How To Style Your Coffee Table
Design editors Joel Bray and Jennifer Koper offer expert coffee table styling tips.
Styling is one of the final steps to decorating a room – and often, it’s these finishing touches that really bring a space to life. One of our favorite pieces to style is the coffee table. Its empty surface leaves so much possibility, and is the perfect opportunity to inject some character into your living room. Here are our top tips and tricks to styling your coffee table.
A favorite styling move of ours is to “divide” the coffee table surface into quadrants or sections, and then treat each one differently with objects or stacks in various heights. This works wonderfully on square coffee tables because it’s easy to divide into four quadrants.
Not sure what to top on each quadrant? Try stacking some books on a couple of the quadrants and layer an object of interest or a box on top. Fill another quadrant with a tray, and place a floral on top of the other. This will create a lush and layered look that’s full of personality.
Another way to style a coffee table is to be less strategic, and place your accessories in a more organic way. Use something sculptural and sprinkle in things that you love, but lay them more loosely by leaving negative space between them. The key here is to make sure the objects relate to one another to ensure the vignette still looks put together, instead of a jumble of random objects.
On our editor-in-chief Suzanne Dimma’s cottage coffee table, the sculptural piece is the antler. A favorite book, some river stones and sentimental objects break up the negative space.
A popular and functional coffee table option is an ottoman. Place a tray on top to create a usable surface – but make sure to leave a little space so you can rest your feet on top, too!
Dress up your ottoman with textiles, such as a throw blanket or a beautiful scarf. Top the tray with some books, a couple of personal objects and a floral for height.
When your coffee table is artful and sculptural, it may not need any surface styling.
For example, The Bell Table by Sebastian Herkner is a beautiful shape and can really stand alone with no additional styling.