Bringing in unique furniture or traditional furniture, like kotatsu tables, is an excellent way to add cultural pieces to your home. A Kotatsu table is a table heater Japanese people use for warmth.

Before you decide on getting a kotatsu table set for your homeI'll share with you all there is about these tables in Japan. I've written tons of home improvement content, so you're in good hands.

Let's talk about these Japanese tables.

Contents

What is a Kotatsu Table?

A kotatsu table is a living room furniture that originated from Japan. Usually found in the middle of a room, it's a short table with a custom futon that can seat several people at once. It's a literal space warmer that families and friends use to keep themselves toasty and cozy during the colder seasons.

While modern-day kotatsu tables use electricity to generate heat, Japanese people originally had a completely different heating system in their houses. During the 14th century, Japanese people had irori in their homes, an underground hearth that used charcoal as the main heat source.

Initially, they placed seating pads near this heat source to protect themselves from getting burned. The Japanese soon switched to electricity to power their heated tables instead of using a charcoal burner or a charcoal heater. In the evolution of the kotatsu table, Japanese people began using quilts to trap the heat and ensure that the temperature in their space stayed toasty warm. Over the years, kotatsu tables became a staple of the average Japanese home.

How much does it cost

A full Kotatsu table set can cost $378 and up.

If you want to build your own, you can also buy separate parts of the set on their own. For example, you can purchase the base table for around $180 at the lowest. Depending on the quality, you can also get the transformer (heating unit) and futon (blanket) at around the same price range.

Make sure to read until the end of this article where I'll tell you how you can DIY a kotatsu table at home.

Purpose

Kotatsu tables are primarily used to keep oneself warm during the cold seasons. In a Japanese home, this table is usually held in the middle of the room as a literal central heating tabletop.

This low table has a heating element that allows several individuals to stay warm in winter, fall, or cold weather. A kotatsu heated table can service around 6 people or more, depending on the size of the table and the room in a Japanese household.

However, during the summertime, people often remove the blanket part of the Japanese kotatsu table and the transformer or the electric heater. They keep the cozy yet heavy blanket in a storage space together with a kotatsu heater.

And so, they have successfully converted the warm blanket table into a somewhat sizeable coffee table.

Is it Worth it?

If you're someone who likes to keep warm and cozy the entire year, then you should have a Japanese kotatsu table in your home.

Top 5 Recommended Kotatsu Tables and Accessories

There's a lot to uncover about this Japanese product, but we got your back. We'll make your research about this Japanese desk easier.

Here are the top 5 most recommended kotatsu tables and accessories:

1. Yamazen ESK-751(B) Casual Kotatsu JapaneseHeated Table

Measuring 75x75cm, this incredibly durable kotatsu table can seat around 5 individuals. Best used with a soft carpet or a large, thin foam for seat padding, this one is a great addition to any living or hangout room.

2. Azumaya ELFI-901OAK Folding Legs Kotatsu Heater Table

Made with a natural wooden material, this table already has its own heater installed underneath. It's also equipped with folding legs, so you can easily store it away whenever it's not in use.

3. Japanese Dining Table

This black kotatsu doesn't get its color by paint. The makers of this low wooden table frame use the old Japanese technique called Yakisugi in capturing the burnt, ashy, natural wood color.

4. Emoor Jacquard Boa Fleece Kotatsu Futon Comforter

No kotatsu wooden frame is complete with a soft and comfortable blanket. This rectangle quilt, measuring 75x91 inches, is a durable and cozy addition to your kotatsu set.

5. Emoor Washable Kotatsu Futon Comforter Cover

Make your kotatsu set more appealing to use by getting this reversible kotatsu blanket or futon cover. It's washable and highly durable so that you can use it for many, many years.

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How To Make a DIY Kotatsu

No Japanese house is complete without a kotatsu table. So if you want to incorporate this piece of Japanese culture into your home, you're in for a treat.

Here's how you can make your Japanese kotatsu at home:

1. Figure out where you want your heated table.

The ideal location for your kotatsu is somewhere spacious and free of clutter. As much as possible, choose a place that gives a relaxing ambiance.

2. Gather your materials.

The basic materials you need for a kotatsu set are:

  • A thick and comfortable futon or blanket.
  • A soft carpet or padding for your seats.
  • A low table.
  • A heater.

3. Set up your heated kotatsu table.

If you're using a carpet, place it right in the middle of the room. Put the table frame on the rug, and make sure that it's right in the center. Set the heater under the table and place the blanket or futon over the frame. And lastly, complete the frame with the tabletop.

Frequently Asked Questions

Let's leave no questions about these kotatsu tables unanswered.  Here are other things you need to know about these Japanese heated tables:

Do people still use kotatsu?

Yes. As a staple in a Japanese house, these tables are often used whenever the weather's chilly. Staying under a kotatsu among friends and family while eating or drinking is a known tradition in Japanese culture.

Can you burn yourself on kotatsu?

Older versions of this kotatsu that uses charcoal as the main heat source might have caused some burns and injuries. However, some modern-day kotatsu tables come with their thermostat, allowing the user to control the heat levels of the blanket or futon.

Does kotatsu use a lot of electricity?

Believe it or not, having a kotatsu in your home can help lower your electricity bills. Central heating or wall heaters usually run around 1500W, while these heated tables run at a much lower level of 500W to 600W.

Can you sleep under a kotatsu?

Most definitely! Who wouldn't want to sleep somewhere warm and cozy throughout the night?

Is a kotatsu a fire hazard?

Modern kotatsu is equipped with safety systems (thermostats) that did not exist in the earlier centuries. However, as it still runs on electricity, you have to be careful in using it.

Can you put kotatsu outside?

Kotatsu tables are usually found inside the house. But as long as you have a power socket and a place where you can chill and hang out with people close to you, then there's nothing wrong about bringing your kotatsu outside.

More Helpful Guides Articles

Looking for ideas on how to improve your home with other multipurpose furniture?

  1. If you're in the market for a piece of budget furniture, check out this article for some ideas.
  2. Another way to incorporate Japanese design is through minimalist furniture.
  3. When you think of Japan, you think modern. This article about modern furniture can help you decide which piece fits in your home best.

In Conclusion

We hope that this kotatsu table post answered all of your questions about the incredible table heater Japanese people use to keep themselves warm.

If you're an enthusiast about unique furniture or traditional furniture, these Japanese counter make an excellent addition to your household. A kotatsu table set is not only beautiful and functional but also opens an opportunity to spend time with your family.

If you want to read more on kotatsu tables and other tables in Japan and the rest of the world, just look around our website and check out other helpful articles.