Consumerism Commentary

Oct 10, 2007

Ann Tancio


Sumo Lounge: Not Your Average Beanbag Chair

Sumo Lounge sells hip, urban furniture in the form of huge nylon sacks filled with some kind of bead product. I’m not sure why they wanted to have Consumerism Commentary review their product, but I agreed with the stipulation that they also provide one to give away to readers. (That comes later, so keep reading.) It turns out that MyMoneyBlog reviewed the Sumo Lounge Omni and Otto last year, so personal finance blogs are apparently within their target market.


Anyway, since the boxes were blocking my front door, I carried them up to my apartment (see photo). Surprisingly, the boxes were very light.

They stayed unopened until I was ready to dedicate the time necessary to deal with more “furniture.” The larger box contained the Sumo Omni, the “chair,” and the smaller box contained the Sumo Otto, the ottoman.

I pulled the Sumo Omni out of the box, and it was already “assembled.” It is a bright red bag, made of what appears to be very strong nylon. I tried unsuccessfully to rip the material with my bare hands, and decided not to pursue the endeavor with sharper objects. My illegal resident cat, Rupert, spent some time playing with the Omni at this time, and his claws had no damaging effect. This was actually one of my primary concerns before receiving the chair, but I see that I don’t have to worry about damage.


The foam beads which give the chair a unique feel are sealed in by a strong zipper and the zipper is hidden from view with strong velcro. This image shows, though it may be difficult to see, the beads inside the bag.

What’s neat about the Omni is its ability to hold its shape. It’s actually quite comfortable. The official website describes eight different shapes and supplies images of ten different colors. My girlfriend and I tried out as many of the positions pictured on the website without getting tired. Yes, the Omni is big enough for both of us to be comfortable at the same time.

It’s actually much more comfortable than I expected for sitting, whether in the Omni with my feet up on the Otto, or just sitting on the Otto itself. Laying the Omni flat and pushing the beads around a bit to even out the support, the chair converts to a small bed. Sumo calls the configurations a “floor pillow.” It’s nothing like a pillow-top mattress, but it’s comfortable enough, even for sleeping.

Pictured below are the Omni and Otto in some of the more standard shapes.

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At $149 for the Omni (currently $129 with free shipping) and $75 for the Otto (free shipping), it’s a bit pricey. This is high-quality material, however, and these seats are not even reminiscent of the old bean bag chairs you may remember from the first episode of 3-2-1 Contact. You’re more likely to see Playboy bunnies lounging on the Omni. This would have been great for back when I was in college, but it still looks nice in my more “adult” apartment. I considered putting it upstairs in my loft, but I’m going to keep the set in my living room to show it off to and be used more visitors.

Sometime later this week, I will kick off a contest to give away one Sumo Omni to a lucky reader. The winner will get to choose the color from the ten choices listed here. If you think this might be an interesting addition to your household decor and furnishings, I suggest you enter once the contest begins. You have nothing to lose.

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