The coffee table — the common footrest, remote holder and snack bar — can ultimately be a main centerpiece to any living area, a blank canvas to reflect personal style and taste. A coffee table and what adorns it has the ability to define the atmosphere in a room that is central to the home. Choosing the best arrangement for this area and finding the right mixture of elements can be a challenge but is also a worthwhile project to display one’s personality and favorite accent pieces to their full presence.
The first step in creating the perfect coffee table is determining the desired look, whether this is simple, eye-catching or an eclectic combination of both. Enhance a room’s décor by either blending the table’s color palette and theme with the rest of the room or create stark contrast. A good rule of thumb is to stick to two or three main colors so as not to overwhelm the small space. Once the ambience is decided, it’s time to add the accents.
The foundation of staging a coffee table lies in layering — sizes, heights, textures, colors and shapes. An easy trick is to divide the table into sections and design each one individually, but be sure to leave some free space so that it doesn’t become too cluttered. Pick décor based on layering these elements to fit your personal style:
Tray: A coffee table tray is the foundation of the display, combining form and function by being both decorative and a storage piece. Trays can be square, rectangle, round, wood, acrylic or whatever your preference is, but they all can “divide and conquer” your table to organize all of your accents.
Books: What would a coffee table be without a coffee table book? Books are a great layering element when piled or stacked; make sure to build height from bottom to top and from the outside to the center. Coffee table books should also reflect your personality and interests, whether that is fashion, art, architecture, cars, travel, décor, the outdoors or photography. They are also the one exception to the age-old rule: “Don’t judge a book by its cover,” and for once, it is acceptable to choose the books with more pictures. Books can also be chosen by spine color to complement the tones in your room.
Natural Elements: Natural elements are a great way to add color to your table as well as bringing some of the outdoors inside. Flowers and greenery make great additions to coffee tables, adding height and texture, and a pretty plant also requires a great vase or pot for the table. Other organic components, such as succulents, seashells, coral or quartz, can also add additional interest.
Decorative Accents: This is often the most fun part of the table and a great way to express your personality. These accessories can be sentimental or just decorative, modern or vintage, flashy or modest, depending on your chosen look. Smaller objects are the perfect topper to a stack of books or can bridge the gap between the horizontal and vertical elements of your table. Whether it is a candle, jar, figurine or bowl, these pieces can tie the whole table together.
No matter what you decide to display on this centerpiece, if it reflects personal taste and interests, it will tie the living area together. Keep it personal and prioritize what you want displayed to keep it balanced. By combining colors, textures and height, your style is sure to come through.