Coffee Table Styling 101

I’m always interested to see what people choose to display on their coffee tables. It says a lot about your interests and personal taste. As the focal point of a living room, it also holds the captive attention of your guests — so give them something nice to look at!

A coffee table is the perfect place to showcase special items: beautiful art books, objets picked up on your travels, curios and candles. But how do we artfully display them so it doesn’t wind up looking like clutter? Here are five key components to creating the perfect coffee table vignette:

1. Books, books and more books.

The hardcover art and design books I’ve collected over the years are some of my most treasured possessions. They also double as decorative objects. Use them as the foundation for your coffee table design. If you have the room, I love the look of four separate piles with a centerpiece in the middle. Two stacks side by side work equally as well.

2. Something fresh.

Incorporating at least one floral arrangement or bit of greenery adds a lot of dimension. It also creates a bit of varying height, which is a nice element to play with when styling a coffee table vignette. You could also use a terrarium for this purpose.

3. Candles.

Even one candle worked into an arrangement can add plenty of warmth and ambiance. Try one housed in something that adds colour or shine to the table, like mercury glass.

4. Decorative objects.

Once you’ve laid the foundation with the above items, it’s time to have some fun by adding beautiful and unusual objects. Layer them on top of your books or group them around a vase. Coral, seashells, crystals or a magnifying glass are good places to start, but be creative — the more original the better.

5. A tray.

To avoid creating clutter, keep select items grouped together on a tray. Substitute one pile of books with the tray and place your candle and decorative objects on it. Opt for something with a pattern, colour or mirrored surface, like this bone inlay style.

Voila! Go forth and decorate like a coffee table-styling pro.

Psst… stay tuned next week for my new coffee table book picks.

Photo credits:
1. The Glitter Guide
2. Design Darling
3. The Everygirl
4. Flourish Design
5. Design Manifest

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