Choosing The Perfect Coffee Table: Here Are 5 Tips

A living room without a coffee table gives an undone look. Just as a blusher completes a woman’s overall look, so too a coffee table.

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They suit several purposes, from completing the living room look to adding display and storage value. Given the options, it’s tough to identify the right coffee table style for your room. Should you go for a round or rectangle coffee table? Should it have a glass top? Will a pouf stool look good in the living room? The options can be confusing and overwhelming.

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A coffee table is more than a place for your teacup. This décor prop is also used to hold newspapers, magazines, AC/ TV remotes, handheld devices, etc. Think about the size, shape, material, and extra functionalities to make the perfect coffee table look like any living room furniture. Since a coffee table is the living room’s centerpiece, here are five tips to help you choose one to suit your lifestyle preferences and needs.

Consider Space Limitations

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A coffee table is a design accessory, so it must fit into your space to give the best functional value. Most people like to go for minimal coffee tables as they help create a base for other styling details like plants, books, candles for a celebration—Mull over the room dimensions before fitting a coffee table.

Keep in mind the space between your sofa and coffee table. Ideally, place a coffee table at a nearby distance from the sofa so that it can get easy access for keeping hot and cold drinks and liquors, yet be far enough to stretch your legs. Also, plan the distance of your coffee table from other seating arrangements in your living room. Make sure each living room furniture gets its comfortable space to avoid cramping.

Size Matters

The coffee table height is as important as theshape. When thinking of the coffee table size, consider the room size first and the sitting arrangement. The table height should be no lower than 1-2 inches from your sofa height. Choose a coffee table of the right height and size so that your guests can easily reach to keep their glasses and cups.

A higher sofa will require a taller coffee table of about 20-21 inches in height. The taller tables are convenient for guests as it saves people from bending down to match the table height. Keep the coffee table of the same height, or a little lower, as your sofa seats. Another rule of thumb is that the coffee table length should be less than two-thirds of the sofa. A more prominent coffee might take up an excess of space and make your guests squeeze around your living room furniture.

Explore Shapes

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The coffee table shape is as fundamental as its size. A rectangular-shaped coffee table will be perfectly compatible with a large-size or L-shaped sofa. For a compact sitting arrangement, a square-shaped coffee table is ideal. If you have toddlers or pets at home, go for a round or oval-shaped coffee table as its corner edges aren’t sharp and therefore harmless. Coffee tables with pointed edges may injure people at home. A rectangular-shaped coffee table will give you the leg space to walk without harming yourself.

You can try out quadratic-shaped coffee tables to bring symmetry to the room. In a large-sized room, you may put over one coffee table to give a last look to the room. Mix and match coffee tables to make your living room décor unusual and statement-making. Some spaces may look better with multiple smaller coffee tables.

Material Selection

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Most home lovers may think nothing beyond wood while getting a coffee table. Modern-day coffee tables come in a variety of materials for functionally pleasing tables. Material preference for a coffee table is entirely an individual choice and depends on personal taste. While a designer wooden table may look modern and classy, a glass top over brass or steel gives a contemporary look. However, the glass may not be the best choice if kids are around. Oak and maple express a casual approach, whereas cherry and walnut have a more formal look.

Go by the interior designing rules or follow your gut feeling to know the best material for your living space. Use practical reasoning to decide between wood, marble, or glass. Whatever the material of your choice, keep post-installation cleanliness in mind when buying or refurbishing your coffee table. Pay attention to the price points too. Depending on your chosen material, a coffee table can be budget-friendly to ultra-expensive. Bend a little on your budget as long as the coffee table you wish for your interiors does not compromise quality.

Estimate Its Functions

There is a purpose and use involved when buying a coffee table. These affect or influence your choice. Find out the primary motive of the table. Do you want to use it as a showpiece, or will it add storage value too? When thinking from a storage angle, choose a coffee table with drawers or shelves. If you want it for aesthetic reasons, then get a simple or designer coffee table to serve the purpose.

Try to assemble different coffee tables in your sitting area if there is room for another coffee table. You can pick similar-looking coffee tables of varied sizes to give an unusual look.

Alternatives To Delve Into

Thinking outside the box may allow you to find the perfect coffee table. Cedar chests, old steamer trunks, and ottomans are uncommon alternatives to the classic coffee table. Each has its distinctive appeal.

Ottomans made of leather or beautiful fabrics add visual interest to your living room. You can put up your feet on the ottomans without worrying about the tabletop. They work well in high-traffic family rooms.

Old steamer trunks were the only way immigrants considered when shifting from one place to another. A trunk also carries vintage value or nostalgia and is a curious conversation piece.

If you wish to put your creative juices in assembling coffee tables, place two cables next to each other to create one larger table. You can curate several eco-friendly garden stools to use as a sofa table. Convert diverse colors and patterns of your garden stool into indoor coffee tables.

Key Notes

A coffee table is a refined style statement. You can choose a formal, informal, or vintage look to match your furniture and décor appeal. Find out your budget limits before buying a coffee table for your taste and specification. Cruise the flea markets or wander in antique shops to search for the ideal coffee table.


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