no-one ever became rich by buying bit of furniture they didn't need and couldn't afford. And after all you can't lounge your way to happiness. Although one day I wouldn't mind giving it a shot.

This story The most useless piece of furniture, but I want one first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.